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Consultation underway on “exciting plans” to expand Bridgewater High School

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CONSULTATION is underway on “exciting plans” to expand Bridgewater High School so that it can meet the anticipated increase in the number of students in the south of the town.

Following careful scrutiny and planning, Warrington Borough Council has identified the need to increase the number of secondary places following the significant level of new housing developments in the area.
Principal Tim Long says the “exciting plans,” which will involve significant capital investment, are “a fantastic opportunity for the school” as it also allows the school to:
•transform teaching and learning facilities across both sites
•redistribute numbers more evenly across the two school sites
•provide a solution to the growing pressure on school places
Mr Long added: “However, we also want to make sure that as part of any expansion we keep all our stakeholders fully informed, giving them the appropriate opportunities to consult and feedback their views.

Principal Tim Long

“For the sake of clarity, this consultation document addresses the increase in the Published Admission Number from 300 to 360 starting with Year 7 in 2023. The consultation over the Building Application is a separate process.
The School has been asked by the Local Authority to increase its Published Admission Number (PAN) from 300 to 360, commencing in 2023 and starting with Year 7.
Because this is considered to be a “significant expansion” the school must consult in line with guidance from the Department for Education.
In order to accommodate an increase in numbers, we must also build additional capacity. We must also consult over this through a separate Building Application process.”
The reason for the available investment for Bridgewater High school is that it has been identified as central to several housing developments in the local area and therefore is named as the school that will benefit from the funding in the S106 housing developer contribution for education places.
The Local Authority will be liaising closely with Bridgewater High School as it develops the site and expands the school roll to ensure as smooth a transition as possible.
The High School is a large, 11-16 co-educational, secondary school operating across two separate sites in Appleton, Warrington. The School converted to an academy in December 2014 and is part of The Challenge Academy Trust (TCAT) which
comprises nine schools and a Sixth Form College all based in the wider Warrington area.
Bridgewater High School would usually admit 300 pupils into the Year 7 cohort each year. Due to exceptional demand and appeals, the school now has more than 300 pupils in all Year groups. Due to significant housing developments creating the need for
additional places, as well as the current basic need for more pupil places as evidenced by applications over the past 3 years, the proposal is to expand permanently the
school’s Pupil Admission Number (PAN) of 300 to 360. This would start in September 2023 with initial growth in Year 7 only.
A planning application has been submitted to expand the school which will also involve “sprucing up” arts of the existing school and also creating a health and wellbeing garden that will create an inviting and welcoming entrance.
The chosen contractors will be “experts” having worked on similar projects and the works will be carried out so as to cause as least disruption as possible during term times.
Works impacting on existing buildings would only take place during school holidays.
For full details n the project and to take part in the consultations visit https://bridgewaterhigh.org/expansion-project-consultation/

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Experienced journalist for more than 35 years. Managing Director of magazine publishing group with six in-house titles and on-line daily newspaper for Warrington. Experienced writer, photographer, PR consultant and media expert having written for local, regional and national newspapers. Specialties: PR, media, social networking, photographer, networking, advertising, sales, media crisis management. Patron Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace. Trustee Warrington Disability Partnership. Former Chairman of Warrington Town FC.

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