Ellesmere Primary School pupils kept their eyes on the ball for charity when they took on a mammoth 40-hour ‘footballathon’.

Over the course of a week, all children from Nursery through to Year 6 took their turn in a hotly-fought contest between blues and yellows.

Heading into the final hours there was still just a single goal separating the sides, but the final whistle saw the yellows take the win.

The sponsored match, which was part of the English Schools’ FA Football Week, raised over £1,670 for the school PTA and Air Ambulance UK.

PE Lead Hazel Adams said: “I am very proud of the way everybody worked as a team. Everyone was able to have a go and it was truly a whole school effort.

“The children have been enjoying themselves and the Ellesmere Wildcats Centre (girls FA football programme), which we host here at school, have had an influx of new girls joining the centre this week.”

“The 40 hours were made up of curriculum time PE as well as the additional extracurricular clubs we run each morning, lunchtime and after school so children played from 7.45am-4.15pm every day.”

Stuart Roberts is Headteacher at the Elson Road school, which is part of North West Academies Trust.

He said: “It was great to see the children having fun and it was very noticeable that they had all grown in confidence on the pitch by the end of the week.

“The funds will be put to good use, buying new climbing frame equipment for the school. 

“We also wanted to support Air Ambulance UK, who have been active on lifesaving missions in our area recently.”

For more information about Ellesmere Primary School, tel:01691 622288 or email: www.ellesmereprimaryschool.org.uk

Clever Hannah Birdsey has become the first Weaverham Primary Academy pupil to earn a coveted private school scholarship. 

The talented 10-year-old showed remarkable composure under pressure to ace the entry exam despite having only three days to prepare. 

Hannah also sat the test during the first national lockdown, but came through with flying colours to bag a full scholarship at The Grange, Hartford. 

The school, which became Weaverham Primary Academy in 2018 after joining North West Academies Trust (NWAT), is confident Hannah’s success will mark the start of a steady flow of scholars after significantly raising standards over the past three years.  

Deputy Headteacher Jo Ferrari ‘couldn’t be prouder’ of Hannah, who will start at The Grange in September. 

She said: “We are all delighted for her and I think she’ll do really well.  

“She is very conscientious and always works hard so I knew she’d do well in her test and she was confident when she met the Headteacher to look around the school. 

“I’m especially proud because she didn’t have time to put in lots of practice. I sent her some test papers but, because of lockdown and the way everything worked out, she really only had three days to prepare. 

“She was tested on non-verbal reasoning, maths and writing. We knew we have covered everything in class so we were confident that she would do well. 

“We’re going to miss her, and all of our Year 6 pupils when they leave. They are a wonderful group and I’ve really enjoyed teaching them.” 

She added: “We’ve been working so hard to improve standards across the board at the school, and to provide new experiences designed to encourage children to engage in learning and reach their full potential. Hannah’s success reflects the sort of results we are seeing and I’m sure this is just the start.” 

Hannah, who lives at Cuddington and wants to become a vet in the future, said: “I feel excited and nervous now! I will miss my friends and all of my teachers but I will still see my best friend at football.” 

NWAT manages eight schools across Cheshire and Shropshire including Delamere Academy, St Matin’s Academy and Acresfield Primary Academy, which are all rated Outstanding by Ofsted. 

CEO Steve Docking encouraged the school to put Hannah forward for the scholarship. He said: “We know the teaching standards are high at our schools, so I’m not surprised that we have pupils of such a high calibre. Hannah is a credit to her school and I’m delighted for her.” 

For more information about Weaverham Primary Academy email: admin@weaverhamacademy.org.uk or tel: 01606 852148.