Network Rail volunteers attend official opening of forest school in Oldbury: L-R Presentation of prizes. Sarah Lockitt - teacher, Joshua, Susan Eaves - Deputy Mayor of Sandwell, Allun Edge - Network Rail, Bradley, Kevin Hurcombe – class teacher

Thursday 17 May 2018

Network Rail volunteers attend official opening of forest school in Oldbury

London North Western

Two lucky pupils and their families are on their way to RAF Cosford Air Show after winning an art competition organised by Network Rail.

Volunteers from Network Rail have been working with The Meadows School in Oldbury, to transform the school’s memorial garden and provide easier access to their forest school.

The special school, in Dudley Road East, contacted Network Rail to ask for donations of railway sleepers to use in their memorial garden, where young people and parents remember those who have sadly passed away.

The volunteer team from Network Rail, headed up by Allun Edge, infrastructure maintenance protection coordinator, created a memorial wall in the garden and also built wheelchair accessible ramps to their new forest school.

The team returned to The Meadows yesterday (Wednesday 16 May) to judge the art competition and be a part of the official opening of the forest school, led by the Deputy Mayor of Sandwell, Councillor Susan Eaves.

Faced with some brilliant competition, Allun and his team finally decided that Joshua and Bradley’s winning artwork will take pride of place in the local Network Rail depot. They will be off to the air show next month with transport provided by West Midlands Trains.

Allun from Network Rail commented: “It’s been a real pleasure to return to The Meadows, see all the pupils again and judge some fantastic pieces of art. We’re really pleased we’ve been able to help make the memorial garden and forest school a special place for them to enjoy.”

Joanna Cliffe, Headteacher at The Meadows School said: "Our staff and students are very excited about the new ramp. It means all the children can now access our lovely new forest school.

"We are very lucky to have such a great relationship with the Network Rail volunteers and we look forward to working with them on other projects in the future.”

Network Rail employees are entitled to five days’ volunteer leave every year to help UK registered charities or community projects.

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