A £10m music school designed by the architect firm responsible for the Olympic Velodrome was approved by a planning committee last night.

King's College School in Wimbledon can now go ahead with plans to build a 200-seater concert hall with stage space for a 70-piece orchestra.

The plan by Hopkins Architects, who designed the Glyndebourne Opera House in East Sussex, also includes four music classrooms, 16 practice rooms, office accommodation and a three-bedroom flat for the school caretaker.

Featuring a red brick and terracotta exterior, architects have designed a striking geometric roof for optimum acoustics.

A hard play area and single storey lodge building will be demolished to make way for the development on the north-east side of the school, off The Ridgway.

Sport England objected to the loss of the play area, but a Merton Council planning officer said last night: "The music hall is part of a carefully timed sequence of projects which was deliberately submitted after the approval of a multi-use games area which will be delivered shortly.

"This is a much bigger area than that being lost and is designed to be used for a range of sports and can also be flood-lit in the evenings."

Three people living close to the development site wrote to the council with concerns including parking, road congestion and noisy building work.

But the plans were approved by the council's environmental team and transport planning team, subject to conditions. 

Building work is expected to start this summer, with the aim of completing construction in December 2016.

King's College School, an independent school for boys with girls in the sixth form, can boast Marcus Mumford and Ben Lovett from Mumford and Sons and Dan Smith from Bastille among its accomplished musical alumni.

The school has a strong partnership with a number of state schools in Merton and Kingston, whose pupils are also expected to benefit from the new facilities.

The decision comes on the same night as nine schools joined forces with King's College School for a production of The Merton Mysteries in the school's theatre.

A King's College School spokeswoman said: "It is great to know we will now have a music school that matches our musical success thanks to an exciting landmark design that is sensitive to its surroundings."

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