The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) in Scotland moved to its new home on 4 November 2019.
The grade A listed 19th century Georgian townhouse, on Melville Street in the west end of Edinburgh, has been refurbished for the Society. The new design, which is accessible for disabled members and visitors, delivers a balance between the historic and the modern. The old Victorian pharmacy display has already been installed, and there are now plans to exhibit parts of the RPS museum collection throughout the building, where appropriate, in the future.
The new premises afford up-to-date IT infrastructure, which will deliver improved flexibility and enable the RPS to respond to changes in user requirements, service changes and developments. It also has space to provide for future expansion, and some RPS jobs can now be advertised as being based in Edinburgh as well as in London and Cardiff.
Melville Street is easily accessible to members and stakeholders — it is in close proximity to Haymarket Station, which is on the mainline to Waverley Station, and the tram line from Edinburgh Airport. It is also well served by main roads and near to major bus routes.
The previous premises, in Holyrood Park House, in the east of the city, were rented by the Society. Prices for rented offices in Scotland have been increasing steadily owing to demand from the financial and technology sectors, and the RPS was facing a significant rent review in autumn 2019.
The new building has been designed to fit with the ambitions and strategic direction of the RPS and is consistent with the core values of the new professional body and its members. It is of a standard befitting the professional body for pharmacists and pharmacy. The purchase demonstrates a long-term commitment by the RPS to its members in Scotland.
But this move was not about a building, nor about RPS Scotland. It is about being able to provide a focal point for members and the wider profession. The new office will be another home for all RPS members, and it is hoped that that members from the north of England, especially, can look on it as somewhere they can visit.
A series of events will be organised early in 2020 to welcome pharmacists and stakeholders to the new building, and RPS Scotland hopes that non-members will also come and meet the Scottish Pharmacy Board and rest of the team.