A MULTI-million pound primary school will be built in the city centre after plans were approved to merge Cheshire’s last infant school with its neighbour.

Victoria Infant in Cheyney Road and St Thomas of Cantebury Junior school, Walpole Street, will close on July 22 for the summer holidays and reopen as an all-through primary school in September.

Initially the new school, in the Garden Quarter, will remain on separate, adjacent sites until a new £5.8m building is built on the current playing field.

On May 30, Cheshire West and Chester council’ s executive backed the project.

It also allocated funding for its 90% share of the cost of the new school, which is yet to be named, with the Diocese of Chester paying the remaining 10%.

The school will cater for 420 pupils, aged three-11 years.

An exhibition of the plans drawn up by Chester architects, Tweed Nuttall Warburton will be shown to pupils and parents next week, after which an application for planning permission will be submitted.

The long-standing head teacher of Victoria Infant, Trisha McGuirk, who is also acting head of St Thomas’s, will retire in July and a new head is to be appointed.

Welcoming the executive's decision, council leader Cllr Mike Jones said: “This is a good move forward, it is something which has been talked about for years."