In May last year teachers, pupils, parents friends of St Nicolas Primary School in Locks Hill, Portslade were deeply saddened to lose a greatly loved member of staff, Joanna Thompson, to cancer. The school did an amazing job of providing care and counselling for everyone who needed it and this continued into a thoughtful act of remembrance in planting some new trees in the school grounds.
Combined with this and the increasing number of pupils since St Nicolas has become a full primary school (formerly just Juniors) the whole site has been extended and re-modelled to improve the indoor and outdoor environment.
Retiring Deputy Head, Christine Connolly, was tasked with setting up a working group to raise funds, design, procure and implement a scheme to improve the outdoor environment to the north of the school buildings and this is where Shoreham Port were able to help.
Through Shoreham’s Port Engineer, Brian Rousell, who has two children at the school, an area was identified where an outdoor classroom could be constructed to bring into use a previously overgrown area of ground.
By using spare materials from the Port, together with the Engineering team’s expertise in tree felling, groundworks and carpentry, as well as some willing volunteer parents, it was possible to make the school’s budget stretch to a spectacular elevated decking area that will provide a naturally shaded outdoor study area with far-reaching views across the town and the Port itself.
Christine Connolly, Deputy Head/SENCo at St Nicolas CE Primary School commented “We now have a fantastic outdoor teaching space which we could never have achieved without the ideas, plans and hard work of the team from Shoreham Port. Brian Rousell has given St Nicolas Primary School so much time and has made this project happen! The children can't wait to get out there for some fantastic science lessons.”
Brian added “It’s great to be able to donate skills and time from the dedicated team here at the Port. Ryan Baker and Chris Lawrence worked non-stop during their weekends to make this happen. The school has made a real effort to improve their environment and we’re happy to support that where we can, to the benefit of so many of our local residents.”