North Yorkshire County Council has welcomed an announcement by the Government that two new schools in North Yorkshire are among bids approved for more than 130 free schools across the country.

The new primary schools will help to meet the essential need for additional school places in parts of the county. The bids were submitted by academy sponsors and supported by the County Council. While known as free schools, they are in reality no different from academies like the successful new Staynor Hall primary in Selby.

The Cambrai Community Primary School will be at Catterick and will provide 420 places to meet demand created by the expansion of Catterick Garrison bringing in more service families, as well as other housing development in the area. This bid was submitted by the Lingfield Academy Trust.

The other development is the Keeble Gateway Academy, which will serve the Sowerby Gateway development near Thirsk. This school will provide 210 places and the successful bid was submitted by the Elevate Multi-Academy Trust.

“We are delighted that the bids have been successful,” said Pete Dwyer, Corporate Director of Children and Young People’s Services. “We fully supported these bids because there is a real need for additional primary school places in both of these areas.

“These proposals have been part of our planning for new places for some time. They will help to ensure that the infrastructure is in place to serve new housing development and provide access to great local educational provision.”

The schools will be funded through the Government’s free schools programme. For the Keeble Gateway Academy, the County Council will make available a site and a financial contribution that has been negotiated with the developer. For the Catterick school, there is likely to be a contribution from developers towards the cost, which will also support the expansion of a number of the existing primary schools in the Catterick area.

The North Yorkshire schools were among 131 announced by the Department for Education today (12 April) to create more than 69,000 new school places nationally.