Sheffield students compete in woodland themed bake-off to raise money for schools new library

A group of Sheffield schoolchildren have competed in a woodland themed bake-off to raise funds for their new school library.

Friday, 22nd November 2019, 10:19 am
Updated Friday, 22nd November 2019, 12:59 pm
Carfield Primary Schools new woodland themed library, designed by parent and PTA treasurer Stuart Hutchinson

Carfield Primary School, in Meersbrook, is on a mission to reestablish its library with the help of its dedicated parent-teacher association, Carfield Friends, who will be helping raise funds for the refurbishment.

As part of the fundraising effort, children in Year 5 and 6 took part in a bake-off competition in which they were tasked with, somewhat independently, creating cakes to fit with the library's new woodland theme.

They were given the details a few weeks in advance so they had time to plan their bakes and were able to work in pairs to pool their creativity.

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A woodland themed cake baked to raise money for the library at Carfield Primary School

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Bake-off organiser and PTA committee member Sian Morrey said: “Carfield Primary School is refurbishing its school library and the PTA, Carfield Friends, is always looking for ways to fundraise for this. Our bake sales have always been popular and having witnessed my own childrens’ Junior Bake Off obsession, I decided it was time to let the schoolchildren do their own bake-off.

“As it was the first event of its kind, we had no idea how popular it would be, so on the day itself we were blown away to be greeted by nearly 60 elaborate, eye-catching bakes. A chocolatey aroma filled the hall and attracted a number of visitors, mostly small ones, who couldn't resist coming to admire the display.”

The day began by taking a photo of each bake, for which the school had the help from professional photographer and parent, Martin Hogg.

A woodland themed cake baked to raise money for the library at Carfield Primary School

After each of the cakes were judged, a special assembly was held to announce the winners and every participant received a certificate for taking part.

All of the cakes were then sold off in the school’s biggest bake sale, raising a total of £400.

“As a keen baker myself – and my own children being too young to enter – I was one of the judges,” Ms. Morrey added. “We also enlisted the help of Naomi Benoist, a former pastry chef who now works for a fine food company. After shortlisting the entries, we had the arduous task of tasting everything from squirrel biscuits to fondant mushrooms to chocolate logs to edible soil.

“The planning and detail that went into the bakes was incredible. Some children had even written explanations of their bakes, with several inspired by the environmental effects on nature. It was an absolute privilege to see what the children had produced, and it's clear we have some passionate and talented bakers at the school.”

A student added foxes to their cake for the bake-off competition at Carfield Primary School

At the moment the library is an underused storage room with hardly any books but a plan has been drawn up for the new 'indoor woodland library' - designed by parent and PTA treasurer Stuart Hutchinson – which will include 13 real silver birch trees and a campfire.

The new library will cost around £8,000 and the school has donated £2,000 towards the refurbish, with Mr Hutchinson raising a further £2,465 by completing a sponsored rock climbing challenge.

All the work will be completed by parents of friends of parents to cut down costs.