Pilgrims’ Way Primary School in Canterbury to be rebuilt as part of multi-million pound project
A “dated” school will be knocked down and rebuilt as bosses look to cater for growing pupil numbers.
Pilgrims’ Way Primary in Canterbury will have a complete transformation after being given the green light by council bosses.
The new multi-million-pound building should be ready for lessons in April 2025 if all goes to plan.
Papers submitted in June by the school and architects Lee Evans Partnership said a revamped site is essential if the facility is to offer top-quality education to more young people.
Bosses behind the project say the original building was built in about 1970 and described it as “dated”, adding it “has passed its expected lifespan”.
They say this has led to classrooms and general spaces “that fall below the standard expected”.
The documents state: “The new school will benefit the community by delivering school places for local children, and [will] improve learning and teaching environments alike.”
Set to be completed in four phases, the initial changes will see temporary classrooms erected before the partial demolition of the old school building.
Construction works on the new facility will then take place before the remainder of the old block is knocked down.
A final project cost has not been revealed by the school or Kent County Council.
A combination of one and two storeys, the L-shaped building will host a two‐storey teaching wing and a smaller single‐storey wing housing the main halls, kitchens and plant spaces.
There are expected to be 14 classrooms alongside an assembly hall and a separate dining space, while existing sports facilities such as the multi-use games area will stay put.
The on-site nursery, which sits in a standalone building constructed in 2006, will not be a part of the scheme and will remain open as normal during the works.
The school itself will also stay open during construction – though pupils from four classes will be put into the temporary block of rooms.
When completed, it is expected the school will be able to teach more than 100 extra children via two-form entry – going from 315 to 420 across the seven year groups.
Bosses behind the project claim the new site will allow dance and drama to be incorporated into the curriculum going forward, as well as a breakfast club and more after-school activities.
The school's current room dedicated to speech and language provision will also be accommodated within the new scheme.
Part of the Veritas Multi Academy Trust, the school joined the small primary-based scheme in 2018 and welcomes children aged three to 11.
Dr Kerry Jordan-Daus, chief executive of Veritas, told KentOnline the group is delighted to share the news.
“The new school will be equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and, are thrilled to confirm, will be net-zero upon re-opening,” she said.
“Additionally, the new building will provide unique community spaces for activities, sports and for children, families and the friends of Pilgrims’ Way to learn, socialise and play.
“Pilgrims’ Way School and Veritas Multi Academy Trust are committed to working with our families, local residents and the community to ensure a successful transition from our existing building to our new building, which everyone will be able to enjoy.”
A KCC spokesperson said: “We are delighted that Pilgrim’s Way Primary School and the Veritas Muti Academy Trust have been successful in the bid for funding from the School Rebuilding Programme for this project.
“KCC has worked closely with the Department for Education on the plans and the expansion of the school to meet the future demand for places in the area.”