New homes on the timetable for old grammar and independent school building in Rastrick
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The old Rastrick Grammar School building at Ogden Lane is to be part-converted into five homes with another six also to be built there after the development proposals were approved by Calderdale Council.
The site, which has a history as an educational establishment dating back to the 1700s, was more recently home to the private Rastrick Preparatory and Nursery School which closed down four years ago.
The changes approved for D2M3 Ltd by council planners will see the Victorian east wing demolished, demolition of the nursery school and removal of its portable buildings, conversion of the main west wing into five homes and building of six new homes in the grounds using land where the playground used to be.
There will be a shared communal area to the back of the new dwellings, says the developer .
One five or six bedroom home; three four-bedroom homes and one five bedroom property will be created from the conversion while the new build homes will each have four bedrooms.
Council officers commenting on the plans concluded that the newer school buildings were not of concern but the east wing had some merit as it may have once physically been linked to adjacent Grade II-listed Castle Hill House.
However, for the school building to be considered to be part of the listed building, it needs to be determined whether the ownership and functional association with the school was still present at the date of Castle Hill House’s listing in 1990.
Ultimately, officers have concluded the wing does not form part of the listed building given those guidelines. It nonetheless constitutes a non-designated heritage asset, considered to represent the oldest part of the former school and its loss would cause harm.
But the impact would be moderated to some degree by the retention of the entire west wing of the school, which would be facilitated by the demolition, and by keeping and converting the west wing, it would maintain the site’s historic association with education, say heritage officers.
So the balanced view would see overall benefits of redeveloping the wider site and retention of the main school building within the west wing would outweigh the harm, says their report.
The developer says the plans will deliver a viable alternative use to its former education function which would also preserve its long-term conservation as a non-designated heritage asset.
Only one comment had been submitted over the plans by a neighbour and that was neutral.
The council has asked the developer to enter into a Section 106 order to cover cost of school places, which equates to a sum of £37,234, and a £10,000 contribution to towards public transport costs is also sought – the permission is conditional on the developer agreeing to these.
For years the building was home to Rastrick Grammar School, which has its early origins in the village from before the 1700s.
According to the Rastrick Grammar School Foundation, it is probable that the first school situated on the Ogden Lane site, that Rastrick Grammar was later to occupy, was built shortly after benefactor Mary Law’s death in 1722.
In September 1985 under comprehensive education reorganisation in the Rastrick and Brighouse area, Rastrick Grammar merged with Reinswood Secondary School, to form Rastrick High School.
The new school continued to use the two existing school sites, in Ogden Lane, and at Field Top Road, but eventually the whole school was located to Field Top Road.
In 1991 the Foundation sold the old school premises at Ogden Lane.
It opened as the private Rastrick Independent School in 1994 but closed in 2019.