TALENTED students from Newport and Torfaen attended an event aimed at encouraging them to apply to the UK’s best universities.

Pupils from Lliswerry High, St Joseph’s Roman Catholic High and Caerleon Comprehensive schools in Newport and Torfaen schools Croesyceiliog and Fairwater High were encouraged to apply to Oxford and Cambridge universities when they met former graduates to hear about their university experiences.

The Welsh Government’s Oxbridge ambassador Paul Murphy, MP for Torfaen, also attended the event at Caerleon Comprehensive School.

The former Oxford University student took on the role last year after data showed low numbers of Welsh students were attending Oxbridge universities. He will report back to the Welsh Government on progress in the summer.

Pupils met Robert High, a former Caerleon Comprehensive School pupil who studied at Cambridge and is now a graduate engineer at Jaguar Land Rover.

Other speakers at the event included former Oxford University students Jo Breckon, who attended Lliswerry High School, and Victoria Stephens, who attended Bassaleg School.

Viv Clement, director of Sixth Form Studies at Caerleon Comprehensive, said: “This event was a fantastic opportunity to inspire our most gifted students.”

It was the second Oxbridge ambassador event to take place in Gwent. Last December Mr Murphy visited Coleg Gwent’s Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone and Cwmcarn High School’s sixth formers.