TWO eight-year-old girls went missing from their school in Warndon, Worcester, this morning.
They were found safe and well at noon in Cranham Drive, a short distance from Cranham Primary School which they left before school had started.
Headteacher Gareth Morgan said the staff at the school were made aware of the pupils' absence at about 8.50am just after the school day had started.
"The police were phoned within five or 10 minutes of us realising they weren't there," he said.
"They just hadn't turned up but apparently one of the girls had been on the playground before school hours and not been in class."
When West Mercia Police were told of the incident, Mr Morgan said the area was flooded with between 30 and 40 officers.
"The officers were incredible, and of course the parents were involved all the way through," he added.
"It was a very, very, very unusual event - I have been a teacher for 21 years and I have only known one other incident like this."
West Mercia Police posted a statement on their Facebook page following the girls being returned to school at 12.15pm.
It said: "Fab news - we've just found the two missing girls in Warndon, safe and well.
"Thanks for all your help in sharing our appeal - lots of calls and eyes and ears on the ground helped us get to this happy result."
West Mercia Police declined to give any more information.