ST JOSEPH’S Catholic Primary School in Worcester is set for quite a transformation next year, and, if a financial target can be met, so is the nearby church.

A planning application by the school in Warndon was approved by Worcestershire County Council in August to increase capacity from 212 pupils to 420 by September next year.

Eight classrooms will be built within a new two-storey teaching building to meet the increasing number of child places required.

It is estimated that the construction will start in the next few weeks.

Jo Collingwood, chairman of Friends of St Joseph’s, said: “The expansion is great news for the school, the children and parents.

“It shows the school is going in the right direction. These are very exciting times for us here at St Joseph’s and we are ready to meet the challenge.”

St Joseph’s Catholic Church works closely with the school and holds mass services for the children every Tuesday morning.

Due to the school’s extension, the church will need to expand its current capacity of about 150 people.

A planning application is yet to be made, but independent advice from Worcestershire architects has revealed the church will need to raise £150,000 to be able to accommodate the extra students.

Although details surrounding the application are yet to be finalised, the community is hoping to raise the cash in three years.

Father Paul Johnson, Parish Priest of St Joseph’s Church, said: “These are such wonderful times for the school and the community, to see the Catholic faith growing in the way that it is.

“But we realise this is a big ask to the community to raise this much money. We appreciate it’s a huge sum.

“We are a long way off the planning application stage yet and in the new year the parish will make a decision as to whether we want to go down this road, and we will ask people in the community whether this is something they want to be involved in.

“I believe it’s a matter of faith. It’s no coincidence that among all the doom and gloom we hear about today, St Joseph’s church is undergoing such wonderful and exciting times.

“I am very confident we can raise the money. If you believe in something, and pray for it, it will come true.

“As they say, build it and they will come.”