Kensington Academy and Leisure Centre

Works are well underway at the Kensington Academy and Leisure Centre (KALC) site. Construction of the leisure centre will run in parallel with the Academy so that both new buildings can open in 2014.

A real-time camera has now been set up overlooking the site and you can watch the construction works live:

Please see details of alternative sports and leisure facilities.

To find out the latest news read the winter 2014 newsletter [PDF] (file size 1.25Mb)

Highlights of the proposals include:

  • a new Academy providing much needed school places as over 30 per cent of local students currently travel outside the Royal Borough for their secondary education
  • a state-of-the-art leisure centre to replace the current facility
  • creating more usable green space and an improved Lancaster Green
  • improving access and creating better links to the area

The story so far

In December 2011 the Council committed £40.2m of funding for the scheme and, on top of the £17.6m Government funding for the academy, this amounts to a £57.8m investment in North Kensington.

Located off Silchester Road, near Latimer Road station, these developments will bring significant investment to the local area, deliver tangible benefits for the whole borough and respond to a pressing need for education provision in North Kensington.


The need for the academy

There is a great need for a new secondary school in the north of the borough and the Kensington Aldridge Academy will help to address this.

Over 30 per cent of local students already travel outside the borough for their secondary education and by 2018 there is likely to be an increase of over 1,200 secondary school age pupils seeking places in our schools.

This issue is particularly important in the north of the borough where there are currently a number of high quality primary schools but not sufficient secondary education provision.

The new Kensington Academy and Leisure CentreThe Kensington Aldridge Academy

We have high ambitions for this academy, which would also play a key role in the redevelopment and regeneration plans for the Latimer area.

The academy will be co-sponsored by the Council and the Aldridge Foundation and will offer a first class all-round curriculum and, in addition, specialise in entrepreneurship and expressive arts.

The academy is scheduled to open in September 2014 for the first group of 11-year-olds, with a second year group starting the following September and the first students entering the sixth form in 2016.

The address of the academy will be as follows:

Kensington Aldridge Academy
1 Silchester Road
W10 6EX

Community benefits

The academy will play a full part in local life and facilities such as the sports hall, dance studio and theatre will also be available for students, adults and community groups to use outside of school hours. Dedicated entrepreneurial areas or ‘pods’ will be available in the academy to help students and members of the community develop their business ideas. Each pod will come equipped with internet access, a phone line and desks. Aldridge Foundation academies also provide support and training to help the development of business and social enterprises in their communities.

Academy admissions

The academy will be a local school serving the local community and will adopt the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea’s admissions criteria. An admissions priority area is being proposed as part of the academy plans. This will not exclude parents outside the area but will ensure it is first and foremost a neighbourhood school. The postcodes included within the priority areas are W10, W11, W12, W14 and a small area of W2. There will be no selection by ability, gender or religion.

Kensington Leisure Centre

The tired and dated Kensington Leisure Centre will be replaced by a modern, energy-efficient building that will offer first-class sports and leisure facilities which can be enjoyed by local people for decades to come. Highlights of our proposals for a fully accessible centre include: a 25-metre, eight-lane swimming pool for teaching and swimming at all levels; 250-seat spectator gallery; 20-metre teaching pool with mobile floor; leisure pool; 120-station gym; eight-court multi-use hall and sauna/steam facilities with treatment rooms.

The new Kensington Academy and Leisure CentreConstruction timeline

A phased construction programme is now underway and enabling works have already begun. The Silchester Road Car Park at the back of Kensington Leisure Centre and the centre’s three small artificial football pitches were closed from Monday 8 October. Kensington Leisure Centre’s last day of business will be Monday 24 December 2012. The centre’s operators, Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL), has extensive experience of closing and opening leisure centres. With the assistance of the building contractors, Leadbitter, plans are being made for those groups affected. For example, current members will be able to transfer to other GLL facilities in neighbouring boroughs and all existing staff will find employment at their other GLL sites for the duration of closure.

Alternative sports and leisure facilities

Other GLL facilities

Chelsea Sports Centre will remain open throughout the works.

Chelsea Sports Centre

Underground: South Kensington, Sloane Square

Bus: 319, 49, 211, 11, 22


Jubilee Sports Centre

Underground: Queens Park, Westbourne Park Kensal Green

National Rail: Kensal Green

Bus: 6, 18, 28, 31, 316, 328


Phoenix Fitness Centre & Janet Adegoke Swimming Pool

Underground: White City, Wood Lane

Bus: 283, 95, 7, 70, 72, 272, 228


Porchester Centre

Underground: Royal Oak, Bayswater

Bus: 36, 27, 7, 23


Facilities managed by the Westway Development Trust

Facilities managed locally by the Westway Development Trust include:

Westway Sports Centre

Underground: Latimer Road

Bus: 295, 316, 72, 95, 220, 272


Portobello green fitness club

Underground: Ladbroke Grove

Bus: 52, 228, 7, 23, 70, 452, 295


Find out more

You can find out more about the plans by visiting our Frequently Asked Questions.

You can also register for e-updates by emailing