Gatwick School bid to remain on site for two years

Gatwick School (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150713-175101008
Gatwick School (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150713-175101008

A bid to let The Gatwick School remain at its site for two years has been made.

Crawley Free School Trust (CFST), which runs the school in Gatwick Road in Manor Royal, applied for a two year temporary change of use from commercial offices to a co-educational school at Northwest House.

Crawley councillors rejected its bid to permanently change the use of its site from offices to a school on August 3.

CEO Tim McCarthy said he was confident his school would be given permanent planning permission in its second attempt.

CFST opened the free school in 2014 with one year of temporary planning rights.

Mr McCarthy said it would make the second bid for permanent planning permission for a primary and secondary school for 1,020 pupils with sports hall, parking and external play areas after it was granted the temporary rights.

He said: “We are absolutely confident that we can resolve the issues with the planners.

“The major issue is resolving the number of journeys to the site and making sure we can operate the site safely.”

Mr McCarthy said the trust was looking at redesigning its proposals for a sports hall in order to create more parking spaces.

He said parking in the area was ‘very tight’ and added:“It’s the same for every business around the area so putting the sports hall on the site restricts the amount of parking you can put on the site.”

He had considered options including proposing the hall be put on stilts and having a split site school.

He explained the school needed to have a sports hall for pupils’ physical education.

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