School looks to the future as re-build gets go-ahead

An artist's impression of the new teaching block at Todmorden High School
An artist's impression of the new teaching block at Todmorden High School

Todmorden High’s headteacher has spoken of the exciting times ahead after plans to re-build the school were given the go-ahead.

Last week Calderdale Council granted permission for the first phase of a re-building of the school, which will see construction of a new state-of-the-art teaching block on the existing site.

Building work is scheduled to begin in July and is due to be finished in time for the start of the academic year 2015/16.

Headteacher Andrew Whitaker said it was a big moment in the school’s history.

“It was almost like a double reaction: at first it was excitement for the students that they are finally going to get a building that reflects how special the students are in this community, and also grateful to the local authority and the councillors for approving the plans,” he said.

“I know there were a number of demands on this money, so the fact that they chose to invest funds in Todmorden High School is something I really appreciate.”

The new teaching block will house the humanities and English departments, as well as a large technology work area including the latest equipment.

There will also be a roof terrace which can be used as growing space and a recreational area for the students.

Mr Whitaker hopes the new facilities will help to change attitudes.

“Historically the students saw the condition of the building as a reflection on them,” he said.

“They have always deserved a state-of-the-art learning environment.

“They are a friendly, ambitious, intelligent group of people.

“We wanted a statement building that would have a real impact and signifies the future of Todmorden High.

“It’s got to be aspirational - parents have got to think the school has a future.”

Looking ahead, there are a further six phases of construction work which will see the entire school re-built.