Work begins on building new specialist school

Two men wearing high viz plant spades into the ground

(L-R) Alex Mackay, Director at R G Carter, on-site with Lawrence Chapman, Chief Executive Officer of SENDAT. - Credit: R G Carter

A new specialist school in Fakenham is still on track to be completed on time, as work has begun.

East Anglia construction firm, R G Carter, has been appointed as the main contractor for the new school, located on the former Fakenham Sixth Form playing field.

The field has not been used in 20 years, and the school would cater for up to 100 children and young people with autism in north Norfolk as well as creating up to 55 new jobs.

Work on the school is due to start in January, R G Carter is currently on location clearing the site, ready to start drainage and foundation works in the New Year.

A CGI mock up what the school might look like

An artist's impression of what the new school in Fakenham could look like. - Credit: R G Carter

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Academies Trust (SENDAT), are sponsors for the new school.


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With schools already in Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich and Sudbury, the trust says it will provide a modern specialist learning environment for children.

This new facility is part of Norfolk County Council’s plan to transform special educational needs in Norfolk and address the ever-increasing demand for specialist teaching and help reduce travel times for students who require support.

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Tom FitzPatrick, county councillor for Fakenham, has visited the site and is delighted for the school to be moving forward.  

"I was really pleased when I visited the site to see that work is already underway,” he said.

“I have really supported getting a school in Fakenham to cater for children and young people with autism.

“For too long local children and young people have had to travel out of the area to be provided with this specialist education.

"I very much look forward to the school being completed and welcoming its first students."

A man stands in front of the fencing at the school's building site

County Councillor for Fakenham, Tom FitzPatrick has visited the school site in Fakenham and is delighted for the school to be moving forward. - Credit: Tom FitzPatrick

Alex Mackay, director from R G Carter and Lawrence Chapman, chief executive officer of SENDAT met to cut the first sod. 

Mr Mackay said: “We are delighted to have been appointed to deliver this much-needed specialist facility for the local community.

Mr Chapman said, “Our aim is always to provide the best possible specialist education for all our children and young people with SEND to thrive and reach their full potential.

"We are excited at the prospect of now being also able to deliver an outstanding special school in Fakenham.”

A CGI mock up what the school might look like

An artist's impression of what the new school in Fakenham could look like. - Credit: R G Carter


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