Proposal to Extend the Capacity at Pen y Cwm Special School


Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council reviews the capacity of its schools on an annual basis. As such, the Council is responding to the increased demand and growth noted over the course of the last 3 years, in line with pupil placement requests for Pen y Cwm Special School. Pen y Cwm Special School caters for pupils (aged between 3-19 years) with a broad spectrum of complex special educational and medical needs. including profound and multiple learning difficulties. The school currently caters for Blaenau Gwent pupils, along with pupils from Out of County (OOC).


The school mission is: ‘To empower and support individuals to be resilient and independent and to develop skills to reach their potential’.



The Proposal

Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council propose to extend the capacity at Pen y Cwm Special School from 120 to 175 places, with effect from September 2021. In order to facilitate the extended capacity, the Council will remodel the existing learning environment to create additional classroom spaces and associated facilities i.e. toilets. In addition, and alongside this, the Council will work with the school to develop a long-term plan to support sustained growth and development. Therefore, this proposal will be delivered in 2 parts:


  • Part 1, to increase the capacity of Pen y Cwm Special School from 120 to 175 places in preparation for 2021/22 academic year, which would involve physical works to the existing building including:

    • Re-location of the Post 16 base (including 3 classrooms, a common room, life skills room, toilets and hygiene facilities)

    • Re-location of the current administrative area and office space (including a staff room, PPA room, conference facility and a small meeting room)

    • Creation of 2 additional primary classrooms

    • Creation of 1 additional secondary classroom and associated facilities

    • Re-location of the soft-play area to the ground floor

    • Re-development of the Science and Technology room


  • Part 2, the development of a long-term plan to secure additional capacity to facilitate sustained growth and development.


    The proposal would support the Blaenau Gwent’s Vision for Education as follows:


    ‘Securing excellent achievement and wellbeing for all learners through a partnership, school-led self-improving system’.




The consultation document and associated process, will provide consultees and interested parties with the opportunity to learn more about, understand and express their views on the Council’s proposal, which will inform the final decision on how the proposal is taken forward.


The consultation period for this proposal will commence on Monday 26th April 2021 and conclude on Sunday 6th May 2021.

Consultees can submit their views on the proposal, however, it should be noted that responses received during this period will not be logged as objection. Should the proposal proceed, and a consultee wish to make an objection, they will need to do so in writing during the statutory notice period.


The Council would like you to consider the information set out in the consultation booklet and provide your views on the proposal.


If you have any questions or queries on the information contained within this document, please contact us either by using the email address, or by calling us on (01495) 355470.


Consultation Outcome and Next Steps


Consultation Report

A Consultation Out-turn Report to the Council’s Executive Committee will be produced in June 2021. The report will be available 2 weeks before a decision is made via the Council’s website before the decision is made to or not to proceed with the proposal. Hard copies can be obtained on request from the email address detailed above.


Statutory Notice


Should this proposal be approved at Executive Committee; the Council will then go out to statutory notice in July 2021. The statutory notice period will run for 28 days, during this time, you will be able to make formal objections should you wish to do so, via the email address provided in this consultation booklet. Any issues raised by interested parties will then be summarised and presented to the Executive Committee for a final decision to be made. Should the proposal proceed, a copy of the Statutory Notice will be displayed on the Council’s website and at Pen y Cwm Special School. Hard copies of the statutory notice will be available upon request.


Determination of Proposal


Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council will determine the proposal based on the outcome of the statutory notice period. This may lead to the approval, rejection or approval of the proposal with modifications


Decision Notification

Once the decision has been approved, an electronic copy of determination will be sent out to all interested parties and published on Blaenau Gwent’s County Borough Council’s website within 7 days of the decision April 2021.

All Enquiries

If you have any questions or queries on the information contained within this document, please contact us either by using the email address: , or by calling us on (01495) 355470.


You are also welcome to complete the on line survey using the following link:

All consultation responses should be received by 5pm on Sunday 6th June 2021 at the latest.



Associated Documents