Teesside mum-of-four launches dream beach school and nursery in colourful seaside huts

Seaton Carew beach huts
-Credit: (Image: Teessidelive)

Shonette Bason's dream of running a beach school and nursery from vibrant seaside huts has been given the green light.

The Wynyard resident has developed a "very unique programme" which involves bringing kids to the beach to augment their education with outdoor learning experiences. The mum-of-four had targeted the vacant huts in Seaton Carew, winning the tender for them "before Christmas", as a base.

Yet, she recently expressed her frustration regarding the absence of feedback from Hartlepool Council concerning her queries about requirements for launching her project. After more discussions with the council, the dedicated teacher has reached an agreement with the local authority, enabling her to operate the beach school and nursery from the huts.

An initial three-month "trial period" is in place, and they've consented to continue allowing the public to rent the beach huts, with someone present on-site "everyday through to September" to assist visitors. Ms Bason, who boasts a teaching career spanning 30 years and international recognition for her innovative approaches, expressed: "I'm super excited. It's just going to be brimming, teeming with life."

"It can be a facility that brings vibrancy and brings a bit more life back to that part of the seafront. I think it's just going to make a huge difference to lots and lots of children in the North East."

The 51-year-old revealed that they have already scheduled several school visits for June and July, while also offering spots to children from deprived areas to provide them with "a valuable experience they wouldn't otherwise have". The first beach school sessions took place during the May half-term, from Tuesday, May 28, to Friday, May 31, with approximately 30 children participating each day.

Kieran Bostock, Hartlepool Council's assistant director for neighbourhood services, said: "We are delighted to see the beach huts come back into use for what should be a fantastic venture. It's a marvellous opportunity for children across the borough to make the most of our stunning Seaside Award-winning beach, but also retaining the option for the public to hire the huts. We wish Ms Bason well with her project and will be keeping in contact to see how it's progressing over the summer."