AN ELLESMERE Port primary school is closed today due to a suspected norovirus outbreak.

A “deep clean” is currently underway at Childer Thornton School in New School Lane Ellesmere Port.

One parent said that up to 100 children had fallen ill from a “diarrhoea and vomiting bug” – symptoms of norovirus – this week.

A message was posted on the school's website and social media yesterday.

It reads: “Following expert advice from Public Health England and a visit from the local Infection Prevention Control Team today, SCHOOL WILL BE CLOSED ALL DAY TOMORROW. This will give us the opportunity to follow the advice given but most importantly ensure the welfare of our whole school community.

“Thank you for your patience and understanding.”

The school added on twitter: “This provides an opportunity to follow the advice given but most importantly, ensure the welfare of the whole school community. Thanks for your ongoing support - keep well!”

A “deep clean” is underway at the school. This includes cleaning sinks and drinking fountains, cleaning cabinets and desks inside and out, cleaning table tops and table legs, vacuuming carpets, and brushing and mopping vinyl floors.

The school described the week as “challenging”.

The school tweeted: “Thanks to all our wonderful parents for being so supportive and understanding. It's been a challenging week! Fingers crossed for healthy children and staff next week.”

Headteacher Stephanie Cade thanked staff for their hard work in dealing with the situation.

She tweeted: “A big thank you to all our amazing staff as well who have battled on throughout the week and are still smiling. I am very lucky to have such a super team.”

The school's Parent Teacher Association (PTA) praised the action of the school and its staff.

The group tweeted: “Thank you all for all your hard work to keep our children safe and well.”

NHS Providers have predicted a “winter of misery” with pressure on the NHS from conditions like norovirus, as well as flu and respiratory conditions.

Patients can expect a "winter of misery" with cold weather, unparalleled pressure on the NHS and potentially the worst flu season in two decades all expected over the coming weeks.

Norovirus is a stomach bug which causes sudden nausea, projectile vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain.

The virus usually only lasts for around two days, but those affected may still carry the virus for a further three days.

This morning (December 8) a spokesperson for Cheshire West and Chester Council confirmed that the school was closed due to a suspected norovirus outbreak and it was expected to be open again on Monday.