A NEW head has been appointed to Loretto School in Musselburgh.

The governors were "delighted" to announce that Pete Richardson, who is currently principal deputy head, would take up the reins at Scotland's oldest boarding school from August.

Current head Dr Graham R W Hawley retires at the end of the summer term after 10 years of "outstanding service" at the school.

Peter McCutcheon, chair of governors, said: "Pete is currently Vicegerent (principal deputy head) and, since joining Loretto last year, has demonstrated all the qualities needed to lead the school in the next chapter of its development.

"His own values and educational philosophy align with Loretto’s emphasis on a holistic education incorporating mind, body and spirit.

"Pete has dedicated his entire career to educational excellence in both academic and pastoral roles, and we are delighted that he has accepted our offer to take over as head from Dr Hawley.

"We will, in due course, pay tribute and thank Dr Hawley for his significant contribution to the school during his time as head since 2014.

"Mr Richardson and Dr Hawley are ideally placed to ensure that a smooth transition takes place before the start of the next academic year."

East Lothian Courier: Dr Graham Hawley is retiring as head at Loretto after the summer termDr Graham Hawley is retiring as head at Loretto after the summer term

Mr Richardson joined Loretto from Gordonstoun, where he was an assistant head of boarding and, prior to this, was a housemaster at Worksop College, where he taught English and history.

A keen sportsman, he has competed in ultra-marathons and iron-distance triathlons while also playing cricket and squash at a high level.

His wife Mel is Loretto’s Junior School administrator.

Mr Richardson said: "I am honoured to have been chosen to lead Scotland’s oldest boarding school into its third century from August this year.

"I was originally drawn to Loretto for its warm atmosphere, the exceptional pupils we met, and its unique setting and history.

"Since joining the Loretto family, my initial impressions have been confirmed: it is an exceptional school.

"I feel privileged to have been chosen to lead Loretto School through this next exciting chapter and cannot wait to begin my new role."