Hedge at luxury school development ‘looks like cannabis leaves’

The new hedge has attracted the mirth of some local residents. Picture: Ian Georgeson
The new hedge has attracted the mirth of some local residents. Picture: Ian Georgeson
0
Have your say

DOPEY developers have left locals dazed and confused – after putting in a hedge of look-a-alike marijuana leaves next to a school.

New Town-based Kingsford Developments has spent £5 million turning the old Broughton High School in McDonald Road into 74 luxury flats.

Close-up of the new hedge at the old Broughton High School luxury flats development. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Close-up of the new hedge at the old Broughton High School luxury flats development. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Around the plush apartments is a temporary fake plastic border bearing a striking resemblance to the plant of the class B drug.

Cakemaker Simona D’Annolfo, 32, said: “I noticed it because I live nearby. I thought it was quite strange.

“I always make a joke about it when walking past with my boyfriend – I think it’s quite funny. I can understand some people getting upset because it’s by a school but for me it’s funny. I just think it’s crazy.”

Kingsford was granted planning permission five years ago to develop the Victorian school, built in 1903.

Contrast and compare: Real marijuana leaves.

Contrast and compare: Real marijuana leaves.

The firm described it as a “labour of love” and kept original features including Edwardian windows, bare brick walls and the Broughton Higher Grade School stone nameplate.

Glasgow-based builders Redpath were expected to take a year to turn the school into flats, including rot repairs, structural works and installing mezzanine floors.

Solar panels were also fitted to the roof, the lift repaired and refurbished and windows restored.

Tenants have yet to move in to the four-storey block as Kingsford awaits a habitation certificate from the city council.

A roof terrace boasts panoramic views of the city, from Arthur’s Seat, across Calton Hill to the Castle.

Once moved in, residents will be able to make use of a gym, club room and garden while a concierge can buzz in guests.

A mix of one and two-bedroom flats will be available for rent, with the former advertised for around £1,600-a-month earlier in the year.

The hedge runs up to the boundary with 365-pupil Broughton Primary next door, with the Around the World nursery on the other side in McDonald Road.

Conor Mackie, 22, from Granton, said: “It does look a bit like marijuana leaves.

“You’d think they’d find something a bit more responsible.

“It’s the first time I’ve seen anything like that anyway.”

But IT Manager Kevin Simpson, 50, from Meadowbank, said: “It wouldn’t bother me at all. It’s plastic, it’s not real.

“I’ve walked past it twice and didn’t notice it, I just thought it was a hedge.

“I used to live round here right enough and I know it was a school before.

“I think it’s fine and doing what it’s trying to do – protecting privacy, I suppose.”

Stuart Montgomery, of Kingsford, said a plant contractor put in the plastic hedge as a temporary screen while the natural permanent border grows behind.

Of the comparisons to marijuana, Mr Montgomery added: “I’ve certainly not been made aware until now.

“It’s come out of the blue.”

andy.shipley@edinburghnews.com