SINCE the year 2000 Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has disposed of 12 schools from its assets, bringing in more than £3 million for the local authority.

Through a Freedom of Information (FoI) request by a member of the public, the Border Telegraph can report that since 2000 the sale of former school sites in the Borders has made £3,269,411.

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The schools sold during this period include:

  • Ashkirk Primary School – sold for £95,000 in 2009
  • Caddonfoot Primary School and nursery – sold for £106,100 in 2015
  • Former Earlston High School – sold for £450,000 in 2017
  • Glendouglas Primary School – sold for £206,156 in 2010
  • Kelso High School – part sold for £725,000 in 2019, part sold for £390,000 in 2021
  • Former Lauder Primary School – sold for £235,000 in 2010
  • Former Halyrude Primary School – sold for £230,000 in 2017
  • Roberton Primary School – sold for £90,000 in 2013
  • Southdean School – sold for £91,155 in 2011
  • Plot of land at Southdean School – sold for £63,000 in 2011
  • Former Stow Primary School – sold for £120,000 in 2017
  • Former West Linton Primary School and nursery – sold for £468,000 in 2019

The Border Telegraph asked SBC how the money made from the sale of the schools was used, and whether this was reinvested in education in the region.

A spokesperson for the local authority said: "Capital receipts are used to fund the Council’s capital programme, which includes the refurbishment and redevelopment of schools."

According to the report, there were seven assets owned by the council which were sold for just £1.

These included:

  • Birgham Village Hall
  • Springwell Brae Development site
  • Coldingham car park toilet
  • Cocksburnspath playing field
  • Guthrie Drive Development Site
  • Unit D Pinnaclehill Industrial Estate
  • St Abbs Community Centre

Springwell Brae Development site was sold to Eildon Housing Association for £1 in March 2018.

The council spokesperson said: "This asset was held on the council’s former Housing Revenue Account for social housing development.

"This was transferred to one of the council’s social housing partners for the provision of affordable housing."

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Unit D at Pinnaclehill Industrial Estate in Kelso was also sold for £1. The asset was sold to Plexus Corp (UK) Ltd. in February 2010.

The spokesperson added: "The sale price was for £1, however there was a payment of £2,475,000 from Plexus to SBC as compensation for early termination of the lease of the factory unit, which SBC had built and which Plexus had leased from SBC up to the point of sale."

The most expensive asset sold by SBC was the George Street Depot in Peebles.

The depot was sold for £1,100,000 to Eildon Housing in 2007. The sale included the whole of George Street depot and the Dovecot Road depot.

Funds from the sale of the depot were put into the council's capital programme.