£25 million promise for new College and Primary schools
NEWS that the green light has finally been given to funding for the extensive build of Foyle and Londonderry College and Ebrington Primary School at a cost of almost £25 million on the former Clooney Barracks site has been warmly greeted by Robin Young, chairman of the Board of Governors, at Foyle College and the principal of Ebrington Primary, Nigel Dougherty.
“I am absolutely delighted with the announcement today by John O’Dowd, Minister of Education, that Foyle College has received the funding for the new school at Clooney,” he said.
“Many years of hard work by the College Governors, who kept the faith with the project over many years, has now bourn fruit and from which, the city as a whole will benefit,” he said, adding: “I also wish to thank the local politicians from all parties who supported us by arranging meetings with key Ministers and lobbying on our behalf. This support was vital in securing the announcement today”.
“Over the coming weeks, we will be putting the final touches to the plans that are already well developed and working on a timeline that will see the new Foyle open within the next few years and in the new facility, celebrate its 400th anniversary in 2017,” Mr Young said.
Meanwhile, the principal of Ebrington Primary, Nigel Dougherty said the announcement, which coming out of the blue, was great news.
“It has been a long journey. We started this about 10 years ago and along the way we have had a lot of disappointments and a lot of promises were made that were never kept. So, it is hard to believe that the day we looked forward to is finally here. It came to us as a bolt out of the blue because I was in a meeting when my telephone started buzzing at 11.45am on Monday and I had to step out to take a few calls. Suddenly it became apparent that this was the day we were going to have the new school announced and the excitement began to mount.
“The news broke at lunchtime and the chairman of our Governors rang me and when I called into the staff room at lunchtime and asked them had they heard the news they asked me what I was talking about. When I told them we had just had the funding for our new school announced they just cheered. When I walked round the classrooms to tell the boys and girls even though they were very small, it had meaning, even among the very youngest, and they all cheered. Certainly the boys and girls deserve it. We also let the parents know by text,” he said.
Mr Dougherty said he hoped to be in position to lead the pupils and staff into the new school in three to four years’ time.
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Weather for Londonderry
Friday 24 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 8 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: South west