THE new Kelso High School welcomed pupils for the first time today.

A short ceremony at the £22.5 million facility saw pupil Ellis Murray cut the ribbon with councillor Carol Hamilton, SBC's executive member for children and young people.

Also performing at unveiling was Kelso Pipe Band; while Head Boy Charlie Graves and Head Girl Aimee Martin raised the school's historic flag.

Facilities at the new school include 3G sports and 2G hockey pitches as well as grass playing fields, a 100 metre sprint track, long jump pit and netball court.

An eco-garden pond is included alongside space for an orchard, allotment, outdoor classroom and an arts and craft garden.

And a new library and gym are also part on offer to pupils.

Cllr Hamilton said: “This is a significant day for the town of Kelso.

“The new high school will transform education in Kelso and will provide much improved facilities not only for pupils but importantly for the whole community.

“The previous high school had served the town well since 1939 but there is no doubt the new facility will provide additional benefits.

“I would like to congratulate the council’s project team for the considerable efforts to get the new school completed on time, as well as the local residents and Kelso Races for their co-operation during the works.

“As part of the School Estates Review, the council will continue to carry out considerable research and consultation so that our children and the wider community can have the best places for learning.”

The school has been funded by the Scottish Government through its Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme, which is managed by the Scottish Futures Trust.

It was delivered by SBC in partnership with Hub South East Scotland and its appointed contractor Morrison Construction.

Paul McGirk, Hub South East’s Chief Executive, said: “We’re proud to have delivered the new Kelso High School, not only on time and on budget, but to an extremely high standard - ensuring high quality and value for money for our client.

“This project has been a fantastic example of partnership working and will provide a modern learning experience for pupils, as well as being a real asset to the community of Kelso.

“We look forward to continuing this successful relationship with Scottish Borders Council as we deliver future projects together.”

A virtual tour is also available here