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School Playing Fields

Volume 13: debated on Monday 16 November 1981

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asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what advice he has offered to education authorities on the sale of school playing fields; what revenues are expected from the sale of such unused facilities; and who he consulted concerned with sport and recreation, prior to the making of S.I. No. 909.

The sale of surplus playing fields is a matter for individual local education authorities and it is not possible to estimate what revenue might accrue from such sales. While my right hon. Friend has offered no general advice, design note 27 draws attention to the high cost of maintaining surplus playing fields and forthcoming DES publications will show how rationalisation of school provision in the light of falling rolls can sensibly involve the sale of surplus schools and land and how the capital receipts can be used to finance improvements to school buildings and playing fields. In preparing S.I. No. 909, the Department consulted local authority, teacher and other associations, the voluntary bodies and the Association of Playing Field Officers.