The fire-ravaged site of a Leyland school will be back in use today (Monday), just as five boys suspected of burning it down surrender to bail at the town’s police station.
A month after the multi-million pound blaze, lessons are to begin again at the devastated St Mary’s Catholic Technology College in Royal Avenue.
Only around 60 per cent of the school’s 730 pupils will be allowed back on site to be taught in portable classrooms and buildings which escaped the flames.
The remaining 300 or so will continue to be bussed to temporary accommodation nine miles away in Preston - daily trips that are likely to continue for another three months.
The return is a major triumph for St Mary’s, where two-thirds of the campus was destroyed on the eve of a new school year.
County Coun Matthew Tomlinson, Lancashire’s cabinet member for children, young people and schools, said: “It’s great to know that so many pupils from St Mary’s will be back on site just a month after the fire.
“I know our teams at County Hall are pulling out all the stops to support the school as much as they can and a lot of work has already been done. “
Pupils returning to Leyland are from Years 7, 10 and 11.
Those remaining in a temporary home at the former City of Preston High School in Ribbleton Hall Drive, Preston are Years 8 and 9.
Staff say they hope all the children will be reunited at the Leyland site by early January once demolition of the damaged buildings is complete.
Five schoolboys aged between 11 and 15, arrested on the night of the fire on suspicion of arson, were due to report back to police today.
It is expected they will be re-bailed to a date when investigations have been completed.
- Video footage from neighbour Paula Burns.