Community event is huge success

Pupils from Lantern Academy with the donated bicycles

More than 100 residents attended a free event at Telford’s Lantern Academy that has succeeded in its aim of strengthening community bonds.

The event took place at the Yates Way school in Ketley Bank, when guests were welcomed by pupils.

Created as a partnership initiative between the newly-rebranded school in conjunction with Telford & Wrekin Council’s ‘Safer, Stronger Communities’ team, the afternoon session was open to anyone in the Oakengates and Ketley Bank area.

Headteacher Michelle Skidmore said: “We were so pleased to welcome such an incredible number of people to the school and we can’t thank everyone enough for their support.

“We’re particularly grateful to Gillian Denning and her team from Safer and Stronger Communities as the event would just not have been possible without them.”

On the day, local councillors Steve Reynolds, Hilda Rhodes and Gilly Latham attended along with over 20 other agencies and support groups including: Betty the Vaccination Bus, local police, energy support advisers, and the fire service.

“We also had a visit from the team from Dr Bike, from the Shropshire Cycle Hub, who offer free bike checks and simple repairs in the community.

“This was particularly welcome as we received donations of 13 pre-loved bicycles at the event which the pupils from the Lantern Academy can use in school and will eventually be able to borrow,” said Michelle.
“The children as so excited and grateful for them and they just can’t wait go get started using them.”

The aim of the event was to invite local people to come in and talk with all kinds of community groups to discuss anything they were concerned about – whether it was safety, policing, community support or just general information about the area.

Ketley Parish Council said it was a perfect example of how partnership working could make a real difference to a community – organisers now hope it is just the start of an initiative that will help local people have their say and build strong and effective relationships going forward.

Lantern Academy is run by the town’s Learning Community Trust, which runs 10 schools across Shropshire including four primary schools.

The Trust said when it took over and renamed the former Queensway School last year that it wanted to build closer links with the local community.



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