Work has begun on new East Twickenham primary school

Release Date: 08 January 2018

Work has now commenced on the new East Twickenham home for Deer Park School, which is part of a mixed development, including a Lidl supermarket.

Deer Park School, opened in September 2015 on a temporary site at Richmond Adult Community College and is a free school sponsored by Bellevue Place Education Trust. From the 2019/20 academic year, the two form entry school will occupy the first and second floor of the new development, above the new Lidl foodstore, at 391 Richmond Road. It will have a capacity of 420 pupils by 2024/25.

The new school will include a large dining hall, dedicated library and a specialist classroom for design and technology. In addition to the onsite playground, the school will make a number of arrangements for offsite sporting activities. The multi use games area provided at first floor, will support the provision of games such as football, netball, basketball and hockey on site. This will be secured for safety and to prevent balls going into neighbouring gardens.

There will also be outdoor learning spaces provided at the second floor and the reception classes will have a covered canopy.

This school comes as a result of lengthy negotiations between the Education Funding Agency (EFA) and Ryde House’s owners, Lidl, and a number of direct interventions by Richmond Council at Lidl’s most senior level.

Cllr Susan Chappell, Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Schools, said:

"There has been high demand for a new primary school in East Twickenham for many years. However, it was always going to be a challenge to identify somewhere suitable and I am pleased that the council were able to identify this site and designate it for educational use. I would like to thank Lidl for their willingness to come to an arrangement, which is the best possible outcome for the local community and ensure that parents in East Twickenham will be able to send their children to a local primary school.

“Richmond upon Thames has the highest achieving primary schools in the country and they continue to be in great demand. However, I am confident that Deer Park will flourish on this site and become an integral part of the local community.

“This exciting mixed development is a national first for Lidl and a first for the borough, and I’m sure that this innovative solution will be replicated elsewhere in coming years, as sites for new schools become ever scarcer.”

Alison Colenso, Headteacher at Deer Park School, added:

“I am delighted that work has commenced on the school’s permanent home. Deer Park School opened in September 2015 in temporary accommodation and the school has grown 6-fold within that time. The Ryde House site will ensure that there is a ‘local school for local children’ for decades to come and we are all incredibly excited about the school’s future.”

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: P014/18

Updated: 19 January 2018