Close shave for Stockton primary school teachers

Darlington and Stockton Times: Head teacher Tom Gittins gets his tash removed by local barber Paul Dawson. Head teacher Tom Gittins gets his tash removed by local barber Paul Dawson.

TEACHERS enjoying a close shave to mark the end of Movember were watched by 500 children sprouting 'facial hair' of their own.

Local barber and parent, Paul Dawson, visited Hartburn Primary School in Stockton with his clippers and cut-throat razor today (MON) to shave off or tidy up the beards and moustaches six male members of staff have been cultivating over the past month to raise money and awareness about prostate cancer.

Head teacher, Tom Gittins, said illness was a difficult topic to discuss with youngsters which was tackled through assemblies.

"It got to halfway through November last year when one of the teachers said in the staff room 'Why aren't we doing this Movember thing?'" he said. "We spoke about families who had lost relatives to cancer so this year we decided to do it."

Every hour in the UK one man dies of prostate cancer and more than 100 are newly diagnosed each day.

As well as Mr Gittins and deputy head, Graham Rickard, teachers Adam Pickard, Sean Davies, Tony Williams and Mark Whitecross sat in a barber's chair in the school hall in front of a very hairy audience.

Pupils were invited to show their support by coming into school wearing fake moustaches and beards which helped raise £100 for the Butterwick Hospice with additional donations going to a prostate cancer charity.

The youngsters also voted for who they thought had grown the best whiskers by clapping loudly for their favourite.

Mr Gittins said he would not be keeping his bushy moustache. "It will be coming off. My mother said 'It does nothing for you'," he said.

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