Agenda Item No.
THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL
SCRUTINY COMMITTEE (CORPORATE RESOURCES): 16TH OCTOBER 2012
REFERENCE FROM CABINET: 1ST OCTOBER, 2012
"C1841 PROPOSALS FOR ST CYRES COMPREHENSIVE, DINAS POWYS SITE AND ADJACENT GRAZING LAND SITE (CS) (SCRUTINY - CORPORATE RESOURCES) -
Approval was sought to declare the former St Cyres Comprehensive, Dinas Powys site and adjacent grazing land site surplus and to undertake consultation to evaluate potential future uses of the site.
St Cyres Comprehensive School had occupied two separate sites, in Penarth and Dinas Powys for a number of years, the Dinas Powys site accommodating younger children before they transferred to the Penarth site.
There were three buildings on site including the former caretaker's house measuring a total of approximately 2,500m2 on a site of 7.51 hectares. The buildings provided a range of facilities required for secondary education.
In July 2011, due to a declining number of pupils on roll, St Cyres Comprehensive School confirmed that from September 2012 the Dinas Powys site would no longer be required. Parents were informed that from September 2012 all children would be accommodated on the Penarth site of the school.
In March 2012 the St Cyres Comprehensive School Governing Body published a statutory notice to change category from Foundation status to Community status. The Welsh Government approved the change of status that took effect from the 24 July 2012. The change of status had transferred both school sites into the ownership of the Local Authority from this date.
The adjacent grazing land site (measuring 4.9 hectares) was also under the remit of the Learning and Skills Directorate. The site had been occupied by the Dinas Powys Pony Club under a Grazing Tenancy that expired on 31 December 2000 and had not been renewed.
The report outlined that the school buildings had been boarded up at a cost of of approximately £22,000 to prevent unauthorised access and that the electricity and gas services had been disconnected. The buildings had been secured but there was still a risk from break-ins, vandalism and anti-social behaviour.
To date, the school building and caretaker's house had suffered three break-ins and regular inspections were being carried out to ensure that future break-ins were attended as quickly as possible.
The site was no longer required by the Learning and Skills Directorate to meet the educational needs of the area and a decision was required to determine the future use of the site. Following contact with the Corporate Asset Management Group no service had a current interest in utilising any part of the site or its buildings, although several external bodies had expressed an interest in the site and buildings.
The external envelope of the building was currently in an acceptable condition however if left vacant the building condition would deteriorate, resulting in damage to the building structure.
The recommendation was therefore to enter into a Vale wide consultation process for six weeks to allow all groups and residents the opportunity to put forward proposals for future uses of the site and buildings. All proposals would be considered and the outcome reported to Corporate Resources Scrutiny Committee to provide recommendations to Cabinet on the preferred way forward for the site.
In addition the Welsh Government had confirmed that as the St Cyres Comprehensive Dinas Powys site was no longer required for educational purposes the site was not classified as school playing fields.
This was a matter for Executive decision.
1. That the former school site and adjacent grazing land site be declared surplus to requirements.
2. That the consultation regarding future uses for the site is undertaken, and the outcome of the consultation be reported to Corporate Resources Scrutiny Committee to provide recommendations to Cabinet.
3. That the report be forwarded to Corporate Resources Scrutiny Committee.
Reasons for Decisions
(1&2). To allow future uses for the vacant school site to be considered.
3. To allow Corporate Resources Scrutiny Committee to consider the proposal contained in this report regarding the consultation process."
Attached as Appendix - Report to Cabinet: 1st October, 2012