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The local area guide to living in Insch

Insch is a small village in Garioch, Aberdeenshire, about 28 miles northwest of Aberdeen. The village’s name originates from Scottish Gaelic, innis, which refers to the local geography, an expanse of meadows and low-lying pasture surrounded by marshland. The Shevock River runs through town and one of its small run offs, the Valentine Burn, runs northward through the Insch Golf Club. The 7th century Picardy Stone, one of the oldest Pictish stones, is located here, and the ruins of Dunnideer Castle are just outside the village. Amidst the wistful, hauntingly beautiful Scottish countryside, there is much to explore. The village was home to a colony of Flemish merchants in the Middle Ages. Today, Insch is a thriving, engaged community amidst classic Scottish countryside and areas of natural beauty, so there is much to do and explore.

Information about the local residents

The Scottish Neighbourhood Statistics provides data for the Intermediate Geography area encompassing Insch, Oyne and Ythanwells as of 2013. The population of the area is 4,563; 18.91% of these residents are children, 62.37% are of working age and 18.72% are of pensionable age. As of 2013, there were 348 primary school pupils in the area and 277 secondary school pupils.

The Index of Multiple Deprivation standards rate Insch as better than 74% of areas in Scotland overall. The strongest ranking individual factors are Employment, - better than 89% of Scotland - Income, - better than 86% - Health, - better than 83% and Education - better than 73%. The community is very engaged, strengthened by the presence of health, community and leisure centres and a very active Parent Council at the local school.

Nearby schools

Insch has excellent schools within the area. Insch Primary School and Nursery is located in the village centre, serving 420 pupils across both primary and nursery levels, with a wide catchment area from Colpy to Duncanstone. The school’s highly active PTA and Parent Council holds a wide range of social and fundraising activities throughout the year and ensures excellent community engagement for students. In a national inspection in 2005, Insch Primary was identified as having the following strengths: emphasis on pupils’ personal and social development and achievement across a range of activities, attentive staff, a positive environment emphasising good behaviour and consistent motivation, strong parent and community partnership, and a clear direction for the school’s future.

Insch Primary School is zoned for two secondary schools as part of the Huntly Community Schools Network. These are The Gordon Schools in Huntly and Inverurie Academy in Inverurie. The Gordon Schools was founded around 175 years ago in memory of her husband. Surrounding by a beautiful expanse of woods and meadows, the majestic building was designed by renowned architect Archibald Simpson. The school covers ages 11-18 and maintains excellent standards for the welfare and engagement of its 720 pupils. Alternatively, Inverurie Academy to the south is another a good option which values fully equipping pupils for all areas of life and cultivating community connections.

Getting around

Insch rail station lies on the Aberdeen to Inverness Line, preceded by Inverurie and followed by Huntly. Bus services provide good connections for the area, with regular services to Huntly and Inverurie and connections to Aberdeen and Inverness. The village lies along the B9002, so road connections are good. Huntly and Inverurie are about 15 minutes away by car in either direction. Aberdeen is 28 miles away, about 35 minutes by train or car.

Local shops

Insch is quite well equipped, with several general and specialist shops in the village centre, as well as the local Dean’s Country Butcher, a post office and a library. Insch Golf Club has a leisure centre and small café in addition to the 18-hole course. Several play parks are around the village, and there is a village pub, a hotel and several B&Bs, as well as a paintball area near the train station.

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All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.

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