Former Leeds hospital land could be used for new £15million high school

Leeds Civic Hall.
Leeds Civic Hall.
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A new secondary school costing almost £15million could be built on land formerly occupied by Seacroft Hospital.

The potential for an academy on the land will go out to consultation following the backing from the majority of Leeds City Council’s executive board to take the project forward.

A new high school in Seacroft is hoped to address the area’s growing population – it is estimated that the need for year seven places across Leeds inner north and east will rise to be an additional 375 by 2018.

According to early council estimates the school, which could cost £14.86m, could open by 2018 creating places for 180 pupils per year group, including provision for pupils with special educational needs.

A report to the executive board also noted that Roundhay School could expand its secondary school provision at a cost of around £10m as part of the plan so it could accommodate 300 pupils per year group.

Despite concerns being voiced at the pre-election timing of the report to the council, which prompted Lib Dem group leader Coun Stewart Golton to reserve his position, the project was backed by the majority of senior councillors.

Coun Judith Blake, executive member for children’s services, said: “Whatever the outcome of the election, the principal of establishing land for a school in that area will remain the same.”

Following the decision, a further report will be published in June outlining how the council, working with the Government’s Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and Education Funding Agency, can secure part of the site for a school.

The Seacroft Hospital land, which is owned by the HCA, will largely be used for a major residential development.

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust sold 18acres of its Seacroft site last year for £6.1m.