THE new headteacher of Pencaitland Primary School fell in love with the area while walking her dogs in the surrounding countryside.

Nicola Wilson succeeded Mary McCall at the school at the start of the new term and is settling into her first role as a headteacher.

Miss Wilson, who lives in Midlothian with her partner and son, told the Courier: “It is a lovely school, with welcoming parents, staff and children.

“They have all made me feel welcome and there is lots going on and to get involved with.

“The children are lovely, pleasant children and I am really looking forward to getting stuck in.”

Miss Wilson previously worked at Sacred Heart Primary School, Strathesk Primary School and Stow Primary School in the Scottish Borders.

For almost a decade she was a principal teacher at Clovenstone Primary School in the west of Edinburgh.

She said: “I had been in my post at Clovestone Primary School as a principal teacher for nine years and felt it was time to move my career on.

“I had been to Pencaitland on a few occasions.

“I’ve got two dogs and I liked to come here and go for walks.

“I saw the job advertised for a second time and I thought it was a lovely area to start off my headship.”

Miss Wilson, 38, has been spending her first weeks at the school getting to know the pupils and staff.

She added: “I’m just really looking forward to the challenges and getting to know everyone and hopefully becoming part of the village and getting to know not just everyone at the school but in the community.”

Councillor Shamin Akhtar, the local authority’s spokeswoman for education and children’s wellbeing, lives in the village and her son, Daniel is in P4, while her daughter Ayesha has just started in P1 at the school.

She wished the new headteacher the best of luck and said: “I’m delighted Nicola has taken up the post of headteacher at Pencaitland Primary School.

“Her knowledge and experience will make a valuable contribution to the school.”