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Former village school site set to be sold off

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The site of a former West Norfolk village primary school site is set to be sold off under plans backed by county council chiefs.

The school in Sedgeford closed last year after it was deemed too small to remain viable. At the time, it had just 13 pupils on its books.

Now, the site has been formally deemed surplus to requirements, meaning it can be disposed of, following a county council cabinet meeting on Monday.

The site of the old Sedgeford Primary School has been declared surplus to Norfolk County Council requirements.
The site of the old Sedgeford Primary School has been declared surplus to Norfolk County Council requirements.

A report said: “Children’s Services have formally declared the property surplus to their needs.

“Following a review, it has been confirmed that the land and building is not required for NCC service use. It is proposed to dispose of this property by open market sale through an auction or by tender.”

It is not clear what the site may end up being used for, although proposals were presented earlier this year for houses to be developed on the site of the old Hunstanton Infant School in James Street. A decision has yet to be made on that scheme.

The Sedgeford site was one of eight across the county whose future use was discussed at Monday’s meeting, along with two patches of land in the village of Mileham, near Litcham.

In that case, cabinet members backed plans for the authority to give up its responsibility as trustee of a charity which owns the lands and transfer that status to the village’s parish council, subject to the agreement of the Charity Commission.

Both areas of land, in The Street and Back Lane respectively, were originally deemed surplus to council needs in 2017, following the closure of the village’s school two years earlier.

But later inquiries found they were owned by a charity group, known as the Free School, Mileham Charity, which was formed in the 1980s. The county council was the sole trustee.

The papers said the trustee was permitted to use the Street site for a school and let the Back Lane field to generate income.

The report added: “Now it is appropriate to consider whether Norfolk County Council should remain as the single trustee and to determine if there is an alternative approach to taking forward the aims of the charity.”

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