Updated 02 Jan 2013

Retford Grammar School

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"Retirement village plan for school site"

James Peck in the Retford Times highlights a reported sale of the old school site, to be turned into a "Retirement Village" for the over 55s. See How things have changed.

(courtesy of Retford Times)

    Retford Times, Thursday, March 1, 2012

    Retirement village plan for school site

    by James Peck, (james.peck@retfordtimes.co.uk)

    The iconic King Edward VI school site has been sold and could be transformed into a retirement village by its new owners.

    After lying empty since 2007, the prominent Grade II listed main building and its surrounding conservation area land has been signed over to Retford-based Heathcliff Developments.

    The historic London Road building has been ravaged by break-ins and vandalsim in recent times but labourers were already looking at clearing the site this week.

    "These are very early days but we are looking at creating a retirement village for the over 55s at the site", said Heathcliff sales manager Wendy Spalding.

    "Looking at the main buildings, we will see if we can create apartments or maybe split it up into houses. We want to build bungalows to the rear and maybe other amenities too."

    The firm, which has been developing the Banana Warehouse on Moorgate as well as the completed Trinity Square development in Retford, says it will also extensively landscape the overgrown site.

    As the location is in a conservation area and the school building is listed, plans will be srcutinised more closely by Bassetlaw District Council before making a decision on whether to give the go-ahead. The facade of the main building will also have to be preserved.

    The sale of the former school had to be approved by a group of trustees.

    Chairman of the trustees Mike Quigley said he was relieved the site had been sold after years of failed offers.

    "We are pleased that at last we have secured a buyer and hopefully they will be able to resolvethe issues of the site," he said.

    "They are limited to what they can do as it is listed and whatever plans are put forward will have to be in keeping with the area.

    We have been trying to shift the building for quite some time but the collapse of the property market made it difficult for developers."

    Mr Quigley added that Heathcliff will have to do a 'serious amount of work' to bring the site up to scratch.

    Money from the sale will be used by trustees to benefit Retford school pupils who want to enter higher or further education.

  • Were you a pupil at the school in its heyday? Do you have any memories or photos of your time there? Tell us via email (james.peck@retfordtimes.co.uk) or call (01777) 713774

How things have changed...

Rear of school in 2012 ( Adrian Marsh) - post-1960 buildings cleared away, leaving:
Head's House --- Cloisters --- Assembly Hall --- Clock tower --- Gymn below Physics Lab --- Workshop --- New Block 1926 and entrance
Front of School in 1904...
...and in 2012 ( Adrian Marsh)
The Assembly Hall in 1938...
...and in 2012 ( Retford Times)
The Old Chemistry Lab in 1917...
...and in 2012 ( Retford Times)
The Old Cloisters and bell in 1935...
...and in 2012 ( Retford Times)

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