Sadly, one hot February night in 1944, everything Ma and Pa had worked for, for years was burnt to ashes.
The entire school, with the exception of the Chapel was burnt to the ground. Italian prisoners of war helped to rebuild the new school.
The Phoenix symbol of St Andrew’s, Turi represents the new school rising out of the ashes of the old, in memory of the fire that broke out at the School on 29th February, 1944.
The School was destroyed but the spirit of its founders remained unshaken and this enabled them to cope with the aftermath of tragedy and rebuild a bigger and better school.
Pa Lavers managed the rebuild of the School with the help of a number of well wishers. He employed Italian Prisoners of War- many of them who were skilled artisans. The construction journey was not one free of bumps and obstructions but both the Lavers’ and the builders’ resilience and certainly the Grace of God saw them through.
“…. and when it was finally finished and we looked round at everything that was done, there really was a perfection there that we had never even dared to dream about… it was all exactly as the Lord gave us in the plan in the sand pit right at the very beginning before there was anything there after the fire.” -Pa Lavers
The earthquake-proof Baden-Powell Hall is a testament to the skills and effort of all those who saw the construction to completion. Since then there have been numerous additions to the school with new classes, boarding houses and staff quarters built to accommodate the considerably large Turi Family.