CHILDREN from a north Durham school got a new play area after writing to their local councillors.

The astro turf area was officially opened at St Mary’s Primary School in Blackhill, Consett, by Durham County Councillor Stephen Robinson earlier today (Tuesday, July 8).

He and fellow councillor, Peter Oliver, donated £5,150, from their neighbourhood budget for the scheme.

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Teaching assistant Claire Crawley said: “It was grassed area before but it got really muddy and the children were quite dirty so we needed something a bit more durable.

“The children think it is brilliant. They are over the moon as it is just what they wanted. It is a far better area for them to play on at play time and at dinner time.”

The pitch has hop scotch grids on and children have been using it to improve their skipping, as well as playing other games.

The school has been holding a number of fundraising activities to buy more play equipment for pupils.

Ms Crawley said: “The school council have organised it all. There are ten children on the committee. They decided to write letters to businesses and councillors and they have got back to us. It is fantastic.”