PUPILS from seven County Durham schools will spend this week devising a play to highlight the issue of domestic violence.

The "play in a week" is one of a series of projects organised by North Durham Domestic Violence Forum.

The event takes place in the run-up to this weekend's International Day Against Violence Towards Women.

Schools involved are St Leonards, Durham Johnston, Gilesgate, Belmont, Framwellgate Moor, all Durham City, plus Park View and The Hermitage, Chester-le-Street.

Youngsters will write and rehearse their play this week, before a public performance in St Nicholas's Church Hall, Durham on Saturday.

Durham Police recorded 533 complaints of domestic violence in Durham and Chester-le-Street between April and September this year.

Across the whole force area, the total figure for the same period was 3,276 complaints