“Common sense has prevailed” after a Hindu free school announced it would not be moving to Barnet.

Avanti House was set to move from Camrose Avenue in Harrow to a temporary site next to Fairway Primary School in The Fairway in Mill Hill in September.

However the school's principal Gareth Jones has announced it has instead signed a lease on the former Peterbrough and St Margaret school site in Harrow. 

Governor at Avanti House Ben Rich said its new site in Common Road was “massively more suitable” than The Fairway.

He added: “The Peterborough and St Margaret site is a quiet location, it’s beautiful and peaceful.

“We would be moving into the existing buildings which are fully equipped as a school. Also, people are used to having a school there and there would be no more pupils than there were previously.

“In contrast, at The Fairway site, we would have to move into prefabricated buildings.”

He added the new site had none of the problems of traffic congestion and parking the residents on The Fairway had been concerned about.

Mr Rich said: “Because of the way the proposed move to The Fairway site had been announced, the school had got off on the wrong foot with residents.

He added: “We want to have good relations with our neighbours, which unfortunately wasn’t the case at The Fairway.”

The chairman of governors at Fairway Primary School and Children’s Centre Gilead Limor said how “relieved” he was to hear the news.

He added: “Moving the school to The Fairway would have caused serious traffic disruption. It would have made life very difficult for parents, children and teachers at the existing schools.

“Avanti House looks as though it will be a very good school and I am glad it has found a site which is far more suitable for its purposes.

“They’re happy and we’re happy too.”

He added he hoped the land, which is ear marked for educational use, would now be used to benefit the existing community.

Hale ward representative, Councillor Hugh Rayner added “common sense has prevailed.”

He said: “It has been a long fight but we had to give them time to make the right decision rather than rushing into the wrong one.

“Whilst traffic on The Fairway in the morning and evenings is not great, we have avoided the gridlock that would have inevitably resulted from the school moving here.

“Thanks to the efforts of the MP, local councillors and the residents who have supported our case, we have won.”

Instead of seeking a permanent home for an all-through school as previously planned, Avanti House is now only looking for a new location for its secondary school as the primary school will remain at the Stanmore site.

Mr Rich added: “The Broadfields site remains an option, but it would house a much smaller school than previously thought.”

“Although Avanti House remains in Harrow, we’d like to hear from anyone in Mill Hill who was attracted by the school.”

However MP for Hendon Matthew Offord said the school’s relocation to the Broadfields Estate, while not yet confirmed, was “extremely unlikely”.

Speaking about the proposals for a move to The Fairway or The Broadfields, he said: “I never felt either site was appropriate at all so I’m pleased they have listened to the objections of local people and myself.

“I’m pleased the Avanti School has found a site they say is superior to any others they looked at and that parents are reassured of their children’s school places next year.”

Councillor Zarina Khalid, who is responsible for education at Harrow Council, said: “We are delighted that Avanti House School is staying in Harrow.

"Over the past year Harrow Council has supported the free school by providing a temporary home at the Harrow Teachers’ Centre in Tudor Road. The school’s decision to move to a new site within the borough means Harrow will retain local school places and that there will be minimum disruption to parents and pupils.”