A CHARITY concert held at Belmont Abbey and performed by pupils from St Mary's Roman Catholic High School in Hereford has raised more than £500 for the international development charity CAFOD, making the grand total raised for charity since 2013 an impressive £20,000.

The spring concert for CAFOD, held on April 11, took place in the new venue of Belmont Abbey.

Pupils from across the school performed a mixture of orchestral pieces, instrumental ensembles and solo pieces.

Members of the Benedictine community shared the experience of the wonderful acoustics in the stunning settings of Belmont Abbey.

St Mary's has a long tradition of dedicating themselves to fundraising throughout Lent in aid of CAFOD, as well as supporting smaller local charities which support people in and around Hereford.

Headteacher of St Mary's, Mr Wetson, said: "We are delighted with how much our pupils enjoy supporting CAFOD. There is a really strong desire among them to raise funds for the wonderful work of CAFOD and it's great that they are able to use their own gifts and talents to do so.

"Part of our mission at St Mary's is to strive to build the Kingdom of God and make a positive contribution to community cohesion. I'm very proud of the way our pupils go about this."

Fr Paul Stonham, Abbot of Belmont Abbey, added: "The concert in the abbey church at Belmont was quite superb and demonstrated the high standards of musical achievement at St Mary's, Lugwardine. There were some exceptional performances, and it was great to see the desire of the young performers to raise money for CAFOD, which does such excellent and necessary work in developing countries. I witnessed some of this need personally during the 20 years I spent founding a monastery in Peru."

CAFOD's local representative in Hereford, Therese Warwick, said: "We are so grateful to the pupils and parents at St Mary's, Lugwardine for using their talents to raise funds for CAFOD. Special thanks to Mr Greg Thomas (head of music), Rob Lucas (organist) and all the peripatetic music teachers for their contribution to this wonderful musical performance. Their support truly will ensure that no one is beyond reach of the support they need to flourish this Lent. Thank you everyone!"