A BOLTON teacher has won a prestigious national teaching award.

Ben Tipton, a Year Six teacher at Sacred Heart RC Primary School, Westhoughton, was named the winner of the technology award at last night’s (SUN) ceremony The Pearson Teaching Awards are the “Oscars” of the teaching world.

Mr Tipton, and his colleague, Jason Bilinkewycz, were both nominated by their headteacher, Martin Johnson.

The pair won the Teacher of the Year in the North to qualify for the finals.

Last night Mr Tipton collected his award and the ceremony will be televised later this month.

He came into teaching after going back to university to retrain.

Mr Tipton made his mark on the school with his IT know-how, where he transported young people back to historical events with the use of a green screen, to creating an award-winning learning platform, allowing young people to carry on learning at home.

When he reached the final he said: “I really enjoy the job — every day is different.”

Celebrities including actor James Nesbitt, TV chef Lorraine Pascale and author Michael Morpurgo helped to present the awards.

Actress Anna Friel, who is the ambassador for this year's awards, said: "Being a teacher doesn't start and end with the school bell, it's a true vocation and one which doesn't always get the recognition or thanks it deserves."

Mr Bilinkewycz won the regional award for outstanding new teacher of the year in the North after he led a project to create an outdoor classroom, which features a garden, a living willow, a Viking longboat, allotments and a pond complete with fish and a pond camera.

Teacher of the Year was Nathan Kemp of Tollgate Primary School in east London and the Headteacher of the Year award went to Anne Bull of Weston All Saints Church of England Primary School, Weston, Bath.

The awards, originally founded by Lord Puttnam 14 years ago, are open to every school in the UK and reward excellent teachers, headteachers, teaching assistants and schools.