Former New Aberdour school to be turned into two new homes

A former school is in line to be transformed into two new homes following approval by councillors.

Thursday, 24th June 2021, 8:54 am
Updated Thursday, 24th June 2021, 8:54 am
The former New Aberdour School building will remain and be transformed into two new homes.

The Banff & Buchan Area Committee last week approved an application from businesswoman Salma Hayat to change the use of the former New Aberdour Primary School.

The development will see the building transformed into a four-bedroom home with a new double garage, and a two-bedroom home.

The surrounding land on the site will be used by both properties as a communal garden space.

The building, located on Elphin Street, has been closed as a school since 2009.

The site was sold by Aberdeenshire Council in 2019 to a private developer and an application had been submitted seeking permission to demolish the school and build two homes. Although the application was approved, no work was ever carried out on the site.

Mrs Hayat acquired the site in February this year. Instead of demolishing the building, she will have it overhauled and transformed into two new semi-detached homes.

One letter in support of the development was submitted to the council stating that it would be “good to see the existing school structure being repurposed into two homes”.

Aberdeenshire Council planners recommended the application be approved stating that the redevelopment of the site is “justified”.

Commenting at last Tuesday's meeting, Councillor Mark Findlater moved a motion to grant the application stating that the development was "a long time coming".

His motion was seconded by Councillor Ross Cassie who said he was "more than happy" to approve the application with conditions.

No amendment was made therefore the application was unanimously approved.

The former primary school was built around 1960. The building was used as a community facilities for several years after the school closed, but it has been lying empty since 2018.

It closed after it was revealed that the cost of providing an education to its pupils was £23,254 a head – more than £19,000 above the average figure for Aberdeenshire at the time.

Council chiefs ruled it had too few students to function properly.