Norfolk school set for new teaching block and science extension

A new �3m teaching block and science laboratory extension could soon be built at a Norfolk school to accommodate the ever-growing student population.

Wymondham High Academy has formally applied to Norfolk County Council for planning permission for the new block, providing 10 classrooms for history and art lessons, as well as three science laboratories.

The county council will be funding the project, announced in December, which will enable the school to accommodate an extra 400 to 500 pupils on top of the existing 1,600.

At that time, headteacher Victoria Musgrave said: 'The school is growing bigger. We were desperate for space and are looking to expand further.'

Justin Smith, the academy's director of enterprise and community, said yesterday the school was hoping to start work on the project this summer, with completion by summer 2013.

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He said the block would replace mobile classrooms which were adequate for pupils' needs but not as modern as the new block, which would be equipped with the latest technology and built to be environmentally friendly and energy efficient.

He added: 'We want to provide the very best for the students and replace the mobile classrooms with accommodation purpose-built for the 21st century.'

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The block and extension will be built in the north-eastern portion of the school's Norwich Road site and include associated paving and lighting. Mr Smith said there would be no disruption to lessons while the work was taking place, as the school had developed a relocation plan so children would be taught in existing classrooms while the new facilities were being built.

Alison Thomas, the county council's cabinet member for children's services, said: 'Wymondham and its surrounding area have been expanding for some time and are expected to grow even more.

'In preparation for this major expansion, the county council is responding now, at the earliest opportunity, and investing �3 million received from the government to deal with growth areas, to improve and make the best use of space on the site of Wymondham High.'

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