School campaign hopes for new beginnings in 2015

Ravenscliffe High School celebrate the funding of their new sixth form and community centre at Spring Hall, Halifax. Pupils Ross Marsden, Katie Lightfoot and Baktash Sulemani with Gareth Hunter.

Ravenscliffe High School celebrate the funding of their new sixth form and community centre at Spring Hall, Halifax. Pupils Ross Marsden, Katie Lightfoot and Baktash Sulemani with Gareth Hunter.

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The team at Calderdale’s special high school is taking a break after a manic term of fundraising for a new sixth form and community centre.

Ravenscliffe High School, Halifax, staff and students have wrapped up for Christmas after months of hard work in a community drive to build a new £2.5m centre at nearby Spring Hall athletics track, Huddersfield Road.

James and Bethany dancing at the lloyds Banking Group Carol Concert at Halifax Minster

James and Bethany dancing at the lloyds Banking Group Carol Concert at Halifax Minster

The school was given the green light on the bricks and mortar of the project at the end of the last academic year when Calderdale Council announced at the schools special Tour de France Victoria Theatre, Halifax, performance that it would pledge an extra £100,000 to its £1.5m allocated funding to the Ravenscliffe@SpringHall project.

Construction will begin in spring 2015, with a 40 week build programme. It is hoped the centre will be open for use in summer 2016.

Now, the campaign is in its second stage and must raise £500,000 to specially equip the centre.

The school has raised the money needed through independent funding, central government funding, grants, corporate sponsorship, community fundraising events and donations from the Calderdale community.

Ravenscliffe students who took part in the Big Bike Bash joined by other cyclists including Bryn Bevan and Nick Horsfall who cycled 24 hours for the Ravenscliffe@SpringHall campaign

Ravenscliffe students who took part in the Big Bike Bash joined by other cyclists including Bryn Bevan and Nick Horsfall who cycled 24 hours for the Ravenscliffe@SpringHall campaign

Head teacher Martin Moorman said: “Reaching the £2.4m milestone means the project now moves on to a design, planning and tendering stage managed by the local authority.

We still need to generate an estimated half a million to equip the centre to the necessary standards. We’ve made a great start, with community events raising over £25k since September alone and we’re at an advanced stage with a number of large grant making organisations, and remain hopeful that these will be successful.”

The school’s Big Bike Bash, featured in the Courier, with pupils, staff and friends of Ravenscliffe cycling 42-miles in the Tour de France route of Calderdale - pedalled in a staggering £9,000 towards the campaign.

Thousands of local school children ‘dressed down for £1’ and raised £15,000 for the cause.

Ravenscliffe students Caitlin Year 10 and Nathan Year 7 feature with Matthew Grimes Head of Music at Ryburnand the choir

Ravenscliffe students Caitlin Year 10 and Nathan Year 7 feature with Matthew Grimes Head of Music at Ryburnand the choir

School choristers from Ryburn Valley High, Sowerby Bridge, hit the right note when they sang to Ravenscliffe students and came with a Christmas bonus of a £400 donation to the Ravenscliffe@SpringHall campaign.

Ryburn Valley High head teacher David Lord, said: “Our school supports the Ravenscliffe@SpringHall project. The pupils who visited the school said they had a fantastic time.”

The school plays a key role in its community and has much individual and corporate support for work it achieves. In a recent community event, Ravenscliffe student James took to the stage in the school’s supporters Lloyds Banking Group Carol Concert at Halifax Minster. The company’s Make A Difference Team created some festive cheer in school when they decorated the school’s hall.

Community support of the school’s ‘buy-a-brick for Ravenscliffe’ has generated an impressive £40,000.

To buy a brick for Ravenscliffe see the school’s website.

“We are so greatful to our community and their overwhelming support to help make the Spring Hall dream a reality.

Martin said: “We hope each and every member of our community has a restful, enjoyable and safe festive period. We’ll return in January reenergised and ready to go again, and hopefully you will continue to join us on our journey. We have lots of things planned, including a “Spring Walk for Spring Hall” in conjunction with the Halifax Courier and Aspire Education.

“The support received has been truly humbling - thank you and happy new year from all of us at Ravenscliffe.”

Follow the Courier in the New Year to find out more about the community Spring Walk for Spring Hall.