Nothing but memories left of village school as work to build houses underway

What a difference a fortnight makes.

The former Ifton Heath Primary School site
The former Ifton Heath Primary School site

The demolition of the former Ifton Heath Primary School was truly the end of an era in St Martins near Oswestry.

As the Shropshire Star's drone photographs show, all that is now left of the Victorian building is in the memories of those who were pupils there or who worked there.

After the school building was knocked down and the playground dug up, contractors McPhillips were quickly on site to transform the land ready for a multi-million pound housing development.

The photograph shows work underway with the earthmovers flattening the site. There are even signs that a roadway is being laid out.

Students of the past

The £5.8 million development will see the building of 35 new homes which Shropshire Council says will provide much needed homes.

The primary school in St Martins was built in 1915. It shut its doors in 2013 after desperate campaigning from teachers, parents and local residents for it to be saved.

At the same time the village secondary school, then Rhyn Park, was transformed into an all-through school for children from nursery to 16.

The renamed St Martins School has gone on to see its numbers of pupils grow year on year.

Behind the new housing is Cornovii Developments Limited, Shropshire Council’s wholly-owned housing company.

Demolition work at the school earlier this month

The development of the site, to be known as Ifton Green, will bring a mix of two-, three- and four-bedroom homes, and a range of styles including detached, semi-detached houses and bungalows. Cornovii says 13 of the homes will be affordable.

Councillor Steve Davenport, local Shropshire Councillor for St Martins, said: “The Overton Road site will offer a mix of house styles, which means a natural community will develop around the development, from young families to people looking to downsize or seeking a home for their retirement. The development will provide sustainable homes for local people.”

Cornovii Developments Limited is partnering with local contractor McPhillips to deliver the homes.

The local councillor has ensured that mosaics that had the created in the school were saved to put on display elsewhere in the village.

Before the old village school was demolished, Cornovii organised tours of the building for residents and former pupils to take one last trip down memory lane.

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