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SCHOOL REPAIRS: Part of £2.5m repairs to be diverted due to flood damage

SCHOOL REPAIRS: Part of £2.5m repairs to be diverted due to flood damage

Image: LDRS

PART of a £2.5m repairs grant is set to be diverted to address recent flood damage at two Flintshire schools.

Queensferry Primary School has been closed since Monday (May 17, 2021) after torrential rain caused flooding in several areas of the building.

In a letter to parents, headteacher Cathryn Lloyd said she was confident the school would be able to re-open on Thursday after health and safety checks are carried out.

It was revealed at a meeting of Flintshire Council’s cabinet this morning that money to fix the damage will be allocated from a seven-figure sum given by the Welsh Government for school maintenance earlier this year .

It will also be used to replace the roof at Canolfan Enfys, a school in Mold for young children with additional learning needs, which suffered damage last week and resulted in pupils having to be relocated.

Claire Homard, the local authority’s chief officer for education and youth, said: “Unfortunately, over the last couple of weeks when we’ve had really inclement weather, we’ve had a couple of significant issues

“Last week we had a roof failure at Canolfan Enfys, which is our early years assessment unit, that has caused significant damage and the roof will need to be replaced.

“The ingress of water has had an impact in the building as well, to the extent that we are having to temporarily relocate the pupils from Canolfan Enfys and we’ve been able to bring one of our youth club buildings in Sealand into use.

“Then there was the sheer amount of surface water that has egressed into parts of Queensferry Primary School, Troi Rownd, the pupil referral unit that’s on the campus and Hwb Cyfle.

“Queensferry Primary School is temporarily closed, but my understanding is they’re hoping to reopen tomorrow so we could do with some sunshine now and a little bit less rain.”

A discussion on how the maintenance grant was to be allocated was already tabled for the meeting of senior councillors before the bad weather occurred.

It will result in two lots of work being carried out at Castell Alun High School in Hope at a cost of £475,000, including the replacement of an all-weather sports pitch which is currently out of use.

The school’s music area will also be refurbished after planned indoor renovations were delayed by the need for roof repairs.

The council’s chief executive, Colin Everett, said most of the original proposed schemes would still be delivered, despite the requirement to address flood damage elsewhere.

He said: “We’ve been through this in really good detail and with the exception of Castell Alun, all school works are based on health and safety and wind and weather proofing needed.

“The Castell Alun recommendation makes absolute sense and just to confirm that all of the works are required for the curriculum.

“We will have to divert some funds from this programme to deal with the storm damage as that becomes an essential piece of work.

“But that shouldn’t detract us from delivering all or most of this programme as intended.”

Cabinet members approved the schedule of works outlined in a report by Ms Homard.

The government funding provided to support it is in addition to the council’s own annual repair budget, which is worth approximately £1.8m.

Words: Liam Randall, Local Democracy Reporter

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