Letter to parents
Thur 4th July, 19
You may be aware that Wakefield Grammar School Foundation secured the purchase of the former Clayton Hospital, in January 2018. This important piece of land is a fantastic long-term opportunity because for the first time, we will have the ability to create a link between QEGS and Wakefield Girls’ High School. It also means that we can add new facilities that will benefit all pupils at the Foundation. The new development will be known as the Clayton Campus.
Following feedback from the parental survey last year, the Governors and Heads made decisions regarding the type of facilities that ideally would be developed on the Clayton Campus. These are a sports complex, incorporating a 25 metre swimming pool, an external Multi Use Games Area, a business school and a performing arts centre.
Seeking planning permission has taken time, but we have recently been able to appoint contractors that have started to remove the residual asbestos on site.
Our outline planning permission grants us the ability to demolish many of the buildings which are not fit for our purposes. It also ensures that we will retain the Victorian tower and some of the adjoining buildings to the main entrance.
We are regularly meeting with Wakefield Council to discuss when demolition can go ahead, and to determine the plans and phasing of the development. We are hopeful that the demolition works will be completed by Spring 2020. Afterwards, a scheme of landscaping will be completed, which is part of the planning requirements.
The total cost of developing the new Clayton Campus is in the region of £16 million and we expect that development of the facilities will take around 7-10 years. It is therefore important that we take time to ensure the design of the campus is right, fully financed and maintains the Foundation’s traditional financial strength.
The Governors have always managed the Foundation conservatively and this approach will continue. The Foundation has already committed funds for the purchase of the site, associated professional fees, and site security. We are also in a position to fund the asbestos removal, demolition and work to make the tower and retained buildings safe and watertight. The cost of this work will amount to around £3 million.
In addition to this commitment, we will be heavily reliant on a successful fundraising campaign to complete each project and more news on the fundraising initiatives will be provided to you in future updates after the break.
I shall keep you updated as we progress and I wish you a pleasant summer.
Acting Spokesman for the Governors