A DECISION has been made on what residents want to see done with a vacant former middle school site.

People living around Hexham have given their seal of approval to the proposed redevelopment of the former Hexham Middle School site, as they gave their opinions of it to be turned into a mixture of good quality housing, bungalows, supported living scheme and family homes.

The council said that over 200 local residents and businesses attended the consultation events and gave feedback in-person or online during a recent consultation exercise and the comments were 'overwhelmingly positive'.

The thinking behind the design on the 16- acre site has focussed on creating a high quality, healthy and sustainable environment.  Residents were very supportive of the low-density development and the provision of green spaces, landscaped areas and the retention of a Community Garden which is currently a much-valued local asset. 

While the access road to the site is in-keeping with a development of this scale, proposals also include linking the area to the town centre with a network of footpaths.

Leader of Northumberland County Council, Glen Sanderson said: “The consultation events were very well attended which confirms the significance of the site to the people of Hexham.

“We are so grateful to everyone who took the time to give their views on this very exciting project. Local opinions are so important to us, and we will build them into our work going forward.

“Our ambition is to provide a high quality, attractive and diverse scheme which meets the needs of the local community.  This has resonated with local people as public reaction has been very positive for our design principals including the landscaping and the mixed residential development. 

“We are pushing ahead rapidly on this scheme and have set ourselves some ambitious goals and targets to make things happen quickly. We know it is a priority scheme for the people of Hexham as it is for us."

The next steps in the project include working up detailed designs and then applying for outline planning permission.