fears hit £4.6m Highbridge school before it even opens
concerns have been raised this week regarding pupil overcrowding
at a new £4.6m school being built in Highbridge which is
set to open this autumn.
new 420-pupil Churchfield School in Highbridge is scheduled to
open in September following a year-long construction project.
Somerset County Council has already applied for planning permission
for a two-classroom 'temporary unit' to be sited besides the new
building to cater for an overspill of pupils.
Town Council's Planning Applications Committee has expressed its
concern about the plans.
were disappointed to see an application to maintain a temporary
modular unit on the site of a school that is being rebuilt and
not yet completed," said a council spokeswoman.
Helen Groves told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "There has been no
future proofing for population expansion. It's very sad that two
classes will have to be based in a temporary unit because the
new school is simply not big enough."
Brue Farm housing development may provide a new school elsewhere
in Highbridge in the future, but that is only an outline plan
and may not meet the overall growth in numbers."
County Council spokesman Elizabeth Kulh responded: "Due to
a growth of housing in the area, we anticipate an increase in
demand for schoolplaces in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Therefore, were
proposing to retain a classroom to help us manage school places
in the Highbridge area over that period."
Meanwhile, the new school's steel exterior is in place and final
work is currently underway ahead of the scheduled completion this
summer in time for the opening at the start of the autumn term.
Highbridge County Councillor John Woodman told Burnham-On-Sea.com:
"This new state-of-the-art, purpose-built primary school
will be a fantastic asset to our community."
Top, how the new school looks this week and, above, how the school
will look when completed, and the earlier topping out ceremony