CHILDREN at South Tawton Primary School have been learning about the dangers of a construction site as their school undergoes a £1.3-million project to provide new classrooms and hall.

The school secured funding for the project from Devon County Council's Capital Strategy fund last year as part of the Capital Build programme.

It will be used to replace four outdated classroom buildings with one new purpose-built classroom block. It will have three classrooms, each with separate cloakrooms and toilets, and additional learning space and a new school hall.

Last Friday, industry mascot Ivor Goodsite visited the school to teach pupils at the school encouraging safety around the construction site. Ivor is a character developed by the Considerate Constructors Scheme to engage with young audiences on safety and the dangers of construction sites.

The buildings being demolished are four huts that stand in the school playground. Originally built to be temporary classrooms, they have stood on the site since 1962 and are no longer fit for purpose.

The project will provide a modern, single-storey building that aesthetically matches those surrounding it so it meets both Dartmoor National Park and conservation area parameters.

It is intended to complete the building work by the start of 2016.

Headteacher Heather Poustie said the building work was going very well and on schedule for the first phase to be completed and ready for use at the start of the new school year.

She said: 'The underfloor heating is now in, the wiring for the new state-of-the-art Promethian flatscreen interactive board are in and the colours for the rooms have been chosen.

'We have been impressed and surprised by the size of all the rooms and how light and airy inside they are even during this stage of construction. The classrooms will have fantastic natural lighting and it is all very exciting because of the extra space this will give us.

'An added bonus is that the local authority has agreed to refurbish the current school hall into a new classroom which is something we thought we would have to do so that is some great additional news.

'The first phase should be completed by the end of this term and we should be moved into the first part of the new build in August for the start of the new school year.'