Thetford school applies for extension

A new library area and extension to the headteacher’s office could be built at a Thetford school if planning permission is granted.

Drake Infant and Nursery School, off Croxton Road, has submitted an application to extend the head’s office by seven metres squared to 16m sq, the secretary’s office by two metres squared to 12m sq, and double the library space to 24m sq.

According to a report to go before Breckland Council’s planning body by senior building surveyor Neil Watts, the extension would improve the layout of the offices, provide more circulation space, improve the working environment, and allow for confidential meetings between the head and parents or staff.

“The existing offices are very cramped and not suitable for confidential meetings that are essential elements in the good management of the school,” it said.

“It is essential to have the ability to hold meetings with third parties close to the existing entrance of the school.

“This ensures that visitors do not have to enter the main teaching area of the school. This is a significant contribution to the Safeguarding initiative in schools.

“In addition to this the existing library area is located in a corridor that is narrow, poorly lit and not conducive to quiet reading.

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“The development proposal significantly improves the library facility.”

It is proposed to add a single storey extension to the school, which would be built over a small grassed area adjacent to the main entrance doors that is not used for teaching or movement across the school site.

“The height would match that of the existing flat roof over the ICT room.

A second report added: “In general, the new extension is of scale to fit unobtrusively into an unused and poorly maintained grassed area while maintaining the existing pedestrian access to the school.

“The choice of finishes is intended to maintain a continuity between the existing and proposed building elements but also break up the hardness of the existing structure adjacent to the main entrance.

“This will hopefully create a more welcoming and pleasing aspect as you approach the main entrance.

“The provision of planting will also add colour and texture that will improve the appearance of the courtyard area.”

A decision will be taken by Breckland Council’s development control committee by July 27.