New term - new school at Danderhall

The return to school after the Easter break was all the more exciting for pupils at Danderhall Primary with the opening of their new building.

Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 10:39 am
Colin Waugh, site manager at Heron Bros, James Junior Heron, Darcy Edwards and Acting Danderhall Head Teacher Jennifer Mouat.

As well as a new primary school and early learning centre, the £16.78 million new build has a library, leisure centre, cafe and sports pitches, some of which will open next week when coronavirus restrictions ease.

Acting headteacher Jennifer Mouat said: “This is a fantastic day for the school and the Danderhall community.

“So much work has gone into creating this modern, exciting education environment so to be able to finally welcome the children into their new classrooms to continue their learning journey is amazing.

Darcy Edwards enjoys the new facilities at Danderhall.

“It’s been a challenging time for pupils and staff everywhere because of coronavirus, so getting into our new school feels extra special today.”

Main contractor Heron Bros delivered the state-of-the-art building, which sits on the former primary site, and can accommodate 640 pupils and 120 children in its three nursery spaces.

Heron Bros site manager Colin Waugh joined pupils and Jennifer for two special ribbon cutting ceremonies.

The oldest early learning pupil James Junior Heron (5), and the youngest early learning pupil Darcy Edwards (3), did the opening honours in the early learning side of the building.

Lemuel Sanchez, Acting Head Jennifer Mouat, Elliot Jenkinson and site manager with Heron Bros Colin Waugh.

Darcy agreed she was “very excited” to be in her new school.

P7 pupil Lemuel Sanchez (12), the oldest pupil and Elliot Jenkinson (5), the youngest pupil officially opened the main school building.

Elliot said the chance to cut the ribbon was “magic”, while Lemuel said he’d been on a tour of the building and it was “pretty cool”.

The multi-million investment is in addition to more than £150m spent in the last 10 years on building new or upgrading existing schools across Midlothian.

The redevelopment of the site comes after extensive consultation with local people about preferences for the school.

Danderhall’s budget is £16.784m, partly funded by £6.2m of developer contributions, £1.1m of Scottish Government Early Years grant funding; and with the remainder being funded by the council.