Construction of a new Welsh-medium primary school in Cardiff is underway, signalling the start of a project that will double the size of Ysgol Glan Morfa in Splott.
Being built on Lewis Road, the £7.8m school will provide a new home for Ysgol Glan Morfa when it moves next summer from its current location on nearby Moorland Road.
Funded by Cardiff Council and Welsh Government through the city’s £164m 21stCentury Schools programme, the new school will accommodate up-to 420 pupils, across two classes per year, from reception class to year 6, and provide 80 part-time nursery places.
The scheme will create approximately 2,500 square metres of floor space, in a two storey primary school and nursery building.
To mark the start of construction, head teacher Mr Meilir Tomos, along with pupils and chair of governors Gareth Price, welcomed guests to a turf cutting ceremony at the new site.
Guests included Cllr Sarah Merry (Cardiff Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills), Cllr Huw Thomas (Council Leader, Splott councillor and Glan Morfa school governor), Cllr Ed Stubbs and Cllr Jane Henshaw (Splott councillors), Cardiff Council staff and representatives from Morgan Sindall, the company chosen to build the school.
Mr Meilir Tomos said:
“This is a tremendous moment for everyone at Ysgol Glan Morfa, and for Welsh-medium education in Cardiff, marking a major milestone in work to create a brand new home for the school.
“It is incredible to think that we will be able to have double the children in the new building than we currently have, reflecting the fantastic growth in demand for Welsh-medium education in the local area.
“The children are so excited and it’s great to have some of them involved in the ceremony. We are looking forward to July 2018 and to provide the best education to the children of Splott.”
The school design incorporates facilities available for community use, including a multi-use games area and a room available for hire.
Cllr Sarah Merry said:
“It was great to see the excitement on the children’s faces as the opening of their new school comes another major step closer. They did a fantastic job helping me out with the turf-cutting duties.”
“The work to double the size of Ysgol Glan Morfa is further evidence of the work we are doing to continue the expansion of Welsh-medium provision and widen parental choice in Cardiff.
“Cardiff 2020 – our vision for education and learning in Cardiff – makes a clear commitment to provide more school places, ensuring that provision is available to all families who choose a Welsh-medium education.”
There are currently 17 Welsh-medium primary schools in Cardiff, each in catchment for one of three Welsh-medium secondary schools in the city – Bro Edern, Glantaf and Plasmawr.
Cllr Sarah Merry added:
“As well as the work we have undertaken to create a new home for Ysgol Glan Morfa in Splott, we also have schemes underway to provide purpose-built schools for Ysgol Hamadryad in Butetown and Ysgol Glan Ceubal in Llandaff North.”
Cardiff Council recently awarded Morgan Sindall with the contracts to build Ysgol Glan Morfa and Howardian Primary School in Penylan.
Regional Director for the company, Rob Williams, said: We are pleased to be working very closely with Cardiff Council to deliver this fantastic school.
“We have a programme of exciting engagement activities that will benefit the pupils and surrounding community during this project.”
The 21st Century Schools Programme is a collaboration between Welsh Government and local authorities in Wales to create the right schools in the right places.
Cardiff Council’s current (‘Band A’) 21st Century Schools Programme totals £164m.
The current new-build schemes funded by Band A 21stCentury Schools are:
- Cardiff West Community High School Eastern High School
- Gabalfa Primary School
- Howardian Primary School
- Ysgol Glan Ceubal
- Ysgol Glan Morfa
- Ysgol Hamadryad
The main priorities of the investment programme are to:
- Match the supply of with demand for places
- Invest in new schools and refurbish existing schools
- Meet demand for education in both English and Welsh
- Create a nursery provision on primary school sites
What do you think of the expansion plans? Let us know in the comment box below.