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Gloucestershire Business News

Specialist autism school set to open and create 300 jobs

A specialist autism school and residential home has opened with the promise of creating 300 jobs.

Orbis Abbey Road in Tewkesbury welcomed its first visitors at a special opening event this week attended by the Mayor of Tewkesbury, local residents and healthcare professionals.

Families who have been supported by site owner Orbis Education and Care were also invited to see the sparkling new facilities, alongside families of prospective pupils.

The state-of-the-art facility that has seen an existing children's home turned into a school and residential home, will accommodate 30 pupils with complex needs associated with autism.

The centre was first opened in 2013 to house 40 children, but the extensive renovation has seen the residential part of the school remodelled to house 30, with 300 jobs created when in full operation.

Mike Currier, CEO at Orbis Education and Care, said: "Our vision for Orbis Abbey Rose as a regional centre for excellence in autism support has finally been realised.

"It has been important for us to establish relationships not just with Gloucestershire and the neighbouring authorities, but with residents in the surrounding community that we look forward to continue working with in order to bring this vision to fruition in its entirety."

Situated on a 17-acre site and formerly known as Southwick Park, the school and residential home has been given new life after it closed under the Cambian Group in April 2018.

Opened by its former owners in 2013 to house 40 children, Wales-based Orbis Education and Care has remodelled the residential part of the school to accommodate 30 children.

Visitors including Lord Mayor of Tewskesbury, Councillor Ruth Hatton, came to see for themselves the changes made and meet members of the Orbis Education and Care team.

Currier added: "Orbis Abbey Rose has some wonderful facilities and even a battlefield from the War of the Roses within its gardens - hence the name Abbey Rose - as well as extensive grounds and a sports hall, among other things.

"We are therefore looking forward to bringing all that we've learned in Wales to England for the benefit of families and employees here in Gloucestershire, and are excited to finally be inviting new residents, students and staff alike in to enjoy this wonderful facility too."

Orbis Education and Care run 15 schools, residential homes and facilities for children and adults in England and Wales which support people with complex needs associated with autism.

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