. “Winning is about struggle and effort and optimism, and never, ever, ever giving up.”
Dear St Cyprian's School Community

It’s official!  We have acquired the necessary City of Cape Town approval at Orange Street Field to build our long-awaited Astro Turf. Holding on to Hope has brought rewards.

We have secured a wonderful ‘win’ that warrants celebration and deserves enormous appreciation for the collective spirit of our community and the tireless efforts of a committed, professional team.    The City of Cape Town’s Special Planning Appeals Advisory Panel confirmed that they have dismissed the appeal brought against us by objectors as our proposal "complies fully with the Municipal Spatial Development Framework (MSDF) and Table Bay District Plan, that our proposal has no material negative impact on any heritage resource in the area and importantly, that our proposal is desirable."

After so much disappointment and slow progress, we are extremely grateful for the tenacity and determination of our team, who despite all the hurdles, worked tirelessly to get us over and through them, and relentlessly pursued our interests to achieve an outstanding result for us.  Every small victory achieved during the arduous process certainly did pave the way for the blue-sky dreaming that’s become a reality. 

Building is scheduled to start as soon as plans are approved.  Given that plans do not involve construction of buildings, we are hopeful that we have no more than a few weeks of waiting for this approval and have, in the interim, enquired if civil works may commence sooner.  We’re holding thumbs for an early June start!  The project development team implemented the tender process concurrently with the appeals process, to ensure that there would be no further delays - remaining hopeful that City Council’s decision would be in our favour - and that once the decision was announced, we’d be ready to roll out the construction programme. We estimate the civil works and laying of the Astro tuf to take several months and anticipate completion in early October.

Such a win requires a whole-school celebration and especially for our sport enthusiasts who have held their collective breaths with us.  We are trying to find a date on a very busy school calendar to host a ‘turf-turning’ burger braai.  Details to follow!

*A 3D view of proposed Astro turf and surrounding landscaping plans at Orange Street Campus

Creating a new partnership and developing strong bonds
The acquisition of Orange Street Campus as a sport facility has an additional role and function in our life as a school.  It signifies, together with additional plans, the beginning of a meaningful partnership with Good Hope Seminary School for Girls.  St Cyprian’s School and Good Hope Seminary have concluded a sport facilities-sharing contract that gets this unique collaboration under way. A few short weeks ago, in the first Under Construction communique, I referred to how amplitude of our physical environment enables us to extend a hand of friendship and support to others. An opportunity to share resources, build relationships and develop bonds with other schools in our community is a prospect to seize and appreciate. 

As work is scheduled to start at the end of the term on the Multi-purpose Hall and parts of the new road, our tennis and netball courts will need to be demolished to make way for all the upgrades.  We wish to ensure that these sports will not be impacted during the new building phase and have secured use of Good Hope Seminary’s four tennis and netball courts as part of our facilities-sharing agreement.   However, the agreement requires Provincial approval as the land belongs to the Province and not the school. We are optimistic that their approval will be given timeously, and we will keep you updated.  Travel arrangements to and from Good Hope Seminary for sport practices and fixtures will be managed by the Sport department.  These courts require some refurbishment and plans are afoot to upgrade the courts to a high standard. 

We are pleased at how our plans to enhance and improve our campus have benefited us in ways that we hadn’t considered.  The opportunity to forge a relationship with a sister school, with whom we share values and visions, is an unexpected blessing and advantage for both schools.  The founders’ visions were and remain similar - a deliberate intention to develop and instil a love of learning, spark interest that crosses all intellectual spheres, build confidence and courage, and contribute positively to their communities.

Close in age, SCS opened its doors in 1871 and Good Hope Seminary followed in 1873.  The latter is the oldest school in Cape Town to still inhabit their original site.  2019 also marks the 100th year that St Cyprian's School has occupied its Gorge Road premises.  We intend to ensure that, over time, our collaboration extends beyond sport.  Already, a few SCS teachers have visited their Good Hope colleagues and shared ideas about their respective subjects.  Cross-cultural events and occasions for dialogue have been in place for more than a year with our High School girls participating in Good Hope's Inclusivity Summit Initiative - a space for students to discuss inclusivity, diversity and equity.  Our students will attend their Power, Privilege & Social Justice Summit, on 4th May.  We look forward to the many opportunities across all levels that this partnership offers to foster bonds that contribute to a greater City Bowl community.

Warm regards

S J Redelinghuys
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Gorge Road, Oranjezicht, Cape Town 8001 Tel: +27 (0)21 461 1090