Nearly £10 million in funding has been agreed by Essex County Council to support the creation of a new all-through school in Great Dunmow.

On Tuesday, May 28, the council's cabinet agreed to increase the capital budget allocated for the project to £9.89 million - an increase of £2.26 million.

Funding will be used for the construction of a new site in Stortford Road for pupils of Helena Romanes School.

Once completed, the project - led by the Department for Education - will provide new primary, secondary and sixth form facilities for students in Uttlesford.

Helena Romanes already has primary provision on its current site, based in temporary accommodation.

The primary building is anticipated to open in September 2025, and the secondary building will open in October 2026.

Funding for the project comes from developers' contributions for major housing developments in the area.

Councillor Tony Ball, Essex County Council cabinet member for education excellence, life long learning and employability, said: "Great Dunmow has grown in recent years and like many other parts of Essex, there is a need for new educational facilities to support young people in the area.

"This state-of-the-art new all-through school will ensure children are able to learn, and teachers able to teach, in the best possible learning environment.

"The new buildings will also benefit from net zero carbon enhancements, helping us meet our environmental targets while also saving the Trust money on energy bills.

"This is a hugely exciting project and I’m pleased that we have been able to confirm the funding needed."


The new Helena Romanes School will help meet the need for school places in Great Dunmow, as set out in the 10-year plan for Essex school places.

Across Essex over the last decade, 13 free schools have opened – 8 primary, three secondary and two all-through schools. Of these, 10 were delivered by the council

The council has also delivered 88 expansions at existing mainstream schools.

Since 2018, 40 temporary classrooms have been replaced with modern permanent buildings, and the council has secured more than £101 million for education projects from developers to support the community.