A specialist early years centre for children on the autistic spectrum has been accredited by the National Autistic Society following a two-year process.

Stevenage's TRACKS autism is the only independent early years setting in England to gain the NAS Accreditation Award.

President of NAS, actress Jane Asher, said: "This accreditation gives great confidence to the ability of this organisation and will stand them in good stead.

"It is a terrific recommendation of what they all do. I know the assessors were deeply impressed.

"Every parent used the word 'amazing' in describing the work of TRACKS. I congratulate them on this remarkable achievement."

TRACKS chairman Mervyn Terrett said: "We were thrilled at how many times the word 'amaze' was used in the accreditation report and stunned TRACKS is the only preschool in England to achieve this award. It is a huge testament to the staff."