School gets a face-lift over half term holiday

120556_REVAMP_16/2/12''(l-r) Adrain Moore (Southen Electric), Julie Rimington (business manger Fernhurst School), Jade Tisson (Southen Electric), Stuart McLaughlin (Southen Electric), Sian Healey (Southen Electric) and Alison Murphy (Southen Electric). ''Staff from Southern Electric in Havant painting the toilets at Fernhurst Junior School, Southsea. ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (120556-146)

120556_REVAMP_16/2/12''(l-r) Adrain Moore (Southen Electric), Julie Rimington (business manger Fernhurst School), Jade Tisson (Southen Electric), Stuart McLaughlin (Southen Electric), Sian Healey (Southen Electric) and Alison Murphy (Southen Electric). ''Staff from Southern Electric in Havant painting the toilets at Fernhurst Junior School, Southsea. ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (120556-146)

Supervisor Emily Moore, left, and deputy supervisor Becky Lansley, back right, with children from Hambledon Pre-School getting ready for their Muddy Puddle Walk for Save the Children

Tots are getting ready to splash in muddy puddles

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THERE’S nothing bog standard about this refurbishment.

A tireless team, led by mum-of-one Alison Murphy, have transformed a school’s toilet block from dingy to dazzling.

Over four days a team of 48 employees from Southern Electric’s call centre in Havant have rolled up their sleeves and got to work revamping the toilet block at Fernhurst Junior School, in Francis Avenue, Southsea.

Gone are the tired-looking walls, replaced now with bright colours, mirrors and pictures.

The idea came after Mrs Murphy, who works at Southern Electric and whose 10-year-old son Luke attends the school, was reading the school newsletter.

She said: ‘They were asking for volunteers to help with the toilet area.

‘I thought it was something our company could get involved with.

‘My team was looking for something we could do for a community project.’

Mrs Murphy admitted she was daunted when she first saw the scale of the work that needed doing.

She said: ‘It was a bigger job than I thought it was going to be.

‘The preparation work was really hard-going.

‘The sanding down was very physical because there was a lot of it.

‘The painting was difficult too because you had to get down behind the pipes, but nothing compared to the sanding!’

Morale was kept high among the team by regular sing-a-longs to the radio.

And four days of hard work certainly paid dividends.

‘It was all pale blue before, now it’s so bright,’ said the 38-year-old, who lives in Stanley Street, Southsea.

‘The boys’ toilets are now a royal blue and the girls’ purple and lilac.

‘The kids are really looking forward to coming back after half term to see what we have done.’

She said that despite the gruelling nature of the work, it made a refreshing change to being in the office.

‘It’s been lovely,’ added Mrs Murphy.

‘It’s given people a chance to do something completely different and it’s been good from a team building point of view.’

Julie Rimington, school business manager, said: ‘We were keen to improve the toilets to cheer them up for the children and encourage them to take pride in their school.

‘This project was an excellent way to do this.

‘We are very grateful to Alison Murphy.’

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