First look at plans for £46 million Musselburgh secondary school

A consultation will open on the plans.

What the new school could look like.
What the new school could look like.

Plans have been revealed for a £46 million new secondary school in Musselburgh.

A consultation on the proposed Wallyford High School will open online on Monday, including the first artist’s impressions released of the development.

Comments gathered on the Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) will inform the final planning application, due to be submitted in November 2020.

The school, which will sit on a site to the north of the recently opened Wallyford Primary School, will include facilities for young people with complex needs, a dedicated Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths (STEAM) centre, and a Tots and Teens area.

It will also host sports facilities, community spaces and a day centre for older people.

The plans show a building featuring lots of glass and access to natural light as well as brick-clad facades.

An interactive online session will be held to discuss the plans with the project team including JM Architects on September 23 between 2pm and 8pm.

Members of the public can email email [email protected] to take part.

A separate consultation was held on Wednesday September 9 with Wallyford Community Council.

East Lothian Council’s five-year Capital Investment Programme set aside £45.83m for the development. In September 2019 it was announced the project would receive funding from the Scottish Government’s Learning Estate Investment Programme.

The school was initially given the green light at an East Lothian Council Meeting in December 2016, and was due to begin taking in students in August this year.

However the construction plans were delayed by two years in 2017 and a new opening date of August 2022 was announced by the council, which blamed factors outside its control for the setback.

The timescale has been further delayed by Covid-19, along with other construction projects in East Lothian.

A new opening date is yet to be announced. The council said it would re-examine student number projections and develop a new timescale, with updates announced in due course.

The decision to build a new school was taken when it became clear that Musselburgh Grammar School would not be able to cope with rising populations in the area in the wake of local housebuilding.

A new primary school, Wallyford Primary School, was opened in February 2019.

Cabinet member for Education and Children’s Services Councillor Shamin Akhtar said: “We’re pleased to share these proposals as part of the first stages of the planning process.

"The development was the result of extensive community consultation in the earliest stages of these discussions.

"It represents a significant investment in new facilities for learning, leisure and the community. I encourage everyone to view the proposals online and share their views through the consultation hub to shape our plans.”

Work is also planned for Musselburgh Grammar School, with £808,000 set aside for future improvements alongside £150,000 spent last year.

A development plan for new toilets and social space at the school was due to be delivered this Autumn, but has now been pushed to Easter 2021.

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