School runaways found safe and well
Two 16-year-olds who ran away from a top boarding school have been found safe and well in the Dominican Republic, police said.
Edward Bunyan and Indira Gainiyeva left Stonyhurst College near Clitheroe, Lancashire, in the early hours of last Monday, apparently took a taxi to Manchester Airport, and headed to the Caribbean sun.
A Lancashire Police spokesman said: "The students have thankfully been located safe and well at a hotel in the Punta Cana area of the Dominican Republic.
"Plans are now being made for their safe return to the UK.
"They will be given a welfare de-brief by police following their arrival back in this country.
"Our priority throughout this has been to ensure the safety and welfare of those students and after they have been spoken to on their return this will signal an end of police involvement in this matter."
Stonyhurst head Andrew Johnson said he was "absolutely delighted".
He said there will be discussions with them and their families when they return but it was too early to speculate about their future.
In a statement he said: "We are absolutely delighted to be able to report that the two missing pupils have been found safe and well by police in the Dominican Republic.
"They are currently in the care of the police and a family member.
"Staff and pupils at the College have been concerned in recent days for the safety of the two.
"We are really most grateful to parents and friends of Stonyhurst for their overwhelming support at this difficult time, and for their prayers for the safety of the two young people.
"Over the coming days we will be having discussions with the two young people and their families about what has happened and also what happens next.
"However, it is simply too early at the moment to speculate about the future."
Previously, the college has defended its security measures, explaining they were intended to keep out intruders, not to "imprison" students.
The college's second master Matthew Mostyn said last week: "In all of these situations, where there's a will there's a way, but obviously there will be a full review of our procedures in every respect as soon as we can get that going."
After news of their escape was picked up, fellow pupils took to social media - using the hashtags #WheresBunyan and #WheresIndira.
Stonyhurst College, a day and boarding school, was founded in 1593, and bills itself as one of Britain's leading Catholic boarding schools.
It received an outstanding inspection report in April 2010 from Ofsted.