Seashell school campus plans take a step forward

artists impression of new school and campus in greater manchester

Plans to create a new, state-of-the-art school and campus for children and young people with special needs have taken a step forward this week.

Seashell Trust has this week released a series of images of what the new £45 million school and extensive campus development on Stanley Road, Cheadle Hulme, could look like.

Chief Executive and School Principal Mark Geraghty described the scheme: “We are very excited about the plans for the new school and today we are proud to release these fantastic images of what the school could look like as part of the new scheme.

“Our current buildings date back to the 1950s and are just no longer fit for purpose. We desperately need a new school and campus to be able to continue to provide great care for children and young people with a very complex and challenging set of needs. ”

The plan also includes an application for up to 325 homes on a part of the land owned by Seashell Trust between Wilmslow Road and the A34 at Heald Green.  The land is designated as greenbelt but, according to the Trust, is a vital part of the overall viability of the scheme.

Mark explained: “The new school and campus is going to cost £45 million.

There simply is no way to get this kind of funding from government capital funding initiatives and we can’t raise all of that money on our own. Because of this the overall plan includes releasing part of our land to a housing developer which we hope will raise around £30m but we will still need to find £15 million. 

“This will be tough challenge but one we at Seashell Trust have planned for. We will be using some of our existing reserves, borrowing some money and relying on donations for at least £9m of the total money required.”

And he stressed: “Without the housing and sale of the land, this scheme simply can’t go ahead and we desperately need these new facilities to be able to continue to provide support and education for our students, many of whom have incredibly challenging special needs. There really is no Plan B – we need this scheme to guarantee the future of Seashell Trust.”

Outline plans for the development at Seashell Trust were submitted earlier this year and are expected to be considered by Stockport Metropolitan Council in early autumn 2016. The application includes a new school, high-quality recreational amenities, family support services and residential accommodation for students.