Demolition of former Peterborough pub for school expansion delayed

The demolition of a former pub in Peterborough has been delayed.

Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 5:00 am

The city council bought the Silver Jubilee in Heltwate, Bretton, for £650,000 in 2020 in order to allow the “very constrained” Heltwate School to increase in space through a new two-storey building for early years pupils, alongside a new footpath and parking area.

A planning application for demolition works was recently submitted to the council with works expected to begin in May, however, the application has now been withdrawn.

A council spokesperson said: “A prior approval application had been submitted for the demolition works at the Silver Jubilee pub in Heltwate, however, the application has now been withdrawn. This is because demolition can no longer be granted through this process following a change in government guidelines regarding public houses.

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How the new Heltwate School building could look

“No immediate demolition works are planned.”

The new building and associated works are expected to be finished by July 2022.

The former pub closed several years ago and since then has been a target for anti-social behaviour, including arson attacks, while residents have complained that it is an eyesore.

Heltwate, a mixed special school, currently offers education for pupils aged 4-19 years. It is situated over two sites - the main site in Bretton which is home to Reception to Key Stage 3 pupils, and Heltwate St George’s in Lawn Avenue where Key Stage 4 and post-16 students are based.

The proposed new first floor play area

It had been proposed in 2017 to relocate Heltwate to a new site in Newark Road, however, the project had to be cancelled in February 2018 due to the financial collapse of contractors Carillion.

Currently, the school only has one hall which is oversubscribed, while there are also insufficient classroom sizes.

Mobile classrooms were provided to the school in September 2016 and February 2020 which provided the additional space required but took up outdoor sports, play and sensory space.

The project at the school is for a detached two-storey building for early years provision.

Other changes will include a new multiple use games area for the pupils, existing public open space converted to school playing fields, a public footpath linking Heltwate to Pyhill and an additional 25 parking spaces.

The new building will cater for Nursery, Reception and Year 1 pupils, while the main site will provide for Key Stage 2 and 3 pupils.