PARENTS are being encouraged to apply for the School Age Payment before applications close on February 29.

The one-off £250 payment is currently open for families with a child born between March 1, 2014, and February 28, 2015. If an application is made after the deadline it will not be considered.

The cash can be used for anything from educational toys to travel, or after-school activities.

The payment is part of the Best Start Grant for families in receipt of eligible benefits, including Universal Credit, income support, housing benefit and tax credits, to help at key stages in a child’s life.