School site plan talks

Fylde by Air March 2008.'King Edward and Queen Mary School. PIC BY ROB LOCK
Fylde by Air March 2008.'King Edward and Queen Mary School. PIC BY ROB LOCK
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THE United Church Schools Trust hope to finalise plans for the historic King Edward and Queen Mary School site in the coming weeks.

The Trust will take KEQMS and Blackpool’s Arnold School into a new era as the merged AKS School from next September and pupil numbers at the Fairhaven site will double in the process. Campaigning parents, still waging a legal battle against the merger, have expressed concerns over how more than 500 extra pupils will be accommodated from the start of the next school year.

But a UCST spokesperson told the Express: “We are currently meeting with our architects to finalise the plans for AKS and the options that accompany these.

“In turn, our architects are also in close liaison with the local authority to fully understand the planning requirements moving forward.”

The pledge came as Jon Coles, the new chief executive of the UCST and its parent United Learning Trust visited the Fairhaven and Blackpool sites to meet staff, students and parents.

Mr Coles was formerly director general for education standards at the Department for Education and succeeds Sir Ewan Harper as CEO.

At the time the merger was announced, an acting CEO, Mrs Charlotte Rendle-Short, was at the helm of the UCST.

Mr Coles’ visit follows a week after London-based barrister Francesca Quint came to the Fylde to meet parents battling to keep KEQMS independent. Ms Quint has been retained by parents who are confident they can overturn the decision by the Charity Commission to allow the merger of the two historic schools to go ahead.