New school hall rises in place of burned down church


St Philomena’s church which was burned down in 2014 has been replaced with a new school hall form St Pius X primary school.

The new Philomena Hall was built over the last four months and can hold around 300 people.

Principal Anna Wormald said the school was lucky to have the facility available, after three years of moving seats out of classrooms to make room for special events.

“As they say, out of some bad comes some good, there’s some bonuses for us,” she said.

When she was interviewed last year Wormald said “On a weekly basis we empty a classroom and we squeeze into a very small space to get the children in but it’s very much limited to parent involvement.”

“We are a very close community school and it’ll be nice to bring our community back together and for them to feel like they can be there and be part of the things that we do.”

“Even little things like practicing for the school dance would be easier as they wouldn’t have to wait for a fine day to practise for the concert outside the school office.”

The hall has been paid for by the Diocese of Palmerston North and other fundraising efforts and the school.

Last Friday afternoon the students, teachers, parents and grandparents lined up outside the school before walking across the playground and into the hall for the first time.

A table in the hall has been made by the grandfather of one of the students using wood salvaged from the church.

The stained glass windows are also the same colour as the church.


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News category: New Zealand.

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