The Department of Education has appealed against a decision by Sutton Council to refuse planning permission for two new schools.

Wates, working on behalf of the DfE, had submitted an application to build a new secondary school and small special school on the disused All Weather Pitch and part of the Sports Village at Rosehill Recreation Ground. The schools would have been operated by the Greenshaw Learning Trust.

But in September, the council turned down the planning application.

Last month, the DfE decided to appeal against the council's decision.

A message posted on Greenshaw's website read: "The proposed schools will provide much-needed secondary school places for local families and specialist provision for children on the autistic spectrum.

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"The inquiry will take evidence from Wates and Sutton Council and from anyone that wishes to make representations. People who sent their views on the planning application to Sutton Council will be notified and copies of their representations will be sent to the Planning Inspectorate.

"If the appeal is successful this would enable the new schools at Rosehill Recreation Ground to be built in time to open in September 2022; and would also allow the proposed new secondary school to open in temporary accommodation in central Sutton in September 2021."

A DfE spokeswoman confirmed that the appeal was lodged on November 15 and that it has nothing further to add at this stage.

The proposed school would provide 1,200 places for pupils aged 11-16, and 350 school places for sixth formers.

It is expected that the inquiry will take place during February and that a decision will be made by the Government Planning Inspector by the middle of April 2020.

Sutton Council has been contacted for comment.