Rugby legend John Bentley recently paid a visit to Thornhill Community Academy in order to officially open the refurbished autistic spectrum condition resourced provision.
The centre benefitted from a generous grant of £25,000 from the Wooden Spoon charity.
This has enabled the academy to carry out major refurbishment work which has seen the redecoration of the building and the installation of much-needed specialist equipment.
Mr Bentley, who comes from Yorkshire, is an honorary president of the Yorkshire region of the children’s charity Wooden Spoon.
The charity aims to positively transform the lives of children and young people with a disability or facing disadvantage across the UK and Ireland through the power of rugby.
Mr Bentley spoke to the students about the value of having such facilities and said he is “delighted that money raised regionally is spent regionally”.
New state-of-the-art facilities include a chillout room complete with an illuminated ball pool and a restorative room.
There is also a sensory room with an interactive sensory floor mat, glowing bubble wall and disco ball.
A brand new kitchen enables students to develop life skills and there’s also a new communal area.
Headteacher Bev Matthews said: “The building was previously not fit for purpose but it is now amazing following the transformation.”
She went to thank the Wooden Spoon charity on behalf of the academy who has made the work possible.
She added: “This facility will transform the life of the students who use it.”