Windows put school history in the frame

The memorial room window from the former Collegiate High School which is now being built into the new Aspire Academy buildings
The memorial room window from the former Collegiate High School which is now being built into the new Aspire Academy buildings
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Decades old stained glass windows commemorating the First World War are set to take pride of place in Blackpool’s new £14m school.

The five panels, originally created for Blackpool Grammar School in the 1920s, will be built into the new Aspire Academy building on Blackpool Old Road, the amalgamation of the former Bispham and Collegiate high schools.

Trustees of Blackpool Grammar School oversee the plans for the new build Aspire Academy, which will include five stained glass panels from the original school building - pictured is Glen Jackson, John Tasselli, Jack Quarmby, John Topping (back row) and Sylvia Prentice and Keith Bleazard (front)

Trustees of Blackpool Grammar School oversee the plans for the new build Aspire Academy, which will include five stained glass panels from the original school building - pictured is Glen Jackson, John Tasselli, Jack Quarmby, John Topping (back row) and Sylvia Prentice and Keith Bleazard (front)

Members of the Blackpool War Memorial Foundation have agreed to finance the costs of their reinstatement to be housed in the entrance hall of the new school.

The windows show Sir Galahad with the Latin motto ‘Meliora Sequamur’, which translates as ‘we strive for greater things’.

They were commissioned by the Rayner family, to commemorate pupils who gave their lives during the war, and later moved to the memorial room of Collegiate High School.

John Topping, deputy principal of Aspire Academy, said: “We are grateful to the trustees for their enthusiastic involvement in continuing this rich heritage

“We are excited to see our brand new Aspire Academy developing day by day.

“We had to make a decision fairly swiftly as to whether we could find the extra money to reinstate these wonderful windows in a significant location, so that all our students, staff and visitors could enjoy them on a daily basis.

“Historically, the windows were in the Collegiate Memorial Room and not readily accessed.

“Now everyone who walks through the entrance of our new academy will be able to enjoy these very old stained glass panels.”