Rejected plans for secondary school on Moreton Hall to be reconsidered next month

Visualisation of new secondary school at Moreton Hall - Image produced by Concertus Design and Property Consultants
Visualisation of new secondary school at Moreton Hall - Image produced by Concertus Design and Property Consultants
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Plans for a new secondary school on Moreton Hall which were unexpectedly rejected last week are to be reconsidered by councillors on July 8.

Suffolk County Council’s development control committee refused the proposals by a vote of seven to five for the school on land next to Lady Miriam Way following concerns about a lack of car drop-off points and its proximity to housing.

The authority says it has listened to the issues raised and consulted with specialists on measures to address the concerns.

Bosses are ‘confident’ the school can still be built in time for the first cohort of pupils in September, 2016 but admit they could use St James Middle School as a temporary measure if there are delays.

Cllr Lisa Chambers, cabinet member for education and skills, said the construction programme had been reviewed due to the delay in planning consent.

She said: “There is no denying that this was an unfortunate setback for the project. However, we have looked at the programme again and whilst we accept it is tight, our contractors have assured us that it is achievable and that delivery for September 2016 is still possible.

“I understand that this is an anxious time for parents, and so I would like to reassure them by reminding them that in the unlikely event of further delays, we are able to use St James Middle School, if need be, purely as a temporary measure.

“However, I would like to be clear that I remain committed to making sure we meet the deadline of September 2016 for the opening of the new school.”

The new school would initially be built to take on 600 pupils and would eventually grow to accommodate 1,400 places.