Seashell plans for a bright future as national centre of excellence

Seashell Trust Harrison Linley-Jones and Henry Bottley

Seashell Trust is building a future as a national centre of excellence for the care and education of profoundly disabled children and young people.

The £45m project will transform our campus and includes a state-of the-art school with sensory and therapy facilities, services to support families of children with profound disabilities and top quality inclusive sports and recreational facilities for use by our students and the surrounding community.

Mark Geraghty, principal and chief executive of Seashell Trust, said: “As an outstanding organisation (Ofsted 2010/11, 2012/2013) we have ambitious plans to be at the forefront of the delivery of specialist and quality education and care. Students come to Seashell Trust from across the country, currently from over 40 different local authorities. We are recognised nationally and internationally for our cutting-edge learning and our research, developments and professional practices have been recognised by specialists in our field.”

The current campus was built in the 1950s as a school for deaf pupils. It it is now home to some of the most severely disabled young people aged 2-25 in the country.

The outdated buildings cannot be renovated any further to accommodate walking frames, wheelchairs or other specialist interventions that are essential in the everyday lives of the present students with their much more complex needs.

Gwen Carr, chair of Seashell Trust, said: “The delivery of our vital services is compromised by the poor quality of our 1950s buildings. We have no access to significant levels of government capital funding initiatives and needs to raise the majority of investment itself. The imperative for the new facilities means the time required to raise such sums ourselves is limited and in order to meet the shortfall the trust needs to look at the role other assets, including its land, can play. The proposals have been widely informed to minimise impact on the local environment.”

The trust has pledged to raise £9million through the Transforming Lives Appeal; the remainder will be realised from the sale of land sandwiched between Wilmslow Road and the A34 for residential housing, reserves and a loan facility.

A planning application for the flagship facilities in disability education at our Stanley Road campus in Cheadle Hulme and the housing development has been submitted to Stockport MBC.

A landscape and visual impact assessment has been undertaken, which demonstrates the impact will be mitigated through the scheme design and layout. Both the Seashell Trust campus and housing land will include sensitive landscape features which are appropriate to the setting.

Seashell Trust has held its own consultation and presented the plans to a public meeting in Heald Green last year.

Stockport MBC will hold a public consultation. Full details of the planning application are available at

To get involved with fundraising please contact Dominic Tinner on 0161 610 0117 or