Hollywood star Liam Neeson surprised a local school this week as it celebrated its 20 year anniversary.

The Ballymena-born actor took a break from his day job by visiting Slemish College as it marked its birthday.

The personable Star Wars and Batman Begins star posed for photographs, signed autographs and chatted with students for about two hours.

A senior teacher said Neeson was an “absolute gentleman”.

“He seemed to really enjoy the visit,” said Grace Anderson, a senior leader at Slemish College.

“He was lovely throughout and could not have been kinder or more accommodating to the pupils.

“He was very generous in how much time he gave to the students. His commitment was totally to them.”

Neeson watched performances by the school’s drama department, spoke about film and acting with media studies students and had celebratory tea and cake with the school’s sixth form.

The schools enrol approximately equal numbers of Catholic and Protestant children as well as children from other religious and cultural backgrounds.

Ms Anderson added that the school only found out last week that the star would be able to attend the celebration.

“We issued the invitation in the New Year, and were optimistic he could find the time. When Liam heard about the event, I think he was keen to come,” she said.

“He really could not have given more time to the pupils – as you can imagine, there was no shortage of kids hoping to get a photo with him.”

Source: BBC

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