Tuesday, May 25, 2021

News: Council completes purchase of former Dinnington College Campus


Rotherham Council has completed the purchase of land and buildings at Dinnington College, which will be used to provide new specialist education for children with social, emotional and mental health needs.

Rothbiz reported last year that the RNN Group had confirmed that the Dinnington campus of the Rotherham College will close, so that the group "can make best use of its estate and invest in its other local sites."

The council then announced an intention to invest in the site in order to use an existing historic education site to develop a new and innovative school which would specialise in providing education for children and young people with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) difficulties.

Under the proposals, a separate building within the campus would host young people currently based in the Upper School at Newman Special School, which would allow the current site to be demolished and replaced with a new modern, purpose-built facility.

The plans show that the council would acquire four blocks of the campus - the main building and resource centres. A large block to the rear has been earmarked for demolition and the horticulture, a working farm and vehicle workshops don't appear to be included in the deal.

The playing fields to the rear have been advertised for lease with agents, Fisher German.

The proposals would require the council to invest some £5.747m.

Councillor Chris Read, Leader of Rotherham Council, said: “The Dinnington College Campus is a cherished landmark for the community and this scheme will ensure 100 years of educational provision at the site will continue. Combined with the redevelopment of the much-loved Newman School in Whiston, our investment will improve the education and life chances for hundreds of local children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).”

Suzanne Joyner, Strategic Director of Children and Young People's Services at Rotherham Council said: “Completing the purchase of the Dinnington Campus site is a significant step towards delivery of a really exciting scheme. We are extremely grateful for the support and co-operation of the RNN Group through the sale process and for the warm welcome our project has received from the community in Dinnington.

“Whilst the formalities to complete the purchase of the site have been going through, we have been working with our partners to appoint a specialist provider who will deliver the SEMH free school provision at Dinnington. We are looking forward to sharing exciting news about the appointment of the provider soon, subject to final sign off by the Department for Education.”

Jason Austin, Chief Executive Officer and Principal, RNN Group, said: “We are delighted that the main Dinnington Campus buildings have been preserved by Rotherham Council for educational purposes to support children and young people who have specialist needs."

Images: RMBC


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