NEARLY 2,000 young people from across County Durham were yesterday urged to develop a passion for success.

The teenagers, all year 12 students, attended a seminar at Newcastle Opera House aimed at raising their aspirations.

Michael Heppell, a motivational expert, helped to inspire the young people, who were from sixth forms and further education colleges across the region.

Mr Heppell has spent the past decade working in the field of human development and personal excellence and said he was happy to share his knowledge with the students.

The day was devoted to providing the young people with long-term motivation and a drive for success.

Mr Heppell said: "It's no accident that some people are more successful than others.

"Are some people lucky? Do others seem to be in the right place at the right time?

"Highly successful people have in place strategies and techniques which they use to optimise their performance to ensure their success.''

Those attending yesterday's event were helped to identify what was holding them back in order to understand how they could overcome it.

The teenagers were urged to set new standards for themselves.

Mr Heppell called on them to move from doing a good job to aiming for a brilliant job.