A SCHOOL drama team went without sleep for a night to raise cash for a charity supporting families with disabled children.

The event at Wolsingham School and Community College last week raised £300 for the Independence 4 Disability group, in Weardale.

Ten year ten students and a year 11 pupil penned and staged their own play.

The performed it the next morning for pupils and staff who each paid at least 10p to watch.

Katie Gunning, Danielle Mustarde, Tom Burton, Megan Edey, Sarah Thirling, Kelly Flounders, Jemima Willis, Robert Harrison, Alex Close, Jayne Harrison and Nicole Rowley are all members of Ian Lister's English class and were also sponsored to stay awake.

Wolsingham has been given specialist school status as a Performing Arts College.

Mr Lister said: "Doing something like this in one concentrated efforts has enormous benefits.

"It is about much more than putting on a play. It is about learning to work under highly pressurised conditions to meet a very exacting deadline.

"It is about character development and working as a team. It is a very effective exercise."

The group plan to work more on their play and put on public shows in Weardale.

Alistair Howes, who founded Independence 4 Disability with his partner Helen Blackburn, said: "They did a fantastic job. I saw them practising during the night and I thought it was good, but the final result was even better."