During the first week of September, you’d be hard pushed to find a school pupil glad to see the back of their summer holiday and looking forward to their impending return to the classroom.
But for children at Newlands Primary School it may have been a little different this week, as they returned to find a brand new state-of-the-art complex waiting for them, replacing the worn out decades-old classrooms that they used to endure.
The redevelopment was given the go-ahead in 2012 after a lengthy campaign by the school’s governors and the new building has been gradually constructed over the last 11 months on the old school field.
Adrian Stygall, the school’s headteacher, said: “The new building’s absolutely wonderful. There were a few ‘wows’ from the children and we’ve heard positive comments from the parents too which is always nice.
“Some of the old classrooms were over 40 years old and were beginning to look a bit tired but the new layout makes it feel like lots of small schools together, so there’s still a friendly environment.”
The new facility at the school, in Wide Lane, was build by David Price of Wates Construction and has a mix of classrooms as well as a community hub and two large halls which will be available for use to the wider community.
The build has also expanded pupil numbers at the school to 700 for children aged three to 11 years, while staff levels will increase from 60 to 90 over the course of the next six years. Thirty-nine nursery places will also be available.