GURU Nanak Sikh Academy celebrated the opening of a new £20million school building, bringing its final phase of development to a close.
Esteemed guests including MPs John McDonnell (Labour, Hayes and Harlington) and Virendra Sharma (Labour, Ealing Southall) joined school governors, teachers and students for the formal opening of the Sant Baba Amar Singh Ji building, named after the founder and chairman of the Guru Nanak Sikh Schools, who also attended Wednesday's (October 12) ceremony.
Students from years seven, 10 and 11 performed a traditional 'Kirtan' - the Sikh tradition of chanting religious hymns - in the stunning brand new Gurdwara before the guest of honour, Attorney General Dominic Grieve QC (also Conservative MP for Beaconsfield) was specially welcomed at the Academy, in Springfield Road, Hayes.
He unveiled the commemorative plaque in the atrium which also contains a centrepiece globe sculpture, symbolic of the Guru Nanak Sikh Schools' international presence.
Mr Grieve said he was 'greatly honoured' to be opening the new site, and added: "This is a real community school that makes a positive contribution to life in this country, and produce fine young people working for the common good, and I am pleased that successive governments have supported it."
Mr McDonnell also gave a small speech, and said: "This is a historic occasion.
"So much has been achieved here in the past 19 years and it is now one of the best schools in Hillingdon and in the country, as well as being a terrific asset to the local community."
The new building features additional classrooms, a new place of worship and specialised teaching areas, including a motor vehicle training centre and classes equipped with equipment for the sciences and ICT.
Nearly 3000 children on the waiting list, and this latest expansion will enable the Academy to started accepting six forms of entry from this year. Around 1200 pupils are currently on the roll.
The opening marks the end of three building phases which started in 2000 and has cost £44 million, 10 per cent of which was raised by parents and the Sikh community.
Headteacher Rajinder Sandhu said: "This is the culmination of years of hard work and fundraising by the local community, and because of their close involvement throughout, everyone feels as if they have a stake. It is a school for the community, by the community, and we are looking forward to the future."
First opened in 1993, Guru Nanak was an independent school before becoming voluntarily-aided in 1999.
The school gained outstanding ratings across the board after its last Ofsted inspection in 2008, and it was fast-tracked to Academy status last November, with plans to incorporate the Primary School next September.