Pupils from Lawn Manor Academy in Swindon have picked up their tools to help give a church in Old Town a complete makeover.

The churchyard of Christ Church on Cricklade Street had been left neglected for many years, and the overgrown grounds were becoming a huge concern for the Christ Church Eco Group.

But using skills they had developed at the academy’s forest school, a group of eight Year 10 pupils stepped up to help turn the churchyard around.

“The pupils really got into the community spirit and could see the improvement they were making to the area, so it was a very rewarding morning for them,” said Lee Horsford, forest school lead at Lawn Manor Academy.

Swindon Advertiser: The children used skills they had learned a forest school to help the community.The children used skills they had learned a forest school to help the community. (Image: Lawn Manor Academy)

The eight pupils worked to clear the overgrown area, clear litter across the grounds and plant 30 native British trees donated by the Woodland Trust, including hawthorn, dogwood, dogrose, crab apple and hazel.

Anne Grainger, chair of the Christ Church Eco Group, said: “We really appreciate the hard work from the pupils.

“This is the start of our 10-year plan for this area of the church and we’re looking forward to spring when we hope to see the fruits of their labour with the trees and bushes providing food and shelter for wildlife.”