THOUSANDS of youngsters have got involved in learning more about the North York Moors National Park.

The National Park Authority runs a schools and outreach programme designed to help youngsters experience, understand and enjoy the spectacular countryside and coast of the North York Moors.

And latest figures show that 18,559 students took part in the programme during the 2018/2019 academic year – an increase of 500 on the previous year.

Heather McNiff, head of education and youth engagement at the National Park Authority, said: “We are thrilled that we can continue to expand our work delivering inspiring learning outside of the classroom opportunities.

"We have been able to achieve this not only through our classes, but by attending schools and conducting assemblies.

“We offer so much variety in all of our activities, all of which are directly linked to the national curriculum.

"We are very proud of the work we do and at a time of such ecological uncertainty it is absolutely vital that we can engage young people in the natural world.”

Education officer Jonathan Green added: “We have found that many children thrive in a varied learning environment and we allow them to develop skills and have experiences that they might otherwise not be able to have."