THE jewel in Helensburgh's visitor crown will reopen to the public at the end of this week following months of construction work aimed at protecting it from the ravages of the west of Scotland weather.

There has been no public access to the Hill House since November, when preparations began for the construction of a giant box around the outside of the building - but now that building work is complete, the gates to the property will open to the public once again on Friday, June 7.

Comprising a steel frame, a sheet metal roof and steel mesh curtains around the sides, the box – the first beams of which were lowered into place in mid-January – is aimed at preventing the wet climate of the west of Scotland causing any more damage to the house, widely regarded as Charles Rennie Mackintosh's domestic masterpiece.

READ MORE: Work starts on £4.5m scheme to save Mackintosh's Helensburgh masterpiece

The box will also enable the National Trust for Scotland (NTS), which owns the Hill House and the gardens around it, to start considering how to reverse the damage already caused by 115 years of wind, rain and sea spray since the building opened in 1904 – and, just as importantly, how to stop it happening again.

In addition, the box, which the NTS expects to be in place for between seven and 10 years, also features a series of walkways around its interior edge – meaning that people who visit the house from this weekend onwards will be able to look upon the Hill House in a way that has never been possible before.

READ MORE: Trust unveils 'big box' plan to save the Hill House

Speaking ahead of this weekend's opening, Richard Williams, general manager for Glasgow and the west of Scotland with the NTS, said: “Mackintosh was a pioneer and a visionary and we’re reflecting that spirit in our approach to saving his domestic masterpiece.

“This is a project that has been many, many years in the making and it is wonderful to be at the point that we’re now seeing work begin to save such a significant place.

"What we’re doing here is a rescue plan for the long term and will, we’re sure, protect this incredible building for future generations.”

READ MORE: Survey shows sheer scale of Hill House weather damage