Girls’ school gets go-ahead to flatten cottages in expansion plans

A Walsall girls' school has won permission to demolish cottages to make room for new classrooms.

Queen Mary’s High School. Photo: Google.
Queen Mary’s High School. Photo: Google.

The move will see Queen Mary’s High School build a new teaching block with four new classrooms to cope with rising pupil numbers at the site in Upper Forster Street, Butts.

The scheme to knock down residential cottages in Lichfield Street and the annexe section of Foden House was unanimously approved without debate at Walsall Council's planning meeting on Thursday.

The cottages were originally owned by the school and were converted to two flats in the 1980s.

They were leased to social landlord Accord Housing Association, but in 2018 the Mercian Trust re-acquired these buildings as part of plans to expand the growing school, opposite Walsall Arboretum.

The construction will be funded by the Education Funding Agency through the selective school expansion fund, with additional funding being provided by the Mercian Academy Trust.

Planning officers have recommended that Walsall Council’s planning committee grants permission subject to conditions, which includes an agreement to secure costs for four replacement trees.

The selective secondary school has 740 places, of which 150 places are in the sixth form.

The proposed new block will face Lichfield Street and access will be via the main entrance on Upper Forster Street.

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