Fifty years on from the opening of Lake Middle School by Lord Mountbatten of Burma, the Island’s Lord-Lieutenant, Mrs Susie Sheldon, unveiled the new Broadlea Primary School library, following fund-raising and support from former pupils.
The launch of the new library coincided with a reunion of many of the pupils who attended the school 50 years ago (when it was a middle school) with messages of support from others unable to attend. The work involved months of classroom conversion, with donations from Lake Parish Council, the local Rotary Club and masons, as well as former pupils.
Mrs Sheldon said: “After the challenges of recent years, it was a delight to see the innovation, imagination and initiative that has made this library project a reality. The tour by pupils, past and present, and the obvious love of literature was heartening.”
One event organiser, Cllr Paul Brading, also a Broadlea School governor and former pupil, spoke about the work. The event was a dream come true, our thanks go to Mrs Freeley, the pupils and all at the school, for making the re-union such a positive experience. It has also been a catalyst for this positive project, which will benefit future pupils as well.”
The opening was the first occasion, since the Covid lockdowns, at which parents and pupils were able to gather safely together, and it included a visit by the local fire service (including many ex-pupils), and an ever-popular ice-cream van.
Another former pupil who was present at the 1972 opening of the school and who was involved with organising the event, Pat McGrorty, said: “As a pupil from the 1970s, it was a delight to meet up with so many pupils from the time, share memories, see how the school shaped our lives, and how we have been able to help the next generation.”
Broadlea primary school are now populating the new library with extra books and other resources, and donations can be made at bit.ly/IWO-BroadleaLibrary.