Warden Hill Primary to get a brand new school
Gloucestershire County Council’s cabinet will be asked to approve the funding needed for a replacement school building at Warden Hill Primary at its next meeting on 11 November.
Over £5.5 million had already been approved to expand Warden Hill in Cheltenham by one form of entry and address the condition of the school. New forecasts show that more primary places in the area are not needed as soon as planned for and Cabinet is being asked to approve an additional £1 million to provide the funding for a replacement building instead.
Warden Hill Primary is rated as an ‘outstanding’ school by Ofsted, however, the building is in need of extensive refurbishment. Detailed investigations into the existing site and buildings showed it would be a more efficient use of resources to replace the existing infant and junior buildings with a brand new one. This will provide the school with a sustainable building, in line with the council’s commitment to becoming carbon neutral by 2030. Better facilities will offer more flexibility for teaching and learning and if the school needs to be expanded in the future, the new design will allow for this to happen in a more efficient way.
Work on the new building is due to start in 2021, subject to planning permission, and the existing school will continue to run on site so there will be no disruption to pupils’ learning.
Cllr Patrick Molyneux, cabinet member for economy, education, and skills, said: “Warden Hill is already an outstanding school but the current buildings don’t provide the excellent learning environment that all pupils deserve to be educated in. This significant investment of over £6.5 million is just part of our £100 million project to improve schools across Gloucestershire.”
Cabinet will also be asked to approve an extra £2.25 million for the new special school in Brockworth, taking the total investment to £9.75 million. Now that contractors have been appointed and detailed site surveys have been done, more funding is needed to address ground and drainage issues at the site and for new services to be connected. The additional investment will also cover more work on the design of the building to make sure it is carbon neutral, and will also support improvements to Henley Bank High School’s sports facilities in exchange for the land for the school.