Exciting new secondary school opens in Twickenham

Release Date: 18 September 2017

The borough’s newest secondary school opened its doors last week, welcoming 140 Year 7 pupils. 

The Richmond upon Thames School is governed by The Richmond upon Thames School Trust, made up of partner organisations including Harlequins, Haymarket Media Group, Richmond upon Thames College, Achieving for Children and Richmond Council.

The pupils will be taught by Kelly Dooley, the new Headteacher who has been overseeing the school’s development over the past twelve months. She is joined by Lee Cornwall and Pippa Wright as Assistant Headteachers along with a teaching staff team of eight.

The school is part of the Richmond Education and Enterprise Campus. The school is based in dedicated, interim accommodation inside Richmond upon Thames College. This secure space has been adapted to suit the needs of a school, with classrooms, SEN facilities, dedicated outdoor provision and reception area.

The new building is well underway. It is next door on the Egerton Road side of the Campus. Its modern design will be arranged around a central 'heart' space, combining dining and social areas.

It is expected that the construction will be completed in June 2018.

Kelly Dooley, Head Teacher, The Richmond upon Thames School, said:

"This is a landmark moment for The Richmond upon Thames School. We are all incredibly proud to be part of creating history.

“The development of the school as part of the Richmond Education and Enterprise Campus shows what can be achieved through schools partnering with the further education sector, local authority, local community and local business.

“Our new building is on track and when open, the facilities will place RTS at the heart of the community. The College redevelopment and new Haymarket Tech Hub will enable our students to benefit from resources and expertise not easily accessible to schools.  

“Our first cohort have settled well into their newly refurbished temporary school and are contributing to the building's final internal finishes. We are all thrilled to have reached this important milestone and look forward eagerly to June 2018."

Leader of the Council, Paul Hodgins, said:

“This is a very exciting day. The project to create RTS has been a long, exciting journey. We have a unique opportunity to create a school in partnership with leading organisations in sport and media – with the expert guide of senior colleagues at Richmond upon Thames College.

“When the overall development is complete, we will have a Campus that not only is home to the school, but it will see new buildings for the college, purpose-built accommodation for Clarendon School and Haymarket.

“Bringing all of these together on a single site is going to ensure we provide modern education so our children are well equipped for the workforce they’ll be entering.”

 Robin Ghurbhurun, CEO and Principal of Richmond upon Thames College, said:

“I wish Kelly and her staff every success for the future and I have every confidence that RTS will be a vibrant, dynamic and outstanding school within Richmond upon Thames.  I am delighted that the school and the college will be close neighbours and over the coming months and years will work together on a number of educational experiences and opportunities that will benefit our local young people.”

Kevin Costello, Chief Executive of Haymarket Media Group, said:

“Haymarket is an international specialist media company rooted in the London Borough of Richmond. Although we have thriving businesses in the US, India, Asia and Germany, our headquarters are here. So it’s an absolute privilege for Haymarket to be a partner in this wonderful project.

“The Richmond upon Thames School will be a valuable new addition to our community’s cultural life. At Haymarket, our day job is to fuel the passions of our consumers around the world. I have no doubt that the school will be just as successful at fuelling the passions of generations of young people to come.”

David Ellis, Chief Executive of Harlequins Rugby Club, said:

“We are delighted to be a founder of RTS and excited to be pioneering an educational campus, providing pupils with the best possible start to their senior education.

“As a professional sports club we will be able to offer unique experiences across a wide range of areas from the theoretical to the vocational to ensure we deliver true value to the partnership.”

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Elinor Firth on 020 8487 5159.

Reference: P427/17

Updated: 2 October 2017