‘What if it had happened earlier?’: Parents' horror as nursery roof collapses hours after children left for the day

16 June 2023, 15:07

Parents were horrified after learning of the nursery's collapse.
Parents were horrified after learning of the nursery's collapse. Picture: Twitter/Facebook

By Jenny Medlicott

The roof of a nursery which looks after some 40 children under the age of four spontaneously collapsed the same day they had been in the building.

Crossharbour Montessori Day Nursery in the Isle of Dogs, East London collapsed at 8:40pm on Thursday night.

It happened just hours after the children who attend the pre-school had left the for day. Nobody was injured in the incident as the building was empty at the time.

Photos of the roof show the foundations of the roof caved in, with the insides of the classrooms exposed.

One parent whose children attend the nursery shared her horrified reaction online: “My both kids go to this nursery. And we live in that building too. It's absolutely horrific what happened, thank God there was no one inside the nursery when it happened. Fire brigade and police are on site dealing with it.”

Another commenter added: “Don’t even want to think of what might of been if it was a few hours earlier. Thank god no one was hurt. Someone needs to answer some serious questions to this.”

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The nursery roof collapsed on Thursday evening.
The nursery roof collapsed on Thursday evening. Picture: Twitter/Facebook

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Many online also expressed a long-held concern about the safety of the building, as one said: “I have been worried about build quality for years - this is awful.”

Another said: “I live in this building and THC have no interest in its safety, residents have been complaining for years.”

Structural engineers are reportedly scheduled to attend the site to determine what went wrong.

Peter Golds, a councillor in the Isle of Dogs said while it was “fortunate” nobody was hurt, he expressed concern about the collapse, as he said: “What concerns me though is that this took place within a residential block.

“They must be worried so the council must look at their safety. The residents need to be absolutely secure in their homes.””

The director of the nursery, Harp Lakhan, told the Evening Standard: “I’m a little bit in shock, we have limited information. We’ve sent out a briefing to parents to say we’ve closed but once I’ve gathered some more information, I’ll be relaying that further to them.

“We’ve immediately told all the staff and obviously we’ll make sure they’re OK in terms of not to come in today and we’ll pay them, and we’ll also make sure parents and nobody else comes in.

“We just want to make sure all the processes are complete and absolutely everything is safe before we allow them back in.”

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