1. ITV Report

Calls for sympathy over future of St Michael’s school

North Devon MP Nick Harvey is asking administrators to look sympathetically at a bid by a local community group to buy St Michael’s School at Tawstock near Barnstaple, which closed at Christmas.

The group, led by parents and former pupils, announced earlier this week that it had raised the funds it needed. The group has since learned that the administrators plan to sell the buildings to the highest bidder. Offers have to be in by this Friday.

Administrators plan to sell the buildings to the highest bidder. Credit: ITV Westcountry

Mr Harvey has written to the chairmen of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group and its administrators Grant Thornton urging them to look at the issue in more than simply financial terms:

I would urge that everything be done to save St Michael’s as a school for future generations. It has been the heart of the local community for generations and its closure due to financial difficulties came as a shock to everyone, including myself. The local community has rallied round to do all it can to save the school.

Through Herculean efforts a considerable sum has been raised by its supporters – but I am disheartened to learn that this is not considered enough.

I would urge all concerned to consider that this is not just about financial gain. Children’s education, a piece of local history as well as the fate of a respected educational institution now hangs in the balance. A workable solution must be found.

– Nick Harvey MP, Lib Dem, North Devon