A LEGAL challenge to save a school from closure has failed.

Ysgol Pontfadog in the Ceiriog Valley has been listed to close by Wrexham Council, as they look to consolidate the Ceiriog Valley Federation from three schools down to two.

The three schools that make up the Ceiriog Valley Federation consist of an English medium school in Ysgol Pontfadog, Welsh medium in Ysgol Llanarmon and a dual stream school at Ysgol Cyddelw.

Ysgol Pontfadog took its last intake of pupils last September and will close its doors for good this summer.

Wrexham Council say the reason for closure is to save money due to dwindling pupil numbers.

Campaigners launched a last ditch legal challenge to keep the school open, but despite a four-and-a-half hour hearing in Cardiff, the challenge was unsuccessful.

A statement posted on the 'Parents and Friends of Pontfadog' Facebook page, read: "On the February 28 myself, as the claimant, my partner John, my mum and dad and my barrister attended an oral hearing in Cardiff Crown Court as requested by a judge to consider our application for an extension of time for the judicial review application and an interim relief order. We had also requested from the court permission to apply for a judicial review and a protective costs order.

"The hearing was only scheduled to last two hours but the judge cancelled his appointments back in London to hear our case properly as he could see how much this meant not only to us the parents and our child but to everyone else affected. In total the hearing lasted over 4.5 hours.

"We are really sorry and sad to say we were not granted an extension of time so the other applications were also refused. The judge believed our application was out of time and provisions have already been set in place as regards to redundancies, redeployment and school admissions which is too late to be reversed.

"The judge did comment that as parents during the hearing we conducted ourselves with dignity and we should hold our heads up high which is what we have done, not only for our son but for the community and wished our son all the best in his future education.

"We would like to thank you, everyone who backed us in this last fight to save our school. It was an extremely tough day but we did not give up without a fight.

"At the end we were given a costs order of over £6,000 from Wrexham Council but with the help of my barrister that has been reduced to £1,200 and the judge has allowed us four months to pay it instead of the usual 21 days. It was not the ending we had hoped for but the judge felt that the costs that Wrexham Council had submitted were unjustified.

Cllr Phil Wynn, lead member for education, said: “Whilst it gave me no pleasure to sanction the closure of Ysgol Pontfadog, I believe the decision was the right one to make to ensure the sustainability of primary school education for all children living in the Glyn Ceiriog Valley.

“WCBC has incurred costs in excess of £6,000 to contest the court case held in Cardiff, which is rate-payer money I would have preferred to of seen spent on front-line services.

“Myself and the leader of the council met with Glyntraian Community Councillors some weeks ago to reiterate our commitment to working with them to deliver an acceptable use for the school site, once it becomes vacant. That offer still stands.”