YOUNGSTERS reaped the rewards of democracy at a Tynedale school last week.

The children from Broomley First School got their hands dirty to plant new apple trees in their school’s gardens.

The trees were the outcome of their annual democracy day earlier in the year.

The event sees local county councillor Anne Dale working with the schoolchildren and teaching them about the voting process.

She also presented them with £100 to spend on whatever they believed the school needed, to be decided on by the children themselves.

Ideas were put forward by different classes at the school, with the final decision made by the school council for apple trees to be planted – fitting in with work they had been doing around healthy eating.

The school councillors had to decide how to spend the £100, fitting in with the criteria for the new project to be within budget, safe, for the benefit of the whole school, sustainable, good quality and environmentally friendly.

Despite the democracy day taking place earlier this year, the children had to wait until last week to have the trees delivered so they could plant them, so that the weather would be right.

Coun. Dale said: “It’s always a lot of fun.

“It’s about trying to get the children to learn that voting is important, and more importantly, how to use their vote properly.

“They all love getting involved and making suggestions, and it also really makes them think about the criteria for what would be beneficial for the whole school.”

Last week was also local democracy week, with various events taking place across the county for youngsters to learn more about the voting system.