Midlothian school designs unveiled by AHR Architects

The opening of two primary school in Midlothian has moved a step closer after plans were submitted to the local authority.

Midlothian Council is pressing forward with plans to open an eight classroom primary school and nursery in Bilston as well as one on land east of Whitehouse Way in Gorebridge. Plans, drawn up by AHR Architects, have been submitted to the council’s planning committee for consideration.

The Bilston school will include nursery and primary facilities at a cost of around £6.3 million while the larger Gorebridge school will cater for up to 400 pupils with two classes in each primary year, and is expected to cost about £8m.

The surrounding community had their say on preliminary plans back in July, with 34 members of the public turning up to air their views on the matter.

Plans for Bilston Primary School
Plans for Bilston Primary School

‘Bilston Primary School’ will replace the ageing Roslin Primary School annexe, which is situated just off of Park Avenue in the expanding village. The school will resemble a large letter T from above. Six classrooms for primary two to primary seven pupils will be situated within the vertical section of the building and a further two classrooms for primary one pupils will be situated in the horizontal section.

Each classroom will have large panels of glazing with a door opening out onto the surrounding playground, a policy by Midlothian Council which encourages teachers to utilise learning outside when the weather permits. A pitched roof will drop vertically across a central atrium area allowing glazing to filter natural light into the learning space below. Midlothian Council also plans an area for community use which will be separate from the main building, albeit accessed opposite the school’s reception.

The creation of a standalone primary school for the village of Bilston has been long discussed, however faced with a new influx of housing, both to the north and south of Roslin and to the south of Bilston, the council are being stretched to find extra school places for children. Earlier this month planning committee councillors decided to back plans to allocate biodiversity land to the north of Roslin to housing.

The move, which is in addition to already allocated housing land, could see the population of the village double. Councillors will also consider allocating further land at Auchendinny to housing. This development alone will generate enough pupils to fill a primary school and as such, developer Miller Homes have included proposals to construct an Auchendinny Primary School.

The new Bilston Primary School could be operational in 2016 should the plans be granted later next month.

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