A PRIVATE school in Taunton has unveiled proposals to demolish a boarding house and replace it with four prestigious houses.

A planning application on behalf of Queen's College seeks to bulldoze Channon House, which is more than half a mile from the school campus.

If Somerset West and Taunton Council approves the plans, cash from the sale of the 1,000 square metre plot would be reinvested in the main school.

Queen's head teacher Dr Lorraine Earps said further boarding facilities could be developed on the campus off Trull Road, which would improve student safety.

"Channon House is over half a mile away from the main school site, down an unlit road with no footpaths," said Dr Earps.

"In order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our students, we have decided to bring all the residential accommodation on to the main school site.

"We have a large, very secure main campus with plenty of space to develop additional boarding facilities.

"This long-term plan will allow us to ensure full integration of all the boarders and safeguard them against the risks associated with being housed remotely from the rest of the college."

The proposed two-storey detached homes to replace the three-storey Channon House, in Wild Oak Lane, Trull, would feature five bedrooms, with family and en suite facilities.

There would be open plan living and dining space with kitchen and utility areas, while outside there would be double garages and parking spaces.

The planning application says: "The development will provide direct benefit to the school business of Queen's College, by the uplift in value of the site created by a grant of planning permission.

"This is a significant benefit to education provision within the area and carries significant weight in the determination of the application."

Channon House is described by the school as a "home fro home" for Upper Sixth boys, with entertainment, games, a karaoke machine, a piano, cooking facilities and sofas.

The spacious grounds have designated areas for playing football and basketball to enable students to exercise and unwind with their friends.

Students are able to prepare drinks and snacks in a modern kitchen and they are encouraged to develop their culinary skills and independence ahead of "university and life after Sixth From".