Teachers and pupils made a triumphant return to their original school site after the discovery of a chalk mine had forced them into a nine-month exile.

Pinner Wood Primary School officially reopened its doors in Latimer Gardens having spent much of last year at a temporary home in Harrow’s Civic Centre.

They were forced to relocate after a huge mine was discovered underneath its grounds and was deemed too dangerous to allow them to operate as normal.

In spite of this upheaval, it obtained excellent exam results – more than 90 per cent of Key Stage 2 pupils hit the expected standards in reading, writing and maths.

Head teacher Sarah Marriott thanked all who had made the return a reality; praising the tireless efforts of the staff, the priceless cooperation of Harrow Council and the unfaltering optimism of the children.

She said: “It’s a huge moment coming back home for the whole school community.

“In the early days we didn’t even know if it would be possible for us to ever make it back here.

“It’s a credit to everyone involved and we wouldn’t have been able to do it without the support of the council – in the decision-making, deciding it could be fixed and finding the funding to do it, and also the day-to-day running of our relocation.

“The children’s determination, their strength, cooperation and being able to get along with each other is incredible. They’ve taught us how resilience makes you stronger.”

The chalk mine which led to the school's relocation

Watford Observer:

Everyone associated with the school celebrated being back where they belong with a morning filled with joy and entertainment.

There were street entertainers, musical numbers and confetti canons, while pupils were given the chance to tie ribbons onto a special ‘wishing fence’.

Politicians, including those who had followed the school’s fortunes particularly closely, were in attendance and they were full of praise for what Pinner Wood has achieved.

Sachin Shah, leader of Harrow Council, said: “I’ve never been happier. I made a promise to parents that we’d get them back on this site by today – and here we are at the start of the Spring Term.

“Being part of a community is part of the essence of what a school is and getting Pinner Wood back home to where it belongs is wonderful to celebrate.”