THE project has been four years in the making but the rejuvenation of Dalry's 'Auld Men's Shelter' has been well worth the wait.

The historic old structure is located on Kilwinning Road between the town's Lidl store and Dalry Thistle's Merksworth Park.

Many years ago the auld men of Dalry would meet up here for a blether or sometimes they just sat on the bench and watched the world go by.

However, in recent years the once popular spot had become worn down and in need of repair.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: How the shelter looked before the work took place.

So up stepped the Bypass Art Community Group, a local organisation who have been promoting the history and heritage of Dalry since 2017.

Some four years ago the group began working on a project to bring the shelter back to its former glory.

Due to unforeseen circumstances it’s only in the last three months that they have been able to move forward with it - though what a spectacular job they have done after having a glorious mural painted in the structure in a bid to highlight Dalry's local history via art.

The process began when one of the group's members, Helen Walker, worked closely with Joe Pollacchi and McTaggart Construction to prepare the shelter for the mural. They did a brilliant job: the shelter was painted, benches were fitted inside and the transformation had begun.

Bypass Art then began working with Glasgow artist Dan McDermott. Dan has been painting murals for around 20 years and his work includes a series of pieces at Strathclyde University, Stan Lee mural in the Gorbals, Winnie Drinkwater mural in Cardonald and last but not least, the Auld Men’s Shelter in Dalry.

The mural depicts a scene like that of days gone by and as you can see from the before and after pictures, it's quite a transformation.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: The mural as it looks now.

To celebrate the completion of the mural, the Bypass Art Community Group are now running a competition and special event to get locals excited about the new piece of artwork.

A promotion event will be held at the shelter this Saturday, November 11, between 11am-1pm with everyone welcome to come along.

They are also running a photo competition for the best selfie/group pic in the shelter.

Locals can strike a pose in the new shelter, with 'auld men' fancy dress encouraged but not necessary, with prizes up for grabs for the best snap.

First place will receive a £50 Lidl shopping voucher which was donated by the store, with second and third place being given a £20 and £10 Amazon gift card respectively.

The competition is open from November 11 until November 25 and entries can be submitted by sending your snap to the Bypass Art Facebook page at

Entries will be judged by Dalry Camera Club and the winners will be notified shortly after the closing date.