Opening of Easter Bush Veterinary Campus, 2011

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In 2011, the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies moved to new premises on the Easter Bush campus. The campus was officially opened by the Princess Royal, Chancellor of Edinburgh University, on 27 September 2011.

From Summerhall to Easter Bush

The School had occupied a site at Summerhall, central Edinburgh, since 1916, but this was increasingly found to be inadequate for contemporary needs. It was decided to move all teaching and learning activities to a new site, seven miles south of the city centre, where the School had already opened a Veterinary Field Station, consisting of the Hospital for Small Animals, Farm Animal Teaching Hospital, and several related practices. Besides the obvious benefits of placing the School in immediately proximity to its training hospitals, the move would permit it to train many more veterinary professionals and support new ways of learning through the development of new teaching areas and resources.

At the time of the move, the Easter Bush Campus consisted of four buildings (besides the existing teaching hospitals):

Dick Vet Teaching Building

Built by Balfour Beatty, the 11,500 square metre Dick Vet Teaching Building was opened in 2011, providing accommodation for 1,200 staff and students. It is located next to the Hospital for Small Animals, enhancing clinical training for students, and includes two 200-seater lecture theatres, a library, seminar rooms, teaching and research laboratories, diagnostic facilities, and innovations such as a learning studio and learning landscape.

Roslin Institute

In 2007, the Roslin Institute merged with the University of Edinburgh to become the research arm of the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies. In 2011, the Institute moved into a new building on the Easter Bush Campus, which is shaped to resemble a pair of chromosomes. Coloured panels representing the DNA "fins" link the office and research laboratory blocks. The new building houses over 450 scientists and support staff, including Roslin researchers, other research staff from the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, and animal scientists from the Scottish Agricultural College. The Institute seeks to tackle some of the most pressing issues in animal health and welfare and their implications for human health. It focuses on basic research, using knowledge harnessed from genome science to understand the shared biology of humans and other animals. Its specific research themes are: effective disease control and treatment through understanding of basic mechanisms controlling animal health and disease, animal welfare and sustainable use of farm animals, human health at the human-animal interface, food safety, and animal health through studies on genetic resistance to disease.

Riddell-Swan Veterinary Cancer Centre

Established following a generous donation by Minnie Riddell-Swan, and completed in 2009, the Riddell-Swan Veterinary Cancer Centre uses advanced imaging technologies to offer the most comprehensive range of cancer therapies in Europe, including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and palliative care. Built adjacent to the Hospital for Small Animals, it houses a state of the art linear accelerator, providing radiotherapy services. It is also home to a Computerised Tomography (CT) scanner allowing for advanced imaging in small animals and horses. The Centre's mission is to improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cancer in animals, and to translate research and knowledge in order to improve cancer care in people.

Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education

The Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education was officially opened by animal philanthropist Jeanne Marchig (d. 2013) on 19 May 2011. The Centre, for which Marchig had provided significant funding, provides a hub of expertise for animal welfare education across the world. It collaborates with international partners to deliver wide ranging educational initiatives catering for different audiences and cultures. It aims to prepare students to work in different countries and address ethical concerns about the wellbeing of both working animals and wild animals in captivity.

Later Developments

Since the opening of the Easter Bush campus, one further building has been added, the Conventional Avian Research Unit. Completed in 2013, this brought to an end Phase 1 of the Easter Bush development. Phase 2 (2014) will see the construction of Specified Pathogen Free Avian Facility, Phase 3 (2014-2017) an Innovation and Campus Hub, an Energy Centre, and enhanced Campus Infrastructure, and Phase 4 (2017-2025) a Large Animal Clinical Facility and Large Animal Research and Imaging Centre.

Other University Events in 2011

Related Events

External Links


  • 'Jeanne Marchig vet training centre opens its doors', BBC News, 19 May 2011 [[1], accessed 3 October 2014]
  • 'Princess Royal opens £100m Dick veterinary studies centre', BBC News, 27 September 2011 [[2], accessed 2 October 2014]