Impressive new sports complex planned for two Sunderland schools

Plans for a major sports complex at a city academy have been lodged with Sunderland City Council.

By Chris Binding
Thursday, 15 August, 2019, 16:44
Caption: Thornhill Academy, Sunderland. Picture: Google

In recent weeks, proposals were submitted to revamp an existing gravel sports pitch at Thornhill Academy.

If approved, a new multi-use artificial pitch will be built in its place offering a range of facilities for pupils.

This includes football and hockey uses and sub-divisions for three five-a-side football pitches.

The planned development also includes a 100-metre running track, long jump track and sand pit and separate courts for tennis, basketball and netball.

Thornhill Academy pupils are set to share the sports complex with Argyle House School.

According to planning documents, the plans aim to give a new lease of life to the largely “redundant” site.

A design and access statement, submitted on behalf of the applicant Argyle House School, adds the current site is in a “poor state of repair”.

This includes issues around uneven ground and poor drainage on the gravel pitch.

Access to the proposed complex will be taken via existing bridges over a stream running across Thornhill Academy’s northern border.

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A new changing block with showers, toilets and storage will also be provided alongside ‘anti-climb fencing.’

In a statement submitted to the council, applicants have stressed no floodlighting is proposed for the pitches and court – with use restricted to daylight hours only.

City planners are expected to make a final decision on the plans by early October following a round of public consultation.

Comments can be made in writing to the council until Wednesday, September 4.

If approved, the complex will be the latest in a strong of new sports facilities taking shape in Sunderland.

Work is underway three multi-million pound sports hubs across the city.

Washington will be completed by October and will include extensive changing facilities, a social club and 326 parking spaces. Work on all three sites is due for completion by the end of 2019.