FORMER England rugby captain and winner of 2011 Celebrity Master Chef Phil Vickery opened Andover and District Mencap’s new sensory room at its Wellington Centre HQ on Wednesday.

The room cost around £39,000 to kit out and was funded by Wooden Spoon, the rugby charity dedicated to helping disadvantaged children and young people across the British Isles live happier, richer lives.

Phil said: “I think it’s fantastic the work which goes on here.

“Through the efforts of people we are changing people’s minds towards disadvantaged kids whatever your background.

“I hope my being here at least will encourage somebody to become a member of the Spoon.”

Partnered with the UK rugby community, the charity involves some of rugby’s top sporting role models in making a difference in the lives of young people in need.

The sensory room provides opportunities for development of all the senses for children, young people and adults with severe learning disabilities.