JUBILANT pupils and staff at a school are celebrating in style after winning a Hartlepool Mail-backed competition.
Ward Jackson Primary School in Hartlepool has won the Middleton Grange shopping centre’s Shop for Schools initiative.
The competition works by converting till receipts donated by shoppers into equipment for schools.
The Mail backed the competition with a series of bonus point vouchers in the paper and by publishing regular league tables.
This year’s Shop for Schools was the most successful to date, with 418,450 points collected – almost twice as many as the total for last year.
The shopping centre’s marketing manager, Suzanne Chaney, said: “Once again, Shop for Schools has been a huge success and we would like to thank our shoppers, parents, teachers and pupils for all of their hard work in supporting the initiative.
“To get almost double the amount of vouchers collected shows that Shop For Schools has really been embraced by our customers and it’s great to see the schools and the pupils now benefiting from their prizes.”
Tens of thousands of pounds’ worth of goods and equipment have been donated to dozens of schools across Hartlepool and east Durham since the initiative started in 2007.
The scheme works by getting Middleton Grange customers to hand in their till receipts at the Customer Services point outside BHS, where they are converted into points.
Shoppers can then choose which school they want to benefit from the points, which are later converted into prizes such as IT equipment, books, cameras and software.
The initiative ran between April and June with bonus double points on offer for purchases made on Sundays and treble points on Bank Holidays.
Ward Jackson Primary School collected the highest points total for 2012 and has converted its vouchers into seven brand-new digital cameras.
Morag Tucker, Ward Jackson Primary’s ICT co-ordinator, said: “The Shop for Schools scheme is a great way for the people of the town to support our schools.
“We’re a school that gets a lot of community support but the good thing about this is that every school is rewarded.
“I’d like to say a big thank-you to all the pupils, their families and the community that supported Ward Jackson Primary by collecting points on our behalf. It makes a big difference.”
Schools taking part this year were Kingsley, Holy Trinity, Ward Jackson, Throston, Springwell, Eldon Grove, St Helens, St Aidan’s, Sacred Heart, West View, Catcote, Rift House, Golden Flatts, Hart, Jesmond Gardens, Lynnfield, West Park, St Cuthbert’s Owton Manor, Grange, High Tunstall, St Joseph’s (Blackhall), Stranton, Barnard Grove, Rossmere and St Peter’s (Elwick).
Other winners this year included St Aidan’s, which converted its vouchers into books; Kingsley, with a prize of IT equipment and a camera; and St Helen’s, which converted vouchers into microscopes and telescopes.