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School breakout zone blooms with housing provider’s donation

A primary school in York is celebrating the completion of a new breakout area thanks to a donation from local housing provider Stonewater.
Headteacher, Mr Reeves (L), joins pupils and representatives from Stonewater in the new breakout area

The new area was unveiled when children and staff from Tockwith CofE Primary Academy were joined by Stonewater’s development representatives involved in a new housing scheme close by.

The need for a peaceful area for the children to take time out of their busy school day was identified by the school council after Stonewater approached them to see if it could support with a project as part of its community outreach work.

Previously used for allotments, the area, which was identified as being a potential space due to its size and location, was run down, overgrown and needed investment, which was where Stonewater’s donation was used.

The renovated area was part-funded by Stonewater, who are delivering 19 two and three-bedroom homes for affordable rent at Westfield Road in the village, along with donations from parents and school funds.

Children and staff worked to tidy up the area, removing weeds and adding new bulbs and plants. The new outdoor breakout space also features benches for the children,
aged four to eleven, to relax away from ball games and more active play. It will also be home to a new multi-use shed that will be used for reading, quiet games and the school’s buddy scheme where children from Year 6 spend time with Reception pupils.

Headteacher Justin Reeve said of the project: “The school community is really appreciative of Stonewater’s support and donation for the outdoor breakout area. This area was unfortunately neglected when COVID forced us out of the school, and to have it back to a useful, visually appealing and relaxing area will really make a huge difference.

“As we welcome new families to the village from Stonewater’s new development, the school will grow and the need for a space to relax, read and have quiet time with friends becomes even more important. We can’t thank everyone enough for their help.”

Linda Horner, Development Manager for Stonewater, added: “Wherever we build or manage homes, we try to make a difference to the community in that area, whether through public art on site, providing green spaces or projects such as this one with the local primary school.

“It’s been wonderful to work with the staff and children to help provide a much needed quiet area and we hope that current and future pupils enjoy it for many years to come.”

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