Northampton school will stay shut tomorrow over false-widow spider 'infestation'

A Northampton secondary school has told students to stay at home tomorrow due to an 'infestation' of false-widow spiders.

Thursday, 18th October 2018, 5:24 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th October 2018, 6:35 pm
An "infestation" of false widow spiders has been reported at a Northampton secondary school.
An "infestation" of false widow spiders has been reported at a Northampton secondary school.

Malcolm Arnold Academy, in Trinity Avenue, has cancelled school for nearly all of its 1,300 students while they clear out of the nesting arachnids.

The pupils were set to break up for half term tomorrow (October 19) - but they have instead been set homework for the missing day and told to come back after the break.

It comes after seven schools were closed in London earlier this month over an invasion by the common garden and house spider.

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Malcolm Arnold Academy has cancelled school tomorrow.

Nicola Koncarevic, head of school at Malcolm Arnold Academy, said: “Earlier today we let parents know that Malcolm Arnold Academy will be closed tomorrow to allow us to treat a false-widow spider infestation located in our secondary building’s technology centre.

"The steps being taken tomorrow will give us adequate time to resolve the issue ready for students returning after half-term.

"The health and safety of our students and colleagues is our key priority and our decision follows the advice of experts in this matter and parents have been very understanding. Given the size of our school, we are running a small Year 11 intervention class in a separate part of our secondary building tomorrow and have communicated to students’ parents about this.”

Although it is a cousin of the deadly black widow spider, the bite of the false-widow has been described as "more like a wasp sting" and they very rarely attack humans.