Is this Great Cornard or Hogwarts?
Students in Great Cornard returned to school this week met by the impressive new building that is now their school.
Thomas Gainsborough School’s new four-storey, £17million building is as impressive on the inside as it is out, compared by staff to Hogwarts from the Harry Potter franchise.
You can imagine the giant staircases moving across the floors from the open atrium area, and like Hogwarts there are a number of banners in reference to the school’s houses.
Headteacher Wayne Lloyd said: “We are delighted. These are facilities the community can be proud of. They will provide an excellent environment for education long into the future.
“It has taken 22 months to completion, all on time and on budget.”
There is still landscaping to be done outside and the demolition of the old building is not expected to be complete until February 2016.
Mr Lloyd said the building would inspire pupils.
“Although a building doesn’t make a school it certainly helps,” he said.
“It provides facilities that every person feels valued in, so they will value education.”
Mr LLoyd said the move would stop a “great amount” of money being spent trying to fix the old building.
“We spent a lot of time and resources trying to make sure it was fit for purpose, these facilities are excellent and will be for the next 20 to 30 years.”
A popular aspect of the building is the central hall, with the many corridors and staircases leading off as you look, leading to the comparisons with Hogwarts.
In the hall way now sits a grand piano, not originally intended to be there, but Mr Lloyd hopes students will sit down and play, entertaining the rest of the school as they come in.
Science teacher Emma Wilson-Downes was thoroughly impressed with her new science lab.
“It’s absolutely amazing,” she said. “The students are going to have such a good time, it’s the first time that all the gas taps will work.
“We have got all the equipment we will need. I believe practical science is so important for getting kids engaged.
“It’s doing the experiments, this is how they go along the path of choosing science as a career.
“It could really help push science here, we could even have the next Einstein, you never know.”