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Welcome to our webpage of plans for

City of London Academy – Highgate Hill

The purpose of the webpage is to show the plans for the school to local residents, parents, pupils and other interested parties before a planning application is submitted.

City of London Academy – Highgate Hill (COLAHH)

COLAHH is a mixed, all-ability academy that opened in September 2017 on the site of the former Mount Carmel Catholic College for Girls. The school currently has a capacity for 700 pupils across years 7-11.

The existing school is made up of a series of buildings developed over a number of years with the oldest Victorian buildings fronting Duncombe Road and Ashbrook Road. Later additions including the link building and extensions have developed over a number of years and include buildings of varying sizes and architectural styles. A number of the existing buildings underwent extensive refurbishment in 2013 as part of Islington’s Building Schools for the Future programme.

Planning Application

The principle of improving and expanding the capacity of the existing school is supported by the Council and pre-application discussions are ongoing.

Galliford Try have been appointed by the Department for Education to design and build the new facilities. Galliford Try with their team have worked up detailed designs for the school and subject to any comments from the community will shortly be submitted to the London Borough of Islington for approval. Once a planning application has been submitted, Islington’s Planning Team will carry out their own consultation.

The Proposals

It is proposed to demolish the existing school hall fronting Nicholay Road and this will be replaced with a new building arranged over ground floor and three upper storeys. The new building will provide a new school hall on the ground floor, with new teaching spaces on the first and second floor. The third floor will provide social and study space for sixth forms pupils as well as further general classroom spaces.

In addition to the main new building a small single storey extension is proposed fronting onto Ashbrook Road in the southern corner of the site. This single storey building will provide a practical work area for teaching.


The proposals will enable the school to expand by an additional 250 pupils enabling the school to provide a sixth form and to operate a higher capacity of 150 pupils per year.

Details of the proposals including plans, elevations and indicative images can be downloaded below.

Next Steps

Following this consultation the comments received will be taken into consideration before a planning application is formally submitted to the London Borough of Islington for consideration. It is hoped that the application will be determined by the council in early 2021 allowing Galliford Try to start on site in the Spring 2021.

The construction phase will last approximately 12 months and the contractors Galliford try will seek to minimise the disruption to the local community during these works. Galliford Try will be in contact with residents to provide further details of the planned works nearer the time.

Download the Plans