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Flying high as pupils swoop in to name peregrine falcon chick

12 July 2019

Councillor Janet Emsley with pupils from St Peters RC Primary School.

Children at a Middleton primary school are in raptures after winning our 'Name the peregrine falcon chick' competition.

Year 5 pupils at St Peter's RC Primary School showed an eagle-eye for a quirky name with their selection of 'Swoop Dogg'.

The name was the inspired idea of pupil Rose Bonnar, who was in tune with competition judges, who loved her clever play on words for world famous rapper Snoop Dogg.

Rose scooped a £20 voucher to spend at Rochdale Town Hall's splendid Clock Tower Restaurant, which sits beneath the birds' nest box, and the whole class will enjoy a guided tour of the borough's Grade 1 listed building.

There were hundreds of name entries from across the borough and beyond, leaving judges with the envious task of choosing 3 lucky winners.

As well as 'Swoop Dogg' the other winning entries were 'Pegasus' and 'Tweety Pioneer'. All 3 chicks have now flown their Rochdale Town Hall nest.

'It's great to link up with the council on such a brilliant project'

Gillian McKeogh, a teacher at the school, said: "The children loved watching the falcons on the council's live webcam and Rose was thrilled to pick a winning name. Pupils across the school have enjoyed doing some really interesting project work about peregrine falcons. It's great to link up with the council on such a brilliant project and we are looking forward to the falcons returning in 2020."

Councillor Janet Emsley, Cabinet Member for Culture, said: "It was great to see children from across the borough entering some brilliant names for the competition. Well done to Rose for her inspired choice, which was a really clever play on words. The falcons have brought delight to thousands of nature lovers, providing a brilliant narrative to the life of a bird of prey. We have had people viewing the webcam from all over the world and it's really helped to boost the profile of Rochdale and the council. We can promise nature lovers that our webcam will be back in 2020, offering an even better eagle-eye view of the nesting area."