NEW funding announced for improvements to Chepstow School must not ‘prejudice’ future plans for its redevelopment, ward councillors have said.

Monmouthshire council has announced it will be allocating £500,000 from a £1million Welsh Government grant to make improvements at the school.

The cash will be used to revamp the school entrance and reception areas, install new windows, replace a ceiling and install new lighting, subject to planning permission.

Announcing the new funding at a full council meeting on Thursday, cabinet member Richard John said the authority remained “committed to delivering a 21st century learning environment for every pupil.”

But ward councillors have said the cash must not ‘prejudice’ any future funding that the school receives.


Monmouthshire council has agreed to prioritise building a new school in Abergavenny over the redevelopment of Chepstow in its 21st century school programme, despite protestations from ward councillors.

The council is creating a school for pupils aged three-19 in Abergavenny by bringing a redeveloped King Henry VIII Comprehensive School and Deri View Primary School onto the same site.

Conservative David Dovey, who represents St. Kingsmark ward, said he will be asking the ruling cabinet for assurances the grant funding will not affect any future cash allocation.

“Any funding that is available to improve the school is welcome,” Cllr Dovey said.

“My disappointment is that through a cabinet decision work to modernise the school was pushed to the back of the queue”

Cllr Dovey said he would continue to make the case for a “fully funded redevelopment” at the school.

Chepstow councillor Armand Watts (Labour, Thornwell) said the rebuild of the school needed to be made a priority ‘immediately.’

Cllr Watts called the existing condition of the school “wholly inadequate” and that improvements were needed to stop a “mass exodus” of children from Chepstow attending school in Wyedean.

“They need to start again,” councillor Watts said.

“Doing a cosmetic job is like having an old banger, respraying it and putting some fancy wheels on it.

“It’s window dressing.”

Out of the £1million grant, councillor John announced money would also be spent on a new classroom at Gilwern primary school and upgrades to specialist equipment at the council’s four Learning Resource Bases.

The council’s 21st Century Schools programme has also seen new schools open in Caldicot and Monmouth.

Cllr Paul Pavia, Larkfield ward, said the grant funding was “welcome news” but also called for the school’s redevelopment to be brought forward.