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Madras College construction restarting with hope of completion next summer

The ground was broken at the new site in September
The ground was broken at the new site in September

Construction of St Andrews’ new secondary school is resuming in the hope can still open next summer.

Work on Madras College was halted when restrictions were imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus.

After years of delay in replacing the town’s present two-campus school, there were worries the setback would prevent Fife Council meeting its target to have pupils in place by August 2021.

The local authority said work is to restart immediately so the remainder of the project can be completed.

Fay Sinclair, convener of Fife Council’s education and children’s services committee, said: “I’m pleased to see construction work re-starting on the new Madras College as, understandably, locals were worried the planned opening date would not be met.

“We’re conscious that any delays to the completion date would impact significantly on the whole school community.

“By re-starting these works now, we can do everything possible to mitigate these delays and achieve an August 2021 opening date.”

Social distancing measures will be maintained for the foreseeable future by those working on the new school at Langlands.

The Madras site team has completed planning and preparation phases as set out in the nationally-agreed construction restart model.

A revised programme has been produced by the contractor, BAM, which will include Saturday working for the remainder of the project.

The council said timescales were tight but the contractor was confident it can hand over the building next summer.

Wrangling over a suitable site for a new Madras College went on for well over a decade, after land negotiations with St Andrews University broke down then planning permission for another site was quashed following a legal challenge.

The current site was acquired through an exchange with the university, which is to take over one of the school’s existing buildings in South Street. The other campus at Kilrymont Road was put up for sale.

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