A double-decker bus converted into a learning hub is the centrepiece of an exciting community project at St Michael’s Catholic Primary School in Widnes.

The newly opened Learning Hub and Garden of Health and Wellbeing is used by pupils, staff, families and the local community.

The bus, donated by Widnes Coaches, has been transformed into a great place for the children to work and socialise with each other and their families. It is available for members of the community to access various organisations and information, such as Halton Healthy Schools, Adult Learning, and mental health.

Features of the Garden of Health and Wellbeing include wicker sculptures, bird houses, spaces for relaxation and reflection, and a fitness trail.

The project was planned, designed and implemented in partnership with multi-national construction company, Laing O’Rourke, and Everton in the Community, with help from a number of other local businesses and organisations. Mick O’Carroll, Construction Manager at Laing O’Rourke and a parent of a St Michael’s pupil, co-ordinated the whole project.

Funding included grants from Halton Borough Council’s Local Area Forum and the Archdiocese of Liverpool.

The project took three years to complete, work continued during the pandemic, and many volunteer hours were given by the partners.

Headteacher, Paul Loughran, says: “We are so grateful for the help, support and dedication from our contributors, without whom we could not have achieved this amazing addition to our school.

“We now have an exciting and innovative learning environment that we’re extremely proud of. It brings the school and community together and provides a lasting legacy for many more children in the future.”