Rishi was joined by professional footballer Josh Coburn and two pupils in remission from cancer treatment to open Bedale CE Primary School’s new multi-use games area (MUGA).
The MP, Josh of Middlesbrough FC, and pupils Alfie Hutchinson and Bailey Cuthbert wielded the scissors to formally open the new facilities.
Josh, an in-form striker with the Championship side, is a former pupil at Bedale Primary and attended the event with the club’s then Head Coach Neil Warnock.
The all-weather playing area has been funded through the school’s grant funding for sport and a donation from local businessman James Proctor of WJP Software.
Before the ceremony Rishi talked to Alfie, aged eight, who has had treatment for a brain tumour, and former pupil Bailey, aged 11, who has just started at Bedale High School, and has undergone treatment for bone cancer.
He said: “It was inspirational to meet Alfie and Bailey, their mothers, and to see how well they are doing after their successful treatment. It was a privilege to be part of this great day at the school, to meet so many of its wonderful pupils and to help open this tremendous addition to the school’s facilities.”
Headteacher Liz Turnbull said: “We aim to inspire our pupils to be the best they can be and it was wonderful to have two high-achieving individuals – role models in their very different fields - join us on this special day for the school showing our children what can be achieved through hard work and dedication.
“Physical fitness is very important and the new MUGA will enable our children to take part in healthy outdoor exercise and sport whatever the weather.”
After the official opening ceremony, Josh Coburn, who Mrs Turnbull taught when he attended the school, stayed on to do some football practice with the pupils.
During his visit, Rishi joined the school’s council for a Q&A session where he fielded pupils’ questions about his work and life as Chancellor and as their local MP.