Go-ahead given for new Cringleford school

Sarah HallThe go-ahead has been given for a new �9.3m primary school to be built on the outskirts of Norwich - as long as developers agree to stump up just over �2m to fund it.Sarah Hall

The go-ahead has been given for a new �9.3m primary school to be built on the outskirts of Norwich - as long as developers agree to stump up just over �2m to fund it.

The governors of Cringleford Primary School have long wanted to enlarge it from 210 places to 420 places because so many new homes are being built in the area.

They want the school, currently based in Cantley Lane, to move to a new site within the Roundhouse Park housing development on the side of the A11.

Consultations raised a number of issues, including that the school would be too big for a primary school and its atmosphere would be compromised, and that there would be parking problems, especially in Colney Lane.

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But members of Norfolk County Council's cabinet yesterday agreed the governors could push ahead with the move and agreed �4.8m of funding to the scheme.

But the agreement is conditional on developers Bovis Homes and Twigden Homes, who want to build an extra 315 homes on the Roundhouse site, stumping up just under �2.3m in contributions for the new school.

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As a church school, the diocese would contribute �2.13m raised from the sale of the land the current school occupies.

The county council agreement also hinges on the school, which would contribute �900,000 to the new build, securing planning permission by March next year.

Daniel Cox, leader of Norfolk County Council, who represents Humbleyard division, which includes Cringleford, said: 'A 420-place primary school for Cringleford is the way forward.

'Roundhouse Park will be a substantial part of Cringleford and the opportunity to have a brand new school is not something which should be missed out on.'

Shelagh Hutson, cabinet member for children's services, said: 'I did take myself to look at the site on Sunday and had a long talk with someone in the area because I thought people at the old school had not wanted to move. But they do because they want to bring the whole community together.'

Ian Mackie, cabinet member for finance and performance, questioned why the estimated cost of the school - at just over �9m - was more than the cost of a similar sized primary school at Dussindale.

Officers said the figure was a broad estimate, but that sustainability standards were driving up the costs of new build schools.

Do you have a schools story? Call Evening News reporter Dan Grimmer on 01603 772375 or email dan.grimmer@archant.co.uk

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