This is despite the withdrawal of original plans to develop Kilmahew Estate in Cardross being withdrawn by the Archdiocese of Glasgow, which owns the site.

Over the past few years, the NVA - nacionale vitae activa - has been carrying out surveys and work to breathe new life into the 144-acre site, which boasts a range of old buildings, a walled garden and St Peter's Seminary.

It has an ongoing 20-year masterplan to develop the site, and by 2016/17 hopes are for new community facilities and performance and exhibition space are on target.

Angus Farquhar, creative director for the NVA, said they are the estate's 'last chance' to restore it.

He added: "We think we are the right people to come up with the solution, it's been a long time coming. The plans we are putting forward are the last chance for the site." The Archdiocese of Glasgow's plans were withdrawn earlier this month as time had elapsed on the applications and are separate to the NVA's project. Planning permission was granted in June for the restoration and transformation of the site.

The Archdiocese of Glasgow told the Advertiser last week it has no plans to resubmit the applications which were submitted more than 10 years ago, reflecting a previous proposal to develop the site, which never came to fruition.

A spokesman for the Archdiocse added: "The applications have been sitting dormant on the council's books since then and the withdrawal is simply a "tidying up" exercise." Security measures have been stepped up across the site over the last few months, after a serious accident left a teenager in hospital.

Chief Inspector Garry Stitt of Helensburgh Police Office, told the Advertiser that a number of different parts of the walled garden area have either been taken away or made safe.

He added: "We are continuing to link in with the Archdiocese as it carries out work. The work will make the area as safe as possible.

"People should be aware of going into that area because clearly there are concerns for some parts of the building." Mr Farquhar said: "No one should under any terms enter the seminary as it contains asbestos. There is no easy solution for that and it's the first step in our capital plan. We need to go in and sort out the full problem.

"We really strongly recommend that people stay away from the buildings in their current condition. We don't access them and we will not access them until we have removed the asbestos."