04 Dec 2021

Mountmellick school's French holiday hit by Storm Emma

Mountmellick school's French holiday hit by Storm Emma

Snow falling in Mountmellick on March 1. Photo Denis Byrne

There were disappointed teenagers but relieved parents in Mountmellick last weekend, when Mountmellick Community School's Paris tour was cancelled over Storm Emma.

The five day trip was due to depart Mountmellick for Dublin Airport on Friday night into Saturday morning, when the country was under the freezing grip of snow. There were 62 second year students and seven school staff packed and ready to go.

It was to be an action packed trip, visiting all the sights and taking in Disneyland Paris. Up to Friday afternoon, the trip was still on.

It was touch and go on Friday, Principal Larry Curtin told the Leinster Express. 

"We had a hectic afternoon on Friday, on the phone to the all usual sources to try and get snow ploughs and salt gritters out so we could get to the airport. The flight was still running then and the accommodation was available, so we had to have our plans in place to get the kids to the airport safely," he said.

Later on Friday the flight was finally cancelled by airport authorities.  

"There was a large number of disappointed students, but a significant number of relieved parents," he said. 

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Mr Curtin said that the annual trip will be rescheduled.

"They are all thrilled that it will be rescheduled. It will be something to look forward to. We are awaiting an update from the tour company," he said.

The school on the main street in Mountmellick, was one of the few in Laois to open last Wednesday morning, with many of its students and staff making it in.

"We closed at lunchtime as the weather worsened. We stayed closed on Thursday and Friday and we are all back to normal now," the principal said.

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