Today's story from the Advertiser's archives sees us journey back in time 15 years to the official re-opening of Cove Burgh Hall under community ownership.

Here's how we reported on the hall's big day in the Advertiser on May 13, 2004...

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LINKS with the Victorian era were brought to life last week at the official re-opening of Cove Burgh Hall.

Sir James Cayzer, whose great-grandfather Charles was a provost of Cove and Kilcreggan and initiated the original project to build the hall, was guest of honour at the event.

Almost exactly 111 years after the hall was originally opened he presented a commemorative plaque to Sue Saxton, secretary of the charitable company which took over the hall in 2001 after Argyll and Bute Council threatened to close it down.

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The council said the hall was running at a loss and more than £100,000 needed to be spent on repairs. But hall chairman Richard Reeve said that hard work in refurbishments had paid off, and income was now being used to make continuous improvements.

“The alternative was a bleak one when the council called a meeting here in January 2000,” he said. “I do honestly believe that when our original chairman Peter Holland stood up and took charge of that meeting it was a pivotal moment.

“He had the clout to make people do it.”

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MSP Jackie Baillie paid tribute to all the villagers who had taken responsibility for the hall.

“You saw the opportunity and you seized it - with a lot of hard work,” she told the audience last Friday night. “You deserve a huge pat on the back - the strength of a community lies in its people and you can be proud of yourselves and your strength.”

Afterwards Mr Reeve said he was delighted that links had been re-established with the Cayzer family.

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“Sir James has been most supportive and we were honoured to have him as our guest,” he said. “Until we got in touch he didn’t know much about the fact that his family had been in Cove.”

After the speeches and presentations guests enjoyed a buffet and celebratory ceilidh.

Mr Reeve’s book, A Victorian Burgh, will soon be published, with profits going to the hall.