A DARLINGTON school decked the halls to welcome elderly townsfolk to a "Jack Frost Christmas party".

For more than 17 years, Polam Hall School has been inviting in Darlington Town Mission to celebrate the Yuletide, with refreshments, music, a raffle, and good company.

The 35 sixth-form students, along with 15 members of Years 8 and 10, took responsibility for organising the whole event, from decorating the dining hall, to welcoming the visitors, making the cakes and sandwiches, and providing entertainment.

Head Boy KC Freeley, a boarder from Nigeria, warmly welcomed the 28 guests and 15 helpers, who enjoyed a wonderful spread, as well as the talents of pianist Ambra Berutti, guitarist Erin Partridge, and the melodious voices of the Polam Hall School Emsemble.

Head Teacher Kate Reid said: “One of the core values of our school is community, so we’re delighted to invite Darlington Town Mission into the school at Christmas, and again in the summer, for an event like this.

“It is all arranged and run by the students, who, with a little guidance, do a fantastic job.”

Darlington Town Missioner, Sue Allison, said how much the older folk enjoyed coming to the school for the party and talking to the students.

Overseeing the event was teacher Innes Buchanan, who said: “This is a really special event where different year groups work together to achieve a really positive and enjoyable outcome. They all have different skills that they can put into practice, but at its core, it’s about Polam being part of the community.”

KC Freeley, who is in his second year at the school, enjoyed the day because, he said, “It puts a smile on someone’s face.”

Year 12 student Abbi Craggs is part of the school’s InterACT Committee – the junior branch of the Rotary Club - which organises charity events and helps with the Jack Frost party. She said: “It’s an opportunity for the sixth formers to take the lead as we organise everything. We started planning the party about three weeks ago – which was tricky for the Year 13s who were sitting mock exams – and it’s been a great event.”