School gets green light to expand - The Redditch Standard

School gets green light to expand

Redditch Editorial 8th Jan, 2015 Updated: 18th Oct, 2016   0

A WEBHEATH school has been given the go-ahead to extend despite fears it could add to traffic problems.

Redditch Borough Council’s planning committee backed plans for Webheath First School to expand its existing nursery and its hall.

The application will see a new nursery, staff room, two reception classrooms, two new infant classrooms as well as two cloakrooms created.

The hall will also be extended to include a new studio, while a staff car park will be built on the school’s current allotment site and a drop-off and pick up point would be created.

Councillors heard the size of the school did not currently meet the needs of the children because the hall and reception rooms were too small. There is also nowhere to cook hot food for pupils, while the toilets were also inadequate.

But Coun Roger Bennett said he feared the plans could lead to a pupil increase from 300 to 420 in the future because of the uncertainty around the borough’s school tier system.

He added he had great concerns about the parking and said councillors were ‘naive’ if they thought the school would not increase pupil numbers.

Fred Tebbs, chairman of Webheath Village Hall committee, said he was already allowing parents to use the hall’s car park in the morning to ease congestion, but a rise in pupils would exacerbate the situation.

Coun Pat Whiterspoon added she was pleased to see the application and hoped the drop off and pick-up car park would alleviate some of the traffic problems.

But county councillor Robin Lunn, who spoke as a member of the public, said although an increase in pupil admissions was not completely off the table, the changes were only being put forward because of current pupils’ needs.

He added the new staff car park would only be used before and after school, so it would not add to traffic on the roads, while drop-off and collection point would also mean less cars park near the school.

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