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25th Jun, 2022

Promised new school may not be delivered

Malvern Editorial 11th Dec, 2013 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

FEARS have heightened a new primary school promised seven years ago will now not be built.

The school formed part of the planning agreement when the district council gave the green light for Persimmon to develop a 490 home estate at Malvern Vale in 2006.

Worcestershire County Council’s education chief has now declared the number of school places in the area is ‘sufficient’ but parents are still calling for a 200-place primary school claiming there are 200 youngsters aged under four in the area and a further 200 at primary school age.

So far more than 50 people have signed up to an online petition set up by Malvern Vale Residents Group.

A statement on the site said: “We need this school to turn our estate into a proper community.

“The community that we were all promised when we moved here.”

John Raine, county councillor for Malvern Trinity, has backed residents in the area and said if the council did not commit to the school by next March the site would return to the developers who were likely to build more houses.

He said: “Malvern Vale – a community now with some 490 plus homes and including many young families – still needs and deserves the primary school that was originally envisaged for it.

“Any decision by county hall not to proceed to build it would be letting the local residents down badly.”

Coun David Hughes, leader of Malvern Hills District Council, also gave his support and said it would be a ‘lost opportunity’ no to build the school.

He vowed to write to the chief executive and leader of Worcestershire County Council to request they gave ‘urgent consideration’ to the situation.

County Coun Liz Eyre, responsible for children and families in Worcestershire, said school places were currently sufficient in Malvern Vale but the council would continue to monitor the numbers and ‘respond as necessary’.

A county council spokeswoman said the council carried out annual forecasts for pupil numbers and aimed to maintain a margin above the estimates to give parents flexibility and choice.

She added families in Malvern Vale would be given priority for schools in their catchment area.

Visit www.ipetitions.com/petition/malvernvale to sign the online petition.

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