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Keep off the path! pupils forced to avoid route into class
Friday 16th September 2016 @ 14:39 by Nigel P.
Community Denton & Audenshaw News



A thick layer of sludge cover the paths leading to classes at Russell Scott School Denton

A thick layer of sludge covered the paths leading to classes at Russell Scott School Denton

Pupils at a newly refurbished Denton school, plagued by construction problems and safety issues, have been forced off their normal path into school by a layer of silt and building debris.

The children arriving for school on Wednesday morning found the pathways  leading into their classrooms covered in a layer of  grey mud, the colour of moon dust.

The lunar like scene emerged at the Russell Scott primary school following Tuesday night’s heavy downpours of rain.

It is believed that part of the problem is a field which has recently had top soil laid down which raised the height of the soil several inches higher than the school’s paths.

As the rain poured down, the soil, mixed with old building debris, blocked drains and formed a thick sticky film of silt  across all paths into school.

The 400 infant and junior aged children  had to be re-routed from their normal way into class by going through the reception and administration area of the school.

One parent Colin Prescott said: “The condition of the paths is a disgrace, but is any body surprised? This just adds to the long list of problems we have had since the school was handed back to us 18 months ago.

“It is clear to see what has happened here, in that after turning the original school field into a building site during the period of refurbishment, the contractors have now sought to return the playing field into its original state by covering it with load of top soil rather than turf.

“Consequently this film of mud is the result of the first downpour. It is not acceptable, the children have not had a proper playing field since the school was signed off 18 months ago, the playground that consists of hardstanding to the side of the school is completely inadequate for a school of 400 children.”

Another parent with two children currently attending the school, Ruth Carsberg, was also angry.

She said: “The field should not have been left unfinished by the contractors, if I had a house built and it did not meet building regulations Tameside Council would not sign it off, how come they saw fit to sign the school off ?”


russ scott

russ scott

Mrs Carsberg added: “This is certainly not the only problem, this is minor in comparison to other things that have happened since we took the school back.

“There have been at least five incidents of raw sewage coming through the pipes and the floor, which involved some children being sent home, so this latest episode was just waiting to happen.

“There have been numerous  instances of issues surrounding fire alarms and an issue of combustible material discarded in the loft space of the school by the contractors.

“The playing fields, which were once pristine, have temporary fencing around them which recently injured a child who caught themselves on a piece of metal that was protruding from the fence.”

A Tameside Council spokesperson said: “Over the summer the contractors, Carillion, completed many of the final works at the school including removing the temporary road surface and clearing and re-seeding the playing fields.

“There is always a period before the grass has taken where the ground will run off more quickly and standing water will be present.

“On the evening of 13 September there was unusually adverse weather where half a month’s rainfall fell in half an hour causing severe disruption all over the region.

“Unfortunately it also had local impacts such as at Russell Scott School. Clearly this event was impossible to predict in terms of its severity and intensity but the school acted quickly to ensure minimum disruption to pupils.”