A GOVERNMENT scheme to help people return to study is proving popular at New College Durham.

People over 19 taking part-time courses can open an Individual Learning Account (ILA), which pays up to £150 of the tuition fees, and offers discounts on future courses.

College marketing manager Paul Ryder said: "A growing number of people who have decided to take a part-time course at New College Durham, have opened their own Government-funded Individual Learning Account.''

Margaret Laycock and Marjorie Atkinson, of Sacriston, opened an ILA account to help pay for a computer course the college runs at a school in the village.

Ms Atkinson said: "The ILA scheme is a great idea, and I would encourage anyone who is considering taking a course to open one."

For details of the scheme, ring 0191-375 4000