New secondary school site
Statement from the Greenshaw Learning Trust, 21st September 2015
The Greenshaw Learning Trust (GLT) has been informed by Sutton Council's lead member for education that the Council will not agree to the use of the disused All Weather Pitch at Rosehill Recreation Ground for a new secondary school in Sutton.
Both the Greenshaw Learning Trust and the DfE have had extensive discussions with Sutton Council about how to provide the new secondary school that will be needed in Sutton. The Trust is disappointed that the Council is preventing the school being built on what appears to be the best site available and is very concerned at the time that has been lost due to the council's prevarication.
In March Sutton Council announced that there were two sites where a new secondary school could be built in Sutton - on part of the Sutton Hospital site in Belmont and on the disused All Weather Pitch (AWP) at Rosehill Recreation Ground. The Council then purchased part of the Sutton Hospital site from the St Helier Trust.
The Department for Education (DfE) assessed both sites and in June concluded that the Rosehill site was the preferred location and that the land purchased by the Council at Sutton Hospital was too small for the proposed school. The Council told the DfE and GLT that they would make either site available for the school.
The Greenshaw Learning Trust and DfE had meetings with officers of Sutton Council and were told that the Council would agree 'Heads of Terms' for the land to be transferred to the DfE for the school at their Strategy and Resources Committee meeting on 28 September 2015.
The Greenshaw Learning Trust and DfE had received no prior notice of the Council's change of position before the council press statement was released on Friday 18 September.
The proposals being considered by the DfE and GLT for the Rosehill AWP site would have seen the school built on the derelict AWP, not on open grassland, and would not have affected the bowling green. The only suggestion that any part of the cricket ground should be dug up came from Sutton Council.
Whilst the council describe the Sutton Hospital site as 'brownfield', building a school there would require the removal of grass and trees - probably more than the proposals for a school at Rosehill.
The Greenshaw Learning Trust remains committed to seeking to provide the new school that Sutton needs and will continue to work with the council and DfE to try to achieve that.