Joint approach agreed to progress rebuild of The Whitehaven Academy and further development of Whitehaven Education Campus
Following a constructive discussion between The Whitehaven Academy, sponsors Bright Tribe Trust and the County Council, agreement has been reached on the way forward for the Whitehaven Education Campus project.
In July it was announced that £33m of funding had been secured for the redevelopment of St Benedict’s Catholic High School and Mayfield Special School on the St Benedict’s site as part of plans to transform secondary education in the area. While the redevelopment of The Whitehaven Academy would not be funded via that route, it was confirmed that the Academy remained part of the wider campus project.
In recognition of the poor state of repair of The Whitehaven Academy and the pressing need to provide new facilities, the County Council, Copeland Borough Council and nuclear partners will continue to work with Bright Tribe to make the case to government ministers, once again, to provide the much needed funding that would allow the school to be rebuilt.
Cllr David Southward, Cumbria County Council Cabinet member for property said:
“We have always recognised that The Whitehaven Academy’s buildings are in a very poor state of repair, and of course we want all young people in the area to benefit from the best facilities – we know the difference the right environment can make to children’s achievement. We were clear in our support for Bright Tribe’s previous approach to government for funding and were disappointed when it was not successful. That’s why we welcome this opportunity to work with Bright Tribe to restate the case for investment. Local young people deserve this and I am hopeful that, given the success in securing funds for St Benedict’s and Mayfield, government will see the necessity of extra cash.”
Tony Elson, the Chair of Bright Tribe, the charitable trust that runs The Whitehaven Academy said:
“We are very pleased to have the support of local partners in our efforts to obtain funding for the much needed redevelopment of The Whitehaven Academy. We also remain fully committed to playing our part in delivering the exciting concept of the Whitehaven Education Campus which will offer a wider range of educational opportunities and choice for this and the next generation of young people.”
Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland Borough Council said:
“It is very important that the pupils and staff at The Whitehaven Academy have a school fit for purpose. It is clear to me that significant investment is required and Copeland Council together with the County Council and our nuclear partners will play their part in securing Government funding”
Jamie Reed, MP for Copeland said:
“Every school pupil in Copeland deserves the very best – that’s why I’ve pushed for school rebuilding for so long and worked to establish the Whitehaven Campus for so many years. Nothing is more important to me than the educational opportunities provided to our young people and I’ll continue to press government and work with partners to attract the money that The Whitehaven Academy needs.”