Friends Matilda Alexander and Esmee Fox, aged 10, have reacted to the fire at St Edmunds RC Primary School in this video.
The pair, who are pupils at South Lee School, were at Matilda’s house, in nearby Friar’s Lane, when they saw smoke billowing past the window.
An outdoor classroom built at the back of the school, in Westgate Street, at a cost of £60,000 to £70,000 after a lengthy community fund-raising project was completely destroyed in a suspected arson attack this evening.
Matilda’s mum Charlotte said: “It looked like there had been a bomb.
“It’s absolutely terrible - someone’s given it absolutely no regard at all for other people’s efforts.”
Pictures courtesy of John Hughes.