PLANS to move a controversial Canvey school away from residents have not materialised, two months after they were first mooted.

Essex County Council admitted no potential replacement sites had been identified and the Continuum School, in Vanderwalt Avenue, was unlikely to change location before September.

Meanwhile, residents and shopkeepers living near the school, which looks after children with behavioural problems, have reported a reduction in antisocial behaviour.

Yet, many are still keen to see the school closed down and moved somewhere less residential.

Alison McCleave, 43, who lives opposite the school, said: “Things have definitely got quieter since the school first moved into the area, but I’m disappointed the council isn’t making any progress on the move.”

During the first few weeks after the school opened last September, residents reported pupils running riot in the surrounding area, throwing stones at cars and passers by, using abusive language, climbing on the school roof and running across parked vans.

Mike Cambridge, who works at nearby garage, Essex Coachworks, in the High Street, said: “I haven’t seen any problems since before Christmas.

“But when it gets warmer and the children start going outside again, I expect it will be back to square one.”

The school angered residents again in January when it put up a fence without planning permission.

Mrs McCleave added: “None of us were happy about that. There were workmen at the school over half-term as well. You do wonder what on earth they are doing spending money when they’re looking to move.”

Continuum has since applied for retrospective planning permission for the fence. Bob Hall, managing director of Continuum, which runs 11 similar schools elsewhere in the country, has been looking for a new site but said his search had so far been unsuccessful.

He said: “If we can find a more suitable location we’ll move the school. We have looked at some sites, but none have been suitable.”

Mr Hall admitted it was unlikely the school would move before the start of the next school year in September.

Essex County Council leader Peter Martin said: “The council does view this location as temporary and is continually looking for alternative sites in which to meet the special educational needs of pupils in south Essex.”