Worries over free school building plans

A FREE school’s attempt to build on playing fields in Woolston has been met with concern by community officials.

Maureen Banner, chairman of Woolston Parish Council, said proposals by Kings Leadership Academy Warrington to build classrooms on the sports fields at Hillock Lane is ‘a worry’ for residents.

She said: “Selling the playing fields is a concern.

“It’s something that we need to have clarity on.

“We have got young football teams who have used those pitches for a long time and we want that to continute.

“Our main concern is to look after the sports facilities of our young people.

“Sport builds character and these facilities need to be guarded for our grandchildren and their children.”

The Government is under pressure for selling off playing fields, with critics claiming it is to the detriment of leaving an Olympic legacy.

Warrington Borough Council maintains it has been bullied into selling the playing fields at Hillock Lane, but free school bosses say sports facilities will improve.

A formal planning application is due to be submitted on Friday, January 18.

Don Earley is deputy chief executive of Fields in Trust, a charity that protects playing fields.

He said: “It will be for Warrington as the planning authority to ensure that any application does not result in any loss of much needed facilities, and that any planning application conforms to national guidance and local plan policies.

“Once open space and outdoor facilities are lost, they tend to be lost forever, so very careful consideration should be given in determining what happens.”

Sir Iain Hall, the super head that helped form King’s Leadership Academy, moved to address fears.

He said: “The plans that will be submitted will enhance the sporting facilities in the area.

“There will be a sports hall, all weather pitch, and there will be no loss of football pitches.

“Exisiting teams will be allowed to use the pitches and we will be opening changing rooms for them.

“The school is a community school and this will enhance facilities for the community.”

Comments (3)

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9:16am Fri 11 Jan 13

MikeJT says...

"Selling the fields is a worry"
"It will be for Warrington........do
es not result in loss"

So people have expressed concerns that need to be addressed

DIRECT RESPONSE and the only comments in this article which are "this WILL happen", and they get relegated the the end of the article.

The plans that will be submitted will enhance the sporting facilities in the area.

“There will be a sports hall, all weather pitch, and there will be no loss of football pitches.

“Existing teams will be allowed to use the pitches and we will be opening changing rooms for them.
"Selling the fields is a worry" "It will be for Warrington........do es not result in loss" So people have expressed concerns that need to be addressed DIRECT RESPONSE and the only comments in this article which are "this WILL happen", and they get relegated the the end of the article. The plans that will be submitted will enhance the sporting facilities in the area. “There will be a sports hall, all weather pitch, and there will be no loss of football pitches. “Existing teams will be allowed to use the pitches and we will be opening changing rooms for them. MikeJT
  • Score: 0

9:52am Fri 11 Jan 13

SAC_in_Warrington says...

The school has undoubtedly agreed to enrich the facilities not destroy and obliterate them. To be blunt, Job done now move on to something else Cllr. Banner, no need to waste any further public funds or indeed those of the Free School let them get on with their good aims of educating and enriching children's lives and those of their families.
The school has undoubtedly agreed to enrich the facilities not destroy and obliterate them. To be blunt, Job done now move on to something else Cllr. Banner, no need to waste any further public funds or indeed those of the Free School let them get on with their good aims of educating and enriching children's lives and those of their families. SAC_in_Warrington
  • Score: 0

9:17pm Sat 12 Jan 13

Rowdie says...

You have it in writing that the plans will ENHANCE the sporting facilities in the area. What more do you want? isn't that clarity enough?
You have it in writing that the plans will ENHANCE the sporting facilities in the area. What more do you want? isn't that clarity enough? Rowdie
  • Score: 0

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