Page last updated at 11:55 GMT, Thursday, 6 May 2010 12:55 UK

Team aims to restore 3D Scotland map at Borders castle

Scotland map
A group of enthusiasts hope to return the map to its former glory

A group of enthusiasts is setting up a restoration project to return a 3D map of Scotland to its former glory.

The structure was originally built by a Polish tank commander who was stationed at Barony Castle in the Borders.

General Stanislaw Maczek designed it as a reminder of their role to protect the Scottish coastline in World War II.

Now the Great Polish Map of Scotland Restoration Committee hopes to bring the map into full use with seas around it and flowing waterways.

Keith Burns, who is part of the group, stumbled across the site while out walking in Eddleston.

I walked along the edge of this pile of rocks and then I thought I recognised Arran - sure enough, I was walking up the Firth of Clyde
Keith Burns
Great Polish Map of Scotland Restoration Committee

"I came for a walk in the grounds, it was a beautiful spring day, and I came into this clearing and saw this pit," he said.

"It was completely overgrown with weeds and tangle and moss.

"My first impression was that it was probably an old water storage reservoir for the village."

However, on closer examination, a different picture emerged.

He added: "As I was walking around the circumference I thought I recognised the shape of the Mull of Galloway.

"Then I thought no, I am imagining things.

"I walked along the edge of this pile of rocks and then I thought I recognised Arran - sure enough, I was walking up the Firth of Clyde."

Amateur historian Roger Kelly said many Polish soldiers ended up in Scotland after their own country was invaded.

Gen Maczek
Gen Maczek was exiled in Scotland after the war

"The Poles were quickly pressed into service during the summer of 1940," he said.

"Maps were a big part of that, big chunks of the coastline were theirs to defend."

After the war Gen Maczek remained in Scotland and in the 1970s he saw his map finally built as a thank you to the people for their hospitality.

He died in 1994 and over the years the site has fallen into disrepair but the local committee hopes to turn that around.

Mr Burns said: "Our plan is to restore this landscape, repair all the frost damage and reconstruct where there is very bad damage - such as Skye.

"The whole of Scotland will be surrounded by sea again.

"And we are going to supply water to all the main glens, so the rivers will flow."



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