QMU Message from the Principal

Message from the Principal

Queen Margaret University (QMU) is preparing a Masterplan & Delivery Strategy for a commercial and innovation hub on the land surrounding our campus. We are of the strong belief that our proposals will deliver long term benefits to the region and I very much hope

that you will help us shape those plans over the coming months through our consultation process.

We hope that these proposals may ultimately form part of any future City Region Deal given our objective is to shape the economic destiny of the local community and wider region.

We are keen to see development in the local area that promotes synergies between the University and business, supports economic growth and meets the needs of the local community. More specifically, we are keen to promote the land adjacent to the campus for the development of specialist facilities to support businesses in high-growth innovation sectors.

As well as enhancing economic development and job creation, we believe that our proposals for this land would add to the vibrancy of the local area as they include attractive spaces and facilities for use by local residents.

As part of our commitment to fully consult with the local community, we are hosting drop-in events to set out our proposals and gather views on the future development of land around the campus. This is part of a broader programme of community consultation on the proposals which in turn complements internal consultation with the University's staff and students.

We look forward to working with you in the months and years ahead to deliver our shared vision for Musselburgh and East Lothian.

Professor Petra Wend, Phd, FRSA, FRSE

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

Planning for the Future 

Issues Report, a document published late last year to inform the Local Development Plan, the latest stage of which will publish this autumn. In our submission to the Main Issues Report we set out the findings of our Development Strategy that focussed on three hubs: commercial, innovation and business, with other uses such as housing potentially being more suited to land south of the A1. We also stressed that completion of the A1 junction so that it provides access to and from the campus, from both the north and south, will be crucial in unlocking what could become the region's flagship economic development site. Our new Masterplan & Delivery Strategy builds on these themes.

Our proposals now centre around creation of two hubs on the land adjacent to the campus. A commercial hub will provide retail and leisure facilities for students, staff and the surrounding local communities. We also propose an innovation hub.

The proposal for an innovation hub plays to the University's strengths in research and knowledge exchange in food and drink, health and creative industries, complementing existing campus facilities and providing a platform to foster entrepreneurship and enterprise in a supportive environment.

We are now developing our proposals further, and are considering submitting an application for planning permission in principle to East Lothian Council for this mixed commercial and innovation hub development on the land around the campus. Our Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) is a first step in the planning permission process.

Listening to you Views

We are committed to ensuring the broadest range of views – from the community, staff and students – are taken on board in our Masterplan, which we plan to submit to to East Lothian Council in the autumn. You are invited to give your views on the initial proposals, including your ideas on what sort of uses could feature in the commercial and innovation hubs.

To assist in pulling our proposals for the innovation hub together, QMU has appointed knowledge economy consultancy Cam-Sci. Cam-Sci has advised some of the UK's most successful innovation and science parks from concept development through to funding and delivery.

What is Planned 

[ image]


Some Key Issues

Local employment opportunities

QMU is East Lothian's largest employer. QMU chose to move to East Lothian partly because of the attraction of opportunities to locate research activities alongside new incubation and employment facilities on the land immediately adjacent to the new campus.

Complementary uses
QMU's academic specialisms, and also its staff and student community, can add value to the local community. Our proposals for the local area capitalise on the opportunities presented by the University to complement local social and economic priorities.
City Region Deals are a way of empowering cities and their regions to deliver better economic growth by putting investment into the hands of local leaders. A £1bn city deal bid has been submitted by Edinburgh and the south east area of Scotland. Although this is still at an early stage we are hopeful that if it progresses, our proposals would be relevant for inclusion.
Roads and Transport Links

A priority in seeing the vision become a reality is the construction of the remainder of the A1 junction, and your views on this, and rest of our proposals will help inform the next stages in this exciting journey.

QMU's Proposal of Application Notice [PAN] allows a planning application to be submitted to East Lothian Council at the appropriate time following consultation with key local stakeholders.

Summary and how to give your views
Next Steps
The University is promoting the commercial and innovation hub through its Masterplan & Delivery Strategy, which we now plan to submit to East Lothian Council in response to the next stage of the Local Development Plan.
Giving your views
Let us know your views. Please take a look at the illustrations setting out our proposals and give us your feedback.
Feedback form: available at drop-in sessions as well as online