PERFORMING arts students from a Basingstoke secondary school have reached the regional final of a national competition.

The team from Brighton Hill Community School secured a place in The Rock Challenge 2014 grand finale with a Cluedo-inspired performance called I Accuse.

The 50 students from Years 8 to 11 involved in the show won the Southern Region Heat at the O2 Guildhall in Southampton, where they competed against schools from areas including Wales and Buckinghamshire.

The characters from the murder mystery board game – Mrs Peacock, Mrs White, Miss Scarlett, Professor Plum, Reverend Green and Colonel Mustard – were brought to life in Brighton Hill’s eight-minute performance as students danced their way through a set comprising a ballroom, dining room and library, with props including a rope, dagger and candlestick.

As well as coming first on the night, the team also won awards for their costume, set design, lighting, video production, soundtrack, performance skills, entertainment and stage crew.

Judges described the performance as “polished” and said the pupils delivered “a cohesive performance that was executed well and with precision”.

The competition is an anti-drug and crime prevention initiative, has been held every year in the UK since 1996 for secondary schools and colleges, and is run by the Be Your Best Foundation.

Its aim is to show young people they can achieve a ‘natural high’ through life rather than the use of tobacco, alcohol and other substances.

Vicky Britton, head of the expressive and performing arts faculty at Brighton Hill Comm-unity School, said: “The standard from all the schools taking part was incredibly high.

“However, our entire team spent many hours rehearsing to ensure they delivered the best possible performance on the night and their efforts were duly rewarded.

“We are all so proud of this very well-deserved success.”

The successful Brighton Hill team will now perform in the Southern Open Final, which will take place on June 19 at Portsmouth Guildhall.