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School plans fresh expansion into famous Ipswich building

PUBLISHED: 11:53 04 February 2020 | UPDATED: 13:50 04 February 2020

Paul Wranek, Nicholas Weaver and Ewan Dodds at Anglesea Heights, which now belongs to Ipswich School  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Paul Wranek, Nicholas Weaver and Ewan Dodds at Anglesea Heights, which now belongs to Ipswich School Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

One of Ipswich’s most famous buildings is set to undergo another transformation – as owners Ipswich School plan to expand into the property further.

The Anglesea Heights from the air in June 1992. The original Victorian hospital building is left of centre. Ivry Street is on the left. Anglesea Road runs from the bottom of the picture to the junction with Henley Road. Picture: OWEN HINES 
The Anglesea Heights from the air in June 1992. The original Victorian hospital building is left of centre. Ivry Street is on the left. Anglesea Road runs from the bottom of the picture to the junction with Henley Road. Picture: OWEN HINES

Anglesea Heights, which closed its doors as a BUPA care home in 2017, was snapped up by the school in January 2019.

Once home to the Anglesea Road Hospital, the landmark building is unmissable on the town's skyline - and since September last year, it has hosted a newly created prep school class.

Now the school is planning to expand into the property further - moving some boarding provision into the building from September 2020.

MORE: Ipswich School's vision for Anglesea Heights revealed

The old sign for Anglesea Heights Nursing Home   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNThe old sign for Anglesea Heights Nursing Home Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

One of the existing buildings is being remodelled to create a space for older pupils, to provide an experience similar to that of a university hall of residence.

Headmaster Nicholas Weaver said: "Our numbers have steadily grown over the last few years, and the expansion of boarding into Anglesea Heights will help us meet the demand for an Ipswich School education from people further away, both in the UK and abroad.

The school's current year 12 boarders will move into an upper sixth form boarding house being created on the site.

WATCH: Anglesea Heights in Ipswich through the decades

Mr Weaver added: "Our innovative 'life skills' programme for sixth form students, called The Edge, provides students with many of the key skills they will need to thrive at university and in life beyond school.

New classrooms and working space are being created at Anglesea Heights in Ipswich JAMES FLETCHER PHOTOGRAPHY LTDNew classrooms and working space are being created at Anglesea Heights in Ipswich JAMES FLETCHER PHOTOGRAPHY LTD

"The upper sixth form boarding house will be another part of this programme for our older students who are living away from home, and will create more space for other day pupils who want to try occasional or flexible boarding in preparation for life after school.

"By expanding into Anglesea Heights we are able to ensure that this iconic Ipswich site remains well looked after."

The changing face of Anglesea Heights

The historic site has featured on Ipswich's skyline for several decades.

Anglesea Heights Care Home shut its doors in 2017 Picture: ARCHANTAnglesea Heights Care Home shut its doors in 2017 Picture: ARCHANT

It was once home to Anglesea Road Hospital, which opened in August 1836 with 50 beds, after £2,500 was raised by the public.

A third storey was added to it in 1869, and a children's wing erected in 1875, as a memorial to former Ipswich MP John Cobbold.

Over the years, the facility expanded to cover much of the site, which spans over Henley Road and Warrington Road.

But ambulances began to struggle accessing the Ivry Street area outside the building.

A new Year 6 prep class was created in September 2019, and lessons are now held in the former Anglesea Heights care home building Picture: JAMES FLETCHER PHOTOGRAPHY LTDA new Year 6 prep class was created in September 2019, and lessons are now held in the former Anglesea Heights care home building Picture: JAMES FLETCHER PHOTOGRAPHY LTD

MORE: Ipswich School announced as new owner of Anglesea Heights

Limited parking for staff, outpatients and visitors led to the eventual relocation of wards and services to Heath Road, where Ipswich Hospital now stands.

By 1988, everything had moved and new buildings were constructed around the original Victorian site.

The BUPA-owned Anglesea Heights care home, which shut its doors in 2017, opened to the public in 1991.

The prominent building is steeped in history, dating back to the Victorian era.


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