When news happens, text LT and your photos and videos to 80360. Or contact us by email or phone.
Blackburn and Darwen BSF deal faces final hurdle
THE final stages of Blackburn and Darwen’s education shake-up are set to receive the seal of approval.
Blackburn with Darwen Council bosses have approved the final business case to complete the last stages of its Building Schools for the Future, BSF, scheme.
Bosses can now plough ahead with the development of Tauheedul Islam Girls School, which is set to move to the Beardwood Humanities College site, and St Bede’s RC High School.
They are just waiting to start work on Our Lady and St John’s Catholic Arts College and the St Thomas Centre pupil referral unit, once the final financial business case is rubber-stamped by the Department for Education.
Our Lady and St John’s Catholic Arts College will see a £10.1million investment and the St Thomas Centre will be given £938,000 to develop the site.
This will conclude the council’s initial masterplan, that was set out in 2006.
Since September 2009 Balfour Beatty has been undertaking the development of the borough’s high school.
Pleckgate High was first to be completed and opened in September last year.
The new Blackburn Central High School, Darwen Vale High and Witton Park High are scheduled to open in September.
Construction has already begun on rebuilding and remodelling St Bede's in Livesey Branch Road which will be complete for September 2014.
Coun Maureen Bateson, Blackburn with Darwen Council’s executive member for children’s services, said: “The financial close is a great achievement from the whole team involved with our BSF programme.
“They have worked very hard against a tough deadline and we can now look forward to the next phase in the programme.
“The new buildings are state-of-the-art and will transform the way that our young people are taught.
“The next 12 months will be incredibly exciting – with three new schools opening and work beginning on the final schools in the programme.”