Halesworth primary school set to expand by more than 100 pupils

Halesworth's Edgar Sewter Primary School is set to expand 

Halesworth's Edgar Sewter Primary School is set to expand - Credit: Archant

A Halesworth primary school is looking to increase its capacity by a third to 420 pupils - as the area sees more growth from housebuilding.

Suffolk County Council has outlined its proposals to expand Edgar Sewter Primary School by creating two new forms.

The Norwich Road school currently has capacity for 315 students.

A planning application to create a new hard play area on the school grounds in anticipation of the increase in student numbers has been submitted to East Suffolk Council.

Earlier this year, land with permission for a developer to build 190 new homes and sports facilities, on a site off nearby Harrisons Lane, was sold amid concerns over a lack of infrastructure in the town.

Neighbours had expressed fears that Halesworth's infrastructure was at "bursting point" - with a lack of school places being a cause of concern.

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Edgar Sewter Primary School, which is part of ASSET Education, is the only school in Halesworth, a town of more than 5,000 people.

However, primary schools can also be found in the neighbouring villages of Holton, Wenhaston and Bramfield.

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Planning documents submitted with the proposals said: "Due to anticipated housing developments in the area, SCC proposes to increase the capacity of the school to accommodate two forms of entry at the school, with a total of 420 places.

"To support the expansion of the school, there is a need to increase the areas available for external play and this planning application is to address this need. This is achieved by the additional hard play areas proposed.

"The proposed development will help the school meet the requirements to accommodate the additional pupils."

Clare Flintoff, chief executive of ASSET Education, added: "Suffolk County Council is proposing an increase from 315 to 420 places - this would mean two classes per year group from Reception through to Year 6.

Clare Flintoff head shot with green backfdrop

Clare Flintoff, chief executive of ASSET Education, outlined the proposals - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

"This is due to local housing development over the next few years which is expected to create a demand on school places so action is being taken now to make sure that the school can cater for this future expected demand.  

"We are working with the local authority on this project and hope to be able to start building works, if the proposal is accepted, next summer."

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