BOLTON School has celebrated a big win.

The borough’s top school received a prestigious Tes Independent School Award 2018 for championing sports in primary schools across Bolton.

The school won the Whole School Community Initiative of the Year Award for ensuring children would be able to take part in sporting opportunities in the face of cutbacks in the age of austerity.

Bolton School helped to form the Bolton Sports Alliance in 2015.

The school’s football coach, Keith Branagan, helps primary school PE departments co-ordinate their programme.

The school hosts an annual football festival, enjoyed by more than 10,000 7-11-year-olds.

And its pupils help to run an annual sports festival, as well as town cross-country and swimming championships.

Gaskell Primary School said Bolton School had been “very positive” in its efforts to use sport as part of its inclusion programme for newly arrived international pupils.

The competition judges stated: “There is an extraordinary amount of work being done for an awful lot of people, with a very wide range of opportunities being provided by Bolton School.

“They have been absolute leaders in the sector in community work.

"It is a really strong project that has had a very significant impact on its area. A shining city on the hill.”

Philip Britton, head of Bolton School boys’ division, said he was over the moon with the award.

He said: “We were absolutely delighted to receive the award and proud to do so for all sorts of reasons — as thanks to all those who have given their time to the community, for those who have spent time making partnerships work, for the whole community of Bolton who can take pride in their working together for the common good being recognised nationally as an example for all.”

The award ceremony was held Grosvenor House Hotel, London, hosted by author, broadcaster, actor and entertainer Gyles Brandreth. Sixteen awards were handed out.