The oldest section of the former Arnold School will be saved from demolition, plans have revealed.
It comes after concern that a portion of the building, on the corner of Arnold Avenue and Lytham Road in South Shore, which is locally listed, could be flattened when work on the new Armfield Academy starts.
But it will not be used to teach the next generation of youngsters because of its ‘poor condition, unconducive layout and access restrictions, which restrict its use as a modern teaching environment’, documents show.
They add: “It is the intention however that this building will be refurbished as a separate project, which will be carried out at a future date, to allow it to be used as administration accommodation.”
Plans for the new all-through school, which is set to open next September and will cater for youngsters aged two to 16, were shown off to visitors to the nearby Burlington Pub on Monday evening.
If they are lodged with the council and passed, a three-storey block will be built on the north of the site for secondary school pupils.
The old primary school block will be refurbished for the same purpose, as will the sports hall and design centre, the drawings revealed.
Other plans include a new main entrance, sports pitches and play areas, outdoor dining area, and car parking.
Coun Lily Henderson, who went to see the drawings, said she was ‘very impressed’. She added: “When the academy is open it will lift the area. It’s going to be good.”
Conlon Construction was appointed to lead the multi-million pound project, and work is expected to start at the end of September, and finish in 2019 – after the school opens.
It will eventually have 1,280 pupils, but will launch with 24 youngsters in its nursery, 60 in reception, and 160 in year seven, with plans to be full by 2025, a leaflet delivered to 25,000 homes across south and central Blackpool and St Annes revealed.
Chris Lickiss, Unity Academy’s former headteacher, has taken the helm, and said he was ‘honoured’ to be given the job.
He added: “I am determined to ensure that our school immediately delivers at the highest level.”
The school was originally named the Avenue Academy, but Fylde Coast Academy Trust bosses did a U-turn after a consultation showed 86 per cent of respondents backed honouring former Arnold pupil and Blackpool FC legend Jimmy Armfield.
The World Cup star later spoke of his pride at the move.