The "David Proud Suite" at Sir Harry's
Wednesday, 28 April 2010 20:32
EastEnders star David Proud returns to Sir Harry Smith to unveil the 'David Proud Suite'
EASTENDERS star David Proud returned home to Whittlesey today (Friday) to unveil a plaque at a suite named after him at his former secondary school.
Staff at Sir Harry Smith Community College were so proud when David joined the cast of Albert Square
that they decided to name the Supportive Skills Department the David Proud Suite.
And David took time out of his busy schedule to unveil his name plaque as part of the school's Children
in Need events.
David, who plays Oxford University student Adam Best in the hit soap, said: "It is such an honour.
I had an amazing time at this school and it was largely down to the help and support I received while
I was here.
"It is lovely to see some of the staff members here today and even the teachers that taught me. I would
like to wish everyone who uses the department the best of success."
David, who suffers from Spina Bifida, made history earlier this year when he became the first disabled
actor to take a regular role in EastEnders.
He chose to attend Sir Harry Smith as a boy rather than another school with a large special needs
department. His mum Wendy is a teaching assistant at the school.
David was given a tour around the school and described today's facilities as "amazing". He also signed
>autographs and spoke to a number of budding actors, before giving students some tips.
David said: "One thing I have learned to realise in my life is that if you have a dream, however daft it may seem, just really go for it. If you don't you will regret it. "Don't let anything or anyone hold you back - so really give it your best shot and if you end up not doing it then at least you can say 'I tried my best'."
The rooms will be used by students who need time out of lessons whether due to a disability, learning need or personal crisis. Staff described naming the rooms after David an honour for the school and
a benchmark for current students.
Jonathan Digby, principal of Sir Harry Smith, said: "As part of a community we are often inspired by the things people do in sometimes very difficult circumstances. Sometimes we see it around the world but I
think it is important we recognise it in our own society, within our own school and within our own town.
"David is an example of that somebody who had a talent, had a vision, had an idea of where he wanted to go and was extremely determined to get there.
"I am inspired by that and I hope everybody in this school will be inspired by that. We are delighted to name a suite of rooms after you (David) because you are an inspiration."
The school has also held a number of events today to raise money for Children in Need. Carnival stalls, leg waxing, musical acts, candy floss and cake stalls helped boost the coffers.
David's work for the day is not over though - tonight he will appear alongside his cast mates in a special charity performance for Children in Need.
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