PUPILS and shoppers have marked the beginning of Lent by reflecting on their lives with the Archbishop of York.

Dr John Sentamu visited Thirsk and nearby Knayton Church of England Primary School, where he joined the school’s 100 pupils for collective Ash Wednesday worship.

After meeting governors and staff at the school, the Primate of England told the children that Lent’s meaning was about remorse, gratitude and saying please to God before marking their foreheads with an ash cross.

Head teacher Kellie Halliday said: “There was certainly a buzz about the school. We will remember this Ash Wednesday for years to come.”

Later, Dr Sentamu met shoppers in Thirsk Market Place, where he asked for prayer requests before taking people to St Mary’s Church for three services, attended by 140 worshippers including Year 5 and 6 pupils of South Kilvington Church of England Primary School.

Canon Richard Rowling, of St Mary’s Church, said: “The response from people in the town was very good, they found it very easy to talk to the Archbishop.”