PLANNING consent has been granted for a new primary school at Blindwells, East Lothian.
The school was granted planning permission in principle in May 2018 as part of the development of the wider Blindwells area. Since then, a number of more detailed planning applications have come forward for housing and roads infrastructure ahead of the school proposals being developed.
The approved plans are for a two stream primary school with 14 classrooms providing education for 420 children and an early years facility for up to 100 youngsters.
Images submitted with the application show a ‘sawtooth’ roof detail and a predominantly brick building with limited use of rainscreen timber effect cladding.
Playground areas to the south of the school have been designed to include play equipment on hard and soft areas, activity and nature play trails and areas for outdoor learning and growing, and an Additional Support Needs garden. Two grass sports pitches, a five-lane running track and basketball court have been positioned on the southern end of the site beside Blindwell’s community pitches to provide opportunities for sharing facilities.
Councillor Fiona Dugdale, East Lothian Council cabinet member for education, families and children’s services, said, “Our vision is for a vibrant community at Blindwells with a modern primary school which is at the heart of this newly-created neighbourhood. Schools provide a focal point in any community and we are keen that the new space benefits the wider area while providing high quality learning for the generations of children who will attend.
“A design that takes account of Passivhaus principles will deliver an energy efficient building that inspires learners and supports our ambitions for a low carbon community at Blindwells. I am pleased that the planning application has been approved and we can now move forward with the delivery of one of our newest schools.”
East Lothian Council is working with development partner Hub South East on the project.
Roddy Clark, Hub South East’s operations director, added, “The new Blindwells Primary School is just one of a number of exciting learning estate projects we’re proud to have been entrusted to deliver in partnership with East Lothian Council and we’re delighted to reach the key milestone of achieving planning permission.
“The designs for the new Blindwells Primary have been developed using some of the Passivhaus principles, so pupils and staff will not only benefit from a modern new learning space, the building itself will be energy efficient and will assist our client in meeting progressive Scottish Government environmental targets. We look forward to working with our preferred contractor Balfour Beatty to make these plans a reality.”
Claire Davie, associate at JM Architects which developed the school’s designs, commented, “We are delighted that Blindwells Primary School has been granted planning permission, an exciting and key milestone for this project. We recognise the significance of this building in the context of the wider masterplan and we are looking forward to working with East Lothian Council, Hub South East Scotland, Balfour Beatty and the wider design team on the construction of this new primary school for the emerging Blindwells community.”
£20 million was approved in the council’s five-year capital plan 2022-2027 for the works. The school is due to be ready for occupation during academic year 2024/25.