Tiny Dales school stays open in snow thanks to parent with digger


A tiny school which stands more than 1,100 feet (335m) above sea level remained open despite blizzards thanks to teachers battling through the elements and a parent with a digger.

Wearhead School did not shut, unlike more than 240 others in County Durham, after the local community rallied round.

A parent dug out the path and yard, two teachers walked to school, one drove and two got the bus from Stanhope.

A parent with a digger ensured the school could open (Durham County Council/PA)
A parent with a digger ensured the school could open (Durham County Council/PA)

Headteacher Karen Evans said: "We said to parents if they could and were happy to make it to and from us, that it was safe to do so, and that they wouldn't put themselves or children at risk, that we were open.

"Five children from the village walked, one came by car from St John's Chapel and one from Westgate."

The school's 27 pupils mainly live on local farms, high in scenic Weardale, and has only shut once because of weather in the past 13 years.

Well done to pupils, parents and teachers for battling "the Beast from the East" to make it to Weardale Primary School amid some of the worst weather in recent years! https://t.co/jdXc1clcGZpic.twitter.com/GuWAzTdpmk

-- DurhamCountyCouncil (@DurhamCouncil) February 28, 2018

The children - aged four to 11 - made snow art, built igloos and snowmen and then had a maths class.

The head said she will decide later whether to open on Thursday.