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school’s new play area proves to be ship-shape

ByDave Stopher

Oct 5, 2016

Nursery and reception pupils at St Gregory’s Catholic Academy, Stockton-on-Tees, got on board with their new pirate boat climbing frame which forms the centrepiece of a magnificent new £165,000 outdoor play area.

Built by Vest Construction, of Bishop Auckland, with funding from The Carmel Education Trust, the new outdoor play and learning environment includes a theatre, a reading corner, a covered sandpit, a bank-top slide, a crawl through tunnel and a wooden castle.

The timber construction which took four months to complete is built on specialised safety rubber flooring with designated coloured areas that create a mini cycle track and splash area.

The School’s Business Manager Angela Walker said: “Our new outdoor investment has turned an ordinary playground into a wonderfully innovative and creative play area that provides a host of physical and development opportunities for our youngest children.

“In effect we now have an additional outdoor classroom, with areas for play and learning, which will continue to be resourced throughout the school year.

“The children absolutely love it and we are extremely grateful to the chair and governors of The Carmel Education Trust for investing in something that will be so beneficial for all of our early years pupils in many years to come.”

Nursery pupil Lola Bradley, four, added: “I like the castle the best because I can pretend that I am a fairy princess but I also like playing in the sandpit and going down the slide.”