Police submit special security requests for new £23m Sheffield school in 'high crime area'

Artists impression of how the Woodside School will look (s)
Artists impression of how the Woodside School will look (s)
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Police are so concerned about crime being committed at a new £23m Sheffield school they’ve asked for benches and bins to be fixed to the ground and footpaths nearby to be banned.

South Yorkshire Police said the new Woodside School, a through-school for 1,200 children aged two to 18 in Burngreave, is in a ‘high crime area’ and needs to be designed accordingly.

The force has met architects to discuss the plans and has submitted a statement to Sheffield Council’s planning department outlining its wishes.

The school will be one of two built in the city next year, with a secondary and sixth form school planned for 1,200 pupils, off Carterknowle Road.

Woodside will incorporate the old Grade II listed Pye Bank School building and will be run by the Reach4 Academy Trust.

Suzanne Turton, a designing out crime officer at the force, said: “I have had a meeting with the architects to discuss crime issues in the area. Both sites should be secure at all times apart from the start and end of the school day, after this they should be access controlled only. There should be no public footpaths through the school grounds as this could create an opportunity for crime and anti-social behaviour.

“As this school will be used out of hours by external organisations, consideration should be given to being able to secure different wings/floors of the school for this purpose.

“Reception areas must be supervised at all times and access beyond this area controlled. The sites should be well lit and designed in collaboration with a CCTV system.

“All doors, windows, glazing and boundary treatments should be to Secured by Design standards. All landscape should be kept low below one metre and trees to have no foliage below two metres.

“External furniture such as benches, bins, should be fixed into the ground in order to prevent it being used as a climbing aid or tool to break into the building shell.”

A Sheffield Council spokesperson said: “ As with every new school build in Sheffield we are putting in security measures to ensure the safety of all our pupils.

“We are hugely excited about this new school and the investment and opportunities it will bring to the north east of the city.

“The new school will be a huge boost for the area complimenting years of positive activity to regenerate and make it a popular place to live.

Working with the schools sponsor Reach4 Academy Trust, we have a wonderful opportunity to make a real difference to the lives of many children, young people and families in our city.”

The council is building the new schools to cope with increasing demand for places in the city.

About 5,500 children need Year 7 places each school year – projected to rise to more than 6,100 by 2021.