School plans get go ahead

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A new school for 420 youngsters is to be created in Sheffield to meet demand after councillors voted unanimously to approve the plan yesterday.

The school and nursery at the site of the former Watermead School, on Barrie Crescent, Southey is to help tackle a shortage of places for children in the surrounding community.

Five letters of objection had been made on the grounds of loss of trees, increased volume of traffic and that the playing fields and other green space would be enclosed by fencing so no longer open to the public.

But a Sheffield Council planning committee agreed the application, which is one of two for new schools in the city from the council, yesterday.

Coun Ibrar Hussain, who sits on the committee, said afterwards: “It was approved unanimously.

“Comments made during the debate said that it was good news for the area.

“ It was welcomed by everyone really.”

The council is proposing to create two new primary schools - including another on Skinnerthorpe Road in Fir Vale, to cope with demand for primary school places after a boom in births nationally.

Oasis Community Learning has been selected to run the two sites.

Plans for the Watermead school also include a car park and landscaping features.

The L-shaped building is in two parts and would house the main service areas in one and the teaching areas in the other.

The site is currently being used as a community learning centre .

The council has not yet announced where the centre will be moved to.

Playing fields would be retained as part of the plans.

The same planning meeting also saw approved an application for 55 apartments for elderly people at the site of the former Newton Grange care home, in Horner Close, Stocksbridge.

The accommodation will include 34 two-bed and 21 one-bedroom flats, along with car parking and landscaping.

There were four letters of objection and one letter of support to the plans before the meeting.

The objections related to loss of trees, the size of the building and disturbance during construction work.

In planning reports officers said the normal maximum number of homes for the site would be 42 - but that a larger number would be allowed for a development of ‘good design’.

Coun Hussain added: “The application went through and that was approved also.

“It was a good plan that was welcomed.”

A public art scheme forms part of the apartments proposal and will be incorporayed into the landscaped areas of the site