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Village revamp could see new school built and improvements to medical centre

PUBLISHED: 08:17 22 May 2019 | UPDATED: 08:17 22 May 2019

An artist's impression of what the new Blofield Primary School could look like. Norfolk County Council, Blofield Parish Council and others have been involved in drawing up plans to improve the village's facilities. Picture: Norfolk County Council

An artist's impression of what the new Blofield Primary School could look like. Norfolk County Council, Blofield Parish Council and others have been involved in drawing up plans to improve the village's facilities. Picture: Norfolk County Council

Norfolk County Council

A brand new primary school is among plans to improve the amenities in a Norfolk village as it grows through housing development.

The current Blofield Primary School building, which headteacher Teresa Doggett says the school is outgrowing. Picture: Denise BradleyThe current Blofield Primary School building, which headteacher Teresa Doggett says the school is outgrowing. Picture: Denise Bradley

Growing pressure on pupil places in Blofield has led to plans for a larger school in the village to replace the existing and constrained Victorian building.

It is part of a number of proposals drawn up by Blofield Parish Council, Norfolk County Council, the primary school and Blofield Medical Practice to help the village cope with the impact of new homes.

Parents and parishioners have been invited to view plans for the new school building - as well as improvements to Blofield Medical Practice, a new "community leisure space" and ideas for repurposing the old school building - at an exhibition event at Blofield Primary on Thursday.

The county and parish councils said they wanted to gauge public opinion on the proposals before submitted a formal application to Broadland District Council.

Teresa Doggett, headteacher at Blofield Primary School, said the school was at capacity with around 220 pupils.

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"The majority of classes in the school have more than 30 pupils, we are having to turn people away on a fairly regular basis who have moved to the area and want a school place, and we are oversubscribed for reception places for the autumn," she said.

"The county council came to us because Blofield has got a lot of new housing and they have seen there will be a need for new school places.

"It makes sense to expand but on the current school site it is just not feasible to extend."

A Norfolk County Council spokesman said: "The demand for school places [in Blofield] is quickly outgrowing the village's much-loved Victorian school and we are committed to investing around £8m in building a modern new 420 place primary for Blofield's children.

"The proposal we are making would enable this school to remain in the heart of the village and could release the existing school playing fields to provide open space for the community.

"All of the proposals would be subject to securing the relevant permissions in the future."

- Information about the plans is available on the parish council's website and Facebook page. Feedback can be emailed to blofieldpcfeedback@gmail.com.

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