We are all very excited about the long awaited prospect of a new school for the village. Cindy, David and our Community Council have done a fantastic job getting our village onto the 21st Century School programme with Flintshire and Welsh Government.
A significant number of residents and the Community Council have expressed concern about the proposed design.
The Community Council have met with the Chief Exec of Flintshire County Council, the Flintshire Schools team, the construction company and the architect and expressed concern about these aspects of the proposal:
1. The appearance is of an industrial building not in keeping with the rural nature of the village. Requests were made to review the roof design to add a pitch roof to soften the appearance (as it was in the original plan) and also to favour natural materials and colours on the outside of the building, such as stone, wood or slate.
2. There are real concerns about the transport plan and traffic access for drop off and pick up. It is likely that a traffic impact survey will be needed, if enough residents express concerns in the consultation process. The survey will take into account traffic from both school sites and the impact on local residents as well as the need for children in Penymynydd to cross main roads to get to the school. The survey would have to be carried out once the schools are back in September. If you didn't complete the transport survey, please do it now:
3. There are concerns about the location of the school building within the site and how overbearing it is on neighbouring houses. The site is very restricted due to:
- Existing established trees
- The need to keep the current school operation during the build
- Covenants to protect the football pitch
The Council are reviewing the football pitch convenant to understand whether it can be relocated within the same site and also whether the loss of some trees would enable a better siting of the school building.
THERE ARE NO PROMISES THAT ANY CHANGES WILL BE MADE TO THE PLANS -THE COUNCIL AND CONSTRUCTION COMPANY AGREED TO RE-LOOK AT THE LAYOUT AND READ ALL OF THE FEEDBACK FROM THIS CONSULTATION BEFORE TAKING A VIEW,
Reassurances were given about some aspects of the plan:
- The building will meet the highest sustainable measures and will include solar panels.
- The hedgerow adjacent to the public footpath along Abbots Lane will not be removed other than where the site access is planned and which later will become the pedestrian access point.
- The football pitch is secure and its use by the school is part of the space requirements and will be safe in the long term
Importantly, we were reassured by the Chief Executive that funding for the school is not threatened by asking for changes. The school will be co-funded by the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools project and Flintshire County Council.
The new school site has been agreed – on Abbots Lane
The Flintshire schools team have consulted with the school teachers, pupils and governors. They are currently consulting with the wider community before the designs are submitted to planning for permission in September or October.
The plan is for the new school to be constructed behind the existing school building on Abbots Lane meaning that the old school will remain open throughout the build.
The Council are aiming to have the new school ready for 2019.
WE REALLY NEED PEOPLE TO FEEDBACK THEIR OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS - GOOD AND BAD.
Public concerns that have been raised so far include:
- TRAFFIC AND VEHICLE ACCESS
- BEING OVERLOOKED
- COLOUR / DESIGN / NATURAL MATERIALS
- FLAT ROOF
Please feel free to make your own observations and comments before the deadline.
PLEASE EMAIL YOUR FEEDBACK TO:
Feedback before the 7th August.
We have a once in a generation opportunity to get this right for the community.
We would like to thank Colin Everett and representatives from Wynne Construction, the architects and Flintshire schools for giving up their free time to come and talk to the Community Council.