Nelson’s Tower is set to re-open later this month for the first time since the Coronavirus pandemic hit.
The Tower has not been open since it closed for the season in September 2019.
But now, the Forres Heritage Trust which looks after the Tower has said it is looking forward to welcoming back visitors.
The Tower which stands on Cluny Hill in Grant Park usually opens every day from the start of April until the end of September, but now will open Friday to Monday 2pm-4pm from July 31.
The Trust is also hoping that more volunteers will come forward to help welcome visitors.
Peter Haworth who co-ordinates the volunteers said he was delighted the Tower was opening for part of the season: “We are very excited to be opening up again and whilst we may not have the wealth of overseas tourists that the tower usually attracts, we are looking forward to welcoming those holidaying at home and locals who have missed being able to enjoy the views from the top.”
He added: “A number of our volunteers have decided they can no longer commit to doing stints at the Tower so we are also appealing for more people to support us so we can spread the bulk of the work. We only ask our volunteers to do one two-hour session a month, so it’s not too time consuming, although if people want to do more that is fantastic. All our volunteers are given training and an information pack on the history of the Tower. It’s really fulfilling, and you get to meet so many different people.”
George Alexander, chairman of the Trust said: “Whilst we could have opened sooner than we are, we take the safety of our volunteers and visitors very seriously and it’s only now that we feel that we can open the Tower.
“Some fellow Trustees, ably assisted by other volunteers, have worked extremely hard to find a way to get the Tower open. We have had support from Moray Speyside Tourism who have visited the Tower with us to make sure that we are putting all that we can in place to make the Tower a safe place to visit.
“We will have a track and trace, people will be required to wear masks and the Trust will be providing disposable gloves. The gloves are required as there is a rope ‘banister’ which goes up the staircase to the top of the Tower and it is not possible to wipe this down in a way that we would be happy with.”
In 2019, over 3302 people visited the Tower which was Erected by public subscription, as a memorial to Admiral Lord Nelson.