Pupils chat with Major Tim

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Children at a Bispham primary school were ‘overwhelmed’ when they received a very special message from space.

British astronaut Tim Peake tweeted his support for Kincraig Primary School’s solar system curriculum from the International Space Station more than 250 miles above the earth’s surface.

He said: “Looks very creative. Great work!” in response to Kincraig Year 5 teacher Hayley Barkworth’s social media posts showing her class’s hand-drawn pictures of the planets.

Miss Barkworth said: “We had some very excited children in our classroom.

“We sent the message not thinking anything of it and within a few hours we had a reply. It was fantastic. We felt very privileged.

“The children were overwhelmed. They had never been so excited.

“We have been following Tim Peake since he first went into space last year. He did an online classroom over the internet and we watched that and followed all his journey, and to then have a personal message from him is amazing.

“We have got so many inspired students.”

Tim Peake, who frequently talks online about his ongoing orbital adventure, became the eighth British person to go into space in December, and the first to walk in space, in January.

He will spend almost 200 days at the International Space Station before returning home in June.

Year 5 pupil Sam Thayre, who attends Kincraig Primary School on Kincraig Road, said: “When I saw that Tim Peake tweeted our school I was so excited as he’s so famous and I couldn’t believe we had got a message from outer space.”

Faye Turner, who is also a pupil in Miss Barkworth’s class, said: “I was left feeling really inspired when Tim Peake tweeted us from space. I couldn’t believe our luck.”

She added that she is now determined to become an astronaut herself.

Kincraig deputy head teacher Lucy Cross said: “They have been learning in school about space and decided to send their work to Tim, and they are delighted that he responded.

“I don’t think the children thought they would get a response, and when they did they were just overwhelmed.”

She added: “It has inspired them an awful lot.”