The Bishop of Chichester has blessed a Shoreham school as part of its milestone celebrations.
The 50th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone at St Nicolas and St Mary CE Primary School, in Eastern Avenue, was marked at a special assembly yesterday.
The Right Rev Dr Martin Warner, Bishop of Chichester, was joined by Father James Grant from St Nicolas’ Church and the Rev Canon Ann Waizeneker from St Mary’s Church for the occasion.
Other invited guests included former pupils from the school who were there when the new building opened in 1971.
Year-six pupils gave some of the history, explaining it was started as St Nicolas’ School and the original building was very small, with toilets outside.
Work on the current school started in 1970 and the foundation stone was put in as part of an outside wall, but it was moved to the reception area when the new entrance was created in 2014.
Head teacher David Etherton said the celebration was taking place exactly 50 years after the laying of the foundation stone and he and the Bishop were using the same words that were said at the time, taken from the order of service for January 16, 1970.
Pupils had a day of special activities, including making clay bricks with ‘50’ carved into them.
Mr Etherton said this was the first time the school had been able to reintroduce clay work for years five and six, due to building works for The Ark, which opened in July 2017.
He hoped Thursday’s celebration would be the start of a year of activities related to the 50th anniversary of opening of the school building.
He said: “Over the next year or so, the children will be collecting stories of some of the pupils who went to the old school.”
One of the year-six pupils modelled the original school blazer with the school badge, to serve as a reminder.
Bishop Martin led prayers and blessed the school to mark the anniversary.