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St Edward’s School goes back to its roots

Presentation

As it marks its 100th anniversary with a series of celebrations, St Edward’s School went back to where it all began with a trip to its original schoolhouse.

Headteacher Patrick Ward took a group of Year 4 pupils to visit the old building, which is now home to St Catherine’s Day Service run by Father Hudson’s Care. The trip was organised by Amanda Ritson, Administrator at St Catherine’s Day Service, whose son attends St Edward’s School, when she heard about the school’s special anniversary. The students were given a tour by Day Service manager, Karen McPherson, with Mr Ward telling both the children and the Day Service staff about what the place was like when it was a school.

The old staffroom is now a hydrotherapy pool room, with fax machines and photocopiers being replaced by a therapeutic pool that offers relaxation and therapy to the men and women who use the centre. Two classrooms have been knocked into one room which houses a dining area and the former reception class is now a common room where clients take part in a range of activities from dance and exercise, to making homemade bath bombs.

As they toured the building, Mr Ward shared stories from his time as a teacher there. Like the time he opened the building one morning to find an owl had flown down the chimney and was flying around the hall. After chasing it around with a big sheet, he and the caretaker managed to get it outside. Karen McPherson told him the troublesome chimney was still there, in her office, and they too had found a bird in the building one day.

As they continued their tour, Mr Ward remembered that on the day the school moved from the premises, they had a football match against another local school. St Edward’s won five-one – a fitting victory for their last day. And he spoke about the history of the school, explaining that it opened in 1917 in the midst of the First World War. Fr George Hudson, who founded Father Hudson’s Care and opened the school, decided that they couldn’t wait until the end of the war – the children needed educating.

After exploring the building and seeing how it is used now, the group gathered for refreshments and biscuits while Margot Scotford, School and Parish Engagement Officer covering Warwickshire, presented a special gift to Mr Ward. Matt Betts, the Site Manager at Father Hudson’s Care, had found original drawings of the old school building and had them specially framed. Mr Ward said they were lovely and he would hang them proudly in the current school building.

Karen thanked them for coming and invited the school to come along to the Day Service’s Christmas play in December. But while the schoolchildren enjoyed their trip, when asked if they would prefer to have their classes there or in their modern building on Packington Lane, the response was a resounding shout of “Modern!”

St Edward's visit St Catherine's

Find out more about St Edward’s RC Primary School on their website: www.stedwardsrcprimary.co.uk

To learn more about St Catherine’s Day Service, visit their page on this website

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