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Last Updated: Friday, 18 February, 2005, 16:17 GMT
Parents in 1m vow to save school
A teacher looks over her pupils' work at Newlands Primary
Parents praised the atmosphere at Newlands Primary
Parents at a rural primary school have pledged to raise 1m over the next three years to save it from closure.

Newlands Primary in Romannobridge, near Peebles, is short of space and in need of renovation.

Scottish Borders Council wants to close the 96-pupil school and the nearby West Linton Primary and build one new school for the area.

The school's board is looking into the possibility of applying for grants and subsidies in order to raise the money.

The decision to close the school was taken by Scottish Borders Council after reassessing funding and resource allocation.

Portable building

Councillor Leona Bendall said: "The school needs considerable investment. The pupils and the staff are working with facilities that are unfit for purpose."

A portable building is currently being used as a classroom and books and sports equipment are being kept in the corridors.

Councillor Bendall added: "We have another school a few miles away that's in the same position.

"We wanted to explore building one new school for both of them to give them the facilities they deserve. We simply don't have the resources to do both at this time."

Dr Karen Blissitt, who is on the school board, said: "It's a special school. The children look after each other and it's just a lovely atmosphere."

The situation is reminiscent of when the school was actually opened in 1876, when local people were awarded the land and told to build within three years or they would lose it.

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