Work starts to find new site for school

A new school for an expanding community in North Tyneside is expected to be open in three years.

Cabinet members at North Tyneside Council have given the green light for work to start on relocating Backworth Park Primary School to a larger building with playing field.

Families moving into new housing estates in the west Shiremoor area have seen the need for a larger school to cover the area.

At their meeting last week, cabinet members agreed for officers to start negotiations for the new site and property now the formal statutory consultation period has come to an end.

The school needs to expand and move as it is small and does not have a playing field or alternative suitable outdoor facilities.

Large new housing estates are being built and these homes, together with the increasing birth rate, will place pressure on primary schools in the area.

Latest figures show there are approximately 1,600 new homes with planning permission in the area with a potential for more than 350 primary age children in the next ten years.

The Duke of Northumberland is proposing to develop land to the west of Shiremoor to create 590 homes and has included plans for a new school on the site.

Welcoming the move, Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “This is excellent news because as well as providing a fantastic education; the school will be the heart of this community bringing life and vibrancy to the area so that it becomes an established community – not just a large housing estate.”

Coun Ian Grayson, cabinet member for children, young people and learning, added: “By relocating and expanding the school into a new purpose-built accommodation with outdoor playing areas we will be able to provide fantastic facilities as well as a great education to the children living on these new estates.”

The relocation and expansion of Backworth Park Primary School to the new site on the housing development is scheduled to open in September 2017.