£8.7m school rebuild plans go on display

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Winslow residents had the chance to learn about plans for the complete rebuild of Furze Down School this week.

Draft plans went on public display in the school last Saturday, with members of staff and governors on hand to explain the proposals.

And on Tuesday night, architect David Morriss, of Abingdon-based Frankham Consultancy, talked about the draft plans and answered questions.

The proposal would double the size of the school building and add much-needed new sports facilities.

It would increase provision from to 140 pupils aged from two to 19 and allow for eight new specialist nursery places.

Funding for the £8.7 million rebuild is being provided by Bucks County Council (BCC), combining a number of capital funding streams including maintenance grant, basic need funding, SEN capital funding and developer contributions under Section 106 agreements.

The aim is for plans to be submitted by the end of October, with a view to work starting next spring and the main building being completed by Easter 2014.

The clever curved design will allow the new structure to be built before the existing school buildings are demolished.

Mr Morriss said: “We’re trying to wrap our new building round the existing building until the new building is finished.”

After that, staff and students would decamp into the new building so the old ones can be knocked down and the landscaping completed.

The design also sits into plot, which falls by 9m from one side to the other, allowing for two extra storeys to be built below the main structure at one end.

Mr Morriss said: “We’re trying to build a building that responds to the landscape and the relationship between inside and outside is fluid.

“The design allows staff and students to move as freely as possible into the landscape.”

He said he was trying to make the building “as green as possible in as many ways as possible”. The plans also provide for improved traffic flow and a significant increase in on-site parking to alleviate congestion in Verney Road.