Longsands seeks permission for metal fencing around school following “repeated incidents of antisocial behaviour”

A site map for the new gates in Longsands Road

A site map for the new gates in Longsands Road - Credit: Archant

The Academy Trust which runs St Neots School Longsands, have applied to the district council for permission to erect steel fencing around the school.

Longsands Academy stock

Longsands Academy stock - Credit: Archant

Astrea Academy Trust, which took over the running of Longsands and Ernulf academies last September, has applied to Huntingdonshire District Council for planning permission for a new steel fence for the school.

The application comes after it says that there has been "repeated incidents of antisocial behaviour and vandalism, with trespassers gaining access to the roofs.".

If approved by councillors, a new 2.4m high fencing system would be put in place on the school site.

Astrea Trust have now instructed construction company AHR too develop a proposal designed to "secure the school sit and control access to and from school, ensuring that staff and pupils are able to work in, and learn in a safe and secure environment."

The design and access statement said: "In addition to the fencing, the proposals include the installation of four sets of double gates for vehicles, three single pedestrian gates and two full-height turnstiles. Two new footpaths will also be created to facilitate pedestrian access to the sixth form block and children's centre. These will be constructed along existing grass verges to match adjacent footpaths."

However some residents have objected to the plans, saying that they would be 'overbearing'.

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A resident on Heron Court said: "The proposed fence would be directly behind our property and by virtue of it's height would appear overbearing, oppressive, visually unattractive and therefore creating a fortress feel to us the occupiers when viewed from our rear windows and garden. The proposal would therefore be detrimental to the amenities enjoyed by us the occupiers of this property.

"If the fencing was at a more reasonable height of 2 metres for the area behind the houses of Heron Court then we would support the fencing."

Another resident said: "I support the erection of a fence, but not that will be visible at the end of my garden and approx 1 metre from my boundary. It will have to be similar to the height of my garden fence. Otherwise it will overshadow my garden and look completely out of place.

"It will impact the daylight/sunlight that my house gets given that we are south facing, we have approx 8m from my house to my boundary."

With St Neots Town Council supporting the application, it will now be up to councillors at the district council to have the final say at an upcoming development management committee.