Dozens of teenage school pupils were left devastated after their end-of-year prom plans were thrown into chaos by sports chiefs.
Teenagers studying for their GCSEs at Standish High School learnt that their leaving extravaganza had been cut from the DW Stadium’s hospitality rota after a rugby league fixture clashed with their once-in-a-lifetime event.
A letter was sent out by headteacher Andrew Pollard this week breaking the news to teens and their parents, some of whom have already booked holidays around the original date.
The event has now been pushed back to July 6, and will now take place at Kilhey Court in Standish, a popular venue for weddings and celebratory gatherings.
Mr Pollard told parents: “You will appreciate that it is the nature of the event that bookings have to be made well in advance. The booking at the DW Stadium was made whilst your son or daughter was in Year 10.
“We have booked the DW Stadium for successive years and have enjoyed very many successful and memorable events there. We were looking to continue that partnership and made our booking last year for this year’s event.”
The dismayed head has explained that on June 28, the date of the prom, Wigan Warriors are now set to play a home game. The match against Leeds Rhinos will take place on a Thursday evening, a slot often favoured by Sky for broadcast on their sports channels.
Events staff at the stadium have offered the school another room for the same night, but unfortunately the capacity was too small to cater for all the students.
“It leaves school in an impossible situation and facing a very difficult decision,” added Mr Pollard. “We very much hope that this change does not inconvenience you in any way. It is a change that we would not have chosen to make and one which has been forced upon us. I do hope you understand that we have been left in a very difficult situation by the unforeseen withdrawal of availability of our chosen date and venue.”
As the school states in the letter, the stadium is within its rights to cancel any events, as written in the small print of each contract.
However, the move has angered some parents who have already booked their family holiday over the new date over July 6 in an attempt to avoid the original date.
One Standish High School student’s mother, said: “I just think this is so unfair. They have held a prom at the DW Stadium for as long as I can remember.
“A lot of people at the school have already booked their holidays. The kids, rightfully, are so upset. They can’t go to prom with all of their friends now. A lot of people have already put a deposit down. I am going to have to see if I can change our holiday to Lanzarote now.
“My daughter was really upset. She won’t be able to go with her best friend now.”