We are fortunate in Kenilworth to have excellent schools for our young people. Kenilworth School is already widely respected outstanding.
Now, the time has come for a new chapter for the school. After a huge amount of work on the part of many, the school is embarking on an exciting project as it looks to relocate to a new, purpose built secondary school and sixth form offering improved teaching, learning and sporting facilities at Southcrest Farm on Glasshouse Lane.
The school now has planning permission from Warwick District Council for new facilities to include a new three storey secondary school and sixth form building, walking and cycle access from Glasshouse Lane, parking spaces for cars, school buses, electric vehicles, sheltered bicycle racks, internal drop-off zones, sports pitches, landscaping and auxiliary outbuildings.
The proposed site is allocated for educational use in the Warwick District Council Local Plan adopted in 2017. At the same time as delivering a brilliant new school, the move from the current school sites will assist with the delivery of the wider Local Plan through use of the areas the current school will vacate. Kenilworth will also benefit from enhanced sports provision at the new school site, to include six high quality grass pitches, an all-weather pitch, an outdoor 400m athletics track, outdoor tennis courts and a basketball area.
As well as providing for the current cohort, the new facilities will allow the school to increase capacity so that it provides places for 2,200 pupils. I have recently visited the school and talked to current pupils about the plans, and particularly those who hope to be amongst the first to benefit from the new sixth form facilities if planning is approved and the build goes ahead in good time. The plan is for the sixth formers to enjoy the benefits of sharing the same site as Years 7 to 11, whilst still having their own space within it to prepare them for when they leave to go into Further/Higher Education or industry. Importantly, there will also be an emphasis on creating sensory spaces and a dedicated SEN area for the benefit of the wider school.
The sooner the project is delivered, the sooner the current pupils in the lower years at Kenilworth School – and all of the children currently at our excellent Primary Schools across the area – will have the opportunity to experience the new and purpose built facilities.
I have done all I can to help this project succeed, and in particular to get the Government funding to make it happen (the Department for Housing, Communities and Local Government has confirmed over £9.5 million of funding for the school from the Housing Infrastructure Fund) and the Ministerial consents it needs. Together with trustees of the school, I met the relevant Minister to pursue this just before the dissolution of Parliament.