Our school green is first of its kind

The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,
The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,

IT WOULD take some lawn mower to look after the latest feature to be fitted at one of Doncaster’s primary schools!

But staff at Saltersgate Junior School, in Scawsby, have been promised they will be shown how to care for ground-breaking green wall, believed to be the first of its type at any school in the UK.

The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,

The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,

The ‘living wall’ was unveiled as part of an official ceremony to mark the completion of a £2.3 million redesign and refurbishment of the Barnsley Road school.

It uses harvested rain-water from the roof which is mixed with fertiliser and is drip-fed electronically to the plants.

A Doncaster Council spokesman said: “The roof installer is training up staff on how to look after the wall.”

As well as being a striking architectural feature, the 98 square metre living wall helps to insulate the building, makes the best use of surplus rain-water from the roof to water the plants, and is said to have a positive effect on the natural environment.

The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,

The Opening of the living wall at Slatergate Junior School Doncaster ,

The school’s pupils have been involved in its creation, will help look after the plants, and will use the wall as educational area studying the different plant types and insects.

Former headteacher Peter Marchant returned to the school to cut a ribbon to launch the wall, joined by current headteacher Mandy Oxer.

An extensive refurbishment has included 600 square metres of new build consisting of a contemporary reception area, new offices, updated ICT provision courtesy of a new ICT suite, a light well, a lift and a modern multi-purpose sports hall which is available for the community to use.

The school has also benefited from new electrics and plumbing.

Mrs Oxer said: “We are thrilled with our refurbished and remodelled school as it will greatly enhance the opportunities and experiences of our children.

“Our school is a happy school with a hard working team of adults and pupils who engage very well in their learning.

“We are committed to providing high quality education and firmly believe the remodelling work and refurbishment have produced a building which matches the excellence and high expectations that all stakeholders have in every area of school life.

“The ‘living wall’ is an interesting addition and it matches our aims as an Eco School.

“Saltersgate Junior School is a national lead school for climate change awareness and the living wall is a visible reminder of our work and commitment to this.”