Two former pupils have taken over a Weston school

PUBLISHED: 08:09 05 September 2017

Headteacher Karen Wallington with business manger Adrian Gifford, together they have bought Ashbrooke House School.

Headteacher Karen Wallington with business manger Adrian Gifford, together they have bought Ashbrooke House School.

Archant

Two former pupils have taken over a private school in Weston and are in the process of refurbishing it ready for the new term.

Current headteacher Karen Wallington and IT consultant Adrian Gifford have teamed up to buy Ashbrooke House School and are now busy redecorating the building ready for the start of the school’s new academic year on September 11.

The business partners both attended the school as children and Miss Wallington has also been the headteacher there for the past four years.

The duo were delighted to be able to take over the school so they can invest in its future.

Mr Gifford said: “We’ve got lots of plans for it. We’ve been flat-out for all the holidays, doing lots of decoration and upgrading the building.

“We want to transform it. It’s the last indepdendent school in Weston so we want to make it stand out.”

Pupils from the school were delighted when Miss Wallington announced she and Mr Gifford had bought the building.

A number of students and their families have given up some time in the holidays to help redecorate and tidy up the garden.

Mr Gifford said: “We are very excited and everyone else was excited for us.

“The school needed some work done. It’s been stagnant for a few years under the previous ownership and we were over the moon when we were given the opportunity to take it over.

“Some of the parents have been helping to paint it and last week we had a garden working party.

“Lots of families and chidlren have helped us with the gardening and painting.”

Ashbrooke House School, in Ellenborough Park North, currently has 65 pupils aged three to 11, but the new owners are hoping to attract more.

Mr Gifford said: “At the moment we’ve got 65 children, but we’re looking to build on that. It can take up to 140.

“We will be keeping class sizes small with a maximum of 15 pupils.

“It’s an amazing place. The care and attention the children get is unique. It has a really homely environment – everyone knows everyone and it feels like family – that’s what stands out the most about the school.

“We are hoping to keep that homely feeling as that’s what makes it so special.”

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