A VILLAGE school is looking to fulfil a “long-term dream” of installing a state-of-the-art play area by raising thousands of pounds - as soon as the coronavirus crisis is over.

Last year, teachers at Kirby Primary Academy decided to remove the school’s last remaining piece of outdoor equipment after it was deemed too unsafe.

As a result, pupils were left with no external facilities on which they could play in between lessons and investing in new equipment was not financially viable.

Determined not to have have their children go without, the school’s parent teacher association set about generating a staggering £33,000 in funds.

The dedicated group hosted what went onto be successful film nights, summer fetes, bake sales and raffles to help raise some of the money.

Kirby Primary Academy head teacher Charlotte Booth-Rylett said: “This school invests in outdoor learning and children benefit from forest school and time in our allotment.

“We have a beautiful big field but the children have really missed having any equipment to play with.

“We want to install a series of independent pieces which will allow more children to enjoy the equipment at any one time.”

After the school’s fundraisers helped generate some of the cash, the project was given a major boost when the Kirby Children’s Play Committee generously donated £10,000.

The group had been trying to build a play area in the community for the past ten years but had failed to obtain an appropriate piece of land. To date, £22,000 has been raised, but a fundraising page has now been launched to help the school move a little closer towards its goal.

Ms Booth-Rylett added: “I am truly moved by everyone’s generosity from residents, as well as parents and friends of the school and the committee.

“This has been a long-term dream of the school to extend the excellent provision into break time and lunch time and everyone has worked so hard to collect the funds.

“Our plans are within touching distance and we just need our community to rally around us and help us in our final push.

“There’s nothing we’d love more than to welcome our children back to an improved school with brilliant equipment for them to play and learn on.’’

To donate visit gofundme.com/f/v88nm-outdoor-play-area.