Demolition of former Morton School in Carlisle well underway
Last updated at 09:04, Friday, 30 September 2011
Work has started on the demolition of a former Carlisle secondary school to clear the way for a new sports village.
Pupils moved out of Morton School at the end of the last summer term, starting lessons at the new neighbouring state-of-the-art Richard Rose Morton Academy earlier this month.
Now, the classrooms where thousands of their predecessors were taught for more than 40 years are being torn down as Carlisle’s education map continues to evolve.
Once the site has been cleared, it is set to become the home of a £20 million sports village that supporters hope will help to nurture a new generation of Cumbrian sporting stars.
Demolition experts have already knocked down a string of buildings at the old Morton School site, off Wigton Road. They include its central spine, technical block and will continue from west to east, towards the former performing arts area.
That land will be turned into a car park for the new £26m school before the now-empty four-storey block that used to house dozens of classrooms is bulldozed.
That area is set to be the site of the sports village, the first phase of which already has planning permission.
The school – built in 1968 – has been an important part of life on Morton and headteacher Katie Robinson says there has been a lot of interest surrounding its demolition, given the school’s historic links with the community it serves.
And while there has been sadness at the old buildings disappearing, people are looking forward to the new era that its replacement will herald, she said.
Mrs Robinson added: “There’s a lot of history surrounding the old school. It’s been an icon of education for Morton.
“We’re the last of the community schools. We’re surrounded by all our feeder primaries and all the kids come from around here.
“We have had so much interest from people in what’s happening. People have asked if they can come and look at the old school for one last time.
Demolition is expected to be completed by the end of November with workers from contractors Kier, who are responsible for building the academy and knocking down the old buildings, expected to be off-site by the February half-term holiday.
Planning permission was granted earlier this year for a floodlit football pitch on the former Morton School site.
City councillors approved the 3G all-weather pitch and six floodlights, along with proposals for a new gymnasium. The £5m scheme is the first phase of the ‘sports village’ vision, which includes a swimming pool and a well-being centre.
The Morton academy is one of four Kier is building for Cumbria County Council as part of a £100m deal.
Carlisle’s Richard Rose Central Academy, in Lismore Place, is another. Both of those schools are run by the Richard Rose Federation.
The third is the West Lakes Academy in Egremont while the final one will be in Barrow.
First published at 09:02, Friday, 30 September 2011
Published by http://www.cumberlandnews.co.uk
Have your say
Im study at Morton school at the moment and the new building is really benefitting my friends and class mates as well as the local community. Less Crying, and get on with something more constructive instead of critiscizing a great new school
I used to go to Morton School and I think it was money well spent on the new school because it was falling apart.
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