A TASTY barbecue and close encounters with fascinating creatures were just some of the treats on offer at Dumbarton Academy as families celebrated completing a healthy cooking programme.

Children, parents and carers who have taken part in the Food, Families, Futures school holiday initiative at the school throughout July got involved in a range of fun activities to mark the end of the course on July 25.

The project sought to teach families the benefits of healthy cooking and improving health and welfare.

Professional chefs whipped up a spectacular barbecue spread for this summer’s participants, while the youngsters worked up an appetite with a number of games, including challenging the Pupil and Family Support Team to a round of Beat the Goalie as well as basketball and frisbee.

Nature was also a big feature of the day as the Edinburgh Zoo Bug Bus made an appearance. Operated by The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, the double-decker has been fully converted to provide a unique and inspiring teaching space for learning all about Scotland’s natural history.

And the youngsters also got to come face-to-face with Dumbarton Academy’s exotic animals as the science department opened its doors – and bug boxes – for a hands-on meeting with its snakes, tarantula, giant beetles, stick insects, frogs, giant snails and giant cockroaches.

Councillor Karen Conaghan, convener of educational services, said:“This has been a fantastic course and the feedback I’ve received from many of the families who have taken part has been very positive.

“It’s great to see so many families from across West Dunbartonshire come together to learn the benefits of healthy cooking.

“I would like to thank everyone who helped run the summer programme and I’m sure on the back of these events families will be spending more time cooking fresh food and having fun in the kitchen.”