IT'S almost impossible to overstate how important the reopening of the Burrell collection is to Glasgow. To put it in context, the £69million revamp of the Burrell is the biggest event in the arts world anywhere in the British Isles. It's that big.

When it closed for renovation, more than five years ago, pandemics were generally nothing more than plotlines in bad science fiction movies. Now, as we hopefully emerge from the toughest part of the pandemic, the culture sector is one of the keys to Glasgow's recovery.

The city has been hit hard by Covid. Glasgow Life, the city council's arms length organisation, which delivers cultural, sporting and learning activities, saw its income drop by £38million due to closures in lockdown.

This led to libraries not reopening, museums including the St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art being mothballed and threats to jobs.

HeraldScotland: Camley's cartoon: Warm welcome at The Burrell CollectionCamley's cartoon: Warm welcome at The Burrell Collection

This saw The Herald campaign for A Fair Deal for Glasgow, calling for the city’s venues and treasures to be funded appropriately and for the Scottish and UK governments to come together to deliver a new funding plan for the culture and leisure services.

Glasgow built its post-industrial recovery on culture, shopping and going out. Starting with the Garden Festival in 1988, which attracted 4.3 million visitors, the city has become a magnet for more than two million tourists from across Scotland, the UK and further afield.

These visitors go to cafes, pubs and restaurants. They stay in hotels, they pay parking charges, they go shopping. They have been badly missed over the last two years.

Glasgow will be hoping that the reopening of the Burrell to the public on March 29 doesn't disappoint and the visitors come flooding back. Early signs, from the first people through the doors at today's media day, are positive.

The Herald's Deborah Anderson was there today. She said: "I think elements of the redesign will allow the people of Glasgow to connect with the story of the Burrell Collection in a way they never have before.

"The use of space to tell the narrative of why this collection is an important part of the city’s history is perhaps something that was needed.

"Yes, it has always been world-renowned but while there is more to see and artefacts can be given more space following the redesign, I think it will have more relevance for the city for generations to come.

"And there are jaw-dropping moments when you turn a corner to see the likes of the Wagner carpet on full display that you realise this is a unique and special place."

At last, Glasgow could be getting back on track.