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Last Updated: Friday, 25 March, 2005, 18:04 GMT
Peak protest over closure schools
Protesters at the top of Mynyddcerrig mountain
Protesters at the top of Mynyddcerrig mountain
Around 60 pupils and parents from three closure-threatened schools in Carmarthenshire have held a protest march to one of the county's highest peaks.

The families from Mynyddcerrig, Bancffosfelen and Llangyndeyrn schools walked to the top of nearby Mynyddcerrig mountain on Friday.

The local authority intends closing up to 32 schools as part of a shake-up of education in the county.

It says it will invest 110m to replace

them with better facilities.

Campaigners from the three schools say although they have not officially been told they will close, they understand their children will be sent to school at Pontyberem as it has spare capacity.

They also were raising sponsorship money to be used in possible legal action against the closures.

Matt Dicks, who has one child at Mynyddcerrig with another joining after the Easter holidays, said the closure of the school would be disaster.

"Our children will be bussed to the other side of the (Gwendraeth) Valley," he said.

Mother-of-one Suzanne Morgan added: "Our school is at the centre of village life, it is only through the school that some parents have met.

Spare places

"We are doing this as a show of strength and it is just the first stage in what we are prepared to make a long fight."

Another campaigner on Friday's march, Jackie Griffith, said the whole community was behind her village school.

"It does lots of fundraising efforts throughout the year. There'd be nothing left in the village, nothing at all.

Carmarthenshire Council said that many school buildings in the county were not up to standard, there were too many spare places and a major reorganisation was the only way forward.

It said up to 32 schools would close and 18 area schools would take their place.

Cabinet member for education, Mary Thomas, said: "Huge benefits have already been seen in pilot areas and there will be full and detailed consultation on any scheme that involves organisational change."

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