High demand for places at Blackpool school has prompted need for expansion

Some Blackpool pupils are having to eat school dinners in their classrooms because dining facilities are inadequate.

Friday, 3rd May 2019, 10:54 am
Updated Friday, 3rd May 2019, 11:01 am
An artist's impression of the proposed new school hall

Now Park Community Academy on Whitegate Drive wants to build a new school hall so all students can be properly accommodated at meal times.

Proposals have been lodged with Blackpool Council seeking planning permission to build a two-storey hall and main entrance.

If the scheme gets the go ahead, the development will replace the existing school hall which will be demolished.

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An artist's impression of the proposed new school hall

Currently there are 277 pupils at the school which caters for children with special learning needs.

A new teaching block containing five classrooms was built at the school last year to meet rising demand for places.

Documents accompanying the application say increased pupil numbers have put pressure on the original 1960s hall and kitchen meaning 26 children and 30 sixth formers have to take their meals in classrooms.

A design brief says: "This has a detrimental affect on school assemblies, dining, physical education and other whole school events.

"The school dining room is no longer large enough to accommodate the number of children taking a school meal on a daily basis.

"As a result 26 children in key stage one and 30 sixth form students are required to take their meals in classroom areas.

"This presents significant food and hygiene concerns and a potential risk of cross contamination long term.

"This must now be addressed to ensure that the school’s excellent teaching and achievement record can be maintained."

The proposed new hall will be increased in height so it can also be used for sports as well as being able to provide a viewing gallery.

The design brief adds: "The design of the new hall, attached two storey building and new main entrance is deliberately contemporary and intended to provide a new public image for the school."

Town hall planners will now consider the application at a future date.