A FUNDING plea has been made in a bid to preserve an “iconic” Scottish map in need of maintenance support.

The Polish Map of Scotland was restored around five years ago and sits in the grounds of the Barony Castle Hotel in Eddleston.

The owners are now looking at ways to help with the upkeep of the sculpture, which was first built in the 1970s.

It was created in recognition of Scottish hospitality to Polish soldiers during the Second World War.

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The idea is thought to have originated with Jan Tomasik, the proprietor of the hotel from 1969 to 1977.

He settled in Scotland after the war and developed his concept for the map with input from his former commander, Gen Stanislaw Maczek, who also lived in the country.

The map itself sits inside an oval pool about 50 metres wide and 1.5m deep with water recreating rivers, lochs and seas.

In 2018, a lengthy effort to clean up and repair the structure was completed. A group of volunteers constituted Mapa Scotland, a charitable trust, in order to take the plans forward.

However, the lease for the restoration project expired in the summer and responsibility for the map has now reverted to the hotel owners.

They recently met with SNP MSP Christine Grahame to discuss sources of funding to restore and maintain the landmark which she said was a “symbol of Scotland’s close ties with the polish people”.

She said: “Being outdoors, the map is subjected to the harsh Scottish weather and is in need of continual care and maintenance.

“I am keen to support Barony Castle to secure funding to continue to look after this treasured sculpture.”

Hotel partner Richard Spanner said he hoped they could find a way to safeguard the structure’s long-term future.

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He told the BBC: “We are proud to be the custodians of this important piece of history for both the Scottish and Polish people.

“We are also very grateful to Christine for her advice and excellent knowledge showing us a clear path going forward to protect this map.”