Plans progress for 125 homes on former East Lothian college site

Henderson House
Henderson House

Architecture firm Barton Willmore has secured planning permission in principle for up to 125 residential units on the site of the former Fire & Rescue Service College in Gullane, East Lothian, subject to the signing of a planning agreement.

The training college closed in early 2015 as part of the national restructuring of the Fire and Rescue Service estate upon formation of a single national service. The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) now intend to reinvest the proceeds from the sale of the site in to capital projects to enhance and add to Fire & Rescue Service facilities across Scotland.

The SFRS wanted to ensure the redevelopment of the 4-hectare site was sensitive to its context and therefore, the approved proposal retains a landmark historic building of architectural merit for conversion to flats alongside new homes.

Andrew Fleming, associate planner in Barton Willmore’s Edinburgh office, said: “East Lothian Council had originally wanted to include an element of employment land and tourism use on the site, however, we were able to demonstrate to the council that such uses were not practical or viable and that there was a clear logic to the redevelopment of this brownfield site within the settlement boundary for residential development.”

Russell Munn of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service added: “We are delighted to see a future use for the Gullane site which retains Henderson House and will provide a range of housing including affordable housing which will benefit local people.”

The site will now be sold on the open market and there is keen interest from a range of developers given the site’s desirable coastal location and Gullane’s many golf courses.

The Edinburgh team is currently working on a range of brownfield and greenfield residential development proposals and is assisting The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service with the disposal of further surplus non-emergency sites as part of the national restructuring of the Service’s estate.

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