Blackpool school had hoped sports scheme would stop yobs breaking into its grounds

A school has lost a bid to open up sports facilities to the community which it  hoped would help crack down on vandals getting onto the site once pupils have gone home.

Friday, 26th July 2019, 1:24 pm
Revoe Learning Academy

Head teacher Dayle Harrison had applied to Blackpool Council for permission to open the multi use games area (MUGA) at Revoe Learning Academy three evenings a week to local residents.

He hoped the move would deter mischief-makers - including youths climbing on the school roofs - by providing activities for them and creating an increased presence on the site on Grasmere Road.

But town hall planners ruled the change would cause noise disruption for residents and increase pressure on parking spaces.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Revoe Learning Academy

They turned down the application to vary a condition of the original planning permission to allow community use of the MUGA for three evenings between Monday to Friday, from 4.30pm until 8.30pm.

The condition limits the MUGA to, "school use only in conjunction with standard school operation".

Documents submitted with the application said the school was "having increasing problems with unwanted access to the school site, particularly the roofs, after school hours and increased problems with incidents of anti-social behaviour on the site out of school hours."

It wanted to "implement community activities on the school site out of school hours using the MUGA.

"These activities are intended to help tackle the trespassing and anti-social behaviour issues by providing activities for local youths out of school hours, and to provide an increased presence on the school site to help provide passive supervision and discourage unwanted access or behaviour.

"This would not only be of benefit to the school but also neighbouring residents, as it would reduce disruptive and potentially dangerous incidents of anti-social behaviour occurring on the school site and in the local area outside of school hours."

But planners, who refused the application using delegated powers, said the proposal was unacceptable because of the impact the additional noise and activity from the MUGA would have on nearby neighbours.

It was also considered the scheme would increase demand for on-street parking in the area "which is limited and already subject to significant pressure".