Victoria Primary School

Stone carving of the school logo and name

Opened: January 2022

Location: Western Harbour, Leith

A replacement building for Victoria Primary School opened in January 2022. The new school is located by the water in Newhaven and was designed by Holmes Miller Architects.

  • Outside the main entrance to the school pavement leads to the building with an area of young plants and grasses in front
  • the exterior of the building, yellow flowers in the border, brick walls and stone showing name and logo of the school
  • The exterior of the building, brick wall and peaked roofs, a white stone wall with the school name and logo.
  • The walkway up to the school main entrance, the wall is mainly glazed with a covered canopy


The bright and modern classrooms have been designed with a natural palette of light wood, accented with colours and furnishings that give a nod to the school’s location and history with a nautical/coastal theme. Floor to ceiling windows and doors looking out to the playground and views beyond really bring the outdoors in with an aspiration to improve health and wellbeing.

The use of flexible furniture in the classrooms allows for greater versatility for staff and students to teach and learn the way they want to; being able to quickly change the layout of the classroom for different activities.

  • A neutrally decorated classroom, house shaped coat racks, circular tables and wooden activity furnishings and storage
  • A classroom with light wood flooring and furnishings, bean bags that look like pebbles on a rug, blue circles on the wall and a blue pentagon table with chairs around, floor to ceiling windows


The school was designed to have a shared breakout space between two classrooms, each side of the space has its own sink and storage area and shared resources in the centre. Large glass sliding doors open up from the classrooms into this space to create good visual connection to the breakout space and allowing the three learning areas to open into one big space, two or three individual spaces.

  • A breakout space with activity stations, for sand and water play, a sink unit with cupboards and U shaped table
  • A breakout space, a white board says "welcome to the Primary 6 kitchen" in front is a white standing desk laid out with chopping boards, peelers, graters and a box of carrots is on a stool.
  • A breakout with highbacked sofas facing each other over a table, a colourful display on a pinboard, upholstered stools and a circular table with four wobble stools


The library is a learning area that is open on two sides to the circulation space with views down to the lobby. It is a relaxing space with comfortable and homely furnishings that really appeal to both students and staff. There is a variety of flexible seating options that offer students choice over where and how they would like to work or read. The furniture offers opportunities for collaborative or individual study.

  • people stand in a library with curved bookcases and comfy seats
  • curved white bookshelves
  • seating inside the curved bookshelves
  • seating inside the curved bookshelves and a house shaped nook with upholstered seats facing each other over a table
  • a circular white table with four upholstered chairs, open to a corridor leading to classrooms

Around the School

  • Looking up the stairs in the lobby
  • looking down into the two storey lobby
  • The lobby is two storeys high with the 1st floor able to look down through glazed balconies
  • A large open room with gym hall at the end, a class sits in the gym hall
  • bathroom with a low level sink trough along one side and cubicles on the other
  • a wall graphic of a lighthouse over blue hills and water
  • A room with a large window on the left, a small bench and table, kitchenette, shelving, plant and lamp
  • a waiting area with homely furnishings, orange sofa and armchairs, coffee table and plant
  • A cosy office with orange sofa and armchairs, homely furnishings
  • An orange sofa and armchairs, homely furnishings
  • a window panel with manifestation of child's drawing of fish
  • A large dining hall with windows and doors out onto the playground
  • People standing in the gym hall which has neutral decoration, gym equipment, a projector and basketball hoop
  • Changing room with blue walls, wooden flooring and benching, white cotton bags hanging from the pegs


The school’s classrooms are positioned in a U-shape around a courtyard area that allows easy access to the playground, good visual connection to the outside world and protects this area of playground against the prevailing south west/ westerly winds.