Plans for new ground at Preston School Academy in Yeovil approved
Plans for a new sports ground at a school in Yeovil are about to materialize.
Preston School Academy, on Monks Dale, asked to turn one of their pitches into an all-weather surface. This would make it possible to practice several sports in complete safety in winter.
The existing land is at the southern end of the school grounds, near the houses of Abbots Meade and Stratford Road.
According to plans, it will be replaced with artificial turf and a path to allow access from school buildings. It will be fenced off with a 4.5 meter high fence.
South Somerset District Council has given its backing to the proposals, but final approval is needed from Communities Secretary MP Simon Clarke due to concerns raised by Sport England.
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Planning Manager Debbie Redding said: “Bad weather makes the grass pitch unusable during the winter months, limiting physical education activities at school.
“The proposed artificial turf pitch will enable sports to be played more often in all weather conditions. It will have a 3G shag surface which is best for football but could also be used for rugby training and other sports.”
The app originally stated that the land would be open to the community on weekends. He also said students would be allowed to use it until 6 p.m. on weekdays.
But manager Gregg Morrison said that would not be the case.
Sport England opposed the plans, raising concerns about the loss of natural green fields, the costs of maintaining the new ground and the amount of community access.
Councilor Pauline Lock said: “I think we really need to look forward to the children’s benefit.
“The hedges are well developed but not very tall – if there is a way to mask the terrain it might lessen the impact of noise from there.”
Councilor Andy Soughton added: “As a former pupil of Preston School I remember vividly during the winter months how this particular pitch got very wet. Then when we had frost at the start fall, it freezes and was not usable.
“I’m pretty happy to see this come up and I’m happy to support it.”
In light of Sport England’s objections, a final decision will be made by the Department of Levels, Housing and Communities. A final decision is expected before Christmas.