Special school hatches plan to update 'poor-quality' temporary classrooms

Fred Nicholson School, Toftwood.PHOTO: IAN BURTCOPY:FOR:EDP NewsEDP pics © 2008(01603)772434

Fred Nicholson School, Toftwood.PHOTO: IAN BURTCOPY:FOR:EDP NewsEDP pics © 2008(01603)772434 - Credit: IAN BURT

A special school in mid Norfolk hopes to upgrade its four "poor-quality" mobile classrooms with a brand new, modern replacement.

Plans have been unveiled to modernise learning at Fred Nicholson School on Westfield Road, Dereham, which would bring four new classrooms to the site.

Fred Nicholson School, Toftwood. PHOTO: IAN BURT

Fred Nicholson School, Toftwood. - Credit: IAN BURT

The plans, which were submitted to Norfolk County Council (NCC) on January 27, would see the replacement of four poor quality and older mobile classrooms with a modern 14-bay, four-classroom modular building.

As well as the new classrooms, the modular would also include a group room, cloak area, four standard toilets, two accessible WC's and four cloakrooms.

The mobile building would need to be moved away from the existing location, meaning 12  new parking spaces are also proposed as part of the plan.

In a design and access statement, sent by NPS Group on behalf of Fred Nicholson School, it said: "The application proposes the replacement of four existing mobiles which are in poor condition, with a modern modular building offering four classbases.

"The location for the modular building has been carefully considered in relation to site including proximity of existing hard play area, proximity to neighbouring properties and existing environmental features."

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The school is not in a flood zone and an environmental statement from Norfolk Wildlife Trust says there would be little impact to the area.

Four trees will have to be removed to make way for the 12 new parking spaces, but the school will re-plant new heavy standard trees as a replacement.

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The statement said: "The school has confirmed that there are currently 76 full-time equivalent staff at the school, and 42 parking spaces, (including 3 disabled). This represents an existing shortfall in the required parking provision.

"At present, thirty-three taxis enter the school site to pick-up/drop-off students and park informally on the hardstanding north of the proposed development. Creation of a safer one-way circular route is proposed for these taxis."

If approved, the mobile classrooms will be at Fred Nicholson School for the next five years.

The plans will now be part of a consultation before NCC makes a decision.