Your chance to say a final farewell to 'Granby' school before it is demolished

Harrogate High School

Harrogate High School

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Harrogate High School, still known to many as ‘Granby’, will throw its doors open to the public one last time on Saturday October 22.

The school has been completely rebuilt on the same site and the new buildings are due to open in February 2017, after which the existing school will be demolished.

Aware that many people from Harrogate and beyond hold fond memories of their time at ‘Granby’ either as students or staff, the school is organising an event to welcome them back through the gates.

It will be a chance to meet old friends and colleagues and to relive school days one last time. The event, titled “Goodbye Granby”, will begin with a welcome from the current head, Ann Francis. Guests will be able to tour the school and remember all the things they got up to in their younger years. The school bell will ring and everyone will be invited into the dining room for a school dinner.

Sally Cocker, who is organising the event, said: "Guests needn’t be worried about the quality of the food; what we serve our students now is nothing like the school meals I had in the 70s and 80s. We’ve come a long way since then and the lunch we’ll be serving will be delicious. We have gone for an ‘old school’ theme though and have even managed to find some battered metal baking tins and jugs to serve the chocolate sponge and custard in.”

There will also be a museum of memorabilia including many items found in cupboards while the school has tidied up ready for the move.

Mrs Cocker said: “We’re still looking for items of interest such as photos, uniform or books from the ‘old days’ at Harrogate High or Granby High. If any readers have anything they’d be willing to lend us that would bring back memories for others, we’d be very grateful to receive them. We’d also welcome anecdotes of people’s school days here.”

Harrogate High School first opened in 1963 and later joined with the adjacent Granby Park Secondary School to form Harrogate Granby High School under the headship of Mr Kimber.

The name reverted to Harrogate High just over ten years ago and in 2012 the school became an academy school independent of the local authority.

Miss Francis, who has taught at the school since 1985, said: “It’s sad to think that these buildings have come to the end of their lives as they hold so many memories for so many people. When I started here on a two-term contract, I never imagined that one day I’d be the head teacher seeing people whom I taught now bringing their own children here.

"It’s been fascinating watching the brand new school take shape and obviously we’re tremendously excited at the prospect of moving into a lovely new learning environment but at the same time sad to see the original school go.”

The event will raise much-needed funds for teaching and computer equipment for the new school.

For more information about the event, and to share your memories and memorabilia, email goodbyegranby@harrogatehighschool.co.uk.