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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 August 2007, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
Flood schools to re-open on time
Floods leave classrooms in a mess
Schools have lots of clearing up to do before term starts
Gloucestershire schools will re-open in time for the start of the autumn term despite flood damage totalling 1.5m.

The county saw some of the heaviest flooding in living memory in July, but only a handful of schools were damaged.

Temporary classrooms are to be installed at the worst affected school at Moreton in Marsh, where repairs could continue until next Easter.

But elsewhere lessons will continue as normal with little or no disruption.

Every single book in every single classroom is pretty much gone
Neil Sullivan, chair of governors, St David's primary school

Flood water reached a depth of 1.25m (4ft) at St David's primary school at Moreton in Marsh, leaving the largely single-storey premises with no power, no usable books and a layer of mould on the walls.

It took the brunt of the damage following last month's floods, but since then school governors and Gloucestershire county council staff have worked round-the-clock to ensure it is "business as normal" when the new term starts in September.

Sixteen temporary classrooms are being installed in the grounds of the school, which will be used by its 300 pupils until at least next February half term and probably until Easter, while repairs are carried out.

Peeling plaster

"Everything is damaged," said Neil Sullivan, chair of the primary school's governing body.

"Every single book in every single classroom is pretty much gone.

"The plaster is coming off the walls and the ceilings have all bowed because it has been so damp."

But they are staying positive about the start of term and a letter has been sent out to parents to reassure them that the school will re-open on time.

The repair bill at St David's is expected to top 1m.

Other schools affected in the county include Robinswood primary in Gloucester, and Pittville, Cleeve and Swindon Village schools in Cheltenham.

Councillor Jackie Hall, lead cabinet member for Children's Services, said: "Of the county's 304 schools, we have identified 35 with damage of some kind, most of it minor.

"They will all open in time for the start of the new term.

"Although any damage is regrettable, we feel that in the circumstances, we have been very lucky.

"Work will continue throughout the school holidays to ensure that affected schools, youth centres and other buildings are repaired although there may be some disruption to services."




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