Due to the foul winter weather, plans to build a primary school at Tadpole Farm in time for September have been delayed by several months.
However Swindon Council has come up with a stop-gap measure to accelerate construction of the long awaited Redhouse Community Centre close to the village centre so that it can be used as a two classroom school until at least January or later into 2015.
The site off Frankel Avenue, pictured, has planning permission and Swindon Council leader David Renard has been assured the building can be ready by the end of the summer. “The rain at the beginning of the year made it increasingly clear that the access road to the Tadpole Farm school site would not be ready so we’ve been considering options.
“Building the community centre in time for September is also a very tight timescale but I’m told it can be done.”
The council cabinet agreed on 19 March that £852,000 of Section 106 developer contributions can be spent this year.
“We’re killing two birds with one stone,” said Cllr Renard. “The alternative would have been spending an extra £350,000 on preparing a site for temporary classrooms which would be removed after one or two terms."
The school will start with 40 children and will begin to relieve the shortage of places in North Swindon, which will increase as the 1,700 houses at Tadpole Farm are built.
The school will be run by the Diocese of Bristol Academies Trust. Once the staff and children move to permanent facilities at Tadpole Farm in early 2015, the building at Redhouse village centre will be taken over by a local management committee which has to be formed. Blunsdon Parish Council have been discussing management responsibilities with the Swindon Council.
St Andrew’s ward councillor Vera Tomlinson said she was pleased the community centre is coming about: “Both the school and the community building are required. I’m happy the centre is going to be constructed this year and will be available for local use in 9 to 12 months time."