Blackpool school choir heads to London for choral competitions
A Blackpool primary school choir has won a place in two national competition finals.
Norbreck Primary Academy choir have qualified for the Barnardo's National Choral competition for the fifth year running, and will head to the Royal Festival Hall in London's Southbank Centre on March 9.
Not only will the Norbreck Road school compete in the Barnado's competition final, but also the semi-final of the BBC Songs of Praise Young Choir competition at Warwick University on March 21, appearing on BBC1 in the summer.
Headteacher Karen McCarter, who runs the choir, said: "The BBC informs me that we are the most Northern school to be in the Songs of Praise competition.
"It's a huge honour to reach these stages of both of these competitions, the choirs who enter are incredibly high-level.
"To reach the semi-finals of the BBC songs of Praise competition is a real accolade, and it means we are one of the five best choirs in the country."
There are 34 places in Norbreck's choir, with pupils in years four, five and six required to audition three times before they are offered a place.
After hearing the news they had reached the Barnado's final, the children jumped up and down and hugged each other, but had no idea their headteacher had also entered them into the BBC competition.
Mrs McCarter continued: "When the children found out we were also going to enter the Songs of Praise competition, it was a phenomenal response.
"We have entered and won many competitions, but I don't take it for granted.
"We aren't like many choirs, we sing classical music in two and three-part harmonies.
"Appearing on the BBC in a Songs of Praise competition is truly beyond my wildest dreams, and I'm extremely excited and proud of the children."
Choirboy-turned-TV presenter Aled Jones will compere the BBC competition, with celebrity judges kept under-wraps until the day of the event.