The winners of an art competition have been unmasked by Stockton’s Wellington Square and Castlegate shopping centres – chosen from more than 500 entries.

Youngsters were asked to design masks for staff to keep themselves and customers safe while working at the centres.

The theme was ‘Love where you live’ and entrants were asked to depict something they love about the area. The two winning designs have been applied to face coverings and produced for staff to use.

Matt Boxall, manager of the two centres, said: “It was great that we were able to engage with the community in a way that really caught their imagination.

“The standard was high and having more than 500 entries was fantastic but made it even harder to pick a winner – so we picked two winners!

“Our staff will wear the masks with pride, as they are a testament to our close relationship with our shopping community.”

The winners were Heidi of Holy Trinity Rosehill Primary, Stockton and Jamie Gate,  age 10 who attends Kirkby and Great Broughton Primary School. Their designs show the Infinity bridge as a rainbow and countryside surrounding the Transporter bridge.

Heidi said: “I am absolutely over the moon knowing that the workers at the Castlegate Centre and Wellington Square will be wearing my design on their mask.

“I hope it will help spread positivity throughout our community and help us through this hard time.”

Jamie said: ‘I really enjoyed designing the mask and I am very happy about winning the competition!”

Jamie and Heidi have won chocolate bouquets, sweets for their classmates and masks for their schools.