A proposal to turn the former law courts in Hatchlands Road, Redhill, into a primary school has taken a step forward with a planning application to alter the site’s access.
The application, submitted on behalf of HM Courts & Tribunal Service, calls for a new vehicle entrance to what was the Reigate County Court and Redhill Magistrates Court. The courts closed in March this year.
According to the paperwork, the new access onto Hatchlands Road (the A25), would allow “for potential future use as a school”.
Reigate & Banstead Borough Council has told us that it understands that it’s a free school that’s being considered.
However, it does seem housing might still be a possibility for the site: a highways and transport note submitted in support of the application says it is based on either a primary school of around 420 pupils or a residential development of around 55 units, made up of 45 flats and 10 houses.
And last year a consultation on Reigate & Banstead’s development management plan for the borough said the site might be used for either a primary school or homes.
When asked last week about the plans, the Ministry of Justice said that the site is “marked for transfer” to the Department for Education (DfE), and that it would be inappropriate to comment further while the transfer takes place. The DfE told us earlier that it doesn’t comment on future sites for schools.
In terms of the planning application itself, the current access to the site is via Caberfeigh Close. Under the proposals, that would be restricted to Caberfleigh Close residents, and a new entrance put in exclusively for access to the courts site. A bus layby would also need to be relocated.
The highways and transport note submitted with the application discusses how road safety for the new access and bus stop have been addressed – but residents’ comments on the plans include this as a concern.