Davidsons to the rescue

Leicestershire homebuilder Davidsons is helping The Martin High School in Anstey to expand and improve its facilities as it becomes an 11-16 Secondary school, providing the opportunity for pupils to take their GCSEs.

The school is converting from being an 11-14 High into an 11-16 Secondary. Nearly all the students have opted to stay on in their new school.  Numbers have grown from 636 in July 2013 to an anticipated 940 in September 2014. The extra students need first class accommodation. The community have complete confidence in the conversion; the main problem has been accommodating the growth.

The Martin High School has obtained government funding for some of the new building but faced the conundrum of raising the rest.  This is where local homebuilders Davidsons came to the rescue.  Davidsons have recently launched a new homes development on Groby Road in Anstey on land bought from the Martin family, after whom the school is named. As part of their contribution to the local infrastructure Davidsons are providing £320,664 to the school, which was due to be paid in 2 years time, but Headteacher Martin Furniss approached the homebuilder to ask if it was possible to have the money earlier.

Martin Furness said, “We have fought for expansion, but didn’t know where we would get the money from to build further classrooms. I wrote to James Wilson at Davidsons to ask if they could help. To our delight James said he would make the money available now. Davidsons are a modern company with a strong community orientation.  They want to ensure that the families who live in Davidsons built homes have an opportunity to attend excellent schools.  Their generosity demonstrates how local business and schools can work together.  This lifeline enables the Martin High School to build enough classrooms for all its students.”

Managing Director of Davidsons, James Wilson, attended a recent morning assembly at the school to present a cheque, and also met with members of the year 9 Student Council. Mr Wilson said “Wherever we build homes we contribute to the local infrastructure and at Anstey we will be providing £2 million over the life of the development to help with a number of community projects. Martin contacted me and said we have a great school here and we want to make it better, but we are short of the funds we need to build new classrooms, and could we have the money early. I’m really pleased to be here today to hand over the cheque and meet some of the pupils”.

The Martin High School offers great opportunities for its students.  It is known for the quality of the education that it provides.  Its students are looking forward to staying on up to the point where they take their GCSEs, and to their first results in 2015.