Pupils and staff members from Walney School have been dishing out Christmas hampers and biscuits to nearby residents, showing why they are such an asset to the community on the island.

As many as 62 senior pupils took part in the Christmas biscuit delivery last week, showing the level of enthusiasm there is at the school to help better their community.

In groups of four the pupils set off with 110 gifts and Christmas cards to addresses, spreading Christmas cheer around the island.

%image('12137338', type='article-full', caption='READY: Pupils ready to go out and deliver hampers to the community', alt='READY: Pupils ready to go out and deliver hampers to the community')

This is an annual event that always goes down well with the community. The gifts are always well received and staff said that the pupils really enjoyed handing them out and giving something back to the community. It is not just the Island of Walney that has benefitted though, as biscuits and hampers have also been donated to St Mary’s Hospice, Furness General Hospital and the ambulance service. Several Christmas hampers have been made up and given out to families on Walney as well.

The community, staff and parents have been generous by donating Christmas food and treats to Walney School foodbank, which has allowed them to make up these hampers. Mrs Andrea Amacna, who runs the foodbank, said: "I have been overwhelmed by the generosity of the people of Barrow.

"It really does mean a lot when we can help students and their families and spread some Christmas cheer."

The pupils have not only been busy helping the community, but there have also been festive competitions going on in the run up to Christmas, including one to create Walney School's Christmas card design.

%image('12137339', type='article-full', caption='WINNER: Damla Gioldzhyuklyu's Christmas card design, Year 10', alt='WINNER: Damla Gioldzhyuklyu's Christmas card design, Year 10')

The art competition was set as homework. Years 7 to 10 were involved and there were many creative designs including a new one – Father Christmas with a mask!

The heads of each year had the tough job choosing a winning design. The winners were: Evan Townsend, Year 7; Kodi Duff and Grace Holmes, Year 8; Amy Hill, Year 9; and Damla Gioldzhyuklyu, Year 10.

Mrs M Turner, head of Year 8, said: "I was absolutely thrilled to be asked to be the judge of the Christmas card competition.

"Year 8 have been very busy preparing for Christmas, including making Christmas wish baubles, donating to Walney School foodbank and supporting the coats for children.

"It was clear Year 8 had worked incredibly hard on their designs and choosing was a very difficult task!

"I particularly liked Kodi and Grace's designs because they both had clearly taken the time to think about the colours and materials they were going to use."

However, a tough decision had to be made to narrow it down to one design.

Mrs A Redshaw, deputy headteacher, said: "Y10 GCSE art students have kindly spent some of their own time designing a Christmas card to be used as Walney School's official card.

"The Senior Leadership Team made the final decision and chose Damla's card because it was so clear and well painted using only three colours.

"We are very pleased and proud of Damla."