Celebrating a “century “of Impact: Wooden Spoon Yorkshire opens its 100th project

Penny Fields School in Leeds meets the needs of learners with severe and complex needs from the ages of 2 to 19. It was the site for the 100th project opening for Wooden Spoon Yorkshire.

Richard Tully and Stuart Watson had first visited the school to discuss their application and could see immediately the benefit to the children in using a hydrotherapy pool enhanced by the sensory lights and equipment that Wooden Spoon funded. Alongside the educational benefits, it was also clear that this project would stir much needed smiles amongst the children. This was backed up when Bruce Allison carried out the second inspection visit as he was equally impressed with the plans. Unusually, this would be working alongside another charity, Physcap, who already had committed to refurbish the pool, and Wooden Spoon were pleased to step in to add the sensory equipment to complete the new hydrotherapy experience.

John Bentley is an outstanding ambassador for Wooden Spoon in Yorkshire and has done many of those 100 openings. Bentos was there again to cut the ribbon and declare the centre open on Friday 10 November. Hannah Duffey, the Head, had made the opening into a big occasion for the children as well as the 40 or so adults in the room. Some of the pupils were able to join us in the assembly hall. Others, for whom a large crowd may have been too difficult, joined via video link.

Those who were able to speak and brave enough to do so in front of a crowd, let us know how special the pool was to them. John’s speech mentioned the alarming possibility of he and the Head taking a dip in the pool but fortunately the water had not yet heated up sufficiently for any pupils or adults to use it, and Hannah kept a safe distance just in case!