Hopes are high that a Mearns tourist attraction and training centre will reopen despite high-profile resignations from its board.
The 18th Century Mill of Benholm, near Johnshaven, closed at the end of April amid concerns over health and safety. Both the chairman and secretary of the trust’s board later resigned.
The mill provided training and work experience to adults with special needs, under contract to the local authority.
Mearns councillor George Carr, who sits on the board as an advisory member, believes the closure was necessary and the institution will survive recent setbacks.
He asked for supporters to put emphasis on “rebuilding, rather than dwelling on the problems”.
“No one is to blame for the issues that were discovered at the mill,” he said.
“It’s a shame that it has had to temporarily close but we must address the issues that have arisen.
“The chairman and secretary of the board have both resigned so we need to think about ways to take this project forward.
“The mill is a great resource and does very good work, both for vulnerable adults and for tourism in the area. The aim is to try and get things back up and running as soon as possible.”
Users of the service cooked in the kitchen, served food in the cafe and helped maintain the grounds.
All trainee activities were suspended and the tearoom closed after a number of health and safety problems were found.
The kitchen’s layout raised concerns, including the placement of electrical sockets and cookers, and the general safety of the site was later questioned.
An Aberdeenshire Council spokesman said: “The council’s focus is to help integrate service users in to mainstream employment and other opportunities.
“As the Mill of Benholm could not deliver the service level agreement it was suspended by mutual agreement. The council has worked with the service users since then and all of them have secured alternative opportunities.
“The council has supported the Mill of Benholm Trust for many years and a project officer will meet with them to identify opportunities that will help them secure its long-term future.”