New site found for Wakefield arts college

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The location of a new performing arts college for up to 500 students has been revealed.

Wakefield’s CAPA College, which was forced to close to new students this September after its expansion plans fell through, has secured a new city centre site.

The college, originally named Cathedral Academy for Performing Arts, plans to expand into the development on Mulberry Way, Wakefield, in 2020.

This year’s cohort of students had to be turned away after a move to a building in Leeds did not go ahead.

The Leeds site, Number One The Embankment, was deemed unsuitable because of its proximity to the proposed HS2 rail link.

CAPA could not proceed with its long-term expansion until a permanent site was found.

Now CAPA will re-open to new students at its current home at the Cathedral Academy, on Thornes Road, next year before the full expansion goes ahead.

The new-build sixth form will be set up as a Free School after CAPA teamed up with the Enhance Academy Trust.

The trust’s chief executive Kevin Jones said: “Enhance Academy Trust are delighted that the Department for Education has secured CAPA College a permanent site in the heart of Wakefield city centre.

“This exciting free school development will enable talented, creative young people from across the Wakefield district, and beyond, with access to the highest quality of post-16 Arts training and education, leading to new opportunities, raised aspirations and improved educational and career outcomes.

“Our vision is that CAPA College will add to, and further enhance, the rich cultural offer of the Arts and educational provision in the area and will be a flagship centre of excellence.”