Students from across the region celebrated a bumper results day today (Thursday, August 17), with achievements ranging from acceptance into Oxford to leading industry apprenticeships to admittance success in early exams. 

For the class of 2023, this is the first set of national exams they have undertaken – their GCSE examinations fell within the turbulence of the Covid years but have

In spite of national warnings that grades would return to pre-pandemic level, school leavers have triumphed, with many students in the North East and North Yorkshire attaining the top grades.

Read our full live blog of A Level results day 2023 here. 

Amongst those celebrating stellar performances were a raft of Durham and Darlington students set to take on Oxford and Cambridge universities this autumn. 

East Durham College is thrilled to announce that A Level students at the college’s sixth form, ED6, have achieved some fantastic results this year, including two students securing places at Cambridge and Oxford University for the first time.

The Northern Echo:

Read more: A Level results: Top grades have fallen compared to 2022

Evan Taylor, who is a former Shotton Hall Academy student studied maths, further maths, biology and chemistry at ED6 and achieved one A* grade and three A grades. He will now be moving on to study Natural Sciences at Cambridge University.

Brian Marville, a former Durham Johnson pupil, studied maths, further maths, chemistry and physics at ED6, achieving two A grades and two B grades. Bryan is going on to study Material Science at the University of Oxford.

In Darlington, Samuel Jackson, who hails from Ingelby Barwick and studied at Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form, realised his childhood dreams when his outstanding triple A* grades confirmed his place in Oxford.

Not all of those who collected their results today are off to university just yet though - 15-year-old Ed, from Norton, sat his AS Level in Further Mathematics earlier this summer - and scooped himself an A, despite taking the exam three years ahead of schedule. 

The Northern Echo: Ed has excelled at THS.

The Music Tech students at Bede Sixth Form College got a rocking result as well - with the full class picking up the highest possible grade.

Student Jesse Ballantyne said: “We are a close group, so everyone helps each other out.”

It’s clearly a passion for the team as Jake Judson added: “We all spend a lot of our free time in the music tech studio.”

The Northern Echo:

A student who escaped the war in Ukraine and arrived in the North East knowing no one has secured top grades and a place at university.

Because of his unique situation, Kyryl Lebedin was given the option to restart year 12 when he joined St John's Catholic School in Bishop Auckland - but the youngster opted to go forward with his studies and managed to secure good grades in his mocks after just two months at school.

In year 13, he thrived and today achieved A in maths, A in further maths and B in physics. He also obtained an international qualification in English and will now read a degree in computer science at Durham University.

Read more: Ripon student and business owner achieves top grades

Two sporty A-Level students including a Team GB water polo teammate have been celebrating after receiving top grades in their examinations.

Friends Ben Alderson of Newton Aycliffe and Tom l’Anson of Darlington are two of thousands of students across the UK who opened A-Level result envelopes this morning.

Team GB water polo player Ben received A grades in A-Level history and law, as well as a distinction star in a level 3 sport and leisure qualification.

Cricket coach Tom l’Anson was also on cloud nine this afternoon when he achieved his grades, cinching a double distinction star in his level 3 sport and leisure diploma as well as a distinction in a level 3 qualification for IT.

The Northern Echo: National water polo star Ben Alderson and dedicated cricket coach and volunteer Tom I’Anson