CHILDREN in Bishop Auckland are learning how to prepare healthy meals for themselves and their families.

More than 200 youngsters at Cockton Hill Junior School will learn about healthy cooking and nutritional diets thanks to £500 from social landlord County Durham Housing Group’s group grant scheme.

A regular cookery club has been launched to help pupils gain essential cooking skills for a healthy diet, and pass on some of the new talents to their parents.

Headteacher Emily Stevens said: “To receive a donation in these circumstances is really vital for our school.

“The money received has not only meant that we have been able to buy the necessary equipment to run an after school club but it has also ensured that all the produce needed can be available for all the pupils who wish to attend.

“The ability to prepare simple, fresh, healthy dishes is a vital life skill which we can now offer all of our school community.”

It is hoped the lessons will help to tackle the national trends of increasing childhood obesity and diet-related diseases.

County Durham Housing Group funding officer, Damian Pearson, said: “This cookery club will provide a great chance for children in Bishop Auckland to gain the expertise that will stay with them for the rest of their life.

“This investment in the long-term future of communities is a great example of why our group grant programme was created.”