PARENTS, teachers and residents of Bellingham have appealed to a government schools adjudicator to keep its middle school open.

At a public meeting last Friday, schools adjudicator Tom Brooke heard about the impact the school’s closure would have on children’s travel arrangements and the local economy.

The deadline for parents to choose where to send their children to school next year is October 31, however Mr Brooke said he could not put a timescale on when he would make his decision, leaving parents in limbo.

Tom Chadwin, a parent from Bellingham, is looking at schools in the area for his youngest son.

“I really feel for other parents because they want to show loyalty to Bellingham Middle School, but by the end of the month are going to have to make a decision regardless,” he said.

During his visit, Mr Brooke

experienced the increased

journey time pupils face, to get a better understanding of the situation.

“We are all pinning our hopes on him to make a decision that favours and protects our local community,,” Mr Chadwin said.