School sell-off goes to vote
Council: Former primary could be deemed surplus to requirements
An abandoned north-east primary school could finally be sold – nearly a decade after the bell rang for the last time.
New Aberdour Primary School closed to students in 2009 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 later ruled it had too few students to function properly and ordered its closure in July that year.
The remaining seven pupils were transferred to Rosehearty’s school.
Since then, the building has been used by community groups as part of a vision by the authority to keep it in use rather than selling it off.
At the last count, four groups – including an under-fives playgroup and the local community council – were renting the property.
But Aberdeenshire Council now feels the village’s community hall would better serve these groups and wants to classify the school itself as “surplus” to requirements.
Winning the backing of the region’s councillors would kick-start a process to offer the former school to other depart- ments within the council or sell it off.
It will be voted on at Tuesday’s meeting of the Banff and Buchan area committee.
In her report on the scheme, Maria Walker, the council’s director of education and children’s services, said the process of marketing the school to po- tential buyers had not yet started. She added: “The committee is being asked to agree that education and children’s services takes the first step by giving notice of its intention to declare the old New Aberdour school and its campus surplus to its requirements.
“There are currently four lessees, who continue to make use of the old school building and it is felt by officers that the community hall could have the capacity to accommodate these groups.”
The school – which was previously branded as “invaluable” by local councillors – is used for about five hours a week by renting groups.
“Community hall could have the capacity to accommodate these groups”
‘INVALUABLE’: Four groups use the former primary school for a total of about five hours a week