High school land sale a step closer

Kelso High School.
Kelso High School.

Two significant steps were taken this week towards the creation of a much needed new secondary school for Kelso.

On Wednesday the preferred contractor for the £15million scheme was announced and the council also revealed that an agreement over the purchase of the necessary land is nearing completion.

An SBC spokesperson said: “Provisional terms of sale have almost been agreed between the seller and the council and both parties are seeking to complete the transaction by March 31, 2014.”

Earlier this month council papers revealed that £1.85m has been moved into the capital financial plan for 2013/14 towards the cost of the land.

It was also announced on Wednesday that Morrison Construction have been appointed the preferred contractor for the high school building works.

The firm, the Scottish arm of Galliford Try plc, will also build a new high school in Midlothian.

Galliford Try chief executive Greg Fitzgerald said: “We are delighted to secure these significant projects which reflect our reputation and strong market presence within this sector.”

In addition to being appointed preferred contractors, the facilities management section of the firm has been selected as the preferred bidder to provide ongoing maintenance at the school over 25 years.

An SBC spokesperson said: “We are delighted that Morrison Construction has been appointed the preferred contractor to develop the new Kelso High School.

“The new school will ensure that pupils and staff of Kelso High will benefit from modern, fit for purpose facilities and the community will benefit from investment in the local area.”

The appointments were made by hub South East Scotland, a joint partnership between public and private sector organisations aimed at developing and delivering local service.

It was involved with the creation of the new health centre for Lauder, which was officially opened this week.

It will also be involved in the construction of the Scottish Ambulance Service station at Borders General Hospital and the planned Roxburgh Street Health Centre in Galashiels.