220 homes planned for Claires Court Schools sites to fund £30m new campus

Grace Witherden

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Grace Witherden

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220 homes planned for Claires Court Schools sites to fund £30m new campus

Claires Court principals James and Hugh Wilding at the Ridgeway site where they aim to build a single campus and 157 homes.

Major changes to Claires Court Schools which would involve merging its three campuses and the redevelopment of its sites to include 220 homes will soon be out for public consultation.

The independent school, which has three sites across Maidenhead, is looking to combine them to create a new single campus at the site of its Junior Boys school at Ridgeway, off Cannon Lane.

The sites in College Avenue, Ray Mill Road East and part of the Ridgeway site will be redeveloped into housing by Berkeley Homes and the new school campus will be able to hold just under 1,100 pupils at full capacity. The schools currently have 900 pupils.

Similar plans which would have seen a new campus and a private hospital on the Ridgeway site were unveiled in 2014. The hospital promoters have since decided not to go ahead.

There would be a total of 11 homes built on the Ray Mill Road East site, 53 in College Avenue, and 157 on land near Ridgeway by the Berkeley Group. Of these 30 per cent of these will be affordable homes.

Proposals also include new sports pitches, a multi-sports pavilion and facilities for drama, art and music plus an ecological habitat area. Maidenhead Hockey Club would use the sports facilities at evening and weekends.

Hugh Wilding, principal of Claires Court, said: “We are delighted to be bringing forward a plan for our Ridgeway site, as this gives us a tremendous opportunity to provide an excellent, sustainable new campus where our children can continue to thrive. This exciting project will secure the school’s future and bring a wide range of benefits to our pupils, staff and the wider community. We do hope that many residents will call in to see the plans.”

The school hopes that plans will be submitted by this autumn and approved by January or February next year. The £30million for the new campus will be partly funded by the development of the two sites and construction is expected to take 75 weeks.

Mr Wilding said: “We hope work would start by January or February 2018 so the school could open in September 2019.

“Currently 30 per cent of our students take buses to school, but we would hope this would be increased to 50 per cent.”

The scheme would also include new access to the site off Cannon Lane near Farmers Way.

The consultation will run on Saturday, July 9 from 10am-2pm at Claires Court Junior Boys School, Ridgeway, where residents can view proposals in full.

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