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Mountjoy School Move Nears Completion


9:56am 27th September 2012
(Updated 9:33am 28th September 2012)

Its cost £9m and now work on the new Mountjoy School in Beaminster is nearly complete.

The big move from Bridport will take place during the October half term, with the school opening its doors to pupils on the 5th of November.

Dorset County Council agreed to relocate Mountjoy in 2010 after discussions with the head teacher and Governors at Beaminster School.

The new Mountjoy has been built for 48 pupils with physical and learning disabilities and is nearly four times bigger than the existing school.

It will provide state of the art facilities - including a sensory studio, a media studio and a hydrotherapy pool.
Headteacher at Mountjoy James Franzen said:

"We are privileged to have the opportunity to move into a brand new school in the heart of West Dorset and are looking forward to a very positive future, continuing the great work that we do and expanding our school community by creating new friendships in and around Beaminster."

This year marks the 45th anniversary of Mountjoy School being based in Bridport, and Mr Franzen said that the town will always be close to the school's heart:

"We are planning an event to say goodbye to our current building at the end of this half-term and thank everyone who has supported Mountjoy over the years. We want to celebrate the happy memories of pupils and staff - past and present - that will always be part of the school."  He added.

Beaminster School will benefit from improved sporting facilities - including a new floodlit 3G synthetic turf pitch. Other improvements include a new staff car park, accessed from Tunnel Road, which will reduce the flow of traffic on Fleet Street and an improved footpath linking both schools with the town centre.

The rebuild has been designed and managed by Dorset Property - part of Dorset County Council - and delivered by Poole-based contractors Morgan Sindall.

Dorset County Council's Cabinet member for children's services Toni Coombs said:

"Dorset County Council has been committed to building a new Mountjoy School for quite some time, so it is really exciting that the brand new building will be open in just a few weeks. I know I can't wait to see the finished product, so I can't imagine how excited the pupils and staff must be."

Paul Gale, area director for Morgan Sindall, said:

"Mountjoy School has played an important part in the local community, serving children with special needs for nearly half a century. The standard and quality of facilities of any education establishment are important, but perhaps particularly so in a school such as Mountjoy, and the new campus is certainly a state-of-the-art facility. We have a long history of delivering schools to the region, completing projects on time and to budget to the highest possible standards. Mountjoy School was no exception and we all look forward to the pupils benefiting from the new school campus."

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