There was a wonderfully warm atmosphere of reminiscence when former staff of Churchtown Farm returned for a special reunion event organised by Roselyon School last week.
The event attracted over 40 staff members who had all previously worked for Churchtown Farm and Activity Centre when it operated as a respite centre in the mid 1970s through to 2011, providing day services and holidays for young disabled people and youngsters with special educational needs.
Roselyon School staff and children were delighted to show guests and their families around the buildings and the facilities that the school has been enjoying since it relocated to Lanlivery, as well witness the reunion of friends and colleagues who had not seen each other for many years. Tea, cake and much news were shared by all!
“We all came away with a warm feeling of well being, knowing our beloved buildings are in very safe, and loving hands,” said Mel Millett, former Care Manager and Deputy Centre Manager at Churchtown Farm.
Hilary Mann, Head of Roselyon School, added, “It was such a pleasure to see so many people who hold this building dear and we were pleased that they were really impressed with the changes we have made. The spirit of the building lives on.”
Any staff of Churchtown who missed the reunion are most welcome to visit when they are in the area – the snowy weather on the day meant that many missed out, although we were most impressed by one tenacious visitor who travelled all the way from the Isle of Mull! Please phone 01726 812110 to arrange a look around.
Roselyon School marked the start of a new academic year with an ambitious and exciting relocation of the school to a new site, the grand opening of which was celebrated earlier this week.
Based in Par near St Austell for nearly 70 years, the prep school for 3 to 11 year olds has moved into the Churchtown site in Lanlivery, formerly well-known as a centre for activities for young people with disabilities. The site has undergone a significant programme of transformation over the summer months, and now has new learning facilities – both indoors and out – making the most of the new location with its woodlands, lakes and outdoor learning facilities.
The new site means that the mid-Cornwall school is now much more accessible to children travelling from the north and east of the county, with additional bus services providing access to families in the towns of Padstow, Wadebridge and Bodmin, as well as the villages in the neighbouring areas. Existing routes from St Austell in the west and Looe, Liskeard, Lostwirhiel and points on the A38 as far as Castle Motors continue to bring children to Lanlivery.
At the grand opening event, Head of Roselyon School, Hilary Mann said:
“We are delighted to be here in Lanlivery, and that the heritage of Churchtown, with its educational aspirations and dedication to giving children an extraordinary and exciting experience, will once again contribute to the life of mid-Cornwall.
“These magical grounds mean the children’s learning will extend far beyond the classroom. Here we can provide an even more exciting outdoor education, with our remarkable adventure playground, ancient woodlands and lakes to explore, as well as an outdoor classroom to ensure that outdoor learning can never get ‘rained off.’
“We will still visit the coastline each week for Beach School, and Woodland School is right on our doorstep, but now we have a farm next door where the children can grow their own food and learn alongside the animals. This combined with our excellent academic facilities means we really could not be happier.”
The building was declared open by Merryn Varcoe, a former pupil and staff member at Roselyon School, and daughter of Philip and Mary Varcoe, who endowed both Churchtown Farm Activities Centre and Roselyon School itself.
Sir Tim Smit attended the opening and said, “I’m delighted that Roselyon School has come to Churchtown as it ensures the long term future of an inspirational school. The imaginative transformation provides a fantastic educational platform that will make it one of the premier schools in the West Country. A childhood spent in this environment will be, in my view, the ideal start for young lives where curiosity and the imagination are nurtured in ideal surroundings.”
Roselyon is the only school in Cornwall in the Sunday Times ‘Best 100 Schools’ list and has a fencing national silver medallist among its children, as well as regular qualifiers for national cross country and athletics events. Having recently joined the Methodist Independent Schools Trust, it has a close relationship with Truro School, which accepts a good number of its pupils each year.
Pictured here are Terry Corby, Chair of Governors at Roselyon School, with Merryn Varcoe and Hilary Mann, Head of Roselyon School.
The video shows a brief (and slightly strangely angled!) snapshot of the first classroom with carpet and lights. Technology is still to be added but this is a great feeling of progress towards our September opening.
It’s really great to see the Community Shop in Lanlivery thriving at Churchtown. A wonderful local initiative which we are proud to support.
The building is shut off now as the builders start to model the new inside layout. We’re so used to being able to pop in and have a look around that it seems strange – but it’s exciting, too!
This weekend we had a lot of visitors to the Churchtown site and we were very grateful for all the help we received. During the morning the children began to learn just what a wonderful environment it is for children!
At Churchtown there are many wonderful spaces, some large and exciting for learning in, others, like this exciting space, which are made for contemplation. Next week we have to leave for a while, whilst the serious building work takes place. Next time we visit it’s going to look really different!
We were delighted to have the support of so many families as we cleared Churchtown over the last couple of weekends.
Great progress has been made – and we also unearthed some surprising finds!
We’re very excited to be starting the renovations to the Churchtown site. Ben and Lily came with us when the press came to Churchtown and were able to look forward to moving to Churchtown in September 2018. Plenty to achieve but a wonderful opportunity.