AFTER almost thirty years Brookfield Special School has been granted planning permission for a much needed new home.

When the school first opened in 1980 it was intended to be a temporary measure, with plans for a new building.

However, while the plan has been mooted many times since then, it failed to ever come to fruition.

Now at long last, and much to the delight of everyone at Brookfield, a new school will be built to provide state of the art facilities for the children.

The new building - on the site of the former Broomhedge Primary School - will bring together the pupils who have been spread out over two sites at Halfpenny Gate Road and Newport annex.

Expressing his delight that planning permission has been granted, school principal Mr Brendan Gillan, said: "It will be a very modern school. It will be eco friendly and will blend in with the landscape.

"There will be thirteen classrooms, interview rooms, offices, changing facilities, an attached nursery and multi-use play areas, with both soft and hard surfaces."

Mr Gillan continued: "It will make a tremendous difference to the children. At the moment we have no appropriate indoor PE facilities and we are all in mobiles. The new school will give us everything within one building."

Mr Gillan concluded by thanking the SEELB, Department of Education and MP Jeffrey Donaldson for all their help in securing the new school.

"Staff and Governors are very grateful that we will now be altogether in one school with the best quality accommodation for our children, who have a wide range of disabilities."