A 900-pupil secondary school on land at Walton-on-Thames in Surrey has been approved by Elmbridge Borough Council (EBC).

EBC’s planning committee approved the plan for the free school for 11-16-year-olds, which will be on a 5.23-hectare Green Belt site at the junction of Terrace Road and Waterside Drive, at its June 3 meeting.

Residents fought the plans and more than 150 objections were made online but members voted to approve it by nine to seven with one abstention.

The need for school places was considered ‘very special circumstances’ necessary to outweigh the harm caused by building on the Green Belt.

The application for the school, which will be known as Heathside Walton, will now go to the Secretary of State for final approval and, if granted, it is looking to open in 2022.

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