Page last updated at 13:38 GMT, Friday, 28 March 2008

New 1.6m school set to be built

A new 1.6m primary school for 70 pupils is to be built in Hereford after winning council backing.

Herefordshire Council's cabinet backed plans for a new building to replace Staunton-on-Wye Primary School.

The council said its support was "crucial" to secure a government grant which would cover 90% of the costs.

The council debated how it would impact on other schools in the area, but decided replacing the 1862 school "had to take priority", a spokesman said.

Questions had been raised about the effect the scheme could have on nearby schools with falling numbers, the council said.

'Unsuitable and impractical'

Last month Herefordshire Council withdraw plans which could have meant up to 40 schools being closed or merged.

It has pledged to work with small primary schools to help them sustain their viability. And also said that no high schools will close in Herefordshire for at least three years.

Herefordshire Council said the Victorian Gothic three-storey school is "unsuitable for modern educational needs and impractical for disabled access".

It said repairing the fund-aided school building would have cost more than 177,000.

The government grant would have been withdrawn at the end of this month if the council had not backed the scheme, the spokesman added.

The school is expected to be built on land near the existing building soon.




SEE ALSO
School review 'hit first choices'
11 Mar 08 |  Hereford/Worcs

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