STUDENTS and staff at The Grange Academy in Runcorn have much to be proud of with GCSE results showing a substantial improvement.

A spokesman for the school said overall progress improved by half a grade for every student and in every subject when compared to last year.

This year has seen improvements in many subjects including English literature, science, history, French and a continuation of strong results in art, music and physical education.

As the envelopes were opened there was an excited and nervous atmosphere in the school hall, but this quickly changed into jubilation as the students read their results.

There was plenty to celebrate with some outstanding individual success stories.

Top achievers rewarded with excellent grades and great progress included Megan Grainger, Owen O'Neill, Nicole Ireland, Molly Vaughan, Beth Goulder and Kayleigh Ann-Mutch.

Megan Grainger achieved nine GCSEs, all at Grades 9 to 7 with the very top grade of 9 in English language, maths, chemistry and physics.

Megan now plans to continue studies at The Bluecoat School in Liverpool to study maths, biology, chemistry and further maths with the aspiration at study at Cambridge University.

Owen O'Neill achieved nine GCSEs with five of these at a Grade 8, which is an outstanding achievement.

He is going on to study geography, physics and maths at Cronton College and hopes to study meteorology and climate change as he progresses to university.

Ian Critchley, principal, said: "I am delighted and so proud of the achievements for this cohort of students.

"They have worked hard all year and I am really pleased this has paid off.

"I look forward to hearing the continued success stories of the class of 2019.

"I wish them all well for the next stage of their education.

"We have had an excellent year in both phases with primary results improving and also we have seen both behaviour and attendance improve significantly.

"I have been very grateful for the support of our parents and the local community and I am confident we will continue to see The Grange Academy go from strength to strength."