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Tyneside - Children pack shoebox of tonic for the troops

Soldiers in Afghanistan have received a hoard of special packages from pupils at a school in Newcastle.

Children from Amberley Primary School have packed more than 40 shoeboxes with chocolates, letters and magazines, which have been sent to the 21 Engineer Regiment, currently based in the troubled Helmand Province.

The pupils were spurred into action following a visit to the school by a serviceman and woman who held an assembly about what it is like to be a British soldier serving in Afghanistan.

The packages were formally handed over last week and taken to RAF Brize Norton, where they were flown out to the war-torn country.

Headteacher Alice Barkes told the Newcastle Chronicle: "This has been a great way of helping our pupils to understand more about the world around them.

"Children can't help but hear about Afghanistan on the news, and so this has helped develop their understanding of what it means.

"The children have also learned about the people in Afghanistan and how soldiers are working with communities to build sanitation and healthcare." RV.

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