Alongside their work in supporting schools, Christine and Peter Thomas recently launched Building Self-Belief, a charity which uses their skills in teaching to develop and deliver programmes where the arts, teaching skills and motivational techniques help to build resilience and self-esteem in young people.

Christine told us "Our programmes are proving to be a great success and to celebrate this in full we organised a launch to ensure as many people as possible could share in our success. We want to show people what can be done to help schools engage some of the most out of reach young people." She added "Sue Snowdon, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Durham made a magnificent effort to interact with fellow guests, and most importantly, make the girls from our Consett group feel warmly welcomed and massively involved in everything that we did. I was even more impressed with her level of interest and commitment when she called me on the Sunday evening after the launch to tell me she had been spreading the word about how great our charity is. She also did us the honour of cutting our fabulous cake and insisted that the girls joined her to share in this experience."