Site of Hampden Park special needs school hits key milestone

The site of a special needs school which is being built in Hampden Park has hit a key milestone.

Friday, 19th November 2021, 2:34 pm
Updated Tuesday, 23rd November 2021, 4:54 pm

On Thursday, November 11, Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell attended a steel signing ceremony to celebrate the progress that’s been made at the Summerdown SEN School, which is currently under construction.

Other guests who joined Mrs Ansell at the ceremony included the executive head teacher of Southfield Trust, Remo Palladino, and Morgan Sindall Construction’s area director Guy Hannell - as well as staff and students.

The new site, which is being built on the land adjacent to Broadwater Way, will be a special educational needs and disabilities (SEN) school.

Summerdown School's steel signing ceremony. Picture from Katariina Jarvinen SUS-211123-165020001

Summerdown, which is expected to open in the autumn of 2022, will create 135 local school places for children aged five–16 with autism, complex learning and medical needs.

Twenty-two new classroom facilities will also be built as part of the project, each equipped with bespoke specialist equipment to aid mobility and learning.

The finished school will include a hydrotherapy pool, sensory rooms, food technology rooms, science labs and landscaped gardens.

The site is being delivered for the Department of Education (DfE) and will be managed by the Southfield Trust on behalf of East Sussex County Council.

Caroline Ansell at the steel signing ceremony at Summerdown School in Hampden Park. Picture from Katariina Jarvinen SUS-211119-142907001

Mrs Ansell said, “To see this brand-new SEN school for our town up out of the ground and making such progress is very exciting.

“This is a big investment in education in Eastbourne and I am proud to have been involved when it was first put to ministers, and now to attend the steel signing ceremony.

“I was impressed with the construction work taking place, but I can’t wait for it to be finished and see the first new pupils going through its doors. These places are vital in the campaign to give every child the best life chances.”

Mr Hannell, from Morgan Sindall Construction, said, “We’re really proud to be hosting MP Caroline Ansell amongst some of our other special guests at the Summerdown School project.

“This visit really illustrates the value this facility is going to create and the important role that it will play in the community as a centre for SEN excellence.

“The Summerdown School will provide a number of invaluable social benefits for Eastbourne, both upon its completion and during the whole process of the build.

“At Morgan Sindall Construction, we’re committed to supporting the local area as much as possible, including through the use of local suppliers, tradesmen and recruitment.”