MORE than 200 Marston pupils turned out with parents, teachers and local residents to celebrate the area's green spaces.

St Michael's Primary School took part in the open air event led by Oxford's Centre for Sustainable Healthcare on Friday.

The National Lottery-funded scheme took the group along Marston's 'green health route' taking in nature parks and recreation grounds.

St. Michael's head teacher Rosalind Owen said: "This has been a fantastic opportunity to involve the whole school in their local area.

"So much of school life takes place within the school gates, so to be able to take the pupils out as a group to explore and connect with their local environment, and learn about all the benefits of being active in their local green spaces, has been a great way to spend the school day."

The group spent the morning on a health walk through Marston, including visits to Milham Ford Nature Park and Croft Road playground, where they spent time exploring the green space and its diverse wildlife.

As well as identifying local trees and wild flowers, the group also spotted red kites, which are thriving in the area following their successful reintroduction.

The pupils were also joined for part of the morning by a group of residents from Marston Court care home.

In the afternoon, the children came out in groups to the nature park to learn more about the local bird population, with practical activities including nest building and educational activities on local wildlife in the area.

Event organiser Sarah Dandy, from the Centre for Sustainable Healthcare in Banbury Road, said: "This is the second of four events that we are running through the year in Marston, based on the health route, which celebrate the local environment and the turning of the seasons.

"Having the school so enthusiastically supporting this event has been key to its success – we are so grateful to them for turning out in such numbers and supporting this community event.

"The next event, focusing around autumn, is already being planned, ahead of culminating the year with our big Hallowe’en celebration."