Project Strands

Existing Buildings

Anderson Educational Institute building

The Anderson Educational Institute is the original school building in Lerwick, founded by Arthur Anderson and officially opened in 1862. It was used as a military hospital during WW2 but in the years before and after, was the school for generations of young people in Shetland.

The Institute is central to the Knab redevelopment, providing the opportunity for ambitious proposals to repurpose the building, and creating a hub for innovation and inspiration. Plans include studio and fabrication facilities for artists and makers, a space for a gallery, performance, meetings and projects, a photographic darkroom, paint recycling facility, a tool library and administrative offices.

Anderson Educational Institute building
Janet Courtney building

Janet Courtney Hostel

The Janet Courtney Hostel was gifted to the community by the Carnegie UK Trust. The building was originally built to provide boarding accommodation for male pupils and until recently continued to be used as a hostel.

The Knab plans include proposals to repurpose the Janet Courtney Hostel within the site into modern, attractive residential accommodation. This sits within Shetland’s wider strategy of attracting and retaining residents to make these islands their home.

Bruce Hostel

Work on the Bruce Hostel began about 1919, although construction was not completed until 1923. The building was gifted to Shetland by Robert Bruce of Sumburgh and was originally built to provide boarding accommodation for school students from all over Shetland.

The upper levels of the building have not been in use for some time and a considerable amount of repair work is required to the external fabric of the building. However, with many original internal features remaining, it has been proposed that this could potentially be repurposed as residential accommodation within the Knab site.

Bruce Hostel
Old science block

Old science block

Along with the listed buildings, the old science block will also remain on the site under the new Knab proposals. The old science block was subject to a community asset transfer with the New Life Church which took over the building in February 2021. It plans to use the building as a place of worship and café, with soft play and crèche facilities.

This community asset transfer from the Council was possible under Part 5 of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015.