County council denies ‘abandoning’ Gayton school site

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Education chiefs have denied claims they have abandoned a proposed site for a new village school in West Norfolk.

The suggestion was made as three large housing schemes in Gayton, which will see almost 100 new homes built, were approved on Friday.

But, with plans still to be formally submitted, Norfolk County Council officials have admitted work on the £4.5 million project, which they initially suggested could start this summer, will be delayed.

In a statement, the county council said: “We have been working for some time to identify the best site for the relocation and enlargement of Gayton Primary School.

“We have identified a site that represents, in our view, the best available location for a new building, and we are in discussions with the landowner.

“We intend shortly to make a planning application for the new school building, and still expect work to begin on the site by the end of the year.”

A spokesman subsequently confirmed they still intend to develop a site at the junction of Back Street and Winch Road, which has already been the subject of two public exhibitions.

Supporters say the school’s current Lynn Road site is too small and the project is urgently needed to enable the school to cope with the anticipated growth in pupil numbers over the coming years.

But opponents claim the 210-place school will be inadequate for the scale of current and future housing developments in the area.

They also argue that traffic and drainage issues must be addressed before any development takes place.