CHRISTMAS came early for an Accrington primary school after it was awarded an impressive £123,445 Lottery grant.
Hyndburn Park Primary was one of just 109 schools across the country to receive a grant from the New Opportunities Fund - the largest of the Lottery distributors - to develop PE and sports facilities and to promote the wider use of its facilities.
The school plans to use the cash to provide a floodlit multi-use games area within its grounds.
As well as benefiting the school on a day-to-day basis, this will also accommodate extra-curricular and community activities such as netball, cricket and football, providing sporting facilities for hundreds of people from the area after school hours, at weekends and during holidays.
Headteacher John Boden said: "We are overjoyed at receiving this grant. It is great not only for the school but also for the community and for Hyndburn."
Mr Boden said he, along with many other headteachers across the county, put in a bid to the Lottery to help improve PE facilities and, fortunately, his bid was successful.
Planned activities also include lunchtime and after-school games sessions for pupils and the school aims to ensure two hours a week of PE and games for Key Stages 1 and 2 pupils.
Michelle McNamee, New Opportunities Fund regional manager for the North West, said: "The funding will widen access to quality sports facilities, giving children, young people and communities the chance to choose a healthier lifestyle, boost their self-esteem and confidence and build a positive outlook and sense of achievement."