DEMOLITION work is set to start on the old Longlands School site in Stourbridge which is set to be transformed into a mini housing estate.

The former school and art college site in Brook Street has lain empty since 2011 when it was mothballed by Stourbridge College which had used the buildings as a base for art students after the closure of the old Longlands School in the early 1990s.

Many former pupils and residents living nearby had hoped the traditional old school buildings, which were locally listed, could have been preserved for future generations to enjoy as homes or some kind of community base.

But after a series of possible development deals fell through – Persimmon Homes finally won approval to redevelop the Old Quarter site with 52 new homes without retaining any of the original historic buildings which date back more than 100 years.

Planning permission was granted in July 2019 and demolition of the old school buildings is now set to start within weeks.

A spokesperson for Persimmon Homes said: “We are currently awaiting confirmation of the legal notices from the local authority for the demolition to begin and would expect that within the next two weeks.

“Once work commences the project is expected to take approximately 12 weeks to complete.

“The first stages of work will see materials removed to minimise airborne dust and then excavators will demolish the structure.”

And she stressed: “Persimmon Homes wants to be a good neighbour and is committed to keeping noise and inconvenience to a minimum.

“We are communicating directly with the community to keep them informed of the process and will be distributing a newsletter with contact details and a description of works.”

The new development will be accessed off Bowling Green Road and the new homes will be a mix of two-three and four-bedroom properties in an 'arts and crafts' style - with 25 per cent expected to be allocated as 'affordable homes'.