Arbroath primary schools top out

The creation of a £14.1 million shared campus for two Arbroath primary schools reached new heights at a topping out ceremony today.

Construction of a state-of-the-art shared campus for Hayshead Primary School, St Thomas RC Primary School and an early years facility is well underway on the playing fields of the existing Hayshead school.

Michael Matheson, Scottish Government cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, joined today’s ceremonial event and signed the final section of roofing before it was lifted into place.

Also in attendance was Angus Council’s children and learning convener, Cllr Derek Wann, as well as fellow local councillors, council officials and representatives from hub East Central Scotland, which is managing and delivering the project; main contractor Robertson Tayside; and Scottish Futures Trust.

Mr Matheson said: “The new, state-of-the-art Hayshead Primary School and St Thomas’ RC Primary School shared campus will benefit generations of pupils, teachers and staff for years to come with a specifically-designed learning environment that the whole community can be proud of.

“The Scottish Government is committed to improving Scotland’s school estate and we are providing £5.8m towards the project through our Scotland’s Schools for the Future building programme.”

The new shared campus will include dedicated flexible teaching spaces to accommodate both schools, including classrooms, activity spaces and group tutorial rooms. It will provide shared accommodation, including multi-purpose halls, general purpose rooms and a campus library.

The early years facility on campus will be shared by the existing St Thomas and Hayshead nurseries and there will be a dedicated Playgroup area. The campus has been designed to be fully inclusive to those with additional support needs and includes a multi-sensory room.

The campus will also provide dedicated community facilities. Externally, there will be two grass sports pitches, together with outside areas to support external learning initiatives and bespoke spaces for early years and children with additional support needs.

With the countdown well underway, children and staff are expected to move in to their new surroundings in February 2020.

Gary Bushnell, chief executive, hub East Central Scotland, said: “It is great to see the new school campus taking shape. The construction programme continues on schedule and we look forward to managing the successful delivery of another high quality education facility for Angus Council that will serve the community for years to come.”

Kevin Dickson, managing director, Robertson Tayside, said: “We are making significant progress with the construction programme at the new shared campus in Arbroath. It was a pleasure to welcome key stakeholders to the site for the topping out of the building and to show the fantastic work which has taken place since construction began. The modern learning environment we are building for Angus Council will be first class and be hugely beneficial for pupils, staff and the wider community and we look forward to the completion of the new building early next year.”

Gemma Boggs, education delivery director at the Scottish Futures Trust, added: “Our management of the Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme is helping all of Scotland’s 32 councils succeed in delivering the very best teaching and learning environments.

“As well as supporting many thousands of construction jobs, the programme is creating and delivering world-class, award-winning learning environments that not only meet future educational needs but are vibrant community assets as well.

“When open next year, the shared campus for Hayshead and St Thomas RC Primary Schools and the early years facility will play a vital part in the local community, with many facilities available for locals to use.”

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