School is enjoying big bonus

Abbeyfield Forest School'Ross Pearson tells woodland tales to the pupils.
Abbeyfield Forest School'Ross Pearson tells woodland tales to the pupils.
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An educational outdoor area for children in Morpeth has a new big attraction thanks to a great fund-raising response following an act of vandalism.

The bird hide at Abbeyfields Forest School, situated within the grounds of the first school in Kirkhill, was smashed up with a hefty log at Easter.

Fund-raising from parents and the Friends of Abbeyfields School and donations from the wider community meant staff were able to replace it with a bigger hide and the total was so big that they also purchased a 24ft teepee.

It features a central fire to cook tasty treats and keep the children warm and it is big enough to accommodate a class of 30. In addition, pupils from other schools are using the teepee.

Abbeyfields Forest School leader Ross Pearson said: “It has added a new dimension to the children’s learning and it has sparked their imagination. It also allows us to carry out sessions in strong winds.

“There was such a buzz in school about the teepee and pupils and staff weren’t disappointed when it arrived.

“The previous bird hide was really quaint, but the new custom-made hide is bigger, we can do more with it and it is more secure – for example the windows have shutters.

“We’ve very grateful to all those who chipped in with the fund-raising and we were amazed by the response from the wider community. This has shown the pupils that something great can come out of a bad situation.”