MP appeals to Harborough businesses and venues to grant school's Christmas wish

Hosting a Christmas lunch will prove difficult this year
MP Neil O'Brien with headteacher Bernadette Dabbs.MP Neil O'Brien with headteacher Bernadette Dabbs.
MP Neil O'Brien with headteacher Bernadette Dabbs.

A Harborough school is hoping their Christmas wish to eat a festive lunch together will come true.

For the past few months, children at St Joseph’s Catholic Voluntary Academy have been forced to eat their lunches at their classroom desks, with boxed meals brought in from outside, following the discovery of structural issues in the school’s hall and kitchen areas.

While the Department for Education will pay for the new roof, and cover the costs of disruption, the spaces are unusable for the time being.On a recent visit to the Coventry Road school, MP Neil O’Brien saw how well the children and staff were adapting to more challenging lunchtimes.

Headteacher Bernadette Dabbs told him her wish for the children to eat together for just one day this Christmastime.

And now the MP is appealing for a Christmas lunch venue on behalf of the school.He said: “Everyone has adapted well to a very challenging situation. The children are eating at their desks and the teachers are doing everything they can to manage until this is fixed. But it would be great if the children could come together to share lunch with each another again for Christmas. Christmas is a time for coming together, so I am appealing to anyone who might be able either to provide a venue, or donate to provide food for the children at St Joseph’s.”

The school will need a large venue, preferably in the town, and for someone – perhaps a local business – to donate the lunches or catering.

E added: “I know the children would love the chance come together over lunch again, even if for just one day.”Mrs Dabbs said: “The children have been coping so well with not being able to use the hall and have been eating at their desks in their classrooms for the past few months. However, we would love to be able for them to be able to enjoy a Christmas lunch together. It would be wonderful if someone could come forward to offer them some Christmas magic this year.”Anyone who can help can email Neil at [email protected].

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