Milestone for Ellon Academy campus

The road to the the new Ellon Academy complex has been named.
The road to the the new Ellon Academy complex has been named.

Ellon Academy community campus has reached a milestone with the naming by the community of two transport links.

The new access road off South Road has been called Kellie Pearl Way.

And the pedestrian bridge over the River Ythan that will link the new complex - opening in August - with the town will be named Boatie Tam’s Brig.

Formartine Area Office brought together local and community councillors, council officers and pupils and staff from Ellon Academy to suggest names.

As part of a project involving research of the town’s history, a group of S1 pupils was asked to suggest names for the road and bridge.

Community councillors then created a preferred shortlist from their suggestions with local councillors endorsing the final two.

The road name comes from one of the largest freshwater pearls discovered in the history of the Scottish pearl industry, which was found in a tributary of the Ythan in 1621.

The new pedestrian bridge also has a local connection as it is to be named after Tom Pirie, also known as Boatie Tam.

Mr Pirie, who died in 1992, operated a small boat that ferried people from one side of the Ythan to the other at a time when there were limited crossing points.

Education, learning and leisure committee chair Councillor Isobel Davidson said: “I am very pleased that the names of the new road and bridge to Ellon Academy Community Campus have been chosen to highlight the area’s history.

“Tom Pirie operated his ferry service not far from the current site of the new bridge so it is very apt that it has been named after him.

“The very process of consultation involving pupils, community council members and local councillors has been one of community spirit and one I believe is representative of the hub the new campus will become.”

Infrastructure services committee chair Councillor Peter Argyle, added: “The new Ellon Academy Community Campus is growing into the beacon of educational excellence we always knew it would be.

“Building works are well advanced with the internal fit of classrooms on the top floor nearing completion and the pool tank is currently being rendered in preparation for tiling to commence next month.”