Work is under way on a long-awaited multi-million-pound Moray school.
Construction began yesterday on the new Elgin High School, which has been hit with delays since it was first announced a number of years ago.
The Scottish Government will invest £28million into the project, with the council contributing about £1.6m.
The replacement building will be created on the site of the current facility in High School Drive and will have room for more than 1,000 pupils.
Elgin High School head teacher Andy Simpson said: “Positive relationships and the quality of learning activities are among the most important features for the success of a school.
“However, first-class modern facilities and resources provide an environment which nurtures and encourages success.
“I know I am speaking for all at Elgin High School in expressing our delight that the prospect of the new school is now becoming a reality.
“Pupils and staff will soon be able to enjoy the quality of accommodation that matches their aspirations and which will remove many of the challenges that have been endured for a number of years.”
Last night, Councillor Graham Leadbitter, Elgin City South ward, said it was an important day for the town.
He added: “It was great to see young people from the high school and all of its associated primary schools taking part in the turf-cutting ceremony. They will have the direct educational benefits when the school is completed next year.
“A tremendous amount of work has been invested already, but it is only when the construction starts that it feels ‘real’! I look forward to seeing the new school take shape in the coming months.”
The new school has been beset with delays since it was first tabled back in 2012.
Last year, a dispute broke out between the authority and Holyrood ministers due to spiralling costs.
A financial wrangle between the government and the European Union had put the scheme on hold, which had added an additional £1m on top of the existing amount.
However, the authority successfully negotiated this down to the original fee, putting the development back on track.
The school is due to be finished by June 2018.