Closed school set to re-open next week

Gilded Hollins Community School
Gilded Hollins Community School

PUPILS who have been relocated to another school following safety concerns over a suspicious smell are expected to return next Monday.

Children at Gilded Hollins Community School, in Leigh, have been taking lessons in converted classrooms at nearby Lowton CE High School after a strong odour was discovered more than two weeks ago.

Everyone at Lowton CE High School continues to be incredible hosts. Nothing is too much trouble and they have gone out of their way to make us welcome and help us maintain the quality education to which our children are accustomed

Darran Mash

The school has been closed since Monday September 14 whilst tests were being carried out and results have come back to show the air is back to normal levels.

But the building is still not fit for purpose as the air conditioning unit needs removing and there will be a deep clean.

The primary school’s headteacher, Darran Nash, has been keeping parents up to date on its website.

He said during in a meeting with various parties, it was agreed that pupils shall remain at Lowton High School for a further week.

He added: “All the compounds for which we already have results have returned within acceptable levels.

“In the meantime, a range of measures have been put in place to provide ongoing updates on the environment within our building.

“Among these are air composition sensors that will remain in school indefinitely.

“This week we intend to remove an old Air Handling Unit in the school ceiling void and the ducting connected to it.

“On Thursday and Friday a deep clean team will enter school in preparation for, it is envisaged, a return on Monday October 5.

“Obviously, we hope to be back at Gilded Hollins as soon as possible and we are doing all in our power to ensure the building is safe for your children, and staff, to return.

“In the meantime, Julian Pollard and everyone at Lowton CE High School continue to be incredible hosts. “Nothing is too much trouble and they have gone out of their way to make us welcome and help us maintain the quality education to which our children are accustomed. We can’t thank them enough for everything they have done for us and our children.”

The primary school pupils have been adjusting to life at Lowton High School, with staff at both schools working hard to accommodate the changes. A separate block has been allocated to the children, with their own toilet facilities and a classroom for each year group.

Lowton Junior and Infant School has agreed to share their kitchen facilities, with Gilded Hollins staff cooking meals at their site and transporting them across to Lowton CE High School.

This is not the first time Gilded Hollins Community School has experienced a crisis, as last summer arsonists had set fire to a summer outhouse. It was also forced to close for a few weeks in 2009 following a blaze in the roof.