WITH help from local schoolchildren, a symbol of peace and hope will adorn the exit of a church.

In a collaborative project involving Whitley Chapel First School, St Helen’s Church and the wider community, a new window has been designed and installed above the door in St Helen’s.

The design of the stained-glass window is inspired by the story of Noah’s Ark and how the dove returned an olive branch following the flood as a sign of peace.

School leavers worked with project sponsor Ruth Marlee, the Rev. Andrew Patterson and artist Sarah Richardson to design some images which were collated by Sarah.

Mrs Marlee said: “Because the window is above the door, it seemed fitting to offer a last wish before leaving.

“So what better incentive than Noah putting his trust in God and his precious dove to lead the way to safety and peace? For me, it is the image of hope after any difficult reflections or struggles that we all feel sometimes, mixed with the reminder of our trust, successes and loves.”

The structure will be known as the Capes Window as a thank you from the Capes family for the warm Hexhamshire welcome the family received when moving to the area 70 years ago. Similarly, candlesticks and cross have been made in memory of well-known member of the community, Dougy Lamb.

Rev. Patterson said it was pleasing the whole community got involved in the project.

He said: “The window looks stunning and it was great to see the schoolchildren embrace the project.”