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Beano launches hunt for Britain’s funniest children and teacher

The UK’s longest running comic has launched a search for the nation’s funniest primary school class.

The Beano is calling on schools and teachers across the country to enter its Britain’s funniest class competition, and to submit their best jokes and gags.

The best votes will be put to a public vote, which will decide the winning class which will be “immortalised” in a special edition of the comic.

The competition marks the 70th anniversary of the Bash Street Kids, known for characters Plug, Danny and Scotty.

The initiative is in its sixth year, and aims to encourage future comedians, and promote confidence and wellbeing in the classroom.

The comic publishers have partnered with Place2Be, a children’s mental health charity, to launch the competition.

The winning schoolkids will be drawn by Beano illustrators for inclusion in a special edition of the comic, marking the first time in the comic’s history where real children will be featured in its pages.

Originally called When the Bell Rings, the Bash Street Kids was inspired by a Dundee school which was next to the offices of publishers DC Thompson.

The front cover of The Bash Street Kids’ 70th anniversary cover (Beano/PA)

Seven decades later, the characters continue to reflect the individuality of British children, making them a great source of inspiration for Britain’s Funniest Class, which this year has the theme “Express Yourself”.

Mike Stirling, director of mischief at the Beano, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to launch our biggest ever Britain’s funniest class competition, whilst also celebrating our very own funniest class – the Bash Street Kids.

“The characters of class 2B, with all of their unique super-powers and flaws, remind adults and children alike that it’s great to be different.

“We hope that the Bash Street Kids inspire this year’s entrants to express themselves and we can’t wait to see all the incredible and hilarious jokes from classrooms across the UK”.

Michelle Bates, headteacher at Greasley Beauvale Primary School, Newthorpe, Nottinghamshire, winners of last year’s Britain’s Funniest Class, encourages teachers across the UK to enter the competition.

She said: “The classroom and the school flourished when we rallied together as a team for the common goal of laughter.

“It was wonderful to see the classroom grow in confidence and creativity.”

Catherine Roche, chief executive of Place2Be added: “We are really excited to join forces with the team at Beano to find Britain’s funniest class, and get children laughing in every town in the UK.

“We know that having fun and laughter in the classroom encourages self-expression, confidence and can boost wellbeing so we’re proud to be part of this year’s initiative.”

The comic is also on the hunt to discover Britain’s funniest teacher for the first time, celebrating educators and the crucial role they play.

The competitions launch during Children’s Mental Health Week.

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