Eighteen students past and present from an Accrington school have received their Gold Duke of Edinbugh’s award at Buckingham Palace.

The St Christopher’s CE high pupils attended a presentation in the gardens of the Palace where they received their awards from six-time world champion kayaker Anna Hemmings MBE.

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During the presentation, HRH Princess Anne congratulated the group on their successful journeys, which took each young person 12-18 months of hard work and dedication. Those who achieve a Gold DofE Award volunteer, learn a skill, get fit, take part in a week-long residential and plan and undertake a four-day expedition in wild country.

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Trevor Smith and Devaki Sutton, who lead the school’s programme, also attended the presentation. Miss Sutton said: “We were delighted to share the day with our students and celebrate their achievement.”

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Upper Sixth student Hannah Donnelly completed her Gold Award in spite of living with a severe visual impairment which affects her clarity of vision and perception of where things are.