Harold Hill school locked down by police

Headmasters of Drapers' Academy, Darren Luckhurst. Picture: Adriana Elgueta

Principal of Drapers' Academy, Darren Luckhurst - Credit: Adriana Elgueta

Pupils and staff at a Harold Hill school were told by police to go into lockdown yesterday.

In a letter addressed to parents with children attending Drapers’ Academy yesterday (April 21), principal Darren Luckhurst said the school was asked by police to keep everyone in the building at 2.45pm.  

A spokesperson for the Met said officers were made aware of a man they described as having a mental health crisis in the Harold Hill area at around 1.30pm.  

Mr Luckhurst wrote: “Within minutes, we secured the school site, door and gates were locked, pupils doing PE were called inside and Sixth Formers data sampling on the Manor told to go home.”  

The school updated its website and social media platforms to keep parents and carers informed.  

After engaging with local schools to consider if children should be held back as a safety precaution at the end of the school day, police officers from East Area Command deemed the action unnecessary and children were released from school as usual.  

Mr Luckhurst said: “I am proud of my staff for acting so swiftly to ensure your children were kept safe.  

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“We are also fortunate to have such a great building that can be secured in a matter of minutes.”