Plans for a new three storey teaching block to be built at Lancaster Girls’ Grammar School have been submitted to Lancaster City Council.
The school, situated in Queen Street, currently has 910 pupils on roll, including sixth form. Its lack of space means the school has to rent the top floor of the neighbouring Dallas Road Community Primary School. This is used to provide four science labs, prep space and storage.
Preston architects Cassidy and Ashton, on behalf of the school, have identified an exisiting 1950s single storey block on the site, which houses the school’s art department, which they hope to demolish and replace with a new three-storey state-of-the-art block.
A lean-to extension to the listed building at 12 Queen Street would also be demolished, providing better vehicle access to the school.
The new development would provide six science laboratories, a sixth form work/dining area,staff work room, general teaching classroom, drama studio, music classroom and practice rooms, toilets and a staff shower area.
The new building would be linked internally to the existing floor level of the main building. The development also provides the opportunity to create valuable external learning and social space which is limited on the site at present.
An external performance space is proposed outside the technology building as well as an elevated terrace in front of the new extension.
English Heritage have raised concerns about the plans to demolish the 1950s block. A report to the council by Alice Ullathorne, assistant inspector of historic buildings and areas at English Heritage, says they believe the extension has “heritage significance as possibly one of the only survivals of the Bristol Aeroplane Company school buildings.”
LGGS head Jackie Cahalin said: “Science at LGGS is thriving, especially in our sixth form, with an increasing numbers of girls opting to study sciences at A-level. Our planning permission application for a new science and performing arts building would remove the need for us to use the existing classrooms on the Dallas Road Community School site, thereby also freeing up much needed space for the primary school.
“As well as increasing the number of science laboratories and providing us with a dedicated performing arts space, these plans would substantially improve disabled access throughout the school.
“We have decided to apply for planning permission now so that we are in a good position to apply for any future building bids.”