Schools get cash for sprucing up campuses

Fred Longworth High School, Tyldesley
Fred Longworth High School, Tyldesley

PUPILS at five schools and colleges will soon be learning in better or more spacious surroundings thanks to a Government funding pot.

Education facilities in the borough are set to spruce up their buildings with the announcement of the Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) for academies and sixth form centres from the Department for Education (DfE).

St John Rigby College, Fred Longworth High School, Tyldesley Primary School, Bedford Hall Methodist Primary School and Westleigh Methodist Primary School will all be improving their facilities with the new funding.

Although the size of the grants for the borough’s schools and colleges are not known the awards form part of a £33m funding pot being distributed to 101 schools in the North West.

St John Rigby Sixth Form College in Gathurst will use the CIF funding to carry out drainage remedial works and Fred Longworth High School in Tyldesley will replace an old, outdated mobile classroom with more modern facilities for its pupils.

Tyldesley Primary School will carry out work to make the buildings bigger ready for a proposed half-form expansion and extend its kitchen, while Bedford Hall Methodist and Westleigh Methodist will both carry out roof repairs.

A Fred Longworth High School spokesman said: “We were pleased to hear that we have been successful with our bid.

“This will allow us to demolish a 30-year-old temporary classroom and replace it with a vibrant space to be used for PE and also a social space for our pupils.

“Once completed we will have fully redeveloped that area of school to create a modern learning environment for drama and PE as well as mentoring rooms and training facilities.”

Yvonne Brown, executive headteacher at Tyldesley Primary School, said: “The governors, and staff and I are delighted with the news. This is the second expansion of the school, reflecting the high standards we are promoting and the parental demand for places in our outstanding school.

“We strive for excellence in all we do and in our work as a national teaching school.”

The CIF will be available from next month and runs throughout the financial year until March 16. The funding pot is designed to replace two previous improvement and capital maintenance funds for academies and sixth form colleges.

The emphasis on boosting facilities in Leigh and Tyldesley was welcomed by the constituency’s prospective parliamentary candidate (PPC) for the Conservative Party, Louisa Townson.

And Ms Townson said: “Families in Leigh deserve local schools with facilities that provide the best learning environment.

“It is great news that, thanks to the difficult decisions this Government has taken to deal with our deficit, it has been possible to fund this boost for not just one, but four schools across the constituency.

“This is vital work to address the needs of our children, including essential roof repairs, replacement of mobile classrooms and kitchen extensions.

“This announcement means that pupils in Leigh will feel the direct benefit of our plan, and will get the investment in their education that they deserve.”

Candidates for the Leigh constituency parliamentary election: Andy Burnham (Lab), Louisa Townson (Cons), Bill Winlow (Lib Dem), Les Leggett (Ukip), Stephen Hall (Left Unity), Paul Whitelegg (Eng Dem).