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Multimillion-pound facelift for college

Midlands independent school Tettenhall College is investing more than £3 million in a major redevelopment

Posted by Dave Higgitt | December 15, 2014 | Bricks & mortar

Tettenhall’s redevelopment plans include new sports facilities, renovation work of historic buildings, upgraded boarding facilities and additional parking provision. Headmaster David Williams said the development would enhance the school environment, keeping the blend of traditional and contemporary, while widening opportunities for pupils.

“We are very proud to offer a unique environment, with historical buildings alongside modern facilities,” he said. “We will be undertaking some renovation and development work to upgrade and enhance existing buildings and create new facilities, outlining our commitment to status as a private school.

“It is a very exciting time for Tettenhall College – we are expanding as a school and investing in our future, ensuring our growing number of pupils continue to have a first-class educational experience.”

The school recently revamped its reception area, the first phase of redevelopment. Work is currently underway on the swimming pool, including contemporary seating and modernised features. The boys’ boarding house will have a major facelift incorporating 21st-century facilities and work will commence next year.

Sports will be given a boost with a new floodlit astroturf pitch, to create a centre of excellence for hockey in the West Midlands area. Environmental impact has been considered and new energy-efficient heating and lighting will be used where possible.

The plans for the estate also include a new tennis and netball area, a multi-use games area, a high ropes facility and a designated mountain bike trail to complement the recently developed 'forest schools' area.

The school’s oldest building, The Towers, is one of country’s few grade II*- listed buildings and sympathetic restoration and modernisation will be undertaken. The towers which gave the building its name were added in 1866 by eccentric owner and inventor Colonel Thomas Thorneycroft, who is alleged to have pushed his butlers off the top to test his flying machines.

He made many structural additions to the building, originally a country house and coaching inn, including a great hall complete with stage, and a theatre now used by pupils for their dramatic and musical productions. Tettenhall College purchased the towers in 1943.

Simon Maddox, a governor and Old Tettenhalian, has been a prime mover in developing the plans in his role on the planning and estates committee. He said: “The college has been at the centre of the community in Tettenhall for 150 years and the proposed improvements will ensure it remains one of the leading independent schools in the West Midlands, with facilities and standards of education to rival the top schools in the country.”

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