Hundreds of caring school children have been presented with certificates from the Archbishop of York.

The Most Rev and Rt Hon Dr John Sentamu lead a service St Christopher’s High School in Accrington after 200 year nine pupils successfully completed the Archbishop of York Young Leaders Award (YLA).

The pupils have been working hard towards the award for the last 12 months and undertook various activities including designing a sacred outdoor school space, helping at a local allotment site and raising awareness of Fairtrade.

Headteacher Richard Jones said everyone was ‘delighted’ to welcome The Archbishop back to the school.

He said: “It’s the second time he has visited the school. He came to us six years ago when he dedicated the sixth form chapel.

“He was delighted to have the opportunity to visit us again. He speaks with such infectious charisma and is always a joy. I know our pupils and staff really benefited from the service.

“It’s always a delight to meet him and he’s a great supporter of our school.”

Mr Jones praised the hard work of the pupils who collected their awards.

He said: “Normally it’s just a small number of pupils who go in for the YLA so it was pretty unprecedented to have a whole year group.

“They have been working towards the award for the last 12 months and it involved various activities around the themes of hope and service.

“For our pupils it included working on the allotments on the housing estate over the road from the school and completely clearing the flower beds.

“They have written to uniform suppliers seeking Fairtrade uniforms and contacted the local council for better school buses and bike lanes.

“The class has also designed an outdoor sacred space area for the school grounds and they have been supporting Friday Praise which is a new church at St Nicholas’ school and which is really thriving.”

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