A SOUTHAMPTON school could be knocked down and replaced with housing.

The old Woolston Boys’ School site is being marketed for use as a housing development. The site was last used as an annexe for the Oasis Academy Mayfield but has been empty since 2011.

Labour city council chiefs have instructed the authority’s private partner Capita, to draw up an application for outline planning permission.

The plan for 37 homes is designed to make the site more attractive to developers eyeing up the site.

The site off Porchester Road had been used as a school since the 1930s, when it housed an infant school.

Since then a secondary school with a number of identities – first the Woolston Boys’ School, then the Woolston School and finally Woolston Business and Language College – operated there.

Prior to its final closure in July 2011 it had been used as part of the Oasis Academy Mayfield.

The application submitted by Capita is to demolish the school and build 37 homes, ranging from one to four bedrooms.

That means if a developer bought the site they would not have to apply to change its use to housing, although an application for full planning permission would need to be submitted.

Selling the site would raise cash for the council’s coffers, and it is likely to raise more with outline permission. A decision on the application is due by April 21.

Warwick Payne, one of the area’s ward councillors and the authority’s housing chief, said: “I will be talking to residents to see whether the potential housing use is acceptable to them. I’m conscious that the site is very important for the local community.

“There is a need for housing in Southampton, but the question must be asked of residents, is this the right scheme at the site for Woolston?

“The application, to get outline permission for housing at the site, is about trying to get good value for taxpayers’ money.”