Elmgrove Primary School

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Elmgrove Primary School
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Motto Have the courage to do what you know is right
Principal Mrs Jayne Jeffers BEd(Hons) PQH(NI)
Colour(s) Green and Red

Elmgrove Primary School (Sometimes referred to as simply Elmgrove and originally known as Elmgrove Elementary School) is a large Primary School in Belfast, Northern Ireland. It opened in 1932 as Elmgrove Elementary School.[1][2][3][4][5] In 2008 Elmgrove celebrated its 75th anniversary. Special medals made from Mambco, were given to all the pupils. Special balloons were also present and two students from each year group got a balloon and released it into the air with a note attached saying that, when found, contact the school, to see how far the balloon travelled. The farthest known distance was to Scotland.


Elmgrove opened in 1932/3 as Elmgrove Elementary School. Pupils from near-by schools were all moved into Elmgrove. Several famous/well known people from Belfast attended the school. In 2008 Peter Robinson visited the school and several P7 pupils got to ask him questions about his childhood and career.[6] In 2009 Henry Winkler (The Fonz) visited the school to talk about reading books and his new book.[7][8][9] During Elections, the school is used as a polling station.[10]

2012 Bomb scares[edit]

12 March[edit]

On 12 March 2012, a pipe bomb was left yards from the school gates in the street opposite, Flora Street. Homes around the area where evacuated and so was Elmgrove and near-by Avoniel Primary School, due to the close proximity of the bomb.[11]

13 March[edit]

On 13 March 2012, another pipe bomb was found in the area, near the Conn O'Neill bridge on the opposite side of the road where the other bomb had been found the day before.[12]

2015 Malicious Threat[edit]

On 21 January 2015, an e-mail was sent to the school which prompted the school to close on 23 January for the safety of those working and attending the school. However, despite the fact the threat was reported to the PSNI on Wednesday, the public had not been notified until Thursday evening. Throughout the evening and night of 22 January, police patrols were set up in the area.[13][14] Police stated they were working with An Garda Síochána. Later on that night a 33-year-old man was arrested under suspicion of sending 'malicious telecommunications'.


  • John Sullivan 1932–1948[15]
  • Arthur Clemitson 1948–1972[16]
  • Dr Jim Hunter 1972-1995/1996[17]
  • Frazer Thompson 1995/1996-2000[18]
  • David Hutchinson 2000–2011 (his death, 11 August 2011)[19][20][21][22]
  • Andrea Brown 2011–2013 (Acting)
  • Jayne Jeffers April 2013 – present

Former Pupils[edit]


Out of this World[edit]

In 2006, pupils from Elmgrove took part in a new CCEA teaching resource called Out of this World. They were joined with St. Teresa's Primary School for the activity. Pupils made different objects with recycled materials.[32][33]

Connswater Community Greenway Project[edit]

Elmgrove has been involved with the local project to refurbish the local walkway and river next to the school. Over the years, the Conn O'Neill bridge and river near-by has been vandalised.[34] The school has represented the project several times, first on 14 November 2007[35] and the second on 24 October 2008.[36]

Over the Halfpenny Bridge[edit]

In 2009, Elmgrove stated that a new production was in the works with Dance United NI. The show was later named Over the Halfpenny Bridge. It was about the History of Belfast and starred the P7 pupils of that year, and Elderly members from near-by nursing homes, Elmgrove Manor and Greenville Court. 'I am staggered by the range and the quality of what has been produced this evening,' said school principal David Hutchinson. 'The children have acquired so many new skills by working with this terrific company and, through them, all of our minds have been opened.' The children worked with Writer Ruth Carr, Rastafarian poet Levi Tafari, print maker Robin Cordiner, musicians Nikki Such, Patrick and Bronagh Davey and Irish, Greek and Indian dancers. On 2 April 2009, the show was performed live in St George's Market, Belfast.[37][38]

Eco-Schools Programme[edit]

Since 2009, the school has taken part in an Eco programme to make the school more eco-friendly.The School has Recently won the Green Flag Award[39]

Sesame Tree[edit]

In 2010, P2 pupils from the school starred in a T.V series that aired on CBeebies called Sesame Tree, Northern Ireland's version of Sesame Street.[40]


  1. ^ Opening of Elmgrove
  2. ^ Opening of Elmgrove
  3. ^ Opening of Elmgrove
  4. ^ Elmgrove PS – Our School
  5. ^ Elmgrove PS – About Elmgrove
  6. ^ Day Peter was pushed around when he met UK establishment ; ASSEMBLY NOTES – Belfast Telegraph | HighBeam Research
  7. ^ The Independent – Print Article
  8. ^ The Fonz gives local pupils a happy day – News, East Belfast – Belfasttelegraph.co.uk
  9. ^ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/east-belfast/ayyy-happy-days-for-local-pupils-14314831.html
  10. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/politics/gallery/2010/may/06/general-election-2010-conservatives#/?picture=362280690&index=8
  11. ^ http://www.u.tv/news/School-evacuated-as-viable-device-found/eb178cf8-e34b-448e-bd6b-ec1ae597af00
  12. ^ http://www.u.tv/News/Bomb-squad-at-east-Belfast-alert/21d207b1-7b54-4da3-b12b-d0b8ca6d2867
  13. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-30943953
  14. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-30943953
  15. ^ Mr. John Sullivan
  16. ^ Mr. Arthur L. Clemitson
  17. ^ Dr. Hunter
  18. ^ Mr. Thompson's Retirement
  19. ^ R.I.P David Hutchinson | Facebook
  20. ^ Ulster school principal dies after ladder accident – Northern Ireland, Local & National – Belfasttelegraph.co.uk
  21. ^ Seaview Primary School Homepage
  22. ^ Ulster Principal Dies Following a Ladder Accident | BigDug News
  23. ^ Billy Bingham
  24. ^ Elmgrove 1940s Football Team Presentation
  25. ^ Untitled Document
  26. ^ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/east-belfast/163235m-lottery-cash-boost-for-connswater-13889694.html
  27. ^ Lord Mayor's Visit
  28. ^ Picture of Girl and Boy in Uniform
  29. ^ https://twitter.com/WEE_CHR1S
  30. ^ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/east-belfast/163235m-lottery-cash-boost-for-connswater-13889694.html?action=Popup&gallery=no
  31. ^ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/east-belfast/163235m-lottery-cash-boost-for-connswater-13889694.html
  32. ^ http://www.rewardinglearning.org.uk/newsroom/2006/031106.asp
  33. ^ http://www.rewardinglearning.org.uk/newsroom/press/2006/press_031106.asp
  34. ^ Connswater Community Greenway – Home
  35. ^ Connswater Community Greenway – News
  36. ^ Connswater Community Greenway – News
  37. ^ Closing the Gap « Dance United
  38. ^ Dance United NI
  39. ^ http://www.eco-schoolsni.org/news.aspx?dataid=431384
  40. ^ http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/east-belfast/news/elmgrove-children-branch-out-into-new-sesame-tree-14886102.html?r=RSS

Coordinates: 54°35′29″N 5°53′29″W / 54.5913°N 5.8914°W / 54.5913; -5.8914