Classes cancelled after school fire

NILABE111014a1, Cotmanhay Bennerley school fire.
NILABE111014a1, Cotmanhay Bennerley school fire.

CLASSES were cancelled at an Ilkeston school on Monday and Tuesday after a fire destroyed part of a classrooom block on Friday.

Fire crews were called to the Ormiston Enterprise Academy on Bennerley Avenue an hour after classes finished at about 3.30pm.

NILABE111014a2, Cotmanhay Bennerley school fire.

NILABE111014a2, Cotmanhay Bennerley school fire.

Firefighters battled the blaze, which started in a kiln room, for more than two hours.

Principal, Eddie De Middlaer, said: “The good news is that the fire happened after school and no one was injured.

“We had to close the school because our main server was in the building that suffered the damage and that means we are without student information. We need to get our database back up and running again. The data won’t have been lost but we haven’t been able to check the server as yet.

“Structural engineers have been into the building and declared it safe but we are still waiting for a report on the roof.”

Staff have been in school and have posted work online to ensure students are up to speed when they are back in lessons.

Most of the damage in the block, which houses the IT, design technology and art department, was caused by water from a burst pipe.

Mr De Middlaer praised fire crews for their fast response.

He said: “The firefighters were great, absolutely brilliant. As soon as they arrived they instilled confidence in everyone who was on site. They were very professional and sympathetic with staff.”

Station Commander at Ilkeston fire station, Gary Platts, said: “When crews arrived we were faced with a well developed fire in a kiln room.

“This fire highlights the importance of knowing what to do when there is a fire. Staff training should always be current and both in commercial and domestic properties.

“People should make sure they are familiar with evacuation procedures and know how to turn off gas, electric and water.”