27 06 2019

Update on timescale for the acquisition of Victoria Primary School

The granting of planning permission for the building of the new Victoria Primary School has been delayed. The Council assures us it will be determined shortly and the school will open during the 2020/21 school year. As a result, the process of Community Asset Transfer is being adjusted. The revised timetable is: October 2019 - Jan 2020 feasibility work January 2020 - Asset Transfer application based on the feasibility study to City of Edinburgh Council July 2020 - decision by the City of Edinburgh Council on the application September 2020 - application to Scottish Land Fund for the agreed purchase costs of the school January 2021 -

Purchase of the school In the meantime our detailed programme of community consultation with the support of Planning Aid Scotland (PAS) continues and we will be posting regular updates on our website and via social media


The story so far

In June 2017 City of Edinburgh Council’s (CEC) proposal that Victoria Primary School in Newhaven (VPS) vacate its existing site, and relocate to a new building in Western Harbour, a newly developed part of Newhaven, was agreed by CEC following consultation with parents and the local community. The outcomes of the consultation report noted that council officers will continue to provide support to community groups wishing to consider community ownership of the existing Victoria Primary School building through the Community Asset Transfer process.

Who we are

The Heart of Newhaven Community (HoNC) was constituted in January 2019 as an unincorporated association. We have an Executive Group of three people and a wider Steering Group. We have a growing membership of around 400, representing a wide range of interested parties within the Newhaven community. Current members 

The objects of the association are to work with
all interested groups to develop a vision for the promotion of the community with a view to acquiring VPS as a vital community asset which will belong
to the Newhaven community and to set in place the appropriate legal entity for that purpose.

How do we know there is a need for the community to acquire the building

Two open meetings were held in October 2018 and January 2019,both attended by over 100 people. In October 2018 those attending were asked to provide ideas on the types of activities that could occur in the building if acquired by the community. At the January meeting this ‘blue sky thinking’ which had been analysed was fed back as three themes with a common thread of older and younger people coming together in a variety of activities. The Steering Group agreed that this idea should be part of a more detailed community consultation with the support of an organisation experienced in intergenerational practice and in helping individuals and community organisations to get involved in decision-making in the planning system in an impartial, open and inclusive way. Funding from the Big Lottery and the Neighbourhood Partnership enabled us to contract PAS (Planning Aid Scotland) to support us in this consultation.

© 2019 Heart of Newhaven