Parliamentary backing for pioneering West Highland community school project

A pioneering community school project in the West Highlands has received recognition at the Scottish Parliament after surpassing its original £100,000 community share offer minimum target.

Today (28 February) marks the closing date for interested parties to invest in the Strontian Community School Building project, with share sales currently standing at over £150,000.

A Holyrood motion from constituency MSP Kate Forbes, who visited the group and pupils at the existing primary school in Strontian last year, was tabled to mark the milestone.

The news was welcomed by Chair of the Strontian Community School Building Limited Board, Rev Donald McCorkindale.

Mr McCorkindale said: “We are delighted with the response to the community share offer - now exceeding £150,000. The project is now financially viable.

“The various threads of the project are coming together and we hope in the coming weeks to share news confirming the land purchase and construction contract award.”

Kate Forbes, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, added: “I am pleased that there is cross-party support in the Scottish Parliament chamber for the Strontian Community School Building project.

“The folk in Strontian are a pioneering example of the innovation and ‘can-do’ spirit that typifies villages across the Highlands.

“What is even more impressive, is that this building is not only being designed in a flexible manner so that it can revert to affordable housing units if required in the future, but its creation will lead to apprenticeship and training opportunities – and hopefully retaining people in the area. 

“The project board are to be heartily congratulated for their vision and leadership, and I look forward to seeing how the initiative develops over the coming months.”

Once completed, it is thought that the community-owned school building – which will be leased to Highland Council – will be the first of its kind in Scotland.

The cost of the project is estimated at £850,000. For more details visit the Strontian Community School Build website here.

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