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Festive surprise for Portway infants

This morning (30th November) the children at Portway infants were in for a treat when they walked into school to find the fantastic winter wonderland trail leading to their classrooms.

Portway Infants went out of their way to bring Christmas joy back to their lives playing Christmas music. Ella Palmer said “It’s fantastic! Such a lovely surprise after a truly rubbish year. The children are excited and everyone is smiling. A huge thank you to Portway infant school”

It was a superb effort to bring the “magic” of Christmas to the children after such a difficult year.

Chole Cotton the founder of Trainmaster said “Through the first lockdown they [Portway Infants] put work up every week, they made lots of videos and they started a private Facebook group so the teachers could comment on pictures and videos of the kids work. Everything I put in that group would get at least one school adult commenting and it really motivated the children.

“They then did weekly competitions, they would pick lots of winners and drop presents and certificates to the door. Then they filled the school with balloons on the first day back to help ease the kids back. Today we arrive to Christmas music and the school site having been turned into a grotto. They really have gone above and beyond for the kids and deserve some recognition for it. The PTA, volunteers and staff work so hard.”

Parents as well as children were just as surprised and has really made their morning one parent said “Just want to say a huge ‘THANK YOU!’ to everyone staff and parents who helped transform the school into a Christmassy Wonderland for the children. It was such a joy to walk into school this morning, Christmas songs playing, classrooms and outdoor areas decorated, all the HUGE inflatable Christmas characters and to see the smiles and excitement on the children’s faces was amazing! I will admit I had a little tear in my eye, after the year we have had and the uncertainty our children have faced this year, it felt so nice to have some normality for them and be able to do something special and celebrate the up coming festivities. THANK YOU!!

Sara Allen, Headteacher at Portway Infants told Andover Radio 95.9fm “We want our children to have only happy memories of Christmas this year and to see their happy, excited faces as they arrived on Monday morning was an absolute joy. Creating the Christmas Wonderland was a real team effort, we were inundated with offers of help to make the decorations from our wonderful parents and grandparents and we couldn’t be more grateful! It has been lovely to hear that together we’ve been able to lift everyone’s spirits and have brought some early festive cheer to our whole school community.”

Local photographer Charlotte Cohen said “It made me quite emotional. Just knowing how much upheaval all the children have had this year, and how brilliantly they have coped, this is just fab. Well done to all the staff, the display is a credit to a wonderful school.”

If you took photos of your little ones enjoying the spectacular display please email them to

See photos below