Proposed Northampton school for children who are excluded, long-term ill or preganant to be turned down

A plan to turn a former Northampton Borough Council depot into a free school for excluded children and young teens who have become pregnant is likely to be refused because of a lack of parking.

Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 10:53 am
Updated Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 2:17 pm
Residents say there is simply not enough parking for a new school in Station Road, Bellinge.

The Education Funding Agency (EFA) has applied to convert two former training buildings in Station Road, Bellinge, into a free school, or "alternate provision" school for young people who cannot attend mainstream education.

But its plan to provide places for 45 young people - 30 primary aged and 15 secondary aged - is likely to be turned down by Northampton Borough Council.

It is due to be heard before the authority's planning committee at the Guildhall next week, but officers have recommended it be turned down.

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A report to the committee reads: "The proposal would fail to provide sufficient on-site parking to serve the development, which would result in a significant increase in the level of on-street parking within the surrounding residential area."

The EFA wants to open a permanent school in Sheep Street in 2018 and keep the site at Bellinge to focus more on vocational training.

The facility it says would be for pupils who can’t attend mainstream school for a variety of reasons, "such as school exclusion, behavioural issues, short or long term illness, school refusal or teenage pregnancy."

The school would be open between at 8.45am and 2.45pm, with most of the pupils.

However, the bid has received a number of complaints from nearby residents, mainly referring the lack of parking in the area and the possibility of anti-social behaviour.

The planning committee is set to meet at the Guildhall at 6pm next Tuesday, December 20.