Academy named after city benefactor scales new heights

A TOPPING out ceremony will be held tomorrow to mark a landmark stage in the development of a new secondary school in Hull.

The £25m Thomas Ferens Academy - named after the philanthropist who helped form the city’s university and one of its most successful companies - is nearing completion on Princess Elizabeth playing fields and will open to students in September 2012.

The academy, which replaces Sir Henry Cooper secondary, is the last to be built under the city’s £380m Building Schools for the Future programme.

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Ferens, a former Hull MP who was one of the founders of household goods manufacturer Reckitt Benckiser, donated £250,000 to establish the university, which will be the academy’s lead sponsor.

Principal-designate Juliet Strang said: “There is a certain gravitas that comes with the name Thomas Ferens because he was so well liked and respected. He was a successful businessman who wanted to make a difference to the world and I am keen for children at the new Academy to learn about this great man.

“The dove of peace and the torch of learning are important symbols on which to build our ethos - citizenship and respect will be integral to the Thomas Ferens Academy.”