Published: 00:01, 30 December 2018
| Updated: 08:21, 30 December 2018
Plans for a new school have been given the green light by the council.
The decision to approve the plans for the Stone Lodge School in the Stone Valley area, Dartford, was taken at a meeting.
The school will temporarily open next September, accommodating 120 pupils, before its anticipated full opening in 2020.
When completed the new school, which is one of the Endeavour MAT academies, will house around 1,600 pupils.
Dartford council leader Cllr Jeremy Kite said: “Seeing planning permission granted for the new school is a major step forward and very good news for the local community.
“We took the brave, but right, decision not to seek maximum value for this land precisely because we knew it would have almost certainly have fallen into the hands of developers.
“I’m not sure all councils would have done the same but we made it available for a school because we had a real vision that Stone Lodge should remain a fundamentally green space and home to some facilities of real social benefit to the community.
“I know that residents in some places are understandably concerned that growth isn’t always matched by the public services like schools and healthcare but we are working very hard to make sure that doesn’t happen in Dartford.
“A number of really great new schools have already been delivered and this decision means that young people in Stone will now have a fantastic new school built to the highest standards.
“It has taken a lot of hard work and lobbying to get to to this point but it’s been worth it.
"The school will make a big contribution to the local community.
“We’re also working with the NHS to help them bring forward new health facilities in Stone as part of a vision that safeguards the wider Stone Lodge site for the community and public use.
“Construction of a new community building and rugby club is also under way nearby and the two will work brilliantly together.”
Spokesman for Endeavour MAT, Lydia Burchett, said: “We are thrilled to hear the planning permission for the permanent site at Stone Lodge progressed without a hitch at the recent Dartford council meeting.
“Demand for the new school, which will open near the permanent site in temporary accommodation in September 2019, is self-evident.
"With more than 240 applications for the 120 places, parents and children have certainly demonstrated their support for a new Dartford secondary school.”