Primary school closed for rest of year

Gilded Hollins Community School
Gilded Hollins Community School

A PRIMARY school which has been closed due to a suspicious smell will not re-open until next year.

Gilded Hollins Community School, in Leigh, was forced to shut on September 11 after staff were feeling unwell after discovering a strange smell.

There is no serious health risk from potential exposure during the time children were in the school

Darran Nash

It has now been revealed that the smell is believed to have been caused by a chemical irritant.

An air quality survey of the school was carried out on October 20 to test for a number of chemicals and tests confirmed that formaldehyde levels were within the World Health Organisation’s safe limits, however further air samples have been sent for laboratory analysis which will take three weeks to come back.

Teachers and pupils were relocated to Lowton High School from Monday September 14 and headteacher Darran Nash has kept parents up to date on the school’s website and via letters. He reiterated that he will not allow pupils and staff back into the building unless 100 per cent sure that there are no health risks.

Mr Nash confirmed that due to building work and deep clean work, the school will remain closed until after the Christmas holidays

He said; “After initial testing, further work has been carried out which will provide definitive results in three weeks’ time, but provisional results have shown that the odour is likely to be a chemical irritant.

“With help from Public Health England experts we have been able to reassure parents that any risk from exposure to an irritant was removed as soon as the school was closed, therefore there is no on-going current health risk to children. And from provisional results we were also able to say there is no serious health risk from potential exposure during the time children were in the school.

“The closure of the school has been extended to the Christmas break to allow for work to tackle the problem and for air quality tests to be conducted confirming the issue has been resolved.

“We’d like to thank parents for their patience and we will keep them fully informed.”