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The local Scottish Fire and Rescue team were on-hand to fill Glasgow School of Art Innovation School's new hydroponic pool for aquaculture


By Garry McCartney

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The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service used the opportunity as a training exercise.
The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service used the opportunity as a training exercise.

GLASGOW School of Art’s (GSA) Innovation School enlisted the help of the local fire brigade for an ecological project.

For the last three years, the Highlands and Islands campus at Altyre has been creating a permaculture garden to explore green initiatives – the latest development is the addition of a hydroponic pool for aquaculture.

Filling up.
Filling up.

However, filling it proved to be quite a challenge so students and staff asked the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) to help.

SFRS Watch Commander Stuart Donald confirmed his team used the opportunity as a training exercise.

He said: “We tested the hoses and equipment and in turn helped to fill their newly established pond.

“Community projects and fire service training can quite often go hand-in-hand and we were delighted to help.”

Interaction design lecturer Christine Farion, environmental design lecturer and permaculture/aquaponics specialism lecturer Fergus Fullarton-Pegg, SFRS crew, deputy director, research and innovation Irene McAra-McWilliam, SFRS crew, SFRS watch commander Stuart Donald.
Interaction design lecturer Christine Farion, environmental design lecturer and permaculture/aquaponics specialism lecturer Fergus Fullarton-Pegg, SFRS crew, deputy director, research and innovation Irene McAra-McWilliam, SFRS crew, SFRS watch commander Stuart Donald.

Head of the innovation school, Professor Gordon Hush, confirmed the pool is ready to be used, not only for academic research, but also to provide food for the campus.

The pond ready to develop its aquaculture.
The pond ready to develop its aquaculture.

He said: “We are very grateful to the SFRS for their help in making it possible to create this important addition to our permaculture garden.

“The garden is a key contributor to our work in exploring creativity in an ecological context, re-imaging how we can develop new forms of living such as producing food with less impact on the planet, which will be crucial as we address the climate change challenge.

“It has become part of the international attraction of studying at GSA for students in Forres and Glasgow. After all, how many art schools can grow their own food, or plants to make chemical free dyes for textiles, while reducing their carbon footprint?”

A nearby established water feature on the Altyre Estate.
A nearby established water feature on the Altyre Estate.


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