A Furness school had big plans for its 400th birthday in 2008.

Ireleth St Peter’s C of E School wanted the community to help it celebrate its 400th anniversary in style.

The foundations of the village primary were established in 1608 when King James I was on the throne, making it one of the oldest schools in the country.

Pupils and staff were planning to have a special week of events in June.

Headteacher Janine Pierce was appealing for the community to work with the children and staff as they researched the school’s history.

They also hoped ex-pupils would share memories from their school days and dig out old photographs and items connected to the Kirkby Road school.

Mrs Pierce wanted to organise a garden party, where pupils would dress in clothes similar to those worn in 1608 and perform dances through the ages.

Ireleth St Peter’s was endowed by landowner Giles Brownrig.

The original school was on Sun Street, opposite the Old Parsonage.

A plaque from the original school was displayed in the entrance hall of the current school.

The plaque read: “Giles Brownrig caused this schol house to be builded the 6 yeare of King James ano 1608 and gave a yearly salari to the schole maister for ever.”

The Kirkby Road site was built upon in 1862 and the building was extended in 1962 and 2001.

The date 1608 was part of the school’s logo, which featured on the pupils’ uniform.

The school had a number of historic log books, which pupils had been looking through.

Mrs Pierce said: “We really want this to be community celebration and not just a school thing.

“The pupils are really looking forward to the events because it’s realistic, it’s not learning about the past from text books. Some of the pupils have parents, grandparents and great grandparents who came to this school.

“We’d like to have a garden party in June with a big birthday cake.”