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Threat of legal action over proposed merger of Langley Preparatory School and Taverham Hall Preparatory School

PUBLISHED: 08:32 20 July 2016 | UPDATED: 08:32 20 July 2016

Langley School headmaster Dominic Findlay

Langley School headmaster Dominic Findlay

Archant

Campaigners fighting the merger of two preparatory schools may seek an injunction if the body that oversees charities does not stop the plans.

Last week, it emerged the Charity Commission had some concerns about the merger of Langley Preparatory School and Taverham Hall Preparatory School, which was announced in May.

The schools are due to merge in September, be based at Taverham Prep, and be called Langley Preparatory School at Taverham Hall.

Last week, the Charity Commission visited Norfolk to discuss what it described as “regulatory concerns”. It did not say what the concerns were.

The chairman of the Save Taverham Campaign, who contacted the Charity Commission, but asked to remain anonymous, and said the merger was “a decision without any proper consultation”.

Langley Schools previously said parents were not consulted because of fears a period of uncertainty could lead to some leaving the schools.

The campaign chairman said: “Fundamentally, we are two schools with different cultures and aspirations and geographical areas and markets, being forced together for the fundamental reason of financial security. Neither school is financially insecure.”

He also raised concerns the Taverham site could be sold in the next 10 years, and added: “If the Charity Commission doesn’t want to intervene robustly then the Save Taverham Campaign is considering all options, including issuing an injunction to stop the merger.”

Dominic Findlay, chief executive of Langley Schools, said: “We fully recognise our recent announcement has caused some concerns, but the trustees have only taken this decision with the long term interests of the schools in mind.

“Going forward we are very confident that the combination of Taverham Hall and Langley will result in a stronger, more rounded, educational offering for children of all ages which will ultimately benefit everyone involved with both schools.”

A Charity Commission spokesman said it had yet to assess the information it received during its visit last week.

Do you have an education story? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk

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