Rugby star opens new play area

By Geoff Berkeley Thursday 06 December 2012 Updated: 07/12 15:30

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Buy photos » Margaret Jones, headteacher Jane Long, Phil Vickery MBE, Steph Webley and John Sitch, of Wooden Spoon, watch on as Fort Royal Community Primary School pupils Ritchie, Danny, William and Ryan enjoy the new play area. 48.012.002.wor.jm2 Order this picture at

FORMER England rugby star Phil Vickery MBE joined staff and children at a special school in Worcester to celebrate the official unveiling of its new play area.

Fort Royal Community Primary School, which caters for children with special educational and physical needs, has completed a further stage in its efforts to transform its grounds and bring even more enjoyment to its 150 pupils.

After the installation of a multi-use games area and bike track last year, the Wylds Lane school has now created a play area which includes a wheelchair friendly swing and roundabout as well as a crow’s nest swing, painting station, set of drums and sand tray.

The second phase has been made possible following a £25,000 grant from children’s charity Wooden Spoon to add to the £12,000 already raised.

Margaret Jones, the school’s grants administrator, is currently working to secure equipment for the nursery’s play ground as part of phase three of the project.

She said: “The play area is absolutely fabulous. The children love it and it means that we have got an integrated space so wheelchair users and able-bodied children can all come and play together.”

Headteacher Jane Long added: “It is a fantastic facility which can be used by all the children. We would like to thank Wooden Spoon for making such an area a possibility.”

To mark the unveiling John Gibson, chairman of Wooden Spoon, Worcester Warriors star Matt Mullan and Mr Vickery joined children for a balloon release.

The 2003 Rugby World Cup winner, who is assistant forwards coach at Worcester Warriors as well as official ambassador for the charity, said: “It is a privilege to be here to see where the money goes.

“It is great to see the look on the children’s faces as they run around with paint all over their hands and enjoying themselves. It shows that we’re making a difference and having an impact on their lives.”

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