Wednesday 13 November 2019

Traffic monitoring as new Loreto school opens

A thumbs-up from Hannah Philpott and Sophie Murray on their first day in the new school
A thumbs-up from Hannah Philpott and Sophie Murray on their first day in the new school
Traffic heading from town towards the new Loreto school early yesterday (Monday) morning. School management, together with the Co Council, are monitoring the traffic situation this week
Third year students were the first to start in the new Loreto school. Pictured on their first day in their new surroundings were Hannah Murphy, Amber Wright, Ella Wright, Shauna Byrne and Orla Kehoe

Maria Pepper

The newly-opened Loreto secondary school in Wexford which welcomed 780 students for the first time on Monday, is monitoring the traffic situation in the vicinity of the building in conjunction with Wexford County Council.

Smaller numbers of students were introduced to the school on a staggered basis last Thursday and Friday ahead of the arrival of the full school population on Monday, including 66 teaching and non-teaching staff.

Traffic around the school in Pembroke Hill appeared to flow well following the first major influx of morning traffic on Monday, although there were reports of greater congestion at roundabouts in the surrounding area.

'We will be monitoring the traffic. We are working with Wexford County Council on traffic management and are hoping that any initial teething problems will be ironed out. We are getting assistance from the County Council and we are appreciative of that', said principal Billy O' Shea.

Reporting from the school on the first full day of everyone in attendance, Mr. O' Shea said: 'It's very strange for us all. It's the first day with everyone here. Obviously, there are orientation issues with people wondering what floor they are on but we are here and the timetable is up and running. As I speak, the building is quiet and there is teaching and learning going on', he said.

'It's a massive relief. There is great joy that we are here at last and that the students and the teachers finally have the facilities that they deserve', said the principal.

'A few of us are pinching ourselves to make sure that this really is happening, especially after such a difficult period, that we are here and that it's all going according to plan', he said.

The past eight months were filled with uncertainty after work was halted on the nearly-completed school following the collapse of UK construction giant Carillion and main contractor Sammon Group Ltd, necessitating the appointment of an alternative contractor and sparking protests by sub-contractors who were left unpaid for work carried out and services supplied.

The wait for a new school has taken much longer than that however, with a planning application for an extension, in the first move towards improved facilities, having been submitted to the local authority approximately 20 years ago.

Mr. O' Shea said an open day will be held soon to allow parents to view the interior of the school, following a period of settling in.

Wexford People

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