A STONE circle in Glasgow at the centre of a battle over its future cannot be removed without explosives, its creator has warned.

Duncan Lunan made the claim as he stepped up the battle to save the Sighthill Stone Circle. Built in 1979, it was the first such monument to have been erected in more than 3000 years.

The landmark, in Sighthill Park, is being overhauled to make way for a pathway as part of the city's bid to host the 2018 Youth Olympic Games.

But Mr Lunan has warned that the stones are partly encased in submerged concrete arc and could only be removed by blasting them out, at a cost of thousands of pounds.

He added it would be far cheaper to renovate the circle.

Mr Lunan said: "If they're going to move it, it would seem they would have to blast it. What a waste.

"Why not do it up and make it the attraction it was originally meant to be?"

Mr Lunan's comments came as his group, The Friends of the Sighthill Stone Circle, prepare to hold a sunset vigil next Saturday to mark the Celtic feast day of Imbolc, which marks the midway point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.

The group has attracted more than 2000 signatures to a petition to save the stone circle.

Glasgow City Council plans to demolish the existing tower blocks in Sighthill to build 830 homes and a new school.

A council spokesman said: "The council wants the stones to remain in Sighthill Park and we would only consider moving them if they were to ultimately get in the way of the regeneration of the area."

maureen.ellis@ eveningtimes.co.uk