Ruby day for Brackenfield School

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Brackenfield School on Harrogate’s Duchy Road celebrated their 40th Anniversary recently.

Around 400 past and present Brackenfield families and staff enjoyed mingling and recounting their Brackenfield memories from the past 40 years.

Brackenfield was founded in 1977 by Margaret Sutcliffe. She grew her nursery due to the demand from families who wanted an independent school that focussed on the individual with traditional values and a strong family ethos.

The school continued to grow but in spite of waiting lists and demand for places, to maintain the high quality of education, Brackenfield remained with one form per year group with small classes of 22 pupils. Mrs Sutcliffe has since retired. Over the past nine years, the present owners Principal Anthony Commerford and Learning Support Teacher Helen Comerford have built on the foundations.

During the 40th Anniversary Day, guests enjoyed viewing a wide range of displays on the history of Brackenfield including a large amount of memorabilia.

They also had the opportunity to tour the school and view the classes enjoying a range of activities.

Over a buffet lunch, the Infant Choir performed a medley of songs from the Sound of Music while the Junior Choir sang their entries for the regional Music for Youth festival that included their Yorkshire Medley performed at the VIP opening event of the Tour de Yorkshire.

In his address, Anthony Comerford, Principal thanked previous Head teachers and Principals while Headteacher Pat Sowa echoed these sentiments recognising what a significant place Brackenfield has in Harrogate life.

Brackenfield’s founder, Mrs Sutcliffe unveiled a plaque to commemorate the school’s 40th anniversary and recalled stories from her 25 years as owner Head Teacher.

Mrs Sowa said: “I really do feel so privileged to be leading a school with such a strong heritage and I am so proud of all the Brackenfield pupils both past and present who make the school so special.”