Head tells of day `evil' visited school

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The headteacher of Dunblane primary school yesterday told of the appalling day when "evil" visited his school, leaving 16 pupils and one teacher dead.

Ron Taylor, 45, said the carnage in the school gym was "utterly appalling" and his worst nightmare. Mr Taylor, who lives in Stirling, went on: "I still feel very deeply shocked and still very, very distressed about the appalling incident yesterday.

"My thoughts and the thoughts of my staff are obviously with the friends and families whose lives have been devastated by the appalling incident.

"Evil visited us yesterday. We don't know why, we don't understand it and I guess we never will."

Mr Taylor then spoke of the moment he opened the gym doors to be confronted with the full extent of the massacre.

"The scene that met us in the hall was just utterly appalling and is one's worst nightmare. I just cannot get the images out my head."

Mr Taylor, who has two daughters aged 13 and 17, denied he had been a hero coping with the aftermath.

"We did what we could. We tried to stop the blood. The children were traumatised and the ones injured were still conscious and very distressed.

"The police were very quickly on the scene and we tried to identify those who were still alive and those whose wounds could be treated." He also praised the ambulance crews who attended the scene.

Mr Taylor, head teacher at the school since 1993, said he had been "totally unprepared" for the scene which met him in the gym.

When asked to recall what he had seen, he said it was "total devastation, total helplessness. The few staff members there really did what they could - it was just so little."

He added: "The staff were absolutely magnificent. Some who were not in the front line and not even aware of the extent of the tragedy were helping parents." He said the other classes at the school had been unaware of the tragedy.

Mr Taylor was confident the school would recover from the trauma with the support of the tight-knit community of Dunblane.

"We will recover. There is a strong team spirit in the staff and it is a close-knit community. I know we will recover."