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Wait is over for Alban City School's official opening
Children from St Albans’ newest primary school sang songs and proudly read out their school’s motto during its official opening on Wednesday.
Alban City School in Hatfield Road gave tours of the site before a ceremony yesterday afternoon, during which teachers, governors and children spoke about their first few months at the new facility.
Headteacher Janet Goddard: "It is so nice to have a celebration.
"I’m very proud of the children and everyone who has been involved.
"The parents have been absolutely amazing. They have had to trust us and we have had to deliver.
"It is very reassuring that people are willing to put their trust in us. It is amazing."
Illustrator Alex Brychta, who has worked on many of the Oxford Reading Tree books, ran workshops with pupils during the day to celebration the official opening.
He said: "This is certainly by far the most impressive school I have ever opened.
"I’m staggered by the amount of work that must have gone into this project.
"I wish the children and the staff a very happy future here."
With the two current reception classes almost full, admissions for next year’s intake are also looking promising.
Allison Saunders, a parent at the school, said: "I am really pleased with the school. The first few months have been fantastic.
"Even though we were closer to other schools we put this as our first choice after being really impressed by the first meetings.
"There is a real child centred approach and lots of imagination."
The school, which took its first intake of pupils in September, is located in the former University of Hertfordshire law building.
The free school project was secured following a determined community campaign to tackle a growing shortfall in primary places in the district.
The team fighting to set the school up had a tough start when their first application was turned down by the Department of Education.
They also faced a battle with the council about a Victorian building in the school grounds, which they hoped to knock down to provide a playground.
However politicians denied them permission to demolish the Pemberton Block in January last year.
Governor Lara Jubb, who has been involved in the school since the first stages, said: "I feel really proud. We have done what we set up to do.
"There was a lack of school places so to be able to provide additional ones is great.
"To see it all come to life has been really rewarding. It has been a great experience."