A SOUTHAMPTON pre-school classroom which burnt down after a “suspicious” fire has been rebuilt in just five days as local firms, charities and neighbours rallied together.

The outdoor building, at Brambles Pre-School on Byron Road, was partially gutted just before 7am on September 7, with fire crews and police officers rushing to the scene.

It was burning for about an hour before it was discovered, the school says, and the damage was significant enough to render it unusable and its contents ruined.

Hampshire police says the blaze is being treated as suspicious and officers are investigating.

Now, members of the community, rallied by charity Doing It For The Kids, The Veteran Centre and The Saints Pub, have come together to repair the classroom - as the pre-school doesn’t have enough funding to do it themselves.

Ruth Thomas, the manager of Brambles, said as a charity-funded school they initially had no funds to repair the facility and were looking at a minimum of three months in order to get The Acorn fit for use again.

However, the huge community effort led to the building being rebuilt and ready to use in just five days.

When asked about what the repair effort by the community meant to Ruth, she said “It means everything to get that classroom up and running. It would have been out for months”.

“I can’t put into words how thankful we are. The impact has been massive, I know for one of our children in particular, it will have a big positive impact on him”.

Tracy Cutler, a leading organiser of Doing It For The Kids, said she is proud of the work the charity has done and proud of the local community for pulling together.

Referring to the rapid repair of the classroom, Tracy said: “For it to happen in such a quick time, it takes your breath away”.

Although the classroom is useable again, there are still more repairs to be made and an online fundraiser is still active. You can donate to the fundraiser here.

Those with information about the incident can phone 101, quoting crime reference 44210357953.