Levengrove Park Restoration – A Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters case study

Submitted by AECOM

Levengrove Park occupies a prominent location on the River Clyde and River Leven, adjacent to Dumbarton Castle. The project involved the restoration and enhancement of the Victorian park and its numerous historic features, including a medieval church with connections to Robert the Bruce.

The southern boundary of the park is enclosed by the Clydeside Walkway. Extensive footpath upgrades and tree management have improved the relationship between the park and the River Clyde corridor.

The park first opened in 1885 after being gifted to the people of Dumbarton by two prominent local shipbuilders: John McMillan and Peter Denny. It occupies a historically important site adjacent to the former shipbuilding yards on the River Leven where the Cutty Sark was built, which inspired a nautical themed play park as part of the restoration.

The focus of the project, funded by Heritage Lottery Fund and West Dunbartonshire Council, was to restore and enhance the landscape quality of the park, provide new and improved community facilities and increase the understanding of its historical importance. High quality materials were used to ensure sympathetic restoration of historic features while also tying into the contemporary design of the new buildings. New planting strengthened the historic landscape structure and increased biodiversity. The park now enjoys Green Flag status as a result of the restoration project.

The project embraced a joined-up approach to mental health care and supported employment services, facilitated by Work Connect and the new Pavilion Café. Produce is now grown on site and used in food preparation in the Café. The park supports multiple community events including inspirational riverside walks, mindful relaxation sessions, and weekly park runs. The project has established Levengrove as a destination offering leisure and tourism benefits to visitors locally and from further afield.

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