St Aubyn’s School in Rottingdean could be turned into hotel or spa

Aubyns School in Rottingdean

Aubyns School in Rottingdean

First published in News by

A FORMER school could be turned into a hotel, health centre or spa, a council has said.

Brighton and Hove City Council planning officials put forward the preferences for Grade II listed St Aubyns School in Rottingdean.

The school, which is just off the village’s High Street, closed in April 2013 after 118 years.

Following its closure, residents concerned about the site’s future approached the council.

Rottingdean Parish Council, the Cothill Educational Trust, which owns the site, and the city council have drawn up a planning brief to shape future development of the site.

The school features a number of listed features including its main building which is Grade II listed, a boundary flint wall and a sports pavilion.

Attached to the school is also a rare listed chapel, built in 1913. Children who attended the school are depicted in its stained glass windows and inside there is a First World War soldiers’ memorial.

Rudyard Kipling’s son John, a former pupil, was killed in the war and is commemorated in the chapel.

The school also had cricket nets, tennis courts and extensive grounds.

The planning brief states any redevelopment should retain and re-use the existing listed main building and chapel and that there should be public access to the playing field.

It also outlines a number of possible uses for the site, including residential institutions, another school, hotel, health centre or spa.

The brief recommends that any building should not be higher than three storeys and must have community benefits.

The planning brief will go to the city council’s economic development and culture committee on June 19.

If voted through it will go out for public consultation in September for six weeks.

Councillor Geoffrey Bowden, chairman of the committee, said: “The document sets out development principles for this important site that will respect the character of existing buildings and the conservation area while meeting the needs of the community.

“We have worked with the parish council, the landowner, local councillors and residents to create a brief that reflects their aspirations.

“The brief aims to be a realistic guide for developers to come forward with proposals that would also breathe new life into the site's historic assets.”

Comments (4)

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4:08pm Mon 16 Jun 14

john newman says...

How much are Cothill being paid I wonder? They closed the school to make money. I think asset stripping could be one name for it. Beware residents, anything could happen here. It should have stayed a school
How much are Cothill being paid I wonder? They closed the school to make money. I think asset stripping could be one name for it. Beware residents, anything could happen here. It should have stayed a school john newman
  • Score: 5

6:09pm Mon 16 Jun 14

kopite_rob says...

The area is still in need of school places. Even more so if the Woodingdean development gets built. But does the council plan that far in advance?
The area is still in need of school places. Even more so if the Woodingdean development gets built. But does the council plan that far in advance? kopite_rob
  • Score: 4

7:56pm Mon 16 Jun 14

Valerie Paynter says...

A free school anyone? Or do the only want to be in Hove?
A free school anyone? Or do the only want to be in Hove? Valerie Paynter
  • Score: -4

7:47pm Tue 17 Jun 14

therealdsg says...

Asset stripping at its absolute worst here. They bought the school for a pound, invested a nominal amount in overdue maintenance having paid off some wage debts, offered the school no running support to the point the headmaster had to find another job then announced needing to close the school due to losses whilst blaming being unable to find a new head as the reason for the closure focusing undeserved anger from parents at the head.

Parents came together and created a committee to try and save the school. Cothill said they didn't have the knowledge or experience. The committee found a private school willing to acquire the school and run it. Cothill moved the goalposts during negotiations and the other school pulled out. Then once the school sadly closed they were approached by help for heroes who wanted to take on the site for wounded veterans. Cothill demanded full market land value.

Utterly reprehensible people. Adrian Richardson et al are the lowest of the flow.
Asset stripping at its absolute worst here. They bought the school for a pound, invested a nominal amount in overdue maintenance having paid off some wage debts, offered the school no running support to the point the headmaster had to find another job then announced needing to close the school due to losses whilst blaming being unable to find a new head as the reason for the closure focusing undeserved anger from parents at the head. Parents came together and created a committee to try and save the school. Cothill said they didn't have the knowledge or experience. The committee found a private school willing to acquire the school and run it. Cothill moved the goalposts during negotiations and the other school pulled out. Then once the school sadly closed they were approached by help for heroes who wanted to take on the site for wounded veterans. Cothill demanded full market land value. Utterly reprehensible people. Adrian Richardson et al are the lowest of the flow. therealdsg
  • Score: 1

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