Shropshire Star

Newport school lodges plans to expand games areas ahead of Netball England visit

A school is planning to expand its games areas as it prepares to welcome Netball England for a training session.

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Haberdashers Adams Grammar School in Newport. Picture: Google

Haberdashers’ Adams Grammar School in Newport has submitted plans to expand its multi-use games area with the installation of fencing and lighting.

Headmaster Gary Hickey says the plans, submitted to Telford & Wrekin Council, coincide with welcoming girls as part of a new Year 7 intake at the traditionally all-boys school.

Female pupils were only previously admitted as part of the school’s sixth form provision.

Mr Hickey said: “Haberdashers’ Adams is continually looking to upgrade its campus so that it is fit for purpose.

“With the exciting move to go fully co-ed in September 2024 there is a need to improve and expand our netball facilities.

“Netball is the principal sport that our Sixth Form girls play and we regularly field four teams on a weekly basis.

“With girls set to join in Year 7, an additional court is required. The existing hard court multi-use games area (MUGA) is too small and needs resurfacing.

“The new MUGA will be built to Netball England specifications and we are thrilled to be hosting Netball England for a training camp at the end of July 2024.”

The expanded MUGA is proposed to be on the south-western part of the school site, which joins Beaumaris Road, with residential properties nearby.

Currently there is a hard-court multi-games area on the proposed site which is adjacent to the sports hall block.

A porous surface is proposed to be used and the existing surface will also be refurbished to ‘provide a coherent design’.

The new boundary fence is proposed to have a height of three metres and have a green coating. Four LED floodlights, which would be eight metres high, are planned to be installed to the external perimeter of the MUGA.

“Lighting would be directed towards the pitch only and obtrusive light calculations have been carried out onto the surrounding residential properties,” said the application’s design statement.

“The proposed works would not change the general location of the MUGA, but would increase its size and move its footprint slightly north to meet the footpath. Access would be made to via gates in the perimeter fencing of the pitch from existing, established footpaths.

“Given the scale of the proposed fencing and lighting columns, together with their separation and being obscured by protected trees, it is considered the works would have little visual impact to neighbouring properties.

“The new MUGA would provide much needed additional sports provision, without impacting on the existing facilities, visual appearance and heritage assets, or neighbouring amenity.”

Plans can be viewed on the Telford & Wrekin Council website’s planning portal, application number TWC/2023/0895. Comments can be made during the consultation phase which ends on December 28.