DETAILS of the exhibitions planned for the proposed £5.5m National Marine Centre at North Berwick have been unveiled.

They include a Planet Ocean exhibition, which would tell the story of how all life stems from the ocean, through 3D graphics.

Another, the Marine Threshold, would use projections of film footage to allow visitors to feel like they were diving under the waves, while the Marine Exploratory would allow people to ‘journey’ from shallow waters up to the heights of the seabird colonies of St Kilda and the Bass Rock.

There would also be the opportunity to explore underwater gardens, forests and reefs, as well as finding out more about Scotland’s large marine animals including sharks, orcas and dolphins.

Controversial plans were submitted to East Lothian Council earlier this summer to see the existing Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick extended both outwards and upwards to accommodate the extended marine centre.

But they have not won favour with the whole community, with North Berwick Harbour Trust Association (NBHTA) among those against the scheme.

More than 1,500 people have signed a petition against the proposed development, which NBHTA feels is an “overdevelopment” that would spoil the “vibrant community nature of the harbour”.

The proposed new centre, which is projected to open in 2020, would include a Marine Lab, an interactive workshop area highlighting the story of some of the crucial marine research taking place in Scotland.

The plans announced this week also include a Marine Observatory exhibition, which would focus on the wildlife that surrounds North Berwick.

A children’s area and a 3D marine theatre would also be included.

Grace Martin, project director, said: “We’ve collaborated with some of the most respected people in the marine world to ensure we are creating an informative, inspiring and enjoyable visitor attraction.

“Our planned exhibits will connect people with the fascinating world of our oceans as well as showcase the importance of looking after them.

“The aim of the centre is to engage with all ages, catering for different levels of understanding.”

Professor John Baxter, head of the centre’s marine advisory group, said: “There are so many wonders to share, so many exciting stories to tell and so much to learn about Scotland’s seas.

“I’m certain everyone will be hugely inspired by what they see.”