Lowestoft (population 56,500) is the major town in the North of Suffolk. It is divided by Lake Lothing and Oulton Broad into two parts. The north of the town, with its outlying villages, is served by two comprehensive 13-18 high schools, three 9-13 middle schools, ten primary schools and a special school. The buildings range from purpose-built and modern to Victorian and are located in both rural and urban communities. With some schools oversubscribed and others less popular in the educational market place, there is the potential for intense competition.