PROPOSALS for a new school campus and nearly 200 new homes in Aberdour have been unveiled.

A planning application has been submitted for a housing development – with 186 new homes – and a replacement school at Hillside School in the village.

They include the creation of a new, modern Additional Support Needs unit within the grounds of the school's current estate which would accommodate 35 pupil places and 10 small business workspace units alongside the Cala Homes development.

Those behind the plans say the proposals will enable the school to move out of the B-Listed Hillside House, which has become impractical and expensive to use and maintain, into a brand-new sustainable, energy efficient building, along with accommodation, playing field and workshops within a distinct tree lined portion of the 135-acre estate.

READ MORE: Latest update on plans to build up to 200 houses in Aberdour

The relocation will be funded through the sale of part of the landholdings to Cala, who in turn will build a sustainable and connected development, with 25 per cent of homes proposed as on-site affordable housing.

School director Anne Harvey explained: “The new proposals will not only provide a fit for purpose, modern and sustainable educational facility, but protect and maintain the existing employment levels at the school presently numbering 85 in total.

“The needs of our pupil population have changed considerably. They have more complex social and educational needs and this is reflected in a reduction in pupil numbers from around 60 to a maximum of 35.

"As a result, teaching methods and the requirements of the digital age demand a different teaching environment.

“Many of our young people have limited family contact so Hillside is their home for several years of their lives. It is expected that each young person has their own room with en-suite facilities and a study area. This has become increasingly challenging in our existing buildings.

READ MORE: Cala Homes to build houses at Hillside School in Aberdour

“We are pleased to be working with Cala in delivering this extremely exciting development which will bring significant benefits to the school, the pupils, the existing employees and the wider local economy."

Hillside School in Aberdour.Hillside School in Aberdour. (Image: Newsquest)

Economics experts from Lichfields, a leading planning and development consultancy, say each year of the build process will create an economic boost of around £31.6m per year as well around 465 direct full-time construction jobs.

The new homes are anticipated to provide a further £2.5m economic boost per annum, associated with resident expenditure, which is estimated to support an additional 35 full time jobs across various sectors such as retail, leisure and hospitality.

Once the scheme is fully operational it is anticipated to deliver an economic output of around £7m per annum and Lichfields also concluded that Fife Council is estimated to receive an extra £590,000 per year through additional council tax and business rates revenues.

Stephen Faller, Land Manager with Cala Homes (East), said: “We understand the sensitive nature of the development and recognise there is a responsibility on us as a collective to bring forward the best possible plans.

READ MORE: Care Inspectorate gives Aberdour school time to improve

“Given the site achieved outline planning consent in 2021, the teams have worked hard to understand the concerns around the previous proposals and have amended our designs to reduce the overall residential development footprint by around 15 per cent.

“The previous consent provided mainly five-bed homes, whereas the proposed mix of housing reflects a much higher proportion of two, three and four-bed properties compared to the PPiP consent, which was based on feedback received locally.

“The residential and school development will be gas-free, containing new electric charging points and extensive tree planting which is putting sustainability at the core of the development.

"The proposals also include a dedicated three-metre cycle/pedestrian link within the development which will connect the village to the site for the wider public’s benefit, reducing the reliance on car use.”

Following the initial Planning Permission in Principle (PPiP) being granted in 2021, Cala has made some notable changes, moving from 125 large, detached homes to 186 homes which comprise a greater number of cottage flats, terraced and three-bedroom homes, of which 46 homes will be delivered as affordable housing – ranging from two-bed terraced homes to five-bed semi-detached homes.

Following a detailed consultation at Aberdour Community Centre in April, the plans have now been submitted to Fife Council.

Updates throughout the process will continue to be provided via a dedicated website at

Plans for homes at the site were first put forward in 2017 and were met with 461 objections.

The second application, in 2018, attracted 352 objections.

Both were refused by the council, the latter in February 2020, due to "inadequate information" on which to take a decision.

An appeal to the government in April of that year was eventually approved in August 2021.