PUPILS at Sanderson’s Wynd Primary School said goodbye to their headteacher – the current longest serving in the county – this week with a special assembly in tribute to her.

Fiona Waddell retires after 17 years at the old Tranent Primary School and then Sanderson's Wynd, and 36 years of teaching across East Lothian.

And the headteacher insisted she wanted to leave without a fuss, but had been moved by the support and kind words said to her since she made her decision.

Ms Waddell, who is originally from Musselburgh, said: “I have worked with some amazing people over the years and have had the pleasure of seeing pupils flourish, which is always rewarding, but I know in my heart it’s time to go.

“I wanted to leave without a fuss, but I’ve been overwhelmed by the support and kindness of so many people.”

During Ms Waddell’s time as headteacher at Sanderson’s Wynd, she has taken part in a freefall abseil off the Forth Road Bridge,to raise money for children’s charity Place2Be, made the school the first primary in the county to be recognised as a breastfeeding-friendly centre by the National Childbirth Trust and helped pupils introduce bicycle-powered Christmas lights.

A delegation from East Lothian Council visited Sanderson’s Wynd earlier this week to thank Ms Waddell for her work with children in the county.

Councillor Shamin Akhtar, council cabinet spokesperson for education and children’s services, was joined by Councillor Jim Gillies, deputy provost, Alex McCrorie, the council’s deputy chief executive and Richard Parker, education boss.

Ms Akhtar said: “We couldn’t let Fiona leave without marking the incredible contribution she has made to generations of families.

“Tranent has a great sense of community which she has also managed to create in the school.”

Sarah Wong has taken over as acting headteacher for the school.