Friendship benches unveiled at Stone Lodge Academy in memory of former deputy head

L-R Headteacher Rick Tracey and Peter Gardiner with pupils from the school and Samantha Barber chair

L-R Headteacher Rick Tracey and Peter Gardiner with pupils from the school and Samantha Barber chair of the school's PTA Picture: MEG APPLEFORD - Credit: Archant

New benches have been installed at an Ipswich school to help children find friends to play with.

The new friendship bench at Stone Lodge Academy Picture: MEG APPLEFORD

The new friendship bench at Stone Lodge Academy Picture: MEG APPLEFORD - Credit: Archant

The friendship benches at Stone Lodge Academy were unveiled last week for pupils to use if they are feeling lonely.

By sitting on the friendship bench other the idea is that other children will invite the student to come and play with them. The benches were made by local charity Genesis and were unveiled by Suffolk County Councillor Peter Gardiner.

Money for the new benches came from a donation from Mr Gardiner’s locality budget.

The new benches were also part of a commemoration in memory of Jane Flowitt-Hill, a former deputy headteacher at the school, who died unexpectedly last year after retiring.

The new bench was dedicated by Peter Gardiner Picture: MEG APPLEFORD

The new bench was dedicated by Peter Gardiner Picture: MEG APPLEFORD - Credit: Archant


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The school said that the benches would be a perfect fit for her memory as she was “a constant presence at social times and really promoted good friendship within the school.”

Headteacher Rick Tracey said: “We hope the pupils will enjoy these benches for years to come.”

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