May 24 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, February 28, 2013
FELSTED School has unveiled plans to rebuild a boarding house which was destroyed by fire – and it is hoped the new building will be open in time for the school’s 450th anniversary next year.
More than 80 years of history went up in flames when Follyfield House, built in 1928, was razed to the ground following the blaze in July.
The Broadcast was given a glimpse of the proposals for the replacement building before they were aired at an open meeting last night (Wednesday).
An application has been submitted to Uttlesford District Council and it is hoped that, if permission is granted, the new building will be opened in 2014 to coincide with the school’s historic milestone.
School bursar Margaret McKenna said: “There will be lots of celebrations to mark our anniversary and this will be another great part of it.
“We are really happy with the plans and looking forward to getting on with it.”
The new building will be placed closer to the school’s dining hall, a different location to the original boarding house.
It will boast rooms for 62 female students aged 13-18 and feature two self-contained houses for the house mistress and assistant mistress.
There will be a large common room for pupils to socialise, as well as a separate living room, quiet area and kitchen.
Pupils have been living in temporary accommodation since the fire on July 15. The blaze ripped through the boarding house and it took nine fire crews from six stations almost five hours to bring the fire under control.
No-one was hurt in the incident but the building was so badly damaged it was deemed unfit for fire crews to inspect. It is believed an electrical fault was the suspected cause.
“The current set up is not ideal but the girls are really happy there. They like it but it’s only a temporary structure and it can only be there for two years,” said Mrs McKenna.
“We are planning to build on a different site because the one that burnt down was not in a convenient location.
“The new one will be much closer to other houses and the dining hall.
“The new building will be state-of-the-art and it is an exciting time for the school.”