PUPILS from Abbeyfield School in Chippenham are still feeling abuzz after receiving their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Awards at Buckingham Palace Gardens after sharing their experiences with Trustee for The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, HRH The Earl of Wessex Prince Edward.

During the awards presentation, Prince Edward took the opportunity to congratulate the group of 6th formers on their successes and heard about their DofE journeys, which took between 12 and 18 months of hard work and dedication.

To achieve their awards, the pupils had to complete five sections: physical; skill; volunteering; residential and a week-long expedition. Experiences ranged from working with and supporting elderly dementia sufferers, to conserving marine life in Tenerife.

Lauren Smith, said: Completing Gold took me out of my comfort zone and gave me confidence."

Victoria Summers, added: "Volunteering with the elderly helped me find my vocation and now I want to be a nurse."

Sally Silcock, DofE manager and head of science at Abbeyfield School said, “I am delighted with the success of the Gold Award which was re-introduced at Abbeyfield School in 2015. To achieve the award alongside sixth form studies is testament to their dedication. The local community benefits from the volunteering completed which ranged from helping at a local animal sanctuary to working in charity shops. The award allows students to demonstrate activities that they have completed for their own personal development. Achieving the award enabled one student to receive an unconditional offer of a place at University.”