Bishop Mark presents Ben Newton with his prize and examines Ben's winning card design.

 Bishop Mark meets students at Northern Saints primary and chats with them about their new uniform.

Bishop Mark meets students at Northern Saints primary and chats with them about their new uniform.
A newly-created Church of England school in the Diocese of Durham is going from strength to strength with a new uniform for its pupils and a visit from the Bishop of Jarrow, the Right Rev‘d Mark Bryant, to announce the winner of his annual Christmas card design competition. Northern Saints Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School has replaced Hylton Red House Primary and Bishop Harland Church of England (VA) Primary in Sunderland, two schools which had served their community for many years. The new combined school was  opened at the start of the new term in September. Bishop Mark visited the school to announce the winner of his annual Christmas card competition, designs for which were inspired by the recent visit to the region of the Lindisfarne Gospels.
 Bishop Mark presents Ben Newton with his prize and examines Ben's winning card design.

Bishop Mark presents Ben Newton with his prize and examines Ben’s winning card design.
Each year, he asks a school to run a competition to design a card and this time it was Northern Saints with pupil Ben Newton (age 10) being named as the winner. The card will now be the Bishop’s official Christmas card, up to three hundred of which are sent out. Ben’s design will also be on the card sent out by Bishop Mark on behalf of Bishop of Durham. Bishop Mark said: “A different school is asked to run the competition each year, which shows our commitment to the schools in our diocese. It’s one of those things that really sparks the imagination of the students involved and we get some wonderfully creative ideas being submitted. This year the students of Northern Saints did a fantastic job making the job of choosing the winner quite difficult.” Ben said: “I was speechless when I heard I had won. I like the design.” In addition, the Diocese of Durham, through its Board of Education, has provided new blazers for each child and assistance with other items of uniform at the new school.
 Students at Northern Saints happy with their new school, uniform blazers.

Students at Northern Saints happy with their new school, uniform blazers.
Bishop Mark said: “It was wonderful to visit the school. The pupils are really excited about the new blazers and I am thrilled that we have been able to provide the school with new uniform. The pupils are proud of their uniform and it gives the school a fine start.” Deputy Headteacher Emma Jarvis said: “It is a very exciting time for the new school and the Christmas card competition is a really nice start to the year. “The new uniforms have allowed the pupils to feel part of a new community very quickly. “The school has given the community a new outlook full of hope and aspirations. The school offers some fantastic opportunities.”

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