Dundonald Primary School Decision Is Due

Merton councillors set to debate expansion scheme

The decision on the controversial expansion of Dundonald Primary School in Wimbledon is set to be debated by Merton council next week.

The council plans to increase the size of Dundonald Primary from a one-form entry to a two-form entry school, by replacing Dundonald Recreation Ground's pavilion with a two-storey building.

But members of the Protect Dundonald Rec campaign group have fought against the plans which they say will result in a loss of community use of the tennis courts, the loss of a bowling green and will violate a historic covenant that restricts building on Dundonald Recreation Ground (pictured below).

The plans will now come before the council's planning committee at 7.20pm on Thursday (January 17). The council is expecting a packed debating chamber and has said there is room for 100 members of the public on a 'first come first served' basis.

Protect Dundonald Rec has said it will launch a judicial review if the plans are approved and is considering a charge of maladministration against the council.

The council's report to the meeting says other objections to the scheme have come from Friends of Dundonald Park, Dundonald Rec Tennis Club, Dundonald Chase Football Club and the Wimbledon Society. Sport England is "potentially opposed" to the scheme, but their comments are awaited.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has already said he will leave the decision to Merton council.

Lorraine Maries, chairman of Protect Dundonald Rec, said the council's scheme was flawed because school places could not be provided until September 2014 at the earliest and there was little long-term demand for extra places in the Dundonald area.

She said: "The council's planning case for Dundonald is in tatters. The council should stop wasting time and money on this hopeless scheme and look at the many better options available."

What do you think? Why not comment on our forum?

January 11, 2013