Hazelwood sweeps the board at NI Rock Challenge

Students from Hazelwood Integrated College won the NI heat of the  Rock Challenge. INNT 17-017-PSB

Students from Hazelwood Integrated College won the NI heat of the Rock Challenge. INNT 17-017-PSB

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HAZELWOOD pupils were headbanging to their success after being named champions at the Northern Ireland heat of the Rock Challenge in the Waterfront Hall last week.

The Rock Challenge is a globally held competition which aims to give children the chance to perform on stage while educating them about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse.

Pupils from Hazelwood Integrated College swept the boards at the Northern Ireland wide stage of the competition.

The group won the best stage Crew, best make up, best set design, performers choice award, spirit of Rock Challenge award, healthy lifestyle award, community support award as well as the overall winner title.

The group will now travel to the UK finals in June to represent Northern Ireland.

Kathryn Sheppard, director of Rock Challenge at Hazelwood said: “I am incredibly proud of such a fantastic team who showed such commitment and dedication.

“They have been a pleasure to work with over the last seven months.”

Hazelwood principal, Kathleen Gormley paid tribute to the staff, parents, politicians, businesses and local community members who supported the students and helped bring about the success.

She added: “The involvement of Hazelwood is key to building self esteem, aspiration and in encouraging young people to go out there and be the best they can be.

“Going to the UK Finals in June to represent Northern Ireland will ensure that this academic year at Hazelwood will end on a high.”

Tim MacFarlane, Rock Challenge event manager added: “Belfast was such an outstanding event this year, the schools taking part were all amazing and created a great atmosphere throughout the day.

“They really embodied the positive, supportive spirit of the event. As we’ve almost come to expect from the Belfast.

“The evening show was an outstanding spectacle of colour, energy and creativity, the audience and judges were blown away.

“The winning performance by Hazelwood was spellbinding, innovative and engaging with fantastic set and costumes. The energy of the young people bounced off of the stage and the audience were captivated - a feat made all the more impressive considering this is only their second year entering.

“Hazelwood are a lovely and supportive team and we can’t wait to see them at the finals in Grimsby representing Northern Ireland.”