Plan submitted for new school to cater for pupils with additional needs

Application submitted for new SEN school in Romford

The proposed new SEN school would be located on the site of St Edward's CofE Academy in London Road. - Credit: Google Maps

A proposal to build a new school for children with additional needs in Romford has been submitted for consideration.

The planning application sent to Havering Council - fronted by Reds10 Ltd on behalf of the Department for Education - would see a 60-pupil school built beside the St Edward’s CofE Academy in London Road.

Should these plans be given the go-ahead, developers aim to open the facility in September 2022.

The Havering SEN school is intended for pupils aged three to 16 who have social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs, as well as for those with autism spectrum condition (ASC) difficulties.

The applicant's Design and Access Statement reads: "Together these two groups of pupils represent some of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children in our society.

"As such, we believe they deserve a beautiful and well-appointed school, surrounded by opportunities for inclusivity and health."

This facility would employ 45 members of staff.

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The proposed site - between Romford and Chadwell Heath - is situated beside St Edward's Church of England Academy on part of its overflow car park and play area.

On the other side, planning permission is in place to build a new ground for Romford Football Club.

The plans make provision for 16 car parking spaces, 10 cycle spaces and two spaces for parking for disabled people.

Meetings have been taking place since last June to finalise this proposal, with feedback from both the council's planning department and the Greater London Authority (GLA) shaping the final design.

Developers also met with St Edward's in February this year.

One concern raised by the GLA is that the application site is in a Green Belt area.

The Design and Access Statement promises the proposal reflects this, and has been designed to respect "character and setting".

Existing mature trees to the east of the site would be retained and protected.

It has also been agreed that the school's drop-off and collection times would be staggered with the neighbouring academy to mitigate possible congestion.

A decision is expected from Havering Council by September 10.

Should the application be granted, construction will begin in December and be finished by November 2022.

View and make comments on the application using reference P1129.2.