Plan to level Culverhay to build two new schools for Bath

Two new schools could soon be built on the site of the former Culverhay School in Bath.

Culverhay School on Rush Hill — which became Bath Community Academy for its final years — closed six years ago. But now a new special school and an alternative provision school for vulnerable pupils at risk of permanent exclusion could be built on the site.

The Department for Education will be funding and building the new schools following a successful bid from Bath and North East Somerset Council — but it is up to the council to find a site. Now the council’s cabinet are set to approve the use of the Culverhay site at their meeting on Thursday June 6.

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The school land has been held for educational use since the school closed in 2018, which a report set to go before the cabinet said had cost the council a net £158,000 last year. The report added that parts of the site which were not needed for the new schools could be released from the site to be used for future housing.

Construction of the two new schools is planned to begin in 2025 The council will need to demolish the buildings — including the sports hall — and hand over the site by early 2025. Construction of the two new schools would begin later that year. The report stated that a new sports hall should form a part of the new school “as a dual use community sports facility run by the education provider.”

Bath Community Academy, formerly Culverhay School -Credit:BristolLive/Michael Lloyd
Bath Community Academy, formerly Culverhay School -Credit:BristolLive/Michael Lloyd

The council’s cabinet member for children’s services Paul May said: “It’s excellent news that funding for both these schools has been confirmed and we can now take the next step to progress a suitable site.

“Having a new free special school in our area will provide a specialist and specific learning environment for children with SEND. The alternative provision school will offer high quality educational and vocational opportunities for young people who have been excluded or are at risk of being excluded.

“The former site of Culverhay School has long been identified as a possible location for both schools and we will now consider in more detail whether it ticks all the boxes.”