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It was the vision of Sir Peter Scott, the son of Scott of the Antarctic - a wetland reserve at Caelaverock just south of Dumfries.
Now 40 years later, they have got nearly 300 thousand pounds to rebuild one of the original buildings that he put on the site.
Matthew Taylor has the full report:
The WWT Caerlaverock Centre was the vision of Sir Peter Scott, the son of the famous antarctic explorer.
It was built 40 years ago, and has now secured £300,000 in funding for a full revamp.
The Peter Scott Observatory will be replaced to make it better for people to see the hundreds of hooper swans that now call the reserve home.
The centre manager explains why the centre is special:
A grant of almost £140,000 has been awarded to upgrade the Sir Peter Scott observatory at Caerlaverock wildlife reserve near Dumfries.
The observatory was built in homage to the founder of the Wildlife Wetland's trust over 40 years ago.
The heated observatory looks onto a large 'whooper' pond, where people can watch up to 300 whooper swans fly in for a twice daily feeding regime in the winter months.
Trust members are currently in the process of securing another £130,000 in match funding for the revamp.
The Solway Firth is one of the most important places for wintering and migratory birds in Europe.
Over 40,000 wildfowl and 83,000 waders spend each winter along the long coastline of the Solway Firth.