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Lisvane Old School & Redevelopment Plans

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The building currently known as the Old School was built as the Lisvane County School and was opened in 1913, but as the village grew in the 20th century, there was a need for a bigger school and the current Lisvane Primary School in Rowan Way opened in 1967.

The Lisvane Community Council (LCC) purchased two-thirds of the County School site in November 1983 with the County Library Service occupying the remainder of the site. In September 1997 the Lisvane Library building was condemned and demolished and since the Council indicated there was no possibility of a replacement building in the foreseeable future, the LCC purchased the remaining one-third of the site. The complex is used for community and social activities, including the community-run Cabin Library, and various educational classes. 

Old School Redevelopment

Update October 2017

Following unsuccessful applications for grant funding, the Trustees have directed the architect to draw up plans for a more affordable option for the redevelopment. Outline plans are now available. Click "OS Plans" on the side bar left to view.  Fund raising amongst the community has been successful with the Development Fund currently standing at £291,000. The outline plans have been presented to the Lisvane Community Association AGM and further presentations and consultations with residents and community groups will take place over the following months. The Trustees are confident that a very effective design, acceptable to all users, is achievable and it is hoped that following consultations, that they will be able to announce positive progress in the near future.

Background (Retained for historical context, but subject to review)

The Old School site currently has three buildings, the Old School itself, the Cabin containing the Library, and the Annexe used for children’s groups. The Cabin is nearing the end of its useful life and is expensive to heat and maintain. A community survey was undertaken in 2007 to ascertain what facilities residents require for their village. The Old School building was seen as an essential focus for community activities. The Community Council decided that a plan should be drawn up with a view to retaining the Old School building, but redeveloping it to encompass those facilities currently provided by the Cabin and the Annexe, which would be demolished. The new development would be in keeping with the existing building and would extend and enhance the facilities within a user friendly and energy efficient environment. The Council has set up a working party (WP) to undertake the planning and management of the Redevelopment Project on behalf of the Community. The WP drew up an Architect’s Brief and in November 2007, eight companies were invited to tender.

Appointment of architect and review of the Community Plan
Gareth James of the James Partnership was appointed based on their background and quotation for the work. The architect’s brief was to retain the Main Hall of the Old School, develop additional facilities which are sensitive to the character of the Old School, whilst also being an environmentally friendly design. The outline plans have been drawn up and presented to the Community at an exhibition, where all residents were invited to comment. 

The Community Plan has also been reviewed in order to reflect the redevelopment.

Redevelopment Policy
The redevelopment is likely to cost in the region of £850,000. The Council does not have this sort of money in reserve, so it is envisaged that funding will be by a) grants wherever possible, b) fund raising within the community and c) by mortgage as a last resort. On-going costs following redevelopment will be recovered from rental charges for the extended facilities, which should be more than we are getting now. There should also be significant savings from a new, highly insulated and renewable energy building, particularly as our repairs and running costs are our main expenditure.

The energy policy to be adopted will be to minimise heat loss from the new complex and to seek more energy efficient methods of lighting and heating. A heat-pump would be an efficient heating option which we will strive to have installed in the future. The capital cost of this option has not been included in the £850,000 and may prove beyond our initial budget unless significant grant funding is available.

Allocation of contracts will take into account energy efficiency and a local focus wherever possible.

Professional advice and consultancy will be employed where this is seen to be cost effective and essential to achieving our aims.

A new body of trustees has been set up to manage the redevelopment known as Lisvane Old School Community Centre (LOSCC) and has been registered with the Charity Commissioners. The constitution of the LOSCC and the original trustees at registration may be viewed by clicking Here. The current trustees and contact details may be viewed by clicking Here.

Project Milestones


  • The Planning Application has been submitted by the architect to Cardiff County Council and permission granted on 8th July 2009.
  • Soil Testing of the site was completed on October 30th 2009 and a report received.
  • A topographical survey of the site was undertaken on 17th December 2009.
  • Five companies have been invited to submit tenders for production of a Business Plan and identification of funding streams. (Grant applications require a detailed Business Plan for which expert advice is required.)
  • Initial grant application submitted January 2010. (This was in advance of the Business Plan in order to meet the submission deadline.
  • Contract awarded to BPU Ltd to produce Business Plan.
  • Business Plan produced and cost and revenue streams identified.
  • New trustees appointed prior to registration as a charity.
  • Charity status achieved 21st March 2014.

Future Activities

  • Grant sources identified.
  • Grant application submissions: on-going.
  • Local fund raising: on-going.
  • Finalisation of detailed building requirement with architects (to include any changes specified by grant agencies and review of planning consent if necessary).
  • Contract agreed with architect for production of detailed building plans, work schedules, specifications, quantities of materials, costings etc.
  • Transition planning.
  • Appointment of contractors.
  • Work commences.