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Watch as Sunderland pupils create community postbox and write to MP as part of Queen's Platinum Jubilee project

Children from Castletown Primary School had a special visit from their MP Sharon Hodgson after writing letters to her outlining their views on how their community could be improved.

By Neil Fatkin
Tuesday, 14th June 2022, 4:55 am

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The letters were part of a city wide Jubilee Postbox Project for the Queen’s Platinum celebration in which, as well as writing letters, children at schools across Wearside have been decorating their postboxes to represent both the jubilee and the importance of communities.

After receiving a visit from professional artists, the children set about decorating their postbox with images and symbols to represent their community, including pictures of local landmarks, footballs and love hearts.

After completing their postbox, pupils then penned letters to the MP for Washington and Sunderland West outlining what they felt were the biggest issues which need to be addressed.

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Year 5 teacher Steven Beck said: “Sustainability was big thing for most of the children and many of them wrote about the need for alternative energy such as more solar panels and wind turbines.

"What really came through in the letters was a sense pride in the Castletown community. They are passionate about where they live and the people within it.”

One pupil expressing her concerns for the local environment was Year 5 student, Lucy McCann.

MP Sharon Hodgson with children from Castletown Primary School holding some of the letters they had wrote.

Lucy, 10, said: “I wrote to Sharon about several issues in our local area, such as people using cars to travel to school, even when they just live up the road, and ideas about sustainability to help make our community more environmentally friendly.

"I was really pleased they had an impact on her so that she decided to pay us a visit. I hope our community can come together and help to make a positive difference on climate change.”

Fellow Year 5 pupil, Lucas Bowmer, 10, added: “It was great to talk to Sharon about the work we did for the post box. We all worked hard and I’m really proud to see my collage on the side of the post box. It’s me in my football kit and football is a big part of my life.”

The community postbox created by children at Castletown Primary School as part of the Jubilee Postbox project.

After receiving and reading their letters, MP Sharon Hodgson decided to visit the school on Friday (June 10) to discuss the issues raised.

Mrs Hodgson said: “It was fantastic to visit Castletown Primary School to meet students during their Jubilee Postbox project and to see they are also learning about democracy, the job of an MP and what people in elected office can do to improve our communities.

"Across my time in Parliament I have taken a keen interest in children’s development and education policy.

"Having served as Shadow Children and Families Minister for over 5 years, I absolutely believe that learning more about how our democracy works, how people and policy can go hand in hand to make our communities better, and how their future votes can affect that, ensures they grow up to be conscientious and well-rounded young people ready to make an impact on the world.

Images of some of the things which are important to the children at Castletown Primary School.

“I was inspired by all these children, whose drawings and ideas were brimming with enthusiasm. I look forward to seeing their contributions to our area in the future.”