Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Historical dig at new school site

AN archaeological survey is being carried out at Mapledurham playing fields in Caversham as part of a plan to build a new school on the site.

Surveyors from Berkshire Archaeology will dig up to 30 trenches, each about two metres wide, across the site over a three-week period from Monday.

Reading Borough Council, which is overseeing the process, is liaising with regular users, including the Caversham Trents football club to minimise disruption.

The survey must be conducted before landscape improvements can be made at the green space, off Woodcote Road, whose trustees have agreed to lease a portion to the Education and Schools Funding Agency for a permanent new home for the Heights School. Its findings will shape the planning application.

Councillor Debs Edwards, of the Mapledurham playing fields trustees’ sub-committee, said: “It will be fascinating to see what the survey will reveal about how the land was used in the past.”

In a separate project, two soakaway test pits were dug on Tuesday and Thursday this week to test the site’s drainage capability before seeking permission for a new drainage system for a sports pitch.

The free school currently operates from temporary classrooms off Gosbrook Road and has had to expand on several occasions in order to meet growing demand since it opened in 2014.

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