SCHOOL facilities in Ilkley are to be upgraded thanks to £1.15 million of government funding.

The money, for Keighley and Ilkley, is part of a £560 million national investment that has been announced alongside an ambitious, ten year school rebuilding programme.

Locally, Ilkley Grammar School, Haworth Primary School and St Joseph’s Primary School, in Keighley, are all set to benefit.

The Government says that the new funding will bring the total allocated to improve the condition of school buildings across the country to £2 billion this year.

That will pave the way for a ‘transformational’, long term building programme which will start later this year with more than £1 billion for the first wave of 50 schools.

Robbie Moore, the Conservative MP for Ilkley and Keighley, has welcomed the announcement.

He said: “Coronavirus has taken a toll on us all, not least our children, who have been kept from their friends, their teachers and their schools.

“As we exit lockdown we must focus on getting children back to school and ensure that schools have the facilities and classrooms they need to support the high-quality education our children deserve.

“This funding will help ensure all children have modern environments which will promote the very best possible schools and education, enabling them to gain all the knowledge and skills they need for success.”

Announcing the funding, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “Investing in our school and college buildings helps create modern environments that lend themselves to great teaching, making sure every child has the opportunity to fulfil their potential.

“We have worked at great speed to release this additional £560 million of condition funding to schools for projects this year to kick-start the economy and get the country moving again following coronavirus.

“This funding brings the total allocated to improve the condition of our school buildings to £2 billion this year.

“And it paves the way for our new transformative ten-year school building programme starting later this year, with over £1 billion funding for the first wave of 50 schools.”

The Department for Education says that the £560 million will allow the repair and upgrade of buildings in 580 schools across the country.

It says that work should create ‘modern, fit-for-purpose spaces that meet schools’ needs in England’.

It will also enable a small number of expansion projects to increase school capacity.