WALES and Newport rugby stars Dan Lydiate and Toby Faletau officially opened the city’s newest secondary school yesterday.

The Newport Gwent Dragons players joined mayor Cllr John Guy, mayoress Joyce Guy and council leader Bob Bright and others at Llanwern High School.

Head boy and girl Bladimie Germain and India Evans, both 17, led a tour around the £29 million building, which boasts a Jam pod music room, 90-seater lecture theatre, sprung flood dance studio, gym and sports hall, much of which is also open to the public.

Youngsters helped design many aspects of the new school and had a say in everything from the colour scheme, school uniform and the installation of lockers for pupils.

Bladimie said he hoped the school would help change people’s perception of the local area and encourage the community to take pride in themselves and their surroundings.

Year 13 pupil Laura Hale, 17, said all pupils now look forward to coming to school, adding: “It’s really exciting, there’s a massive difference in everyone since we have moved in.”

The new school, completed last spring, replaced the crumbling Hartridge High, which was long outdated and in much need of repair.

Head teacher Peter Jenkins said Llanwern would give students better opportunities in life than ever before and while it replaced the former Hartridge High it would forge its own merits.