Newton Primary, Porthcawl, preserves links with past

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A PRIMARY school which began life with lessons held in the porch of the local church has been presented with a modern new painting to help preserve its links with the past.

Newton Primary School in Porthcawl began life hundreds of years ago with lessons held in the porch of the parish church of St John the Baptist.

A schoolroom which is now Newton Church Hall was later built before the school moved to its current site in New Road in 1908.

The school’s historical links with the parish church are reflected in its logo which features an image of St John’s and now these links have been strengthened with the presentation of the new painting which is on display in the school foyer.

The idea for the painting came from assistant parish priest the Revd Craig Vaughan during a visit to the school when a large old picture of St John’s was taken down from the school hall while redecorating work was carried out.

He suggested it be replaced with something more modern and commissioned local artist and parishioner Peter Mills.

“We wanted to ensure that this visual link with the parish was maintained but in a more modern way. It is a great joy for us to formally present this to the school and we hope it will be a sign of many years future cooperation,” said Mr Vaughan.

Acting head teacher Rachel John said: “We loved the idea from the start as it is a fantastic way of keeping the past alive.

“Although our building is more than 100 years old we are very much a 21st century school and this painting reflects the past while looking forward to the future.

“We are very grateful to both the church and Mr Mills for the painting which has already become a real focal point in our foyer – it captures the old and the new very effectively and is the first thing that visitors see when they arrive. Both the children and visitors love it.”

Mr Mills added: “I was delighted to be asked to come up with this painting for the school and am glad that it has been well received.”

The painting which is bordered by the school colours of red and grey shows images of both the school and the church out of which it grew. It also includes the school motto of Believe and You Will Achieve.

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