A CHESTER parent teacher association, which was formed only last summer, has received a national award.

The Hoole CE Primary School association was named New PTA of the Year for England at the National Confederation of Parent Teacher Associations (NCPTA) Gold Star Awards ceremony on HMS Belfast in London.

The NCPTA said the group was a remarkable example of the difference a new PTA could make in a short time.

The association organised its first event – a summer fair – in just six weeks, managing to gain the support of 60 local businesses. The event raised more than £1,800 for new outdoor learning equipment.

This success was followed by the Hoolephant Treasure Trail, which saw pupils and families searching for 50 decorated paper elephants placed in businesses around Hoole.

The winner was given the chance to switch on Hoole Christmas lights.

In its first year, the PTA has organised several events and made £5,600 profit. It has also launched a discussion forum for input into anti-bullying and child protection policy.

PTA chair Paula Norris and deputy headteacher Rosemary Blackburn, accompanied by pupils Beckie Barker and Lewis Roberts, were presented with a trophy and cheque for £500 by judging panel chair Sir Pritpal Singh.

Paula said: “This is my first experience of being a key player in a PTA and it has been amazing. I have been inspired by people who give up their time to support the school.”

Headteacher Cheryl Walton added: “In my first year as headteacher at Hoole, it has been wonderful to find such an enthusiastic, supportive and energetic team of parents whose key focus is on helping our school be 'A Place to Be, A Place to Grow'.”