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School extension a step too far for neighbours

Residents of Hawthorn Close, Ruskington, unhappy about the planned extension of St George's College, Ruskington, which is encroaching too close to their gardens.

Residents of Hawthorn Close, Ruskington, unhappy about the planned extension of St George's College, Ruskington, which is encroaching too close to their gardens.

RESIDENTS whose homes back up to the site of a school under construction are annoyed that the scheme is suddenly encroaching on their properties.

Householders in Hawthorn Drive, Ruskington live next to the St George’s Academy site currently being rebuilt.

They had accepted the original plans but since the main school block has been constructed they are being disturbed all night by security lights shining into their bedrooms.

Sheila Beddow, one of those affected, said they had not complained thinking it was just temporary. Now residents are shocked that the Academy plans to extend the school to within 15.5m of their boundaries to cope with increased demand, requiring an extra hall, classrooms and office space.

Mrs Beddow said: “It is getting too close to our fences. There are four or five alternative places they could put it around the school where it would be further away from any houses.”

Residents affected are writing with their objections to the planning authorities. The retired teacher, who has had no problem living next to the school in the past 30 years, pointed out that the building would be higher than a domestic dwelling and would be overbearing.

“It is going to be a huge, overpowering monolith like Buckingham Palace encroaching on us,” she said.

Academy principal Paul Watson promised to work with neighbours to resolve the lighting issue and architects would try to take on board residents’ comments.

He said: “The problem is how the extension links with the existing building. At one end is the big sports hall and the front and back are large glass elevations which makes it harder. We will try to help them with the design but the school is attracting more than we envisaged in each year group.

“We are trying to balance everything off with the needs of the school and the needs of the village and residents close by. We thought this was the best location.”

 

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