Flooded Cossington school opens again

Giselle Pirie standing in the chaos caused by up to eight inches of water.

Giselle Pirie standing in the chaos caused by up to eight inches of water.

First published in Somerset This is The West Country: Photograph of the Author by

A PRIMARY school which was forced to close for more than a week after it flooded has re-opened.

Staff at Cossington Primary School had just ten minutes to save pupils’ work and tell parents not to bring in their children as flood water rushed in on Wednesday, November 21.

The building went under up to eight inches of murky water and partially flooded again the following weekend.

Teachers have been working tirelessly in a massive clean-up operation which enabled the school to open yesterday (December 3).

Giselle Pirie, senior teacher at the school, said: “The staff came in before 8am and saw water rising through the gardens towards the school.

“At around 8.15am we realised the school was in danger of flooding.

“The staff worked very hard to call parents and let them know not to bring their children in, and as a result there were no children on site when it flooded.”

The older part of the main building suffered a lot of flood damage with carpets fast becoming saturated with the dirty water.

It also seeped into skirting boards and wooden furniture.

Giselle said: “We’re looking at a lot of damage, but staff have been absolutely brilliant and have been coming in the whole time to help clean up to ensure that the school could open as soon as it was safe to do so.

“It’s not an easy operation and we’ve been co-ordinating with other parties. This wasn’t something which could be repaired over-night.

“We’ve also had a lot of support from people in the village who came and offered to help.

“A school is such an important part of the community.”

Somerset County Council’s Area Building Surveyor has been assessing the damage and the school understands it was the worst hit school in Somerset.

So far the council has arranged for contractors to come in and provide temporary toilets, make walkways safe and install dehumidifiers, but the assessment is ongoing.

One other school which closed in Somerset due to flooding was North Curry Primary School, near Taunton

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