IT’S A CLASS ACT: School in raptures after winning chick naming comp

Children at Smithy Bridge Primary School are flying high again after winning the council’s ‘name the peregrine falcon chick’ competition.

It’s the second year in a row that Smithy Bridge pupils had shown an eagle-eye for interesting names, following last year’s winning choice of ‘Perrie’.


This year’s winning choice was the inspired idea of class 4 pupil Evie Law who wowed judges with her selection of ‘BuckBeak’, a character from the Harry Potter novels.

The winning prize was a £20 voucher to spend at Rochdale Town Hall’s splendid Clock Tower Restaurant, which sits beneath the birds’ nest box, followed by a guided tour of the borough’s most historic building.

Hundreds of entries had winged in from across the borough and beyond, leaving judges with the envious task of choosing three lucky winners.

As well as ‘BuckBeak’ the other winning entries were ‘Striker’ and ‘Kevin Beakon’.

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All three chicks have now flown their Rochdale Town Hall nest. Birding experts have reported that they are thriving in the wild.

Big cheer as pupils at Smithy Bridge Primary School celebrate naming one of the Peregrine Falcon Chicks, with Councillor Janet Emsley

Joanne Ramsbottom, a teacher at the school, said: “The children have loved watching the Falcons on the council’s live webcam.

It’s been a privilege to have been part of something so special within our local area. We are looking forward to entering the competition again next year.”

Councillor Janet Emsley, the cabinet member for culture, said: “It was great to see children from across the school entering some brilliant names for the competition. Well done to Evie for her excellent choice which was a deserved winner.

The Falcons have wowed thousands of nature lovers and the camera will be back next year for an even better bird’s eye view of our feathered friends.”

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For more information contact Rochdale Borough Council’s media team on 01706 926002 or

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