Caretaker sweeps aside the opposition in competition

Caretaker of the year, Polegate school. John Murrell
Caretaker of the year, Polegate school. John Murrell

A primary school worker in Polegate has swept aside the competition to be crowned the county’s top caretaker.

John Murrell of Polegate Primary School scooped the coveted East Sussex School Caretaker of the Year accolade.

Schools across the county were asked to nominate their caretaker and say why they should win the award.

Mr Murell was picked by Matt Dunkley, county council’s director of Children’s Services.

He was presented with his trophy at a special ceremony at the caretakers’ annual meeting this week.

Mr Murrell was described as “outstanding” and someone “who really doesn’t know the words `can’t be done’” by the school’s business manager, Ivy Scarborough, who nominated him. His nomination was also supported by pupils.

Cllr Nick Bennett, East Sussex County Council’s lead member for Learning and School Effectiveness, said: “The effectiveness of a school depends on many things, but it is certainly vitally important that a school is safe, warm and clean - a place where pupils and teachers can teach and learn.”

He added: “We hold this competition every year and I’m always delighted to hear how our school caretakers, often unsung heroes, really go the extra mile and make a major contribution to the running of our schools.

“Schools appreciate their caretakers and this award is about making sure they get the County Council’s thanks too.”