Aboyne and District Men’s Shed project is poised to take a significant step forward.
The group has confirmed it has received major funding from the European Agricultural and Rural Development Fund.
It will provide sufficient cash for a start to be made on a two-level building located in the old quarry, off Ballater Road and near Aboyne Games shed.
The total cost of the project is around £320,000 of which £250,000 has been raised.
This includes the major funding award, other grants and self-raised money.
Committee member Dave Marshall said: “We are extremely grateful to the Aboyne Castle Estate for the land, which is leased under favourable terms.
“The project represents a major new social development for Aboyne.
“The facility will offer opportunities for local people, as groups or individuals, to become involved in a range of practical activities, projects or events.”
He added: “In opening access to the wider community the building while providing workshop space for Men’s Shed times will also be available for scheduled access by other groups.
“Accordingly, the building will operate under the title of the ‘Aboyne and Mid-Deeside Community Shed’.
“While some way from operating, we will be interested in resurrecting ideas for what is required for shed facilities, workshop equipment and so on and where help to finalise the project will be needed.”
The idea of forming a Men’s Shed in Aboyne was first suggested in the spring of 2016.
In the initial stages, the target was to find a vacant or disused building requiring refurbishment, or a plot of land to locate adapted ex-construction cabins.
However, despite extensive searches, this was ruled out and a new build became the objective.