Construction work has started on site to rebuild two Calderdale schools at a cost of £8.6m and create 'state-of-the-art' facilities for children.
‘Turf cutting’ ceremonies took place at the sites for the new Copley Primary School and Moorside Community Primary School in Ovenden.
Students dug the first holes in the ground for the foundations and they were joined by Councillor Megan Swift, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services, and representatives from the Council, the two schools and the contractor, Wates Construction.
Coun Swift said: “It’s fantastic that building work is now underway at Copley and Moorside Schools. We’re investing in brand new buildings for the schools to help provide the best possible learning experience for local young people. They will benefit from top-class facilities in modern settings.”
It is expected that the new schools will be completed in time for the new term in September 2018.
Nan Oldfield, Headteacher of Copley Primary School, said: “This is a very exciting time for the pupils and staff at Copley School as we look forward to the completion of the new school this summer.
"Moving into the new building will be the start of a new chapter for the school. The children will have access to some amazing facilities, giving them the well needed space to learn and thrive during their time with us.”
Dani Worthington, Headteacher of Moorside Community Primary School, added: “The children, staff and governors are absolutely delighted that the work on our new building has begun.
"The school council already have lots of exciting ideas about creating a fresh start for Moorside Community Primary School whilst remembering the history of the school.
"We want to see Moorside at the heart of the community and our new facilities will offer the best facilities for our pupils that will also be of benefit to the local community.”
The Council has said both schools are old and in such a poor condition that rebuilding them is a better solution than continuing to carry out costly maintenance and repairs.
Paul Dodsworth, Business Unit Director, Wates Construction North East and Yorkshire, said: “We’re very happy to be working with Calderdale Council on the redevelopment of these two schools, and this event was a fantastic opportunity to celebrate work getting underway.
“We have extensive experience in redeveloping schools so they meet modern requirements, and our team is looking forward to getting to know staff and students at Copley and Moorside as we upgrade the facilities to the standards they deserve.”