Fire-hit Dukinfield school rising from the ashes
Thursday 30th March 2017 @ 09:31 by Adam Higgins
Dukinfield News

Work to rebuild fire-hit Cromwell High School is underway with plans for it to reopen in September.

Pupils and staff at the Dukinfield school have been in temporary accommodation at Inspire Academy in Ashton since the fire in April 2016, which caused extensive structural damage and destroyed two classrooms.

The site has since been cleared and now work is underway to redevelop it, with approximately a third of the school being rebuilt and internal repairs and refurbishment – including a new internal layout and covered walkway – planned.

Head teacher Andrew Foord said the school is looking forward to making a fresh start once the new academic year begins in September.

He told the Reporter: “It’s great news to see the work starting and going full steam ahead. We’re getting everything ready for the summer and then we should be back in for September.

“Although we’ve been very lucky with the accommodation we’ve had at Inspire Academy – they’ve been fantastic to us – there’s no place like home and it will be lovely to get back here in September.

“Of course, the pupils and staff are really looking forward to it and we would just like to thank everybody who has helped us, including Tameside Council.

“Even though this has been a challenging experience, as Cllr Travis said, it has brought us all together. The community have been absolutely fantastic. It’s lovely to have a Tameside company involved in the re-build because it really is the spirit of Tameside to get us back up and running in September and we’re really looking forward to it.”

Cllr Lynn Travis, Tameside Council’s Executive Member for Lifelong Learning, said: “I’m delighted and the council are delighted to see such progress and to know that it is going to be done to such a high standard.

“It was very disappointing when the fire happened but Cromwell and Inspire have worked so hard to make things work out right for the kids.

“It’s not been such a down story because I think an awful lot of togetherness has come out through this. The school and the young people who go there have gained something but I think they will gain a lot more when they come back into their own purpose-built accommodation.”

Local firm Jamieson Contracting, which is based in Hyde, is contracted to do the work on the new-look Cromwell High School.

Andy Jamieson, Project Director, said: “It’s a fantastic project to be involved in. It is fast-paced to say the least; we’ve got to have it open for mid-August. We’re hoping for a few months of good weather.

“It’s fantastic to be involved with Tameside Council and Inspired Spaces and be involved in this kind of project; especially being a Tameside company, it’s good to give back to our local community.

“At the moment we’re carrying out more demolition and enabling works so we can get the structure built back up again.

“As soon as the structure is back up we can get the roof on, make it water tight and start the internal fit out, making it right for the kids in August!”


Main picture:

Rebuilding: Head teacher Andrew Foord and Cllr Lynn Travis with Danny Carr, Chelsea Trimble and Richard Hutchins from Jamieson Contracting outside the Cromwell High School site.