New Peterborough school welcomes first pupils

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New Peterborough school welcomes first pupils

St John Henry Newman Catholic Primary School and Nursery, in Hampton Water, Peterborough, has opened its doors to new pupils, teachers and staff for the first time this week.

The school is now open for nursery, reception, year 1 and 2 children in the first year. It will cater for 630 pupils when full and will be run by the Diocese of East Anglia. More than 50 are already enrolled.   

Mark Cooper, head teacher at St John Henry Newman, said: “After many months, planning and preparing, we are delighted to welcome our first cohorts of Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 children to our school.

“We officially opened on Saturday with our open day, and we had well over 150 people from the Hampton Community come and join us for a tour of the school. The feedback was very humbling to hear. The staff have worked incredibly hard over the summer to prepare the school for our children and the school is looking amazing. We are now excited to begin the children’s learning journey with us.”

Helen Bates, Assistant Director of Schools for the Diocese of East Anglia, said: “We are delighted that St John Henry Newman has opened after more than four years in the planning. The Diocese started this process in mid-2018 in preparing its bid for funding to Government and it was the only successful bid.

“This school has been a collaborative project between the Diocese of East Anglia, Peterborough City Council and the Department for Education. It has involved many people giving their time to support the complex process of creating a school, with the building being only one part of that process. We know from enquiries we have received that many parents are interested in a place at this school and we look forward to seeing the school grow year by year to become an integral part of the Hampton community.”

The school’s construction started in mid 2021, with Eco Modular Buildings (EMB) leading the work which saw building modules constructed off-site before being transported to Hampton Water for installation.  

The Modular delivery approach was the first of its kind for a Peterborough school and included many benefits including decreased waste, a reduced site period and reduced site traffic ensuring less disruption for local residents.

Councillor Lynne Ayres, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, education, skills and the university, said: “Peterborough is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK and we expect this trend to continue, so finding new school places is an urgent and ongoing challenge.  

“St John Henry is a unique project with its construction tying in with the council’s bid to be Carbon neutral by 2030.  Along with two news schools in Paston, they are all going to be huge assets not just for Hampton and Paston, but for Peterborough as a whole, for years to come.”  

Pictured above are some of the new pupils welcomed at St John Henry Newman School this week.