Row over Lancashire village school expansion plans

A row has broken out over £4.25m plans to expand a primary school in Pendle.

Plans to knock down and rebuild Laneshawbridge Primary School have been met with opposition from some residents.

Supporters of the plan, which would increase school numbers from 174 to 210, say the current Victorian building is out of date and too small.

But opponents say a bigger school would dominate the village and cause traffic chaos.

No kitchen

The school on Emmott Lane, Laneshawbridge, has been rated "outstanding" by Ofsted and has featured in top school polls.

"When you've got a centre of excellence as this is, then you really have to build on it," said headteacher Eileen Bleasdale.

She said its facilities were out of date. There is no kitchen and pupils eat their packed lunches at their desk.

Ms Bleasdale also said the school hall was too small, so pupils cannot have full assemblies with school plays staged elsewhere.

But opponents to the plans said the new school would be too big, occupying 14% of the village.

They said the school does not need to expand when there are schools in Colne, Foulridge and Nelson with spare places.

Opponents also argue that Emmott Lane is a single carriageway rural lane, plagued by traffic during the school drop off.

Lancashire County Council is due to consider the plan on 16 February.

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