A Brighton secondary school has started an online fundraising campaign as it prepares plans for a new £4 million sports centre.
Patcham High School, in Ladies Mile Road, has set up a Just Giving page aimed at raising £10,000, with pupils having already raised £5,000 towards the estimated £15,000 cost. To donate, click here.
The scheme includes a sports hall, artificial football pitch and netball court, with funding for the main project coming from other sources such as Sport England.
But the £15,000 cost of drawing up the architect’s detailed plans and applying for planning permission isn’t covered.
Head teacher John McKee said that sport played a vital role in a child’s education and the new sports hall would benefit the wider community too.
Mr McKee said that the school’s current sports facilities were more than 50 years old and were “no longer fit for purpose”.
Research showed that sport motivates children and helps build their self-confidence, Mr McKee said, adding: “I really do believe that sport keeps pupils healthy, develops their social skills and shows them the value of team work.
“Unfortunately the facilities we currently have at the school are woefully inadequate.
“I am a man with a mission – a mission to give the children and the wider community a sports centre they can be proud of, not just for now but for years to come.”
With little prospect of public money being made available to fund the planning process, Patcham High has decided to appeal directly to parents, local businesses and people who are likely to benefit from the sports centre in the future.
Mr McKee said: “I know many people are stretched financially at the moment but anything they can contribute, no matter how small, will help us kick-start the sports centre project.
“They can look at it as an investment in the future, not just the future of pupils at the school but the future of the whole area.”
The next fundraising event is on Friday (16 June) when the school is hosting a sports quiz in the main hall as part of its money-making efforts. Doors open at 7pm for a 7.30pm start. Entry is £5.