World News

Plans approved for new £63.5m Fitzalan High School building

Plans have been approved for a new building for Fitzalan High School, which should be ready by spring 2023.

The new £63.5 million building will replace the current school, which is more than 50 years old. It can now be built on land next to Leckwith stadium, after Cardiff council’s planning committee granted permission on Wednesday, November 18.

The three-storey building will have space for 1,850 pupils and include sports pitches and an indoor swimming pool that the public will be able to use outside school hours.

But the plans have drawn controversy with parents of pupils at the neighbouring Ysgol Pwll Coch. Parents and carers previously protested against the loss of the primary school’s green play area, the Cae, as part of the Fitzalan plans.

Concerns have also been raised about buses dropping off Fitzalan pupils near Ysgol Pwll Coch on the one-way Lawrenny Avenue, and new fencing put up between the two schools closing in the primary school.

Richard James, a parent of a pupil at Ysgol Pwll Coch, wrote to the council with his concerns. He said: “My children and hundreds of other Pwll Coch pupils will spend almost half of their primary school years surrounded by construction works and traffic, increased noise and pollution.

“The result for Pwll Coch will be a primary school completely enveloped by a secondary school and imprisoned by high fencing to protect from sports activities and noise; lower quality outdoor spaces for the children to play; lower air quality from increased bus services adjacent to the school’s playing fields; and ongoing risk from Fitzalan traffic.”



Ysgol Pwll Coch parents protesting last year against plans to flatten the school’s green area for sports pitches for the new Fitzalan High development

Helen Raynor, another parent also writing to the council, said: “High fencing will create a caged feel for Pwll Coch children, reduce natural light, and increase the risk of ice on playgrounds in winter. The open aspect we previously had is already destroyed, and instead of trees and fields, our children now look at solid fencing.”

Council planner David Davies tried to allay those concerns during the planning committee, saying hedges and trees would be planted in front of the fences.

Mr Davies added school buses couldn’t stop south of the site, due to concerns pupils would frequent the nearby McDonald’s and KFC, and the council doesn’t own that land.

Councillors on the committee praised the plans for the new school but echoed concerns of Pwll Coch parents.

Cllr Keith Parry said: “Fitzalan school is in need of replacement. But I’m concerned students at Pwll Coch will be subject to building for several years, and their access to the school will still be blighted by the school buses going to Fitzalan.”

Cllr Iona Gordon said: “The designs look fantastic. But my main concern about the plans is the boxing-in of Ysgol Pwll Coch and the long time those children are going to have in their school career with construction going on all around them.”

...

ALSO READ  nearly all UN security council unites against 'unpleasant' US
Tags

Leave a Reply

Back to top button
Close