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James Marks Academy Trust home page

The James Marks

Academy Trust


Please note this consultation does not relate to any building, or planning applications surrounding the new school; it is solely to consult on support, or otherwise for the Trust to enter into a Funding Agreement with the Secretary of State for Education to run the James Marks Academy.


This consultation is in two parts:


  1. The temporary opening of the James Marks Academy, on Roman Fields existing site, in Hemel Hempstead, with a reduced number of pupils (20) for one academic year, until the brand new building in Welwyn is ready to occupy, in September 2024.

  2. The opening of the James Marks Academy (special free school) in its purpose built substantive new home in Welwyn, to 35 pupils in 2024, rising to 60 pupils when capacity has been reached, some two years later.


This is an important step in the journey of our small Trust. We are looking forward to hearing your view.


We are keen to ensure that we deliver a school that meets an identified need and serves its pupil and families well. The school is intended for those pupils between the ages of 11-18, with high anxiety and mental health needs, for whom a traditional SEMH school would be deemed inappropriate.


Please note that the online questionnaire is now closed


Background to the Consultation

In 2019 Herts county council wrote a proposal for a new free school, to meet the increasing demand for school places, for growing numbers of pupils with high anxiety, and social communication difficulties, whose needs meant they were not accessing school. The proposal to open a free school in Herts, for these pupils was approved by the DfE. A specification followed, which better identified the needs of the intended pupil cohort, for those parties interested in running the school. Roman Fields subsequently submitted a comprehensive bid, and after a rigorous process, approval was given to run the new school.

To enable us take up this challenge we became an Academy Trust in April 2021. The James Marks Academy Trust was therefore formed. Forest House Education centre (SLA) joined the Trust in September 2022.


The free school has been delayed for a plethora of reasons, and is now due to open in September 2024. As a result, the pupil demand which was already significant, is growing further still. We therefore intend to open the free school, the James Marks Academy on our existing site, Roman Fields in September 2023, before transferring to our brand new purpose built building when it is ready for occupation, in September 2024. The location for the new school is The commons, Welwyn Garden City, Herts AL7 4DD, which was a former HCC office site.


Please take the opportunity to browse our website which we hope will support you to make an informed judgement. For Quick access to more information click on these links:


Why is the Trust and the new academy named after James Marks?

Admission Guidance

Central Policies

School Policies

James Marks Academy Trust home page

The James Marks

Academy Trust

Contact Us

James Marks Academy Trust

Roman Fields, 11 Box Lane,

Hemel Hempstead,

Herts, HP3 0DF


01442 256915


Email Us