Survey finds two thirds of local residents have traffic concerns over expansion plan at Sheffield school

An artist's impression of the extended Ecclesall Infant School.
An artist's impression of the extended Ecclesall Infant School.

Two-thirds of residents living near to a Sheffield infant school are opposed to plans to almost quadruple its size.

A survey has found that 66 per cent of respondents are against proposals to expand Ecclesall Infant School into a primary school to meet increased demand for pupil spaces.

The £4.9 million expansion would eventually see the school increase in size from 180 students to 630 over four years.

Local councillor Shaffaq Mohammed, who carried out the survey, said that while many are in favour of increasing school places, residents are concerned about traffic and congestion.

Coun Mohammed said: “Many residents feel that expanding Ecclesall Infant School will only add to the already congested roads.

“Junctions such as Highcliffe Road and High Storrs Road are already hazardous and require urgent action from the city council.

"There’s also potential issues with double parked cars blocking access for larger vehicles like ambulances and fire engines on Huntley Road.”

The Lib Dem councillor has raised his concerns with the council's planning department.

"I understand the need to increase school places. But we need to address all the possible issues instead of pushing ahead with projects," he added.

Sheffield Council said it had revised the original proposals following feedback from parents.

According to the plans submitted last month, 15 new classrooms would be built as part of two extensions. There would be three classrooms each for Years 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.

The expansion also incorporates new staff rooms, a special educational needs suite and flexible studio spaces which could also be used by the community.

The plans also include a travel plan to mitigate the increase in vehicle numbers on roads around the school.

The application says a review of traffic found the impact on junctions at peak hours would not be severe’, but suggests several measures such as staggered start and end times for different year groups, a pick up and drop off plan and encouragement of sustainable’ travel.

The expansion plans were put forward after a council report highlighted an increase in birth rate and significant movement’ of young families to the Ecclesall area meaning there is high demand for school places.

A total of 74 people have objected to the plans on the council's website, while 83 people have submitted comments in support.