THE blaze that ripped through York High School has cost the city’s education authority nearly £1 million, new figures have revealed.

Most of the costs relating to last October’s fire will be covered by insurance, but the public will foot a £200,000 bill.

Staff at City of York Council are still totting up the value of the fire, which began in an art room and devastated a third of the old Lowfields School in Dijon Avenue.

Current estimates are that the costs will total about £900,000 but only £700,000 of that will be covered by insurers.

The costs include £456,000 on temporary school buildings; £183,000 on security and demolition; and £257,000 on the school’s contents.

The £200,000 public bill includes a policy excess of £125,000 and will be paid for from council reserves.

A spokeswoman for the council said: “City of York Council has full buildings and contents insurance on all its schools.

“The Dijon Avenue site is insured for just in excess of £12 million. Following the fire, the council is prudently still identifying and collating all costs associated with the incident prior to sending them to our insurer’s loss adjusters.

“It is important that all costs are identified before the claim is settled and our experience from previous school fires is that it takes some time to identify these costs.”

She said that once the council had ensured all costs had been collated, they would be submitted to loss adjusters along with supporting evidence.

The adjusters will identify any costs they deem not claimable under the policy conditions, and those will be funded from the public purse, along with the £125,000 excess.

York High, which was formed through a merger between Oaklands and Lowfields, was using the Dijon Avenue site temporarily, while its new building in Cornlands Road, Acomb, was completed.

Pupils moved into the new £10 million buildings last week, following the Christmas holiday.

The school’s 970 students and staff had been forced to use various other schools across the city in the days following the fire on October 3.

More than 70 firefighters tackled the blaze, which devastated an area containing IT, art, food technology and textile classrooms.