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Building work delay at school forces some parents to miss work

By West Briton  |  Posted: September 06, 2012

  • Tregony School, where roof repairs are being carried out.

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PARENTS have had to stay home from work or fork out cash for childcare as a delay in building work forced Tregony CP School to stay closed this week.

Torrential rain over the summer holiday has been blamed for delaying the work on the roof and causing "considerable water damage" inside the school.

Construction company Midas is installing a new roof while upgrading the fire alarm and emergency lighting. No one from the company was available to comment.

Rain water was believed to have leaked into the building and ruined hundreds of tiles in the suspended ceiling and damaged carpets and furniture.

A letter to parents from head teacher Mark Weir said the damage needed urgent additional remedial works, further delaying the work on the roof.

This week rumours were circulating as to whether the work would be completed by Monday, for the planned reopening for 120-odd pupils who were due to return last Tuesday.

The school, Tregony Pre-School and Playgroup and the children's centre, all on the same site, remained closed for health and safety reasons.

One parent, who had to stay home from work to look after his children, said villagers were trying to help each other with childcare.

He said: "It's not on. The council wants stringing up because they have people in high places who oversee these jobs.

"They knew there were problems weeks ago but they only had an emergency meeting last Thursday – the children were supposed to go back on Tuesday. It's not good enough."

The roof replacement was described by Cornwall Council as a "substantial programme of works".

In a letter to parents and carers Mr Weir described the delay as "unavoidable".

It explained that he and the chairman of governors, in consultation with Cornwall Council and contractors, agreed there was "no alternative but to close the school as the Health and Safety (sic) of children and staff could not be ensured".

The Cornwall Council statement said: "Every effort is being made to ensure that the works are completed as quickly as possible."

Mr Weir's letter to parents and carers added: "Please accept my sincere apologies for the inconvenience this will no doubt cause you, especially where childcare arrangements are needed, it is not a decision that has been made lightly but it is vital that the health and safety of children is not compromised."

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