Catherine receives national accolade

Catherine Hunter receives her award from Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove.
Catherine Hunter receives her award from Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove.

A PONTELAND High School student been recognised for her achievements and dedication both in and out of school.

Students from across the North East were nominated for the Lord Glenamara Memorial Prize, which was created to honour young people in the region for their outstanding academic success and civic contributions, as well as having an active interest in history, politics or public service.

The runners-up received an award from Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Education, at a ceremony in the London School of Economics (LSE) and they included Catherine Hunter.

As well as meeting the other winners and getting a guided tour of the LSE, she and her family spoke to Mr Gove and distinguished guests such as David Blunkett, Baroness Estelle Morris, Lord Beecham and Michael Short, Lord Glenamara’s son.

Ponteland High School headteacher Kieran McGrane said: “Catherine was selected for this prize because in addition to her excellent academic achievements, she has contributed significantly to the care and well-being of others in an active and informed way.

“These include being an active member of the St John’s Ambulance service in the region and, since 2011, acting as a volunteer ward helper at a local hospice.

“Catherine helps to provide palliative care for the adult inpatients and now mentors new volunteers in this important role.”

The prize was established last year in memory of Lord Glenamara, formerly Ted Short, who was MP for Newcastle Central from 1951 until his retirement from the Commons in 1976.

As a former teacher, he always had an interest in education and among his many roles served as Secretary of State for Education.

Among the runners-up 12 months ago were then Ponteland High students Bryony Clear Hill and Jonathan Lakey.