A TEMPORARY heritage centre could be open in Gourock by the summer.

Ronnie Ahlfeld, who has championed the visitor centre, is forging ahead with his plans with the help of community activist Kay Clark.

They plan to set up a display within the upper floors of the former municipal buildings to whet the public’s appetite while work continues behind the scenes to acquire the town’s former police station through a community asset transfer.

Mr Ahlfeld, who is standing for re-election in the town in next month’s council poll, said: “A community asset transfer to obtain the police station on a permanent basis is a long involved process.

“We have now asked permission from Riverside Inverclyde and the council to run events in the two upstairs rooms in the municipal buildings to create a bit of interest in it.

“This is a temporary measure while we negotiate on the police station between now and October.”

Kay, who formerly worked with Inverclyde Community Development Trust, was appointed to drive the project forward and Mr Ahlfeld has heaped praise on her contribution.

He said: “She is so experienced and her input is like a breath of fresh air.

“She has been looking at governance and a constitution and has also organised visits to other centres and has lots of information.”

Although the heritage centre does not yet have a permanent or temporary home, people of the town are already keen to get involved.

Two local ladies say they will share a treasure trove of memorabilia at the new centre.

Jean Campbell, widow of Neil Campbell, the youngest-ever person to do the Clyde swim from Dunoon to Gourock, has newspaper cuttings and medals her husband won over the years.

Another, Jean Canning, has a host of Cragburn material, including posters dating back to the 1940s.

Mr Ahlfeld said: “I am convinced that a visitor centre will be a brilliant provision for the town – a place to visit and to celebrate our heritage and at the same time provide a community space.”