SHALFLEET Primary School has unveiled its new, nautical themed play area — which has replaced a wooden boat structure built more than two decades ago.

With many RNLI lifeboat crew members' children being taught at the school, teachers and parents were keen to maintain its nautical links.

The school’s PTA and local community — including individuals, businesses, Yarmouth Harbour Commission and Shalfleet Parish Council — worked together to fundraise the project costs.

A mainland company produced the 10m by 7m structure, which was transported to the Island for free by Wightlink and constructed on site.

Headteacher Elizabeth Grainger and deputy Sue Shynn held an opening ceremony to unveil the playground. All the children attended the ceremony, which included a prayer, songs and nautical-themed dance.

It was followed by a ‘tea of thanks’ celebration for all who had helped buy and instal the new equipment.

Mrs Grainger said: “We’re delighted to unveil our new playground and show our gratitude for the hard work of our PTA, and the generous support from our local community.

“It has been a fantastic effort which will bring a great deal of enjoyment to our pupils for many years to come.”

Daryl Palmer, Wightlink operations director said: “We were delighted to help the school transport the equipment over, lending our help to what has already been a fantastic fundraising effort.

"It is particularly appropriate that the equipment has a nautical theme and we are sure pupils will have great fun playing on it.”

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