Well the answer to that question is yes. On the 14th September 2017 Turner Schools bought the 3 freeholds which make up the former Pent Valley School for £1. There is a legal charge on the school and the agreement is between Turner Schools in favour of the Secretary State of Education according to companies house.
The title deeds are K942270, which is Pent Valley School (Cheriton) itself and covers approxiamately 3.66 hectares or 9 acres.
The last title is land opposite Sandgate Primary School and is approximately 3 hectares (7.4 acres). What could one do with this land if one is short of cash or running a deficit? Housing?
It was the former Secretary of State for Education Justine Greening MP (pictured below) who was responsible for selling the land to all three titles deeds for just £1.
Now Turner Schools is made up of four schools in Folkestone. They are Martello Primary School East Folkestone, Morehall Primary School Cheriton, Folkestone Academy and Pent Valley, Cheriton.
Now the company is head-quartered at Martello Primary School (pictured below) and had as a director during the purchase of the Pent Valley Site, Mr Sarah Lucy Collins, wife of Damian Collins MP. Mrs Collins stood down as a director on the 13th Dec 2017 according to Companies House.
Back in Feb 2016, the decision to close Pent Valley School was taken at County Hall. In April 2017 it was announced that Turner Schools would take over the site. The school is set to re-open in September of this year. However, Turner Schools have been remarkably quiet about the school. We hope that in the near future they announce whether or not the school will or will not re-open this Sept. After all Pent Valley and all that land cost them a £1 and we are sure they can afford a press release.
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I would have expected that each parcel of land to have been valued by an independent surveyor before it was sold. Also, if the land was ever to be sold for housing who would benefit from it? Finally, why was Damian Collin’s wife ever a director of this company? What relevant skills, knowledge or expertise did she bring to the company?
hmmmm.. looking at the google maps – they both look a bit like a possible housing development to me.