SETTLE College students were treated to an inspiring talk by an Afghan political refugee who fled his home country when he was barely a teenager.

Gulwali Passarlay, left Afghanistan in 2006, when he was just 12 years old, settled in Bolton, and is now reading politics and international relations at the University of Manchester.

His book, The Lightless Sky, which chronicles his life to date, has been very well received and could possibly be made into a film.

Gulwali spoke to the school's year eight and year 12s, sharing his inspirational story, and answering questions.

Those who heard him speak, were gripped by his experiences, and what he had gone through at such a young age.

And they came away from the talk with their eyes open to the difficulties some people face, and realising how little they know about the plight of refugees.

Particularly moving, said the school, was when he spoke of his mother and how he had not seen her since leaving Afghanistan 12 years ago, and that 'by saving him, she lost him'.

But, despite his different experience of childhood, he was very down to earth and related to the students.

His last piece of advice to the students was for them to 'work hard' and to 'be kind to each other'.

A school spokesperson said: "His achievements of coming to England, graduating from the University of Manchester and now doing his Master’s degree, was truly inspiring for all the students.

"His book The Lightless Sky is a ‘must read’- it has received rave reviews and a film could even be on the cards. Gulwali may even star in it himself. The college aims to make his visit a regular event, so all students can hear his remarkable story. That’s assuming he doesn’t become too famous to visit."