A LOCAL authority chief has defended the procurement process followed by a secondary school building a new sports pavilion.

North Yorkshire County Council said that while it raised initial concerns about the exercise at Richmond School, the headteacher took advice to address the problems.

The Northern Echo this week revealed how Richmond School head Ian Robertson appointed a project manager and lined up a building contractor to build the £750,000 pavilion.

However, a fresh procurement exercise was launched after concerns were raised by the former governing body and the council that the proper procedures had not been followed.

Commenting on the saga, Pete Dwyer, corporate director for children and young people’s service at the county council, said: “Whilst the local authority did raise some concerns about aspects of the school’s initial procurement process, the head teacher of the school did take appropriate procurement advice to address this.

“The outcome was a good tendering process for the building of the £750,000 scheme which satisfies all the procurement rules.

“It was the governing body’s decision to proceed with the construction of the pavilion having satisfied themselves that it represented good value for money.”

Mr Dwyer said the facility would benefit both children at the school and the wider local community.

He added: “The local authority has provided support and advice to the school but the school is to be congratulated on its success in securing grant funding from external bodies to allow the project to proceed.”