Hartlepool school forced to close temporarily after cracking found in chimney

A Hartlepool school has had to close as a safety precaution as its chimney is set to be demolished.

Wednesday, 23rd February 2022, 4:55 am

St Helen’s Primary School, in Durham Street, had to close on Wednesday (February 16) after cracking was found in its chimney.

The decision was made as a safety precaution in light of stormy weather forecast across Hartlepool last week.

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St Helen's Primary School was forced to close last week after cracks were found in its chimney./Photo: Google

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St Helen’s pupils studied remotely for the last three days before the start of the half term holidays.

The 12-metre-high concrete chimney is now set to be demolished and parents will be updated on when children could return to the classroom later this week.

Mrs Carole Bradley, Headteacher of St Helen’s Primary School, has thanked parents and carers for their “understanding and support”.

She said: “When some cracking was found in a 12 metre high concrete chimney at the school, the school/Governing Body liaised with Hartlepool Borough Council and, as a safety precaution in the light of the storms which were forecast for the latter part of last week, we took the decision, in discussion with the council, to close the school from last Wednesday and made arrangements for our pupils to learn remotely for the last three days until the start of the half term holidays.

“Specialist contractors have been brought in by the Council and demolition of the chimney is currently under way.

"As that work progresses during the course of this week we will be better placed to be able to inform parents later this week as to what the arrangements will be after the end of the half term holidays.

”I would like to once again thank parents and carers for their understanding and support – as always, the safety of our pupils and staff is paramount. I would also like to thank the council for its prompt response in arranging the demolition of the chimney.”

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