Bramcote Hills Grammar School 50th Reunion
Bramcote Hill Grammar School held its 50th Reunion on Saturday 2nd September 2006. If you went to BHGS Nottingham then why not take a look at my Flickr photo album for trip down memory lane and remember what for many of us were the happiest days of our lives.
A brief history of the school
Carlton-le-Willows Grammar School opened in September 1954. Its pupils included approximately 60 pupils who were to form the nucleus of the new Bramcote Hills Secondary School. In early 1955 the first Bramcote Hills staff were appointed: Miss Hobbes, Miss Arkinstall, Mr Scott and Mr Carhart. In September a further 90 Bramcote Hills pupils joined the existing nucleus at Carlton-le-Willows. On May 1st 1956 Mr F J Creswell was appointed Head Teacher by the Education Committee. At 9am on September 10th Bramcote Hills Secondary Technical School opened. Subsequently the name was changed to Bramcote Hills Technical Grammar School.
In July 1972 Founding Head, Mr F J Cresswell retired and sadly died in September. In September 1973 the Technical and Grammar schools merged, with Mr Lyons, former Headmaster of the Grammar School, as Headmaster. The former Technical School became Lower School (situated at the top of the hill), and the former Grammar School became the Upper School (situated at the bottom of the hill). Mr Lyons remained Headmaster until 1977.
In 1978 the school became Bramcote Hills Comprehensive School with Mr Pitts as Headmaster until 1982. Mr Maltby then became Headmaster until 1995 followed by Mrs Trikic until 2004. In 2004 the school changed again, becoming the Bramcote Hills Sport and Community College under the continued leadership of Mrs Trikic.
A sad end to the story with the closure of the school
In 2008, a £500,000 re-development of the 6th form accommodation to create a new open plan modern learning environment for post 16 education was undertaken. While completing these works, and re-roofing the building it was discovered to have brittle concrete, the problem was caused by high alumina cement or Calcium aluminate cements, which was used in the construction of buildings in the Nottinghamshire county between the 1950s and 1970s.
Subsequently the refurbished building was never opened to students and the entire building was condemned for use due to its instability.
Following a Nottinghamshire County Council Report on 14 May 2009, it was revealed there are further problems with the 'safe' buildings currently being used. Nottinghamshire County Council therefore formally approved that the school close on the 31st August 2009, with current students on role being transferred to Alderman White.
In the Summer of 2009 demolition of the unsafe blocks in the upper school began, demolishing the science block, 3 storey tower block, and the 6th form block, leaving the gym, changing rooms and barn. Along with the art and music block, built by more recent construction. Prompt demolition was favoured to reduce the running costs of empty buildings.
Future of the Site
The site is now part of Alderman White School and Language College, however the issues still remain current for the existing buildings. Alderman White under the White Hills Park Federation are continuing to run post 14 and post 16 provision from the site for the remaining federated schools, under the name of "Bramcote Hills College Sixth Form". The sustainability of this 'new' venture cannot be seen as the remaining buildings on the site can only be used safely until 2014/2015, unless funding is found for new accommodation.
Further investigations into the structural issues with the building have been ongoing. Extensive structural testing determined that the buildings that have remained in use can remain so for the next three years. It is likely that they can be retained beyond that and probably for six years, subject to regular monitoring and inspection. This should result in the buildings being in use until the time that Building Schools for the Future (BSF) funding delivers a solution for this area. Beyond that time the future use of the buildings is currently unclear within the context of BSF. A master plan, identifying the educational needs and requirements of the area will be developed to clarify this at a later date. The current proposals may provide the flexibility to retain parts of the existing buildings, subject to the monitoring and testing regime outlined earlier.
A number of options have been considered to address the need for sufficient teaching accommodation as follows:
- Demolish all of the buildings and provide temporary accommodation
- Demolish all of the buildings and build new accommodation
- Repair and reinstate existing accommodation