PUPILS won a science award for their work on a nature reserve.
The Billericay School pupils picked up the Blake Shield after coming first in a national competition run by the British Naturalists’ Association.
More than 270 pupils aged between 13 and 15 took part in the eight-week ecological study at Mill Meadows, off Greens Farm Lane, Billericay, during which they monitored the condition of grassland, investigated different pond species, checked bird populations and tested the soil.
The pupils worked with Basildon Council’s countryside ranger Chris Huggins during the project. He will use their research to continue conservation work at the reserve.
The shield was handed over by botanist, writer and broadcaster Professor David Bellamy, honorary president of the association.
He praised the pupils “outstanding” work and said: “The project was a wonderful opportunity for young people to become aware of the natural world within their own community.”
Head of biology at the school, Morven McLauchlan, said: “It’s an absolutely fantastic achievement for a comprehensive school to win a prestigious award like this. The pupils are thrilled to bits.”