Half term heroes – school playground battered by Storm Dennis fixed free of charge
PUBLISHED: 19:00 25 February 2020
A head teacher has praised the community for pulling together to repair its playground after Storm Dennis tore it down.
Ranelagh Primary School in Paul's Road was hit badly on Saturday February 15 when the sturdy wooden 'relaxation' area was ripped from the concrete by high winds.
However, during half term the school community and a local firm pulled together and by the time children returned to school on Monday February 24 the playground was as good as new.
Head teacher Nicola Ling was overjoyed by the help they received and admitted she thought they would have to close off the playground during the first week back.
She said: "Despite Storm Dennis, our Parents Teachers and Association worked tirelessly on the first weekend of the holidays to remove the old structure and received tremendous support from both GoodGym Ipswich who helped clear the area and workers at the Household Waste Recycling Centre on Portman Road - who all stopped to help our families unload and dispose of the rubbish.
"However, removing the structure left us with a new problem and it was looking like we may need to close this area of the playground to pupils."
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Then Mrs Ling contacted the heroes of the hour Taydal Surfacing, who despite being aware that the school had no budget to deal with the damage, agreed to fix the playground free of charge.
Tom Page works for the firm and said that they helped many Ipswich residents in the storm aftermath.
He said: "We had a spare hour or two in the morning that day and went along.
"The flower beds had all been blown over and left a lot of trip hazards, but the volunteers had all cleaned up the area for us so we just went in and laid some tarmac down to fill in the gaps.
"They're a school which is local to us and we wanted to help out in any way we could."
Mrs Ling expressed her gratitude saying: "It was truly heart-warming to see the community pull together to support the school in its time of need.
"I cannot thank everyone who helped enough; it was an amazing team effort with so many people going above and beyond."