An internationally renowned school for children with autism has opened a new centre in Shepherds Bush for young adults.
The new Queensmill centre in Goldhawk Road will prepare 19 to 25-year-olds with autism to lead independent lives after Hammersmith & Fulham Council funded the £188,000 build.
At the official opening on 9 February, Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of H&F Council, thanked staff for their work transforming the lives of young people.
“When I meet people doing the work you do, I always feel humbled to think that you have dedicated your lives to that,” he said.
“I get the honour of saying thank you, saying that your work is recognised and best of all, your work is making a fundamental difference to young people."
Queensmill’s main site in Askham Road, Shepherds Bush, was opened in May 2015 after H&F Council funded the construction. It enabled the school to move from its temporary site in Fulham.
Queensmill also runs three units in local mainstream schools, in Fulham Primary School, Fulham College Boys’ School and Fulham Cross Girls’ School.
Queensmill’s new centre includes classrooms, a sensory space which helps autistic people learn how to interact with the world around them, a gym and a training kitchen.
It is based at the same site as Options Day Service in Goldhawk Road, Shepherds Bush, which helps adults with learning difficulties live independently.
As part of their education, students can learn about finding work, staying healthy and getting involved in the community.
“We’re hugely grateful to H&F Council for helping us establish our new unit,” said headteacher Freddie Adu.
“Queensmill students can now make the often daunting and challenging transition into adulthood in an environment that they understand, that meets their needs and inspires them to achieve their best.
“This collaboration with H&F Council will bring together children’s and adult services in a manner that has not existed before. This is what makes this project so exciting.”