Senior SQA staff visit new Shawfair office

Shawfair site visit
Pictured (L-R) are Simon Parsons, facilities manager; Neil MacGowan, head of corporate affairs; John Preston, construction manager at Muir Construction and Karen McCallum, director of operations.


Senior SQA staff visited the site of our new offices at Shawfair Business Park on the outskirts of Edinburgh, to see how work has progressed since construction began last year.

Staff and operations based at our current site at Ironmills Road in nearby Dalkeith will relocate to the new Shawfair office in late 2011. 

Building work began in June 2010 when the then Minister for Skills and Lifelong Learning, Keith Brown MSP, along with SQA chairman, Graham Houston and SQA chief executive, Dr Janet Brown, officially marked the beginning of construction with a ground breaking ceremony at the site.

Karen McCallum, director of operations, said: “Our existing Dalkeith premises were built almost forty years ago and are now unsuitable for our future needs.  We are happy to be here today to see many months of hard work take shape and witness the substantial progress that has been made so far.

“This new building is just the latest stage in a long line of commitments SQA has to Midlothian and our surrounding communities.  From our Midlothian Art Challenge which invites local people and community groups to submit works of art to be exhibited in our new building to our commitment to local schools.” 

Joining Karen on the visit, Neil MacGowan, head of corporate affairs, said: “Our new office will incorporate a community space where we will be able to engage with local groups as well as our staff commitment to health promotion, local charities and the arts.  It’s great to see these ideas move from paper to reality.”

Alan Muir, director of Muir Construction, said: "We are progressing well on site with the new offices and hope that Karen, Neil and the rest of the team from SQA are pleased with what they have seen.  We are committed to delivering the project on time and on budget and are delighted to be working with Buccleuch for the third time.”

Councillor Russell Imrie, Midlothian Council’s cabinet member for planning and development, said: “As a council we successfully lobbied for the SQA to remain in Midlothian. We are delighted, therefore, to hear progress is being made and SQA will relocate to Shawfair later this year.”