The former Acklington C of E First School, which closed in 2018, will be turned into a house after an application by Gerard Egan seeking change of use permission was granted.
Northumberland County Council planning officer Jon Sharp reported: ‘The proposal represents an appropriate form of development that would not have a significant adverse impact on the appearance of the property, the street scene or the amenity of nearby residents.’
The application was supported by Acklington Parish Council which welcomed the sympathetic restoration and conversion plans to bring an important building back into use.
A heritage statement, submitted due to the school and adjoining school house – dating from 1852 – being Grade II-listed, states that there ‘are no proposed changes whatsoever to the existing appearance of the building’.
The final bell rang at the school in the summer of 2018, after receiving a stay of execution from Christmas 2017.
Despite becoming part of the James Calvert Spence College hard federation in 2015 to support it and reduce overheads, the falling pupil numbers meant the governors launched a consultation on closure in May 2017.
By the autumn, a report recommending closure at the end of December that year was presented to county councillors, in line with the governing body’s approval.
Between May and the new academic year, the number of pupils on roll had fallen even further, from 13 to eight, with places available for them in other schools across the Coquet Partnership.