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Last Updated: Friday, 14 December 2007, 12:23 GMT
Art gallery in 10m revamp boost
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
The gallery will be completely redeveloped
One of Scotland's biggest art galleries has been awarded grants of 10m towards a major refurbishment.

The Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh will get almost 5m from the Heritage Lottery Fund and a further 5m from the Scottish Government.

Another 7m will be raised privately, allowing the attraction to be completely redeveloped.

The building will close in 2009 and reopen in 2011 with double the space and visitor capacity.

It will also have new state-of-the-art exhibition and education facilities.

The gallery houses portraits of some of Scotland's famous figures, including poet Robert Burns, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, and Mary Queen of Scots.

We are a great national institution and have a fabulous story to tell
James Holloway
Gallery director

Announcing the funding, Culture Minister Linda Fabiani said: "Our national galleries play a vital role in housing and reflecting Scotland's cultural assets as well as profiling high-quality international exhibitions.

The gallery's director, James Holloway, said he was delighted with the funding contributions, and said he was confident the 7m could be raised privately.

Natural life

He said: "We are a great national institution and have a fabulous story to tell.

"We want to share it with as many people as possible, and there are lots of very generous people out there who like to contribute."

Mr Holloway, who has been in his post just over 10 years, added: "The building is a bit run-down.

"A lot of the services have reached the end of their natural life.

"There's also the great potential of a lot of the unused space within the building.

"I am absolutely delighted with this funding."

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