Brent Council approved plans for extensions at a private school despite some concerns around the development’s design and its impact on traffic in the surrounding area.

Its planning committee comfortably approved proposals at St Nicholas Preparatory School, in Salmon Street, for side and rear extensions to allow a greater intake of pupils in the future.

It came despite concerns around the impact a bigger school would have on traffic and parking in the surrounding area.

The council received objections from more than 20 households, including one representation from Brent North MP Barry Gardiner, which covered this and concerns around appearance.

Brent Council highways officers initially said they could not support the application due to concerns around the damaging impact it would have at drop-off and pick-up times.

However, a revised travel plan submitted by the school was deemed sufficient and was accepted by the committee.

The issues around design were also addressed in the officers’ report – it noted it was in keeping with “the parent building and its surrounds”, as well as neighbouring properties.

Cllr Arshad Mahmood, who represents Dollis Hill ward, noted admissions at the school are currently undersubscribed and questioned the need to expand at this stage.

St Nicholas’ head teacher Matt Donaldson said it is taking a “proactive” approach by securing planning permission now, to allow for a steady stream of pupils, rather than reacting further down the line.

He added the school had a “responsible and supportive attitude to the local area” and that it would continue to tackle any issues around traffic flow by encouraging the use of public transport and walking and cycling to school.

Seven members of the planning committee voted to approve the scheme, while Cllr Mahmood chose to abstain based on concerns around the impact on neighbouring properties and scepticism around the travel plan.