Children at a school in Winchmore Hill have a new set of wheels to drive around in.

The keys to a 17-seater minibus, which cost £31,000, were handed over to Highlands School, in Worlds End Lane, on Friday, following a donation from Enfield Borough Council’s Enfield residents priority fund.

It brings to an end the prospect of uncertain journeys for pupils, with one of the older minibuses constantly breaking down. Previously, replacement minibuses were hired to cover necessary trips.

The new vehicle can also accommodate people with disabilities.

Headteacher Bruce Goddard said: “The beauty of this minibus is that it's publicly funded and it will be used for the benefit of a wide variety of people within the local community."

The opportunity to use the minibus has already been seized by members of the Ruth Winston Centre.

Chris Rash, the centre’s chairman of trustees, said some of its 1,000 members continue to feel isolated and was in need of transportation to luncheon clubs and other social events.

Mr Rash said he hoped that those people could be picked up by the new minibus over the next few months, with plans to use it during the weekends and outside of term time.

Councillor Jon Kaye, who represents Highlands ward, also suggested that youth clubs could benefit from use of the bus.

Jayne Poole, chairman of the Highlands Parent and Friends Association (HPFA), said donations like this from the council were the result of the commitment of parents and the committee, though she said sustaining the current level of funding requires a great deal of effort.

This Saturday, the HPFA will host a comedy night at the school, one of three major fundraising events held during the course of the year.

For more information, email HPFA committee member Maria Zavros at