Blyth school extension signed off as pupil numbers to rise

Another extension at a Blyth school has been given the go-ahead, to support the influx of additional pupils from September.

Monday, 8th April 2019, 10:23 am
Updated Monday, 8th April 2019, 10:29 am
Horton Grange Primary School in Blyth. Picture by Jane Coltman

A classroom extension at Horton Grange Primary School, on Cowpen Road, was unanimously approved by Northumberland County Council’s strategic planning committee last Tuesday (April 2).

It had sparked no objections and was only before the committee as the council itself is the applicant, and members had no qualms in giving the scheme the go-ahead almost immediately.

The report to councillors explained that the single-storey extension, measuring 24.1 metres by 19.8 metres, is to help with the need to expand teaching space for the upcoming 2019-20 school year to accommodate an additional 100 pupils.

A similar extension at another Blyth school – New Delaval Primary – was approved in February.

An increase in the admission numbers at this pair of schools, along with Whytrig Community Middle School in Seaton Delaval, has already been agreed and an informal consultation on the permanent expansion of the accommodation was launched earlier this year.

The council expects this to be ‘non-contentious’ as it simply seeks to respond to the growth in pupil numbers in Blyth and Seaton Delaval, as required by law.

Money to fund this comes from the Basic Need Grant, which is provided by the Department for Education to help councils fulfil their duty to ensure there are sufficient school places for children in their areas. Northumberland’s allocation for 2011 to 2020 is £15.7million.

Ben O'Connell, Local Democracy Reporting Service