New primary and secondary school places for Lyde Green
We are committed to delivering new primary and secondary school places for Lyde Green.
In July 2020 local residents had their say on proposals for new primary and secondary schools for Lyde Green through a public consultation.
What we are doing
We are investing council capital funding to:
- expand Lyde Green Primary School through a new building co-located with the new secondary school
- develop a new secondary school with 900 places for children aged 11 to 16
You can find details of the location, current site plans, layout drawings and 3D images in our design proposal.
Lyde Green Primary School
The Castle Schools Education Trust’s proposal to expand Lyde Green Primary School has been approved by the Regional Schools Commissioner. Additional places became available from September 2022.
Lyde Green Secondary School
The secondary school is being developed in partnership with The Olympus Academy Trust and the Department for Education. It will be funded through the government’s Free School programme.
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Update on the project to deliver new Primary and Secondary schools for Lyde Green
We are continuing to work in partnership with the Department for Education (DfE), Castle School Education Trust (CSET) and Olympus Academy Trust (OAT), to design, build, and open the new Primary School and new Secondary School for Lyde Green.
Design and planning
We have now finalised the designs and layouts of buildings that are designed to provide outstanding environmental performance and an excellent learning environment.
A planning application was submitted in August 2023 for minor amendments to the previously approved planning permission, to still achieve the building performance and the teaching and learning needs for the new schools. We anticipate this will be determined by November 2023.
Funding for the works
More than £41 million has been committed to-date for the new school buildings, including agreement from DfE to invest more than £30 million in addition to investment of more than £11 million of Council funding.
Costs have risen significantly in the construction industry, as well as in the overall economy, which has impacted this project. We are now finalising the construction costs aligned to the revised designs and we are working to agree the funding and contractual requirements to deliver the new schools.
Timeline for construction
We intend to build the new schools at the same time, to enable both the new Primary School and new Secondary School to be completed and then opened at the same time.
Subject to agreeing the contracts, we expect that building works will begin in the first half of 2024 and that the construction of the new schools will then take approximately two years. This means an expected completion date in mid-2026, ready for opening to pupils for the start of the new term in September 2026.
Further details for school admissions will be published in the future.
We are finalising the agreements for the range of sports facilities at Lyde Green, before the new schools are built and opened. We will provide further information about the anticipated availability of the sports facilities in a future update.
We will provide a further update on progress before the Christmas school holidays.
We, the Department for Education (DfE), Olympus and CSET remain committed to building and opening these new schools as soon as possible. We recognise and appreciate the frustration shared by all that this project has been delayed.
Our new administration is keen to get this project finally delivered. We have asked project partners to agree a realistic timeline of key milestones on the journey to the delivery of these new schools. This will allow all stakeholders to understand how the project is being delivered and provide an easy to understand indication of the project’s progress.
Currently, work is underway to finalise plans for the new facilities which, once approved, will allow us to agree the final element of government funding so that work can begin on site and we can begin to plan for the schools to open.
The updated designs will still deliver schools designed to Passivhaus standards of outstanding environmental performance, as well as ensuring that their layout will suit the needs of modern teaching and learning methods.
Large amounts of funding have already been agreed, we and the government have committed more than £41 million so far.
What is causing the delay
Conditions in the construction industry have impacted many projects, including these. Costs have risen significantly, which has meant that we and the DfE, who are providing most of the funding, have had to look again at the designs to make sure they provide the schools we need, but that they are also affordable.
When the schools will open
We are working hard to finalise the designs and secure the remaining funding so that the DfE will be able to confirm opening dates for the new schools. We want this work to start as soon as possible, but we do not want to raise expectations again, only to have to disappoint people later.
While we are doing everything that we can to deliver the new schools and school places as soon as possible, our close collaboration with existing schools in the local area means that we continue to be able to meet demand for places. This year 96% of families received an offer of a place at one of their preferred secondary schools and 98% received an offer at one of their preferred primary schools.
When the sports equipment and facilities will open for public use
The Core Area is nearing completion. This comprises a range of sports facilities, including playing fields, tennis courts, a multi-use artificial pitch and a cricket wicket. These have been built for the community and they will also be used by the new schools once the schools are open. The pavilion, which will provide changing facilities for the sports facilities, is nearly complete and we are exploring options for who can operate these before the schools are built. We hope to be able to provide an update on this in the autumn.
We will provide a further update on progress on this project in the autumn term. This will include more information about the anticipated availability of the shared use sports facilities which will be used by the schools but also made available for community use.
We have secured the agreement of the Department for Education to invest more than £30 million to the cost of the new secondary school for Lyde Green. This is in addition to the £11 million of our own funding allocated to deliver both the primary and secondary schools.
Now that this initial funding package has been agreed, we are working with partners to determine the final cost to build the new secondary school and to agree the programme for delivery.
We are also working to agree the funding required to deliver the new primary school. The plan remains to build both new facilities at the same time and for them to have the same opening dates.
Once the full programme and funding has been agreed we will be able to share details of when work will begin, as well as the planned school opening dates. We expect to be finalised in the autumn.
When the schools will open
We appreciate the community are very keen to know when the schools will open and we will confirm dates as soon as we are in a position to do so.
At this stage we can say that the schools will not be open in September 2024 and that we anticipate the build programme will take approximately 2 years.
We, along with Olympus Academy Trust and the Castle School Education Trust are committed to delivery of the new schools and their opening at the earliest opportunity.
While we are doing everything that we can to deliver the new schools and school places as soon as possible, our close collaboration with existing schools in the local area means that we continue to be able to meet demand for places. This year 96% of families received an offer of a place at one of their preferred schools. Primary offers for the start of term in September 2023 will be confirmed with parents in April.
Local residents may see activity on the site in the coming weeks as additional survey work takes place. This will help to update and determine the final design and build programme.
We will provide a further update on progress on this project in the summer term. This will include more information about the anticipated availability of the shared use sports facilities which will be used by the schools but also made available for community use.
These facilities are close to completion and subject to management arrangements being established we expect community use to be possible this year.
We continue our engagement with the Department for Education and partners in the pre-construction process.
We share the community’s frustration but remain committed to delivering the new primary and secondary schools to meet local demand for places.
The process is designed to make sure that the final projects are well-designed and that they will deliver value for money.
As soon as we are able to provide an update and indicate a firm timeline to take these new school projects forward we will provide further information.
You can find our stakeholder update for July 2022.
The updates include:
- discussions to finalise the funding arrangements and procurement processes for the new secondary school are continuing
- we anticipate construction of the new primary and secondary school to commence in 2023
- deferring the anticipated opening date for the new secondary school for Lyde Green until September 2024
- construction of the new primary school, delivered as part of a single project with the secondary school, will also be delayed
- we will continue to work with existing schools in the local area to make sure that there are sufficient places
You can find our stakeholder update for January 2021.
The updates include:
- the planned opening of Lyde Green Secondary School will not be going ahead in September this year
- continuing to work with the Regional Schools Commissioner’s Office and The Olympus Academy Trust to finalise the plans and funding arrangements to deliver Lyde Green Secondary School
Olympus Academy Trust are holding meetings for prospective parents and carers of children transferring to secondary school in September 2022 who may be interested in expressing a preference to attend Lyde Green Community Secondary School.
You can find our stakeholder update for August 2021.
The updates include:
- the Olympus Academy Trust issuing this update for Winterbourne Academy parents and carers on 25 August 2021
- plans to temporarily co-locate the Year 7 cohort on the Winterbourne Academy School site
- Lyde Green Secondary School will open for children in September 2022 and parents and carers will be able to express a preference for Lyde Green in their admission application for secondary transfer in September 2022
You can find the stakeholder update for July 2021.
The updates include changes to the plans that will delay completion of new buildings. We are still confident that sufficient provision of school places will be available for year 7s entering secondary school in September 2022