Construction has completed on East Lothian’s newest primary school and the building will be formally handed over to the Council today. 

Everyone involved in Letham Mains Primary has been looking forward to this move.

Work started on site on Letham Mains Primary School in Haddington in March 2019. Morrison Construction was appointed to the £8.6m contract following a competitive tender process. Work was initially due to complete in Summer 2020 but, due to Covid-19 restrictions on construction, the timetable was extended. 

Planning approval was granted for 809 new homes at Letham Mains in 2015, as well as a sports pitch and changing facilities, leading to the requirement for a new primary school. The project has been funded entirely through developers’ contributions for housing at the Letham Mains area in Haddington. The school’s staff and pupils have been hosted within Haddington Primary School since August 2019.

Cabinet member for Education and Children’s Services Councillor Shamin Akhtar said: “I am delighted that construction has completed and Letham Mains Primary officially joins our school estate. The construction environment over the past 10 months has been challenging and it’s a credit to all those involved that they have been able to continue working safely to complete the building. I’d like to congratulate them on their achievements delivering these modern and high quality learning spaces.

“Everyone involved in Letham Mains Primary has been looking forward to this move and to continuing their work to establish East Lothian’s newest school within our community. I’d also like to say thank you to everyone at Haddington Primary School for their space and support as the new school was completed.” 

The council’s teams will now complete internal works including furnishing, IT and setting up spaces ready for the building to be occupied. Pupils and staff are due to move into the building after the February break, subject to Covid-19 advice at the time, with the nursery due to open after the Easter holidays. 

The new school has 14 classrooms, an early learning and childcare centre, a dining hall, dance space and a two court PE hall with retractable seating for performance and community use. The external areas have been designed for outdoor learning, PE and play. 

Letham Mains Primary School currently has 32 pupils across its year groups. Head Teacher Bruce Murray and his staff team have worked closely with children and families to develop a supportive school community ahead of the move to the new building.  

Letham Mains Primary School Head Teacher Bruce Murray said: “We realise just how fortunate we are to be in the position of taking possession of a brand new school. Our pupils, parents and staff have closely followed the building’s progress over the year and we are very excited to be transitioning over. It will be an amazing resource to have and we look forward to embedding the school in the community and growing the Letham Mains ‘family’.”

Eddie Robertson, Managing Director for Morrison Construction Building Central, commented: “Everyone involved in the Letham Mains Primary School project deserves recognition for coming together to create a fantastic new school despite the ongoing pandemic. 

“It does feel slightly strange to us all to hand over this school when the children can’t be there in their full numbers, but we look forward to all the children being able to occupy and benefit from the first-class facility the team has provided as soon as possible.”

A spokesperson representing the developers said: “The delivery of the new Letham Mains Primary School is a significant milestone for the growing community at Letham Mains, and soon children living within our respective developments will be able to enjoy their new school. Letham Mains has a flourishing sense of community that is attracting a wide range of buyers to the development, and we are very proud of the legacy the new primary school will provide for the local community for decades to come.” 

Project team

Design: East Lothian Council’s in-house architectural team

Clerk Of Works services: East Lothian Council’s in-house team

Structural/civil engineering design: AECOM

Quantity surveying services: Currie & Brown

Mechanical and electrical services design: RSP

Contractor: Morrison Construction.

External landscape and design: East Lothian Council’s Landscape Architect.

Published: Friday, 15th January 2021