The Fraser Centre Community Trust capital project to rebuild the former picture house in Tranent is set to begin after raising £2.9 million. The demolition and building contracts have been signed and the project is expected to commence in the next few weeks.

    The Trust was formed by members of the community in 2011 with the vision to rebuild a semi-derelict former picture house into a community hub for learning, development, arts & entertainment in the heart of Tranent.

    In February the Trust announced a gap of £400,000 which had to be achieved by the end of March or the project would be in risk.

    Through a combination of design savings and additional fundraising, including a passionate response from the local community, the Trust is now able to proceed with the project.

    The Trust is delighted to welcome local firm RM Brown Demolitions to the project to manage the demolition.

    Fleming Buildings Ltd have been appointed to construct the new Fraser Centre after a vigorous tender process and we are looking forward to working with them to build our new community hub.

    Photo: Top L-R Gillian Russell, Treasurer; Hannah Biddulph, Secretary; David Orr, Project & Development Manager. Bottom L-R Jonny Russell, Chairman; Isabel McNeish, Trustee.

    Jonny Russell, Chairman of the Trust: “I’m absolutely delighted that our community dream is becoming a reality. The Fraser Centre Community Trust staff and volunteers are all very excited with the recent progress and look forward to completing the next stage of our project.

    The community as a whole has totally got behind what we’re doing and we want to reward them with an amazing state of the art venue”.

    Iain Gray MSP: “I remember visiting the Fraser Centre nearly five years ago when the idea of transforming it into a community hub was at the very early stages. I am delighted that the centre has now reached the point where work to realise its vision is finally getting underway. It has been a remarkable effort by everyone involved in driving the project forward, with great support from the local community in and around Tranent, and I look forward to seeing the final result when the new centre is completed.”

    East Lothian Council Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing, Cllr Jim Goodfellow, added: “East Lothian Council has provided both advice and financial support towards this innovative project and it’s excellent news that work will shortly begin to bring this into reality. I am sure the new centre will provide a ‘go to’ place that will be enjoyed by the local community of all ages and interests.”

    Tranent & Elphinstone Community Council: “We are delighted to see the project for the rebuild of the Fraser Centre coming to fruition. It is testament to the continued determination of David and Jonny as they have worked tirelessly to make this happen and we would like to congratulate them. Despite several hurdles, they have never faltered in their conviction that the project would go ahead. An inspiration to many, and what an achievement for what will be a great community facility”.

    The project start is subject to demolition and building warrants and will commence when this has been concluded and site preparation is complete.

    Fundraising has been achieved to allow the project to proceed, however we aim to go beyond that. Throughout the project the Trust will fundraise for the purchase of DCI cinema equipment, raked seating and decorative features which had been removed during the cost saving exercise.

    For further details on our project please check