Primary school plan gets the thumbs down


Eastbourne planners have given Cavendish School’s plans to open a primary school on the Eldon Road site major disapproval.

The council’s planning committee was asked for its views on the proposals by East Sussex County Council, which will ultimately decide whether the primary school can be built on playing fields opposite the cemetery.

The county council says the Old Town school is the perfect site for the new school and will meet the growing shortage of primary school places in the town.

But on Tuesday night last week councillors on the borough council vetoed the plans and voiced their concerns which will now be sent back to County Hall in Lewes as part of a consultation process.

The planning committee members say the proposed siting of the new school is “considered inappropriate in this location by virtue of increased traffic generation and parking within the surrounding roads during pick up and drop off periods and an inappropriate vehicular exit point onto Eldon Road, close to the busy junction with Willingdon Road adding to existing traffic congestion at this junction and consequently within the school grounds”.

They also say the siting of the school is “considered unacceptable by virtue of its adverse impact on surrounding residential amenity with regard to increased on-street parking and traffic, noise and disturbance from the new pedestrian and vehicular access and from Cobbold Avenue”, the proposed new school is poorly designed, it would lead to a loss of playing fields for the existing school within the site which are not adequately replaced or provided elsewhere and that a new exit point on to Eldon Road would be unacceptable as it would mean removing two mature elm trees.

After the meeting Cavendish headteacher Kenny Fitzpatrick said, “We acknowledge the concerns expressed by the planning committee and these are being addressed by the county council which will make the ultimate decision about the primary school later this month. However, there are a great many people in the community who fully support the prospect of an exciting new all-through school. We have received hundreds of positive comments and dozens of enquiries about admissions. We believe the proposal will allow us to develop Cavendish into a top quality all-through school.”