A primary school in Purley Way has celebrated the opening of their huge roof terrace with a sensory garden, alongside the Mayor of Croydon. 

This week, Councillor Maddie Henson visited Harris Primary Academy Purley Way (HPAPW) to tour the school’s new roof garden.   

The large outdoor space features a playground, picnic benches with games, a stage for plays and performances and a sensory garden. 

During her visit, she toured the new space, spoke to staff about the school’s improvement journey and joined pupils for a cooking session.  

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The Mayor also thanked pupils for their contribution to her ‘Croydon Connected’ paperchain project which saw schools from across the borough create paper chains as their own memorial to those affected by the pandemic.

This has been displayed at the Town Hall and will soon be moving to the Croydon Museum. 

School principal Verity Lambert-Dale said: “We were delighted to welcome the Mayor here to visit our fantastic new garden space and see first-hand how it is enriching our pupils’ learning here at HPAPW.

"The children were very excited to meet her and loved learning more about her role within the community. 

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“It is such a brilliant space - it is already loved by all our pupils.

"It is especially wonderful to spend time there in the spring sunshine and has been the perfect tonic for our pupils after the lockdowns.

"It is such a joy to see them spending time out in the fresh air, playing and learning together.”  

Mayor of Croydon, Cllr Maddie Henson, added: “I really enjoyed the visit and I was delighted to say thank you for all the hard work the children put into the paper chains.

"It was also brilliant to see the roof garden in action, it’s a fabulous space and it's clear how much the children appreciate it.” 

Pentagon Play created the playground for Harris Primary Academy.

Commenting on the importance of sensory play, Sam Flatman, Sales Director of Pentagon Play, said: "Sensory play boosts so many important life skills, one being language and communication development which has already been spoken about in the news this week following lockdown.

"So, it’s really important that children have the opportunity to go out into their playground and explore everything their senses have to offer.”