MP says issues surrounding proposed new school must be resolved or village risks losing millions
- Credit: Archant
MP Steve Barclay says a series of “outstanding issues” surrounding the proposed new secondary school in Littleport must be resolved within the next seven weeks or the village risks losing millions of pounds.
Cambridgeshire County Council has proposed using Camel Road and Elmside as access points for the £34million facility but Littleport Parish Council says those access routes will impact on residents and lead to a loss of green space.
The parish council also has concerns over the management and ownership of a proposed new leisure centre to be built with the schools.
Two public meetings have taken place within the last fortnight to try and iron out the issues and another is scheduled for March 12, but Mr Barclay says the clock is ticking for an agreement to be reached.
He said: “This scheme is fully funded with £34 million secured for a new secondary school, primary school and special needs school together with a state of the art new leisure centre for Littleport.
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“We need to quickly resolve the issues over access to the site, management of the leisure centre, and traffic management issues for residents as we cannot afford to lose this scheme.
“I hope Littleport residents will make clear to all those in positions of influence how much they want this scheme to go ahead and what a positive impact it will have for local residents.”
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At a meeting held earlier this month, Liam Roberts, a design manager for the schools project, warned that that unless agreement ccan be reached the project could be lost, with the county council looking to invest in other areas instead.
Littleport parish councillors are concerned about the use of Camel Road as an access and about potential issues with the demolition of the existing leisure centre with the site being used for parking.
Parish councillors also fear the change of use could breach a deed of covenant made when the land was given to the town by the former landowner.
The covenant stipulates the land must be used for leisure purposes or ownership will revert back.
Mr Barclay said: “It was pointed out that leisure facilities will still be on the site, they will just be slightly relocated and the parking would be for people using the new centre.
“It was suggested that access to the leisure facility would fall within ancillary services, and so comply with the existing covenant.”
Ian Trafford, education officer at the county council, told the meeting that the parish council could be given a long-lease on the premises so that the management of the leisure centre would revert to the parish council if the existing leisure centre management ceased at any point in the future.