IW Council ‘not able to commit to any definite opening date’ of new Cowes Enterprise building

Parents had understood that it would open in September 2013.

Cowes Enterprise College

Stuart Love, Director of economy and environment at the Isle of Wight council, has told the BBC that the council isn’t able to commit to a definite opening date for much-delayed Cowes Enterprise College.

Back in December 2012, Parents understood that the much-delayed school would be opening in September 2013, when Rachael Fidler, Chair Cowes Pathfinder Trust, wrote to parents saying, “we have reluctantly come to the decision that the College will not occupy the new building during this academic year (September 2012 to August 2013).”

£19,000 spent on experts by IWC, so far
The BBC reveal that the IWC has spent nearly £19,000 on architectural, mechanical and electrical experts to carry out investigations. The council’s report list “snagging” issues have included incomplete work to the building’s roof; water damage to other areas; and some mechanical and electrical installations which were left incomplete.

As to when it might actually open, Stuart Love said, “There are a number of scenarios we are working with which are dependent on the completion of several aspects by the contractor.”

BBC: School opening ‘can’t be guaranteed’

Location map
View the location of this story.

Tuesday, 26th March, 2013 1:49pm


ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2aD7

Filed under: Cowes, Education, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, North Wight, Top story

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

Leave a Reply

31 Comments on "IW Council ‘not able to commit to any definite opening date’ of new Cowes Enterprise building"

Email updates?
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted

The first thing Stuart Love could think of to say to the BBC was: “It’s extremely frustrating as it is putting a significant amount of pressure on the council and its reputation.”

Well, everyone has their priorities…

Island Monkey

Yep, they only think of themselves not the poor students, staff and parents.

Stupidly the council don’t realise their reputation was lost years ago.

This building is a monument to incompetence.


This man is a walking disaster as everything he touches is plagued thereafter. I have never come across a more bumbling baffoon. He can’t string a response together that makes any sense whatsoever as its loaded with corporate and council non-speak!
Bet the incoming Academy folk have a diferrent view though?

I hope the elections really get to the bottom of this and quickly.

So Stuart Love has points for the Contractor, Pihl UK. Might be hard to contact them, as they are in a Sherrifs court in Scotland, being sued by a demolition company. Perhaps that company might like to come to Cowes and give us a new site to start again on Cowes Enterprise College? Someone has to ask, where is this all going to end? It will be… Read more »
Barry Groves
Is anyone liable for the delays. Are the builders paying compensation. Has anyone on the Council lost their jobs, I know they have lost their heads and seem more concerned about their own welfare. I am concerned for the I.W. children who are going through all this trauma. Nobody at the Council seems able to make anything happen. They seem quite happy to accept all this trauma… Read more »
Disgraceful and appalling situation for all the Students and Parents of my old School.I will accept my responsibility and apologize to them as an Adult voter and pledge that I will do all in my power to make sure that those responsible for this debacle in the Ruling Council are not Re-elected. Now could we have a sincere apology from those that are responsible.You have just put… Read more »
Y’s 1

Interesting that Pihl UK and a demolition company are in the ScotCourts listings…

Aberdeen Sheriff Court
Wednesday 20 March 2013
Civil – Ordinary Actions
Options Hearing

Lawrie (Demolition) Ltd v PIHL UK Ltd

Anderson Strathern LLP A392/12
Blacklocks – DR/059778

From Google cache


Hi Gavin

I see you’re trying to divert attention from the real culprits again. It is Stuart Love and his cronies that have failed here!

Chris Welsford

No it’s Councillor’s Pugh and his cronies!

walrus and the eggman

why do i find myself thinking that the £19,000 could be better spent simply completing the work to get the school open, and then a bill presented to the contractor for incomplete work.
Instead of spending ridiculous amounts on legal defense when trying to close libraries and cut social care, why not spend a ridiculous amount on prosecuting the contractor for not fulfilling their contract in full.

Walrus, if you think £19,000 can put right the problems in Cowes Enterprise College, you ought to buy shares in a bank in Cyprus! If the IW Council wont release a date, it is because it is BAD news. It is not beyond reason that when contractors were doing ‘first fix’ electrics in CEC that the roof was still leaking, so Governors and the Council told Pihl… Read more »
Billy Builder
The problem. that Stuart Love has is that he went into CEC in October last year after being told by Alan Well, George Brown, Rachael Fiddler and Keith Simmons, none of which have any building or project management experience, that the new building was not ready and that there were serious problems with the roof. The building professionals however maintained that the building would be ready by… Read more »

Billy, I wont ask what you do for a living, but you seem to know whats going on at this cash cow. I think that ordinary people like me just cannot believe nobody has taken the fall for this shambles. If I performed just one day like these idiots I would be on the dole.

I do not believe it

………….the lunatics really are running the asylum and resultantly blighting the lives of island children. In China they would be shot!


Can anyone tell me what the contractors have to say as to why the project has overrun or is it all to do with the council?

Black Dog

Enough is Enough – Parents should withdraw their children from this school until Alan Wells along with the remainder of the board resign.

Additionally David Pugh, George Brown and Stuart Love must go and go now.


I thought he was being replaced under the Councils emergency powers?

You might find this useful from the Local Govt Ombudsman website. http://www.lgo.org.uk/guide-for-advisers/maladministration-service-failure/ How many of the examples could be applied to IWC? …………………………………. Has the council done something wrong? (maladministration) The law says the Ombudsman can investigate alleged or apparent ‘maladministration’ or service failure. This can include: delay incorrect action or failure to take any action failure to follow procedures or the law failure to provide information… Read more »
So Billy Builder, you have had a great deal to say over Cowes Enterprise College and island Education generally over the last few months. You appear to speak with authority and with what some may regard as privileged information. You seem to have an inside track into Local Authority information. However you let slip little things that point as either to you, or someone close to you… Read more »

I would suggest that if Billy Builder has knowledge that exposes the failings of those involved, then he is quite right to expose them. Employees who are prepared to stand up for the truth should be protected and is something which mIght have helped vulnerable patients at Stafford and many other hospitals. I think the in-phrase is ‘duty of candour’.


Which part of Billy’s comment do you think is fiction rather than fact Jipper?

My god nipper, are you totally unaware of all the allegations of bullying and intimidation that goes on at County Hall? It is of such proportion now, that it cannot all be untrue. Should Billy be one of those sacrificial lambs then good luck to him, is what I say along with many others. Look at the votes on your comments, give you an idea what we… Read more »

Whatever the substantive issues here, I don’t think anyone should take too seriously the voting on comments. To expect posters to do so could itself become a form of bullying.

I weigh up what someone says in a comment, not how many people are for or against it. The majority (& where does that come from? We don’t know)- isn’t always right.

mike starke
“JipperNipper’s” carping at “”Billy Builder” are (mildly) amusing in that the former appears to be guilty of what he/she accuses the latter of doing. What we should not lose sight of is that the main architect of the train crash that Island education “reform” has become has skipped off to the Essex marshes whence he came, happily counting wads of our taxpayers’ wonga. So we cannot hold… Read more »

Has a typo replaced “p” with “t” in the consultancy’s name that seems to belong to the “Toys-R-Us” genre? :-))


Interesting the current Mayor of Cowes David Walters, wouldn’t put CEC on the Town Council agenda last year. Despite requests from a number of parish Cllrs. Remember his name come election time and don’t vote him if you live in Cowes.

Billy Builder

Hi jippernipper, or maybe one if Love’s cronies
As you well know everything that I’ve said is absolutely true and verifiable.

Chris Welsford
I want to see senior politicians placed in the firing line when it comes to public statements such as this. I had a very interesting conversation with a BBC Journalist about this recently. He told me that the Isle of Wight is striking in its use of officers to comment on and deliver bad news. Our senior politicians hide behind unelected directors and senior officers. It is… Read more »
Billy Builder
Hi Chris Whilst I fully agree that members should take responsibility for failures resulting from inappropriate policies or from inadequate scrutiny of the implementation of those policies. Officers also have a responsibility to ensure that they give members the correct advice, and that the policies once actioned are carried out diligently. In the case of the failures in children’s services it was David Pugh and Steve Beynon… Read more »
Billy, This certainly would appear to be the case for Cowes, as both the Builder and the suspended officers advised that there was no issue with the roof, but the Comms Technician a fire place maker and a woodwork teacher all thought that they knew better – how wrong they were – heads should roll here, in the Trust and within the Council at member and senior… Read more »
I heard that Alan Wells is now dealing with May council election and does not want disturbing by anybody at the moment and his personally ‘selected’ officers, including Stuart Love and the remaining Directors must keep CEC out of the news till HE is ready. So you are probably right, nothing happening till after the election., but bet the local candidates in Cowes will be asked some… Read more »