School cuts turf

A turf-cutting ceremony marks the "rebirth" of Pontefract's Carleton High School, which was destroyed in a fire in 2008.L-R Ross Parkinson and Roberta Cuttle

A turf-cutting ceremony marks the "rebirth" of Pontefract's Carleton High School, which was destroyed in a fire in 2008.L-R Ross Parkinson and Roberta Cuttle

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ARSON-HIT Carleton Community High School will rise from the ashes as a £10.7m rebuilding project begins – more than two years after it was decimated in a raging blaze.

Pupils and staff at the Green Lane school gathered for a turf-cutting ceremony on Monday to mark the start of the long-awaited project to replace buildings lost as flames ripped through the school in October 2008.

Students also planted a time capsule containing a DVD about the school, a school newsletter, school badge and tie, a copy of the Express, a 2012 Olympic commemorative coin and pictures of the royal wedding.

Headteacher Rob Foreman said: “It’s a very exciting time and we’re thrilled to see the building start to take shape.

“It has taken some time to get to this point, but it means we’ve been able to create a facility which meets the needs of the community and I’m confident the new building will transform education in Pontefract for years to come.”

Metal frames arrived at the site on Monday, where work to dig the foundations has already been completed. Last week year ten pupils were taken on the tour of the site by Matthew Garnett, project manager, who told them how the foundations were positioned using laser technology and explained why a new type of building material called hempcrete had been chosen instead of traditional materials.

Mr Foreman said: “The children have been getting as involved as possible.

“Every Wednesday different groups of children will be taken onto the construction site to see the work as it happens. BAM Construction, which is working on the site, has also offered apprenticeships to former pupils at the school.”

It is hoped that work will be finished by the time students return to school after the summer holiday in September 2012.

Visit www.carletonhigh.com to see updates as building work continues.