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Worries over Croy playground as Highland Council proposes fencing for primary school use


By Donald Wilson


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Croy Primary is to lose its current playground as a result of the need to accommodate additional classrooms following an influx of new pupils living in new housing. Picture Gary Anthony.
Croy Primary is to lose its current playground as a result of the need to accommodate additional classrooms following an influx of new pupils living in new housing. Picture Gary Anthony.

A COMMUNITY council chairman has spoken of his fears that village children could be left without a proper pitch to play on outside of school hours as the local primary expands.

Bruce Strachan, chairman of Croy and Culloden Community Council, was speaking at a recent meeting after Highland Council proposed fencing off the existing local playpark, for use by the primary school.

The school is to lose its current playground as a result of the need to accommodate additional classrooms following an influx of new pupils living in housing created recently both within the village and in nearby Tornagrain.

At the June meeting of the community council Mr Strachan said the proposed change was a matter of great concern.

“What is going to happen during the school holidays when the existing (public) play area is taken over by the education authority for school use?” he asked.

“There will be nowhere for the kids of Croy to play if it’s fenced off and locked up during the holidays.”

Mr Strachan said he had spoken to the head teacher who said the school would require all of the additional play space because of the growing school roll.

“I understand her priority is the school but our priority is the village youngsters,” Mr Strachan said.

“We have two weeks holidays in October, two in Easter and six in summer.

“What happens if the playground is closed?”

And he added: “The bigger issue is how planning allow this to happen – allowing 100 houses to be built [placing extra pressure on school capacity].

Glynis Campbell-Sinclair, newly appointed Inverness Provost.
Glynis Campbell-Sinclair, newly appointed Inverness Provost.

Local Highland councillor Glynis Sinclair, recently appointed Provost of Inverness, was present at the community council meeting.

She said there would be issues of health and safety and security during the holidays in terms of allowing public access to school facilities including the play area if and when it falls within the school’s remit.

She also said she did not think the council would allow the play area to be left open and she did not think any schools in the Highlands would be open to the public over holidays.


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