'Amazing team effort' creates new nature site at village school

An Ab Kettleby Primary School pupil helps with the project and (right) the finished new nature siteAn Ab Kettleby Primary School pupil helps with the project and (right) the finished new nature site
An Ab Kettleby Primary School pupil helps with the project and (right) the finished new nature site
An impressive wildlife and nature resource has been created at a village primary school thanks to the hard work of teachers, pupils, parents, grandparents and local businesses.

The stunning pond area was put in at Ab Kettleby School in a part of the school grounds which was previously overgrown and unused.

Last summer, workers with Galliford Try, which is building the Melton Mowbray Distributor Road cleared a mass of brambles and repaired fencing.

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A £500 grant from the TESCO Community Grant Program enabled the school to develop a new learning area at the site.

The overgrown area at the back of Ab Kettleby Primary School prior to the new nature site being createdThe overgrown area at the back of Ab Kettleby Primary School prior to the new nature site being created
The overgrown area at the back of Ab Kettleby Primary School prior to the new nature site being created

Headteacher, Andrea Brown, had noticed the large disused and unsightly area at the back of the school after taking over in August 2021.

“This area had not been utilised by the school for over 15 years and had become overgrown and unmanageable,” said Mrs Brown.

“To clear this area was a huge task and too big for us as a small school.”

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With the support of Galliford and then the TESCO grant, they set about transforming the site.

“Over the next few months, with the help of a team of amazing parent and grandparent volunteers, we managed to clear away the branches and make the area safe,” she explained.

“At the start of this year, Mowbray Education Trust supported us to get the area at the back fenced off, to make it safe; David Musson Fencing kindly donated mulch; children in our gardening club helped lay the mulch and finally, over the Easter holidays 2024, bird feeders and bird houses, donated from our parents, were proudly put in place, to add the finishing touch.”

Mrs Brown added: “I am so proud of this amazing team effort from the wider community to help us create a fabulous area for our children to use.

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“It has taken a year of hard work and dedication, but it has been worth it.

“The area can now be used as part of the science curriculum – understanding living things and their habitats and plants – and will also be used as part of our Forest School Learning.

“I am also headteacher of Somerby Primary School and I am planning to bring children from there over to the pond for them to also enjoy.”

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