Warm welcome at a Northwich school for two Ukrainian sisters

Viktoriia and Anastasiia started school in Northwich after escaping Ukraine with their Mum Credit: ITV News

ITV Granada Reports correspondent Mel Barham has the story.

Two children who have fled the war in Ukraine had the warmest of welcomes when they met their new classmates for the first time.

Viktoriia and Anastasiia escaped with their mother, Anna, to stay with family in Cheshire, leaving their father, Valeriy, behind as he helps defend their country.

Valeriy was forced to stay behind to defend their country - but Anna says it is something he does willingly and has signed up for the Ukrainian Army reservists.

Six-year-old, Anastasiia, and her 15-year-old sister, Viktoriia, took the first steps in their new life in the North West by starting school on Monday. Viktoriia said "I feel excited and happy, it is a first step in a new life"

For Anastasiia it is doubly poignant as she has never even been to school before as they do not start until they are six in Ukraine.

6 year old Anastasiia's first day at school Credit: ITV News

Deputy Head at The Grange Junior School, Anna Evans said "We are aware of how overwhelming this must feel for Anastasiia today, but I think once she is with the children and they are playing then language isn't a barrier and I'm sure she will relax and feel settled"

The family had lived in Ukrainian capital Kyiv where Anna worked in a farm shop and her husband Valeriy was a security guard at an American school.

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