THE future of Hartlepool was given a thumbs-up by an approving special visitor.
The Lord Lieutenant of County Durham, Sir Paul Nicholson, and Lady Nicholson were in town for the day yesterday.
The Lord Lieutenant, who is the Queen’s personal representative in the county, toured both Hartlepool College of Further Education and the equally impressive Hartlepool Sixth Form College.
Afterwards, he told the Hartlepool Mail he was “amazed” at the educational establishments on offer in Hartlepool.
He said: “The youngsters in Hartlepool are very lucky to have these wonderful facilities, it gives them every chance of succeeding in education.”
The Lord Lieutenant arrived in town yesterday morning and was greeted by Mayor Stuart Drummond at Hartlepool Civic Centre.
Mayor Drummond was informed of the visit earlier this year, and put together a day of activities to showcase the town.
He said he was “proud” to be able to show off the town and the fantastic college facilities.
After a chat at the Civic Centre, the group made their way to the new Hartlepool College of Further Education building, in the town’s Stoctkon Street, where after taking in the innovative facilities they enjoyed lunch.
It was then on to Hartlepool College of Further Education, in Blakelock Road, where the Lord Lieutenant was shown television studios, lecture theatres and impressive art work as part of the tour.
“It has been a very nice day,” said the Lord Lieutenant.
“I always enjoy coming to Hartlepool and I have been extremely impressed by the wonderful facilities.
“There are no excuses in Hartlepool for youngsters not making the most of their talents.
“I think people should have every reason to be optimistic about the town.
“The future of Hartlepool looks very promising.”
The Lord Lieutenant said he has visited Hartlepool regularly over the years, and especially enjoys taking in HMS Trincomalee.
He said he was amazed by how much the town has changed over the years.
Mayor Drummond said he was extremely pleased with how the visit had gone.
He said: “Sir Paul is the Queen’s representative for County Durham and if there is a chance of a member of the Royal family visiting the area then we need to keep Hartlepool in the Lord Lieutenant’s mind.
“The facilities at Hartlepool College of Further Education and Hartlepool Sixth Form College are absolutely fantastic and I was proud to tour both colleges with him.
“With the opportunities which they have at the colleges what we can do is give youngsters the best chance of competing.
“The choice for the students is fantastic.”