There was joy at Chirton Primary School, near Devizes, today as staff and governors were told officially that it will not close.

Coun Lionel Grundy, Wiltshire Council's cabinet member with responsibility for children and schools, phoned chairman of governors Nicky Wragg this morning to give her the glad tidings that the school is not to close despite falling pupil numbers.

Mrs Wragg told the Gazette: "We are absolutely ecstatic. Now the school has a future everyone is feeling much more positive and we will now go full speed ahead to attract more pupils."

Claire Perry MP, who has supported the school in its struggle to continue, visited it this morning and said: "We should be able to keep these small schools open.

"It has taken a threat like this to galvanise everyone into action but the parents have done such a good lobbying job."