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Peter Pan’s birthplace to be restored

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​Home where Peter Pan was dreamt up to be restored

One of pantomime’s greatest ever characters is to have his birthplace restored after being boosted by a major funding award.

Peter Pan’s birthplace in Dumfries, run by the Moat Brae Trust, is to receive a £1.78 million grant towards restoration as part of a wider £4m Heritage Lottery funding announcement.

The much-loved boy that never grew up, and his friendly fairy, Tinkerbell, who has been loved by generations of children across the world, were first conceived at Moat Brae House when as a child, author JM Barrie played out pirate and castaway adventures in its ‘Neverland’ gardens.

In Barrie’s words his "escapades in a certain Dumfries garden which is enchanted land to me, were certainly the genesis of that nefarious work".

With the help of the grant, an ambitious project will transform the house and its gardens into Scotland’s first centre for children’s literature and storytelling promoting creativity, imagination and play.

The trust’s patron, Joanna Lumley, greeted the news, saying: "This grant will make a sensational difference to Moat Brae and the plans for the future of the Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust.

“It means that we can now move swiftly towards our goals of restoring the house and garden in readiness for its role in the literary life of children in Scotland.”

Colin McLean, head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, added: “Moat Brae and its gardens have an important place in the history of Dumfries. A new breath of life has the potential to transform them into a visitor attraction that could boost the town’s tourist economy and inspire children today and tomorrow, as they once inspired JM Barrie.”