No one loves a consultation more than us. No one, that is, except Richmond Council. And that, oh little ones, is why they’ve just launched another one. Now, you’re thinking to yourself, “What else can there possibly be left to consult on?” And the answer of course is… schools and education again, obvs. Truth be told, this one’s about the future of the Richmond College site in Twickenham’s Egerton Road. Richmond College is the Borough’s sixth form college (in oldspeak) and offers a wide range of academic and vocational courses as well as ‘traditional’ A levels. Although the College does get some decent results, it’s not always the destination of choice for local sixth formers, many of whom head off to Esher or Strodes Colleges to continue their education. The proposals under consideration include improving facilities and partnership opportunities at the College; moving the Clarendon school for pupils with learning difficulties and special needs from Hampton to the site; and, developing a new co-educational, non-denominational secondary school. A new secondary school? Yes folks, with Lord True and his acolytes having got the controversial exclusive Voluntary Aided Roman Catholic school safely nailed down at the Clifden Road site, they’ve decided it could be time for another conversation about meeting the growing demand for secondary school places in the Borough. As was overheard recently at Ambassador’s reception, “Your Lordship! With your school consultations you are really spoiling us”.
Developing and improving the College, providing new facilities, and making use of the site to provide a secondary school and a school for special needs pupils sounds like a decent idea. Will they all fit in? Dunno! Is co-siting three establishments on one site sensible? It could well be. We’ll let the building designers and educationalist worry their pretty little heads about that. But here at twickerati HQ we can’t help but feel that consulting on a new school in Egerton Road in Twickenham so soon after the discussions about Clifden Road (about a mile away) seems a little bit strange. Only a teeny bit, mind. Perhaps a wider consultation on Twickenham schools could have been undertaken in one go. Just sayin’ like. But, as ever, what the hell do we know about it? And maybe that’s why we don’t expect to get invited back to one of the Ambassador’s receptions any time soon.
So, if you want to have a word with El Brute about future developments at the Egerton Road site you’ve got until 11th March in which to do it. Toodle pip!
* El Brute consultation page
Deadline for comments is 11 March