Notre Dame unveils plans for new science block

A �500,000 science block is planned to provide state-of-the-art teaching facilities for students at a Norwoch school.

Notre Dame's current science and technology block was converted from a former tea and coffee warehouse and the school has outgrown it.

A planning application for a three-storey project, which will see two new science and technology classrooms added to the existing school buildings, has been submitted to Norfolk County Council.

None of the existing rooms will be altered, but the new classrooms will be built in a currently unused space above a boiler room.

Brian Conway, head teacher at the school, said that the scheme would provide students with the latest teaching facilities and much-needed space.

He said: 'Our science block is a reasonable building, but it could do with a bit of improvement. It will make it a much better building for teaching.

'We've got contracts and everything ready to go.

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'Because we're a city centre site we're very tight. We're not knocking anything down.'

He said that the school was lucky to be able to construct new classrooms at a time when most schools are having to cut back on their spending.

He said: 'We managed to find a little put of money.

'You've got lots of cuts at the moment, but we've managed to keep this little bit going.

'Across Norfolk school building is unfortunately likely to be scaled-back.'

The application will now go before Norfolk County Councils planning regulatory committee for a decision, although the scheme has already been recommended for approval by officers.

But in a report put before councillors Norwich City Council criticised the design and said that it was 'unfortunate' that it did not include re-cladding the existing concrete St Peters building, calling the design 'monolithic'.

Two members of the public also submitted letters of complaint, arguing that the 'ugly' design would overlook neighbours' gardens and case traffic disruption on Surrey Street.

The report goes on to conclude that the design is energy efficient, will provide important teaching facilities and not be a negative addition to the area.

t Has an unusual building been designed for your area? Call reporter Matthew Sparkes on 01603 772439 or email