Staff and students at Halesowen College are boosting their health and wellbeing at a special animal café.

Animal cafes are a concept that has come from Japan where customers can pet a furry friend while grabbing a cuppa to help them relax - with venues popping up in cities across the UK.

The college is tapping into the theme thanks to its chaplain Hazel Charlton, who came up with the idea.

Students can meet furry friends Sophie and Pippa as well as talking to Hazel who is on hand to offer advice and support to people of all faiths as well as none.

Hazel, who is reverend at St Peter's Church in Lapal, said: “The main aim of the café is to help staff and students relax and take some time out from their busy college day.

"It has been scientifically proven that being with animals has a calming and relaxing effect.

"It's a great way for me to contact more students rather than being tucked away in an office.

"It's been fabulous - the students just love it - their reactions are huge - they adore the dogs."

Staffie Sophie, aged 11 and Jack Russell Pippa, aged 12, are both Hazel's dogs. They are rescue hounds, with Sophie coming from the charity Senior Staffie Club and Pippa from Blue Cross in Bromsgrove.

The café is held the second Wednesday of every month behind the College’s Starbucks café from 1.30pm to 3.30pm.

Rev Charlton is part of the Church of England's Halas Team Ministry.