English Heritage has urged local councils to protect existing school architecture, which is coming under threat from the school rebuilding programme being undertaken by the UK Government.

The UK school building programme will see the largest number of new school buildings being opened since the Victorian period.

English Heritage manages the historic built environment in the UK, while Partnership for Schools (PfS) is set up to deliver Building Schools for the Future (BSF).

An estimated 50% of school upgrades will be refurbishments, according to PfS.

English Heritage also claimed public support through a survey of 1,723 adults, which saw two-thirds opine that refurbishing and extending schools is more environmentally friendly than demolishing, while 83% wanted councils to find new uses for old and empty schools.

Refurbishment is an environmentally sensitive and effective solution, which cuts demolition waste, according to chair of English Heritage Baroness Andrews.

The potential of older schools has been highlighted by two new publications produced by English Heritage.

Some cherished local landmarks have been refurbished through the Building Schools for the Future scheme.