Plans approved for £17m Archbishop Beck school

Simon Donohue

Permission has been granted for a new £17m home for Liverpool's Archbishop Beck Catholic Sports College.

The school will relocate from its current site on Cedar Road, Walton, to a new building on the site of the former Long Lane council depot in Fazakerley.

It has been designed by architects Sheppard Robson and is being engineered by Mouchel.

Willmott Dixon won the contract to build the £17m secondary school for Liverpool City Council in March as part of the local authority's ongoing programme to rescue projects that stalled when Building Schools for the Future collapsed in 2010.

The school is being developed as a series of "learning clusters arranged in a simple, cost efficient and flexible building shell".

There will be an adjacent six court sports hall and extensive external sports facilities for both college and community use.

The school will feature a solar panelled roof to generate electricity, basketball courts, a theatre and recording and dance studios.

Sheppard Robson associate James Jones said: "This new facility has been designed within Liverpool's exacting cost parameters, but through detailed engagement with the college we are confident the scheme will meet their exacting academic and pastoral requirements."

Work will start on site in May, with the school due to open in time for the start of the academic year in September 2014.

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And the swimming pool… going to be replaced? That would be well used by the community. The local area has three close primary schools and others within easy reach – the North of Liverpool needs a pool for swimming tuition (not council run) – one of the best forms of exercise known!

By Heather