Up to 90 much-needed new primary school places and state-of-the-art facilities have been formally opened at Wincanton Primary School.
Thanks to a major Somerset County Council school expansion project, pupils and staff today (Tuesday 10 April), celebrated the official unveiling of their £4 million extension which boasts eight new classrooms, dedicated therapy facilities for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities and a new administration hub.
The extension also has an impressive outdoor covered play area and an IT suite, with the extra space boosting the school’s capacity from 330 to 420 places.
The need for extra places was identified following recent housing developments in the area. The existing building, some of which dates from 1896, was already right up to capacity.
Having this new facility means that pupils can now have a dedicated library and practical science room, which up until now had to double as classrooms.
The cost of the new two-storey block, which was built by the contractor Midas Group, was met by the Council and Section 106 contributions from the housing developer.
Councillor David Fothergill, Somerset County Council’s leader, said: “This is a fantastic state-of-the-art development which has provided much-needed school places for the Wincanton area and also gives pupils some wonderful new facilities.
“We are committed to investing in schools and education in the county – earlier this year we announced our plans to see £140m invested in new, replacement or expanded schools across Somerset.”
The building is located on land acquired through a swap for land originally proposed for a new school on the Barns Estate.
Head Teacher Graeme Wilson said: “We are very proud of the new extension and thank everyone who has been involved in providing us with this fabulous provision.
“This additional space has already made a significant impact on the provision for our pupils and thus in turn ensuring our children are making good progress in their learning.
“Having dedicated space for specific areas of the curriculum and interventions, both inside and out, ensures our promise to our