Neston High School is looking forward to a new era.
The market town’s new £25m campus will open its doors in September after the current Raby Park Road buildings close following this year’s GCSE results.
Deputy head Rachel Hudson has described the move as ‘a significant and special moment in the history of the school’.
The development, heralded as ‘impressive’ by the town’s civic society, is said to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Neston.
“This is a very important milestone for our community,” said headteacher Steven Dool as contracts for the new build were signed.
The agreement confirmed the construction of the new purpose-built school building with places for 1,750 students including a sixth form.
It has been built on land already owned by Neston High away from the current school buildings, some of which date back to January 1958, under a Government priority building programme.
The three-storey school will have state of the art facilities for all students including 16 science labs, 13 art and design technology classrooms and a drama studio in addition to more than 60 other classroom and teaching spaces.
It will also provide comprehensive sports and fitness facilities including changing space, two activity studios and ICT areas for the library, a learning resource centre and a sixth form study zone.
Mr Dool said at an earlier stage: “This important step is the culmination of many years of work to ensure the young people of this area receive the very best opportunities to enable them to prepare for high quality destinations for generations to come.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for this community.
“The school has been instrumental in ensuring that the local community is thriving and economically vibrant on a national and international level and this investment will secure this for years to come.”
He added: “We are really looking forward to enjoying the increased spaces for non-educational use such as our new 450sq m dining room, an outside dining area,an eco-garden and improved parking for staff and visitors.”
The Department for Education itself said it believed ‘high quality education in a high quality learning environment is crucial to the future success of this community’.
The adjoining Neston Recreation Centre, operated by Brio Leisure, the borough council’s leisure arm and used by the school, is itself set for a £2.2m revamp.
To mark the occasion the Pioneer has drawn up a year by year pictorial history of the school since the turn of the century.