Tag Archives: Cranmer School

Cranmer School community use of school facilities and travel plan not up to scratch

Cranmer School at Cricket Green is expanding to help it cope with a rising demand for school places. When the school put in its planning application for new building in May 2013 to cater for a 50% rise in pupil numbers we were supportive, while expressing concern in two areas:

  • We wanted to see a strong travel plan. Even with pupil numbers before expansion there were considerable problems caused by the school run.
  • We wanted to see local people able to benefit from the use of school facilities so that good use could be made of them outside of school hours.

The school has applied for permission to ‘discharge’ or have accepted as complete, its work in both those areas. Sadly we do not feel it has done enough in either respect.

The travel plan fails to address problems caused by drivers dropping off and collecting children, which even before the school’s expansion include illegal parking and causing obstructions in residential roads. We believe the 50% rise in pupils will make these problems worse and that Cranmer School is not doing enough to address this.

We are very disappointed that ‘community use’ of the school’s new Multi Use Games Area, is restricted to a very narrow definition of ‘community’ and want to see this broadened. We also want to see wider access to the school’s facilities for the local community out of school hours.

We believe that Cranmer School, which is in the heart of a residential community, should reach out widely to everyone and think beyond its current, narrow definition of community.

Read our representation to Merton Council Cranmer School community use & travel plan September 14

Cranmer School development proposals – our response

The growing school population has resulted in plans for a new building at Cranmer School to accommodate a 50% increase in the number of pupils.

The new building runs along the boundary with the Wilson Hospital and it is a concern that this is prominently located in the green corridor which links open spaces in the area. The design is striking and has a green roof (made of sedum plants).

We have welcomed the general approach while encouraging a more sympathetic design to the main frontage.  A serious concern is the impact on the school run which is already a source of major disruption even before the school grows in size.  To address this we are asking for any planning permission to include a school travel plan that is agreed with the local community and reduces the impact to below current levels even after school numbers have increased.

This will need a clear commitment to monitoring and enforcement to be effective – something which has failed to materialise in other parts of the Borough.

A final comment is that we have discovered a large number of basic errors and weaknesses in the reports used by Merton Council to support the application and suggested they tender again for their consultancy work.

You can read our comments on the planning application here