‘Rescue mission’ to save books, stationery and furniture from recently-closed Dundee school

Paul Scott and Doug McLaren salvaging items from the former Baldragon Academy

Community groups have launched a “rescue mission” to salvage text books, stationery, calculators and furniture from a recently-closed school.

Baldragon Academy closed its doors at the start of this year, moving to a new £28 million campus nearby.

This week, members of Kirkton Community and Safety Partnership and Dundee Resource and Re-use Centre started collecting goods left in a skip destined for landfill.

Initially, the groups had until today to save what they could before the skip was removed — but Dundee City Council has now extended the deadline until Thursday.

Partnership secretary Stephen Cragg said that his organisation had been working through much of the night to recover a haul of re-usable goods.

He said: “There is a skip at the site which we went through — there were brand new text books that sell for £10 online, new calculators and unopened boxes of chalk.

“We needed more time to retrieve items that can be used again.”

Stephen said that the organisation was working with Better World Books with the intention of sending books to help children in Africa.

He added that the items could be used to help reduce costs for hard-up parents in Dundee — which was identified as a need by the city’s Fairness Commission.

Stephen said they had found a couple of unopened boxes of display books that would cost parents £2.79 per book if bought online.

Doug McLaren, of Dundee Resource and Re-use Centre, launched the “rescue mission” to recover furniture after hearing equipment was to be binned.

He said the charity was trying to collect as much as possible from the school for re-use with help from the Employment Support Service.

A council spokesman said the local authority had delayed the skip collection following discussions with the groups.

He said: “A procedure is in place at the former Baldragon Academy to maximise the recycling opportunities for materials.

“Items are offered to other schools and council service areas before specialist social enterprise companies are allowed access to recycle any objects that are left.

“Following this, remaining furniture and other items are split into component parts before being recycled.

“The procedure aims to reduce the amount of waste that is just simply thrown out.”

Doug said groups which have an interest in the items retrieved can contact him on 07986 971145.