Schools celebrate millions cash boost


- Credit: Archant

Two Exmouth schools are celebrating a multi-million-pound cash windfall, after successfully bidding for government cash to revamp their buildings.

Exmouth Community College applied for £4million, and Exeter Road Primary School a six-figure sum, from the Priority School Building Programme.

Both schools were told this week they are among just four schools in Devon to have been successful.

They have not yet been told exactly how much they will receive, and it could turn out to be less, or potentially even more, than they applied for.

Exmouth Community College director of finance Kim Dearsly said: “We put in a bid for around £4million to refurbish eight blocks. It could be a lot more than that or a lot less.

“Either way, we are going to get a large cash injection, so it’s fantastic news.”

College principal Tony Alexander and chair of governors Jill Elson said they were ‘delighted’ that the bid had been successful.

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The buildings in the college bid house dozens of classrooms across both its sites, and proposed works include new roofs, windows and decor.

The college does not yet know if all eight will be refurbished, or if the Government might instead decide to replace them.

The college is now awaiting the results of a £2.6million bid, to the Government’s Condition Improvement Fund, to fund a new classroom block on its Gipsy Lane site, which will be decided in March.

Exeter Road applied for money to repair its roof and boiler, and the success of its bid is a major boost, especially as it will allow the school to press on with its plans to revamp its library in memory of teacher Holly Bettridge, who died of cancer last year.

Chair of governors Vicki Johnson said: “It’s going to make a huge amount of difference to us.

“Not only do we need a new roof, but we want to go ahead with our library, and we weren’t going to be able to do that until we got our roof fixed.

“The roof had to be done to make it a viable project.”