Great news, Phase 2 is complete. Keep updated on the progress at SSSJ click here to view our recovery information.

Vantage member school, SS Simon and Jude’s CE Primary, in Great Lever reopened last week after being destroyed by fire in August.

Over four hundred pupils were forced to relocate and have been taught at three sites in the local community during the interim period.

Now all the pupils have been welcomed back to their new education village located on the adjacent Walker’s Field, with new buildings, facilities, and resources.

The construction of the new village began almost immediately after the fire, with the support of the Department of Education.

Resolute site teams and contractors worked to transform the space into a modern, inviting, and functional area tailored specifically to meet the needs of our pupils.

Work will now start on rebuilding the original school over the new few years, after which Walker’s Field will be handed back to the community.

Keep up to date with phase 3 of this project HERE

Katie Jones, Principal of SS Simon and Jude said: ‘We are thrilled to see our school community back together on one school site and we were more than ready to welcome our children back to our school family and see them enjoy their new learning environment. This week is very much about letting the children explore the new school and re-establishing their routines. We are absolutely delighted to be able to give the children this environment where they can again learn together just seventeen weeks, following the devastating fire.’

Jill Albertina, CEO of Vantage Academy Trust said: ‘A huge thanks to the team at SSSJ for all their work, ensuring learning for pupils has continued within the community venues. Our community coming together really has made the impossible possible— truly living the trust value of ‘not setting a limit on what is possible for ourselves, for one another and for our community.’

Bolton Council’s Executive Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, Cllr Martin Donaghy said: ‘The fire at the school came as a shock to everyone and we understand that quite rightly parents were concerned about their children’s education moving forward. The council will be supporting the school to ensure long term options to accommodate the children are progressed and look forward to seeing the new build on the original school site. We continue to be extremely grateful and humbled by the ongoing support we receive from the local community, and we would like to thank them for their patience, understanding and support.’