New buddy benches are 'fantastic addition' to Bognor primary school

'Buddy benches' at a Bognor Regis primary school give new students a chance to sit down and make friends.

Friday, 1st October 2021, 10:32 am
Updated Friday, 1st October 2021, 11:15 am

The brightly coloured benches, which are situated in the school playground, were first unveiled last week. They are designed to give students who feel shy or nervous in their first weeks of school a safe space to sit and talk to others during break times.

Especially pleased to see the new benches was former pupil Nathan Tilley, who helped raise money for them before leaving last year. Now at secondary school, he spent his last year at Southway participating in a bake sale and embarking on an 11 mile bike ride to Bosham Quay.

All that hard work raised more than £1,000 to buy eight benches for the school playground, making Southway more welcoming to everyone.

Former student Nathan with the buddy benches for which he helped raise money

Mike Wood, head teacher at Southway Primary School, called the buddy benches "a fantastic addition to our playground.

"As well as brightening up the space, they have given our newest pupils in particular a place to sit and make new friends. Starting a new school can be daunting and so it has been great to have these benches to help new pupils settle in as quickly as possible.

"We were so pleased to welcome Nathan back so he could see for himself the new benches he raised money for," Mr Wood added. "Without Nathan's hard work and determination, we wouldn't have these benches, which really do make a difference to some of our pupils' playground experience. We wish him all the best as he starts the next chapter of his education at The Regis School."

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