PLANS are being drawn up to replace a religious school after it burnt to the ground.

The Jewish community is considering rebuilding a centre for 50 boys after the Luzern Yeshiva, a Jewish school in Meppel Avenue, on Canvey, was destroyed by fire on Sunday December 22.

Joel Friedman, spokesman for the Canvey Jewish community, said the students are back on site in a temporary centre.

He said: “It’s only temporary and a bit small but we are looking at different options and long-term solutions.

“We are considering rebuilding it, because if it’s worth doing it’s worth doing it properly.

“The time it’ll take depends on what we do and whether the boys are on site at the time.

“Hopefully we will have a solution very soon.

“If we decide to rebuild the centre, it could take up to two years to finish it.

“The support on Canvey has been really fantastic.

“There’s been so many people and even businesses coming forward who want to help us.

“It’s been brilliant. The boys had to stay in London for about ten days as they had nowhere to study.

“It was like an extended holiday.”

Days after the blaze Norman Smith, Tory leader of Castle Point Council vowed to try to find an alternative centre for the pupils.

Huge flames and plumes of thick black smoke filled the air as the fire took hold of the religious college.

At least seven fire crews rushed to the scene as the huge flames took hold of the building.

The firefighters found the fire was well established on arrival.

The crews worked with the Jewish community to safely salvage items from the building

It is understood the fire has resulted in damage worth more than £100,000.

Firefighters have confirmed the cause of the fire has been recorded as accidental and was started after candles were left unattended.

The centre was being used for a Hanukkah event and fortunately everyone had left the building by the time the fire started shortly before 9pm on Sunday.

Pictures supplied by Mr Friedman show the burned out shell of the building, after the devastating blaze.

The site was used for the former Castle View School.