Hartlepool United's fine February has been rewarded with manager John Hughes and defender Peter Hartley picking up the npower Manager and Player of the Month awards respectively.

John Hughes' men looked destined for relegation around Christmas, but an undefeated February complete with four victories and two draws, has breathed new life into their season. Although they finished the month in 23rd place and six points adrift of safety, this run of form will have Pools fans dreaming of a great escape.

The form of local lad Hartley was instrumental in Hartlepool's turn in fortunes. He allied his ability to read the game to his physical strength, ensuring greater defensive stability. Calm in possession, he also powered home vital headed goals in the wins over Notts County and Leyton Orient.

Speaking about Hughes' triumph, panel member Alan Curbishley said: "John Hughes has made a fantastic impact following his appointment at Hartlepool United. Recording 14 points from just six games has now given his side a realistic chance of survival in npower League 1."

Commenting from npower, Partnership and Sponsorship Manager Katy Thomas added: "It was clearly a great month for Hartlepool United, both in the dugout and on the pitch.

"It's still going to be an uphill battle to avoid relegation, but after a month like this, I'm sure they'll be brimming with confidence and up for the challenge."

For all the latest news on Hartlepool United please click here