PAGEANT - "Education is the future"
Hilary Emery Nursery School
Hilary Emery Nursery School started out as JJT Nursery School in Talinding, Serrekunda a few km from central Banjul. From 2005 on, Pageant member Aris Harrison-Price coordinated assistance given to the JTT Nursery school by Nuneaton Lions Club, Ashby Castle Rotary Club, Coleman Primary School and other organisations in the Leicester area. The story of the school up to this point is covered by our. In 2010 the African Oyster Trust built a new school on a new site, and the school changed its name to the Hilary Emery Nursery School. Links on this page cover the story of both schools. You can also find further information on .
April 2010 - A new school!
Up to this point, Aris Harrison-Price had coordinated fundraising at JTT Nursery School. Now Lady Kira Dalton and the African Oyster Trust took over this role.
Kira Dalton had met with the Mayor of Talinding to discuss the possibility of moving to a new school building. She then located a suitable site and negotiated the rental of some land. There would be three good sized, separate classrooms plus washing and toilet facilities. Also a partially constructed building on site, would be completed to create a home for the Headteacher, and safe storage for school equipment. The new building would be named after the late Hilary Emery, as donations in her memory funded the new building.
Building work has started, and the school hoped to move in for the new academic year in the autumn. The photos below show the overcrowded conditions in the old JTT Nursery School, and the first stages of the building work.
early May 2010 Update - Building Progress
Kira Dalton has just sent us the latest photos of the building work at the new school. The intention is to rename it the Hilary Emery School when it reopens on its new site:
"Great news to report is that the builders have got on incredibly well with the work while I've been in UK. In just five weeks they have completed all of the blockwork and nearly done the plastering too! The soakaway (cesspit) for the toilets has been dug and is being blocked today. Next week, we will be putting the roof together - and then it is just painting and decorating etc.
Most certainly, all will be completed before I go back to UK in June just before the rainy season. All is on target for the new 'Hilary Emery' school to open in September. Needless to say Janko, Natoma and the kids are over the moon."
late May 2010 Update - Building work nears completion
They are making great progress with the building work for the new school. The soakaway is done, the roof rafters are all in place and fitting the corrugated sheets has started, and should only take a couple of days. After that, doors and windows will be installed.
These later photos show the roof nearly done, doors and windows fitted, and toilets built. All of the classrooms have been plastered.
...and the final photos show the roof completed and some of the local kids checking up on progress.
The new school just needs painting and furnishing and will be ready to open after the summer holidays with its new name.
September 2010 - New School Opens
The team of builders led by master builder Modou, had quickly built a splendid new school, with three good sized classrooms, toilets, washing facilities, office and storeroom, together with accommodation for headmaster Janko.
Pageant and Aris still continue to help the new school in collaboration with the African Oyster Trust. Pageant has contributed a shipment of donated classroom furniture, which means that all three classrooms were ready for the start of the new term. However, we still need to continue fundraising for classroom equipment and educational supplies.
The new school opened for the 2010 Autumn term, fully enrolled with 105 children and all is going well. The youngest class (ages 3 to 4) are on mats until the Pageant furniture arrives but that is ideal for playing with Lego etc.
The school was officially opened by Steve Emery (Hilary's widower) in December 2010, with an opening party for the alkalo (elected village chief), parents and children.
The new buildings have given the school a flying start, and for the first time, all 130 or so pupils could be accommodated properly. However, the school is still short of vital classroom equipment and educational supplies. If you can help in any way or require further information, please