TOURING TORQUAY Boarders’ half term adventure to the south of England
Getting involved Celebrating Mental Health week and wearing red for Sarah Everard
Making a difference Global Learning Week puts sustainability – and fun! – at the heart of Coram House
New 3G football facility for our Football Academy
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HEAD’S ADDRESS ANTON MAREE
Making things better for all Independent boarding schools have entered into something akin to an arms race, a term synonymous with the Cold War and nuclear escalation for those who can still remember the Cuban Missile Crisis! As the boarding market in the United Kingdom retracts, the competition for pupils increases and so the prize offered must be increased in size and improved in quality. Millions of pounds have been spent on magnificent buildings that look like John Lewis stores within.
las whilst it would cost less to stand aside, we can’t afford to do so and so we join in the race, not recklessly building white elephants that increase debt, but methodically, progressively changing things for the better. We already have the magnificent buildings that date back to the 1750s and we can transform them within whilst paying heed to our heritage and not destroying their historic features. The girls’ boarding house is being refurbished with scaffolding due to rise around the buildings on 12th July. Once finished it will be a very modern boarding house with en-suites for seniors and thermostatically controlled central heating in all of the rooms. The kitchen will be transformed with all the accoutrements the girls deserve and their lounge will have the latest devices to view Netflix and Amazon Prime amongst others. Perhaps the cushions will come from John Lewis! The house is already a fine example of what the ideal boarding house should be. A good mix of single and double rooms with a view from every window and a duty room close to the main door. When it is finished it will be able to compete with the best the “arms race” has to offer and for a fraction of the price (Cold War afficionados will remember that the West reputedly spent their way to victory over the USSR). The difference is the tutors who work within it; they provide an irresistible magic that
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transforms the experience for pupils who become a part of the house. They really make things better! We won’t stop there: we are in the process of creating a new room in the Library (which is already one of the biggest libraries at any school I have been a part of) – the Bright Room named for John Bright, MP and Ackworth Old Scholar, a prominent Quaker who was the founder-member of the Anti-Corn Law League, which fought for lower grain prices in the 1840s. Bright was also an outspoken critic of British involvement in the Crimean War. The room will be used by pupils for quiet study whilst also being a meeting room for Old Scholars and a museum that will proudly tell Ackworth’s story. Finally, our project which will improve the prospects of our pupils when they leave to go to university will start in September. The old stone farmhouse, probably the oldest building on our campus, will be refurbished as a digs for sixth formers who will stay there in groups of four for a week whilst they learn to live together, cook meals, read utility meters and appreciate what it is like to be independent. By the way the house will be available as an AirBnB during school holidays! There are other projects in progress that will make things better. It is a complex and never-ending story that is exciting to be a part of.
…The difference is the tutors who work within it; they provide an irresistible magic that transforms the experience for pupils who become a part of the house. They really make things better!
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SPRING WATCH World Book Day Coram House
Back in March we celebrated our first day back at school after the second lockdown came to an end. Usually celebrated on 4th March, we waited for the children to come back to school until we celebrated World Book Day making their return an exciting and colourful affair. Coram House did a fantastic job of directing and filming this creative short film in celebration of the day. Follow the QR code and enjoy!
Comic Relief Autism Resource
For Red Nose Day, the Autism Resource had a hot chocolate and cake sale. We sold chocolate buns, brownies, chocolate cornflake cakes and flapjacks. The total amount we raised from the sale was £51.55 to Comic Relief. Here is a picture of Evie enjoying her hot chocolate.
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Ackworth School’s First Virtual Careers Exhibition Tuesday 16th March 2021 Hosting our Careers Exhibition during the COVID-19 pandemic was always going to be an interesting and exciting challenge! Unable to host our careers carousel and exhibition in our traditional manner, we transitioned the event virtually, via Zoom. We were delighted to be joined by professionals from a wide range of careers, specifically selected by our pupils. Our chosen professionals presented on their occupations and answered questions from pupils and parents. A range of topics was covered from how to find out more about that career, how to build experience, how to develop relevant skills and longer term how to establish yourself or progress in that career. Pupils could pick and choose the careers that they wished to find out more about and the pupils and parents that attend rated the usefulness of the event as 4 out of 5 stars (5 being high). Thank you!
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the professionals that hosted, for giving so willingly of their time and providing a wealth of information and resources, to support our pupils in making their future career choices. The presentations from the events were recorded and are available at the following link on the school website for those that were unable to join us.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the careers exhibition further, please contact Pip Langfield, Head of Careers at email@example.com
Let’s Count! Census 2021 Coram House
The ‘Let’s Count’ Census took place. We looked at the many different ways of collecting data and how it can be used to help us. We encouraged the children to reflect on where they might be in 10 years’ time and how old they will be at the next Census. Year 5 surveyed the river for their Let’s Count! Census. We found 44 different living things including some fish. Year 3 and 4 Census count involved tree types at Forest School.
This matters to us As a Quaker school, we know that it is our responsibility to become more sustainable and we are working towards this. We love Earth and want to protect it. Looking through the eyes of our children will help us change behaviour for a more sustainable and renewable future. Year 6 used Birds of Britain reference books to identify the birds. They did tally charts when outside and then created pie charts digitally. Year 5 did a water survey in the river Went and created bar charts. They found twenty-five shrimps! Years 3 and 4 did a pictogram to show three different types of trees in the forest. Years 1 and 2 counted mini-beasts in Great Garden. They created a pictogram and bar charts with twigs. Nursery and Reception counted the flowers on our school grounds. We are so proud as a school to take part in this unique event, Let’s Count! Census 2021. Sophie Schoukroun Deputy Head of Coram House
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World Earth Day We love the Earth and want to protect it. Looking through the eyes of our children will help us change behaviour for a more sustainable and renewable future www.earthday.org/earth-day-2021 At Ackworth School, sustainability is one of our foundations as part of our Quaker values and we aspire to see to it that we do our bit in creating a more sustainable future for our children. From September, we hope to introduce the Plastic Free School Initiative into the school and head more towards an Eco Community instead of a Throwaway Society. Over the summer, we want to encourage you to participate in your very own Family Sustainable Audit, encouraging the children and yourselves to consciously reduce your plastic intake and waste you produce. Gathering this data could change the way we think about consumption and sustainability!
Wearing Red for Sarah – The Survivors Trust Young Activists Grace and Evelyn have been raising money for The Survivors Trust by giving talks around the school about sexual violence. Sparked by the circumstances of Sarah Everard’s death the messages and topics brought up by the girls spoke about the need to raise awareness among younger audiences. “Whatever gender you are it is never ok to body shame and make sexual comments about someone,” said Grace and Evelyn. “Tackling these problems from a young age can help normalise these conversations later down the line.” The girls raised a total of £460.76 for The Survivors Trust as well as getting people talking about the topic.
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Open Morning On 3rd May we opened our doors again for the first time in over a year to welcome prospective families to our Open Morning. It was great to be able to tour families face to face and talk to them about what Ackworth School has to offer. We are very much looking forward to the new academic year where will be hosting more faceto-face Open Mornings as restrictions ease.
For Mental Health Awareness Week it was time to take notice of our natural surroundings. By connecting with nature, we continued to be active outside, giving back to nature, and learning with natural art. Let’s keep talking! Going with the flow. As part of our Forest School, we know that it is not just being in nature but how we open ourselves up and interact with nature that counts. As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, Year 5 were asked to share their definition of mental health.
...what you feel inside. You don’t always show it on the outside. Mental Health is important – Freya ...all about what you think and feel about different situations – Kria ...something that is keeping you happy and healthy on the outside and inside – Sofia ...where you feel and think and worry. It is hard to talk about it but when you do it’s a massive wave of emotions – Holly ...about the health of your brain. If your brain is healthy, your mental health is good but if your brain is suffering from depression or something like that, your mental health is bad – Harry
I think mental health is...
...your health but not physical, and inside not outside – Grace
...about not keeping your feelings inside and speaking to somebody – Holly
...is a bit how you think, and it needs you to keep eating healthy food and to stay active – Dexter
...is how you feel about daily life and how you interpret things. This affects your happiness a lot so it’s important – Benjamin
...your health that’s mental not physical – Phoebe
...how you feel mentally, and it can come and go at any time – Amelia
Talking Mental Health is an animation made by children the same age as Year 5 and designed to help conversations about mental health in the classroom and beyond. Watching this gave the children a better understanding of how to be good listeners and outlined the difference between every day small feelings and big feelings.
...how your health is good or bad. If your mental health is good you are happy and if it’s bad you are unhappy – Sebastian
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Half Term Programme Torquay Takeover May Bank Holiday saw our boarders head off to Devon for their half term break. A 52-seater coach with no spare seats embarked on the 6-hour journey to the South coast. This was a well-deserved break from the daily routines of boarding at Ackworth School and allowed them the opportunity to have some time away from technology, making memories that will last a lifetime. On the first day, an excursion to the beach was welcomed by all. We were fortunate with the weather; getting through numerous bottles of factor 50 sunscreen says it all! We swam in the sea, played football on the beach and enjoyed traditional Devon ice-cream. And if that wasn’t enough, the same evening, we went to the fun fair! The pupils’ smiles and pure enjoyment of spending such a fun evening together made it all worthwhile. Based at a PGL outdoor adventure camp, the pupils enjoyed revising by the pool during downtime and indulging in the occasional dip!
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Activities such as canoeing and the zip wire were a massive hit and the staff were so proud of each and every one of the pupils for getting stuck in and even conquering their fears. On our last night, we all gathered around the campfire and spent the evening reflecting on our week, and indeed, the last year. It was lovely for our Upper Sixth Form pupils to have been given the opportunity to spend this time together – some of them have been with us since 1st Form. There were some emotional moments when reminiscing about their time at Ackworth School and what the future holds for them. A huge thank you to the staff that gave up their half term to make this memorable trip possible! Nicola Gilbert
New Head of Boarding
We are delighted to announce that from September 2021 Nicola Gilbert will become our Head of Boarding. Nicola has worked at Ackworth School for just over two years in the Marketing and Admissions department and has a wealth of boarding experience. Being a boarder herself when she was at school and then going on to work in numerous boarding schools, she is the perfect fit for the role. Nicola, along with her husband James, her two daughters, Libby and Lois and their working cocker spaniel, Otto, will move into the boarding house to ensure their family presence is very much felt at the heart of the boarding community. Despite the numerous setbacks the international boarding market has faced during the Covid-19 pandemic, Nicola is up for the challenge of supporting the recovery as the world returns to a new kind of normal. Nicola has a great rapport with our boarders. With her great sense of humour and tenacious work ethic she will certainly bring a fresh approach to the boarding house. www.ackworthschool.com | 9
NURSERY Coram House
‘Global Week’ The children had great fun, joining in the Rainbow Run during Global Week. At Nursery we talked about recycling and how important it is to look after our world. The children learned about various forms of recycling including how different ways that ‘green energy’ can be generated. The children made a beautiful collage rainbow using recycled cardboard, plastic bottle tops and orange peel and proudly displayed their masterpiece with the rest of the Coram children’s fabulous work.
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‘Growing’ The children have really enjoyed the topic of ‘Growing’. We have been learning about the life cycles of butterflies, frogs and of course, human beings! We had great fun looking at their baby photos and guessing who each one was. We enjoyed a visit from one of the children’s parents who was kind enough to bring three baby chicks to Nursery. The children delighted in stroking, holding, looking closely at their beautiful, fluffy friends.
Kindergarten Our older friends have been attending Kindergarten each Friday during the term to give them a little taste of the slightly more structured curriculum of Reception Class. The children have enjoyed several lessons with specialist teachers and a themed ‘French Day’. Despite the fun filled timetable we think all the children would agree that the games and lessons in the swimming pool were the highlight of the day! Sharon Marsh Head of Nursery www.ackworthschool.com | 11
CORAM HOUSE We have been fighting Covid in one way or another for over a year now. Our thoughts are now on the future. Many education systems have historically relied on passive forms of learning, direct instruction and memorising information. You will all have memories of this from your own schooling. We now need to look forwards, and move to a more critical and individual approach. I have been astounded by the negativity around the future of education and the incessant talk of “lost learning”. I feel that we should be celebrating and taking pride in the achievements of our pupils during such a difficult period. Their resilience, problem solving and independence need to be celebrated and taken forward. We do not need to go back to all the old ways. We have a chance to change what we are doing. Let’s embrace this.
So what are we doing in the Junior School? The focus on mental health and wellbeing is more important than ever. Outdoor learning provides young people with the space to reform connections. The impact on the wellbeing of children spending time in the outdoor is well documented. Time outdoors arms them with life skills. In
Coram House we have regular timetabled outdoor learning sessions. Forest School, river work and shorter lesson times giving longer transition and time to get outside of our indoor learning spaces. The technology process of learning is as important as what is being learned. Over this last year, skills have become beneficial for pupils to be successful in a virtual environment. Technology has changed the way pupils provide feedback to each other and work better as part of a team. This type of learning looks more like the workplace. We are equipping them for their future. We have already and are restructuring the school day, the way we offer homework and giving more opportunities to collaborate. There is a focus on streamlining the curriculum – less time for sitting and a focus on the quality of learning. As educators we have to ensure that learning has direction, a purpose and encourages independent thinking. We are creating competition and challenge – both great motivators – that pupils can share across communities. Our Global Council are playing an active role in the global community with its ambassadors inspiring many to think of the future in a holistic sense and not just for themselves. We are improving our environment – we are creating a Peace Garden, which will service the whole school community – a place of peace, quiet reflection – an open air Meeting House. Pupils are at the centre of all that we are doing to create our changing school. They need an enquiring mind, the confidence to ask questions and explain their findings – all a good springboard for their future. We are building on the resilience built up through months at home – re-establishing friendships – and looking at ways of equipping them for their futures. Digital literacy is pushing pupils and teachers to new limits. We need to teach children what they have learnt and not what they have missed out on. Finally we are celebrating a spirit of partnership where parents, pupils and schools are working together even more closely. Every part of every lesson, day and week must ensure consistency and continuity for them through our drive for: global citizenship skills, creativity and innovation, problem solving and playful learning, technology, emotional intelligence – empathy and negotiation, leadership and social skills, inclusive learning – learning that is not confined to the school building, collaboration and child-driven learning.
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Sally Slater Head of Coram House
Global Learning Week at Coram House 2021 Catherine Bradley The preceding week to May half term saw Coram House embark on Global Learning Week. This year would have several differences, the key difference being the active involvement of our new Global Committee 2021. Global Committee had spent several weeks planning themes and creating posters to advertise the week. This pupil led approach to learning at Coram House has promoted passion within the committee and showed the drive and enthusiasm of our pupils, not to mention the care for our planet and empathy they share for those who depend upon it. After much debate, the children decided on set themes for each day which consisted of recycling, paper free days, food waste, and peace ending with a global award presentation day.
All children from Nursery to Year 6 took part in this week. Children completed litter picks, produced art using recycled materials, investigated our impact on the planet by asking questions such as, ‘what is the problem with landfill?’ and created green screen videos based on a greener more sustainable world. We were also privileged to have Julia from Forge Recycling come to talk to the children about food waste. Global Committee weighed our lunchtime waste and compared this to waste from senior school lunch and frugal lunch.
Young Leaders Award Rainbow Run As part of this week Year 6 organised a sponsored run. They marshalled the event and supported their peers. The children are hoping to create a Peace garden at school that will be of benefit to the whole school community. Now more than ever we are aware how important nature is for our mental wellbeing. The children will use the funds raised from this event to create a garden designed by them for them! We hope this peaceful area will allow pupils and staff time to reflect and positively benefit from the beautiful grounds that surround us.
The Final Presentation Global Committee were very excited about the award ceremony where they gave two global gold awards out to Year 1-2 and Year 3. Other year groups received silver awards, and all should be very proud of their achievements. We were excited to have Mr Maree attend this event where he was able to see each year group’s display of their work from the week. School iPads once again proved how learning is being enriched by their frequent use in the classroom and several groups displayed digital examples of the week’s work. A total of £2,500 was raised to go towards the creation of the Peace Garden.
What the children thought “The litter pick was great because it is making the world better!” Joel Year 4
“I want to give as much as I take from the world.” Benji Year 5
“It is nice to think about people around the world who are not as lucky as us and how we can help.” Bethan Year 4
The future belongs to our children and the passion exhibited by Coram House pupils over the week tells us it is in good hands!
“I enjoyed creating the green screen video about how people can help people who are hungry.” Evan Year 3 “I have learnt how to look after the world by turning the lights off.” Henry Reception “I want to waste less food as I learnt that wasting a lot is terrible for the environment.” Gabriella Year 5
I would like to end on a quotation that demonstrates the ethos of Global Learning at Coram House. “Bringing nature into the classroom can kindle a fascination and passion for the diversity of life on earth and can motivate a sense of responsibility to safeguard it.” Sir David Attenborough
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Young Leaders’ Award Archie’s Challenges These are community action challenges that the children take part in as part of their award. Despite the issues of COVID the children have engaged with their community and learnt how they can make a difference to others. Challenges ranged from cooking a meal for your family, helping the elderly, and offering support to someone you know. Year 6 show us how they got involved:
Year 6 Year 6 have been working exceptionally hard on their YLA. As part of this award they have been developing and planning their own vegetable garden. The children plan to support our community by sharing the produce. Through this scheme they have also planned and raised funds for Coram Peace Garden. In the future we hope that this can be a relaxing space which allows for reflection.
Extracurricular Activities Claudia in Year 2 has achieved great success in her ballet. It was a huge selection across the UK for performer of the year 2021 so to come 1st in ballet is amazing.
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Holly in Year 3 rode her pony Cleo at a mounted games competition. She rode for Rockwood Harriers B Team and came 5th. Holly was very happy because she was the youngest team there! “I love going away to weekend competitions with my friends – we have so much fun together”.
Inter-House Art Challenge Coram House celebrated its artists with an Inter-House Art Competition in May. This year pupils were invited to create a piece inspired by Summer. Entries poured in – from landscapes to 3D ice cream sculptures to beach scenes using real seashells! Both Sarah Rose (Head of Art) and I were blown away by the variety of media used and the talent on display. Pupils received an abundance of tokens for their respective houses. Some pupils were awarded a Special Mention: Persia (Year 6) for her digital art, Sophia (Year 6) for her landscape, Vivi (Year 4) for her 3D sculpture, Gabriella B (Year 4) for her pencil drawing, Claudia (Year 3) for her composition and Darcey (Year 2) for her creativity and copious amount of glitter! I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all children on their hard work. Please look out for more Art Competitions in the future. Emma-Louise Rose, Art Coordinator, Coram House
Year 6 – School Production This term in Year 4, 5 and 6, it has been a delight to be back in the theatre for our Drama lessons. Year 4 began their term with a topic called ‘Hats’. They brought in various hats and used them to create characters. During the course of our lessons, Year 4 were enthusiastic and creative in their approach to building their characters and it was fantastic to see Year 4 develop monologues which they were able to perform on stage in their roles. This half term, Year 5 have begun to look at flashbacks and flash forwards as a way of adding detail to their performances, and they are using the short film ‘The Piano’ by Aidan Gibbons as their inspiration. Already they have recreated one of the flashbacks in this story, and have thought carefully about their characters and how to engage their audience. They will work towards a performance on stage with their groups this half term. For Year 6, this term is a particularly exciting one. We have been working on our end of year production ‘Alice in Wonderland Jr’. This musical has been a challenge for our Year 6s that they have taken on with fantastic enthusiasm and their attention to detail has been impressive. With the performances scheduled for the beginning of July, we are pulling everything together and trying on our costumes – much to Year 6’s excitement. After an unusual final year in Coram, it is wonderful for the Year 6s to have this opportunity and they have taken to performing on stage with gusto! Helen Cross
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Nature Club “ The forest was fun – we found some bullhead fish in the river.” Oliver
Nature Club is new to Coram House. We have enjoyed many activities immersed in nature. Here are some comments from the children:
Viking Visitor Year 3
Year 3 learned some new iPad skills, writing questions using the Pages app.
“ I really enjoyed using the wildlife camera I set it up under the holly bush. We were lucky enough to capture a picture of a black bird.” “ I enjoyed kick sampling in the river. We had to kick the rocks and we caught some fish.” Zachary
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“ We added some new plants to the pond and found some snail eggs.” Jasmine
SENIOR SCHOOL The legacy of the Duke of Edinburgh Christopher Bailey The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award offers young people the chance to take on their own challenges, follow their own passions, discover new skills and make a difference in their community. There are three progressive levels which, when successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. There are four sections to complete at Bronze and Silver level and five at Gold. They involve helping the community/ environment, becoming fitter, developing new skills, planning, training for and completing an expedition and, for Gold only, working with a team on a residential activity. The volunteering section is simple. It’s about choosing to give time to help people, the community or society, the environment or animals. For the volunteering section, students have helped elderly neighbours to look after their gardens, given language lessons to their peers, helped coach sports teams and worked in charity shops. For their physical activity students need to choose any sport, dance or fitness activity - in short, anything that
requires a sustained level of energy and physical activity. For example, playing a sport regularly and showing personal improvement would count. However, learning to be a coach in the same sport would be a Skills section activity, whilst being a volunteer coach counts for the Volunteering section. Students have completed the skills section by taking part in a great variety of clubs including: painting, photography, drama, gardening, languages, DT and music lessons. The skills section involves students broadening their understanding and increasing their expertise in a chosen skill. The key thing is that the activity should not be a physical activity, for example horse riding, as this would count towards the Physical section, however, students could choose to learn about caring for horses. For the expedition section, the young people have to plan, train for and complete an unaccompanied, self-reliant expedition with an agreed aim. Training for the expedition section involves sessions on navigation skills, cooking and campcraft, personal and group kit, countryside code, first aid and emergency procedures. To complete the expedition section, they also deliver a final presentation. We are looking forward to the next DofE expedition in the Howardian Hills in September. Other planned expeditions will take place in the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors. The photos you see are from a 2014 expedition. Whilst completing the award, young people develop a whole range of skills and attributes such as resilience, confidence, commitment, drive, self-awareness, empathy, team working and problem solving, which support them in navigating adult life. The award is recognised throughout the world, improves young people’s Further Education or Higher Education prospects and opens doors to jobs.
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SENIOR SCHOOL Welcoming Our New School Officers
We will be welcoming Abrielle and Rhys into their new roles as Head Girl and Head Boy, as well as Emily, Matthew, and Harriet as our new school officers for the next academic year as they move up into Upper Sixth!
Creative Writing Comp Congratulation to the three winners of the recent Inter-house English Creative Writing competition. The theme was ‘New Horizons’ with a 500 word limit, which could be interpreted in any fictional way they chose. Among the entries was a whimsical fable-like forest conversation, an azure planet called Caerulus, an epiphany about beauty, and a terrifying wolf. The results were as follows: Juniors: Joint 1st Place: William (Penn) and Charlotte (Fothergill) 2nd Place: Ruby (Fothergill) 3rd Place: James (Woolman) Seniors: 1st Place: Annabel (Gurney)
A Word from Outgoing Head Girl, Maisie I started at Ackworth in the September of 2014, an extremely scared 11 year old girl who just wanted to make some new friends. Next week I will leave, after spending seven years of my life here - a very strange thing to contemplate. My time at Ackworth has been genuinely lovely and I leave full of so many fond memories. The people I’ve met and the things I’ve seen have shaped my life and they will continue to shape the next path I take. The most important thing for me has always been the people here, both pupils and staff. For the unwavering support that they have given me, and the amount of fun we have had, I am forever grateful. 18 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
The last year was obviously a challenge for all of us, trying to keep the Ackworth spirit alive in a time when we needed to be physically apart. It reinforced my feelings that the best part of this school was its people. As effective and well put together as online learning was, nothing could bridge the fact that we were interacting through screens without real human connection. As much as I can complain about how hard it’s been, there’s also much to take from the last year. Being Head Girl in this time has taught me, along with everyone in the School Officer team, valuable lessons. We learned to be resilient and adaptable in order to carry out House Competitions and events which at first we wouldn’t have thought possible. The lockdowns, along with Ackworth itself, have prepared me wonderfully for the next stage of my life. I don’t know of any other situation which could have left me in such a good position to undertake independent research and to support myself. I’m happy to say that scared little girl did make friends. In fact she gained so much. So, next week, even with an exciting new future dawning on the horizon, I’ll leave with a heavy heart. Maisie
Annabel - Gurney The leaves crunch under my feet as I step ever closer to the beast’s lair, with the wind howling in my face and silvery mist contaminating every surface. The sun sets a dark silhouette onto the forest. All black and brown thorns wrap around the trees like teeth waiting to tear you apart. Suffocating every living thing. Sharp shadows, darker than the deepest forest which eerily sinks out of sight. From which emerges the wolf. Hidden beneath a canopy of trees; steel grey claws extended from its heavy paws, its black fur tinged with silver tips stood straight up on end. Eyes of the palest watery blue, like a creature who’s spent its entire life in perpetual shadow. Saliva coated its tongue as it brushed against sharp, ivory canines. Five men bravely surrounding the creature. All tall, all intimidating hunters; conveniently wearing black, well versed in violence and bloodlust. Carrying heavy duty riffles; nothing but a primitive species with bad intentions. The wolfs movements are fluid and without apparent effort; while I huff and puff to clamber up a rocky edge, a few yards closer to its statue head. Her limbs were the finest machines ever made. Then suddenly, it acts scarce. Running further into the woods, laying waste to its surroundings. Trees now adorned with deep claw marks resembling that of a monster. In out. In out. In out. My lungs desperately trying to keep up with my body, as we begin the chase. The momentum of my downward travel was so out of control I began to feel weightless. Tracking the beast by sound as its snarls and growls echo through the trees.
Charlotte - Fothergill For me, life was hard (so I thought). Dad worked, grandma had dementia, mum looked after grandma. My brother was frankly irritating. I only had my friends. My captivating friends. How beautiful they were. I wasn’t. I shrivelled with jealousy. My most stunning friend was having a party. This was my time to shine. I asked mum if I could go. Invariably her answer was no. Tonight was no exception. “ No, I need help to look after grandma”. “YOU NEVER LET ME DO ANYTHING” I blared. I ran from the house slamming the door. Grandma’s aged wrinkly face watched me through the window as I ran down the path. I stumbled across a sharp lump in the grass. I ran my fingers over its emerald, lush wetness and pulled the lump from the ground. It was a key. I picked myself up and walked over to some scattered vines covering a cobblestoned wall. I brushed my fingers along it, parting the vines. Then I saw it. The lock. I pushed in the key apprehensively. “CLICK”. I grabbed the handle, my hands, jelly-like. The door opened. The sight before me was heavenly. I stepped onto soft grass, the door miraculously closing behind me. This must be a dream; yet it wasn’t. A pool of water, shiny as diamond, clear as cellophane. Trees with blossom, dancing in the breeze. The sun, so bright, so scintillating. Angels floated in the lucid blue sky. Their perfection made me gasp with malaise and envy. Suddenly, one stood before me, beautiful, like the others.
Boom! Bang! Frantically I attempt to chamber another bullet. This time actually wounding the creature; filling my body with a sense of accomplishment and courage. The hunters were on top of it as I hear sheer cry’s of desperation from the animal. Horrified, staring at the blood admittedly with fear. My hands drenched with the oozing red liquid as clear as rubies. Which seeped down my sleeve, drenching my cloths in a perfidy treasure or curse. It’s dead. Laying amongst the rocks lifeless and violated. The men I thought were my friends were now nothing more than strangers. Feeling so alienated from the hunt, taking the wolf as a trophy to the car. Believing the game was over… But it wasn’t. Suddenly, comfort tilts its twisted head towards doubt and stares directly into his eyes until she attacks. The fight has been a choreographed dance of destruction, tearing us where we need to heal. Our faces are unreadable, no fear, no confusion, no invitational smirk. Just blank. Questions flood my mind, drowning me in confusion. How did the wolf not die? Moments later I begin to open my eyes, scanning the area for reassurance that everything is ok… But it wasn’t. Five corpses almost devoid of skin and pitted by claw and teeth marks; emotions of panic and fear stricken my body like a cancer growing inside of me. With a sharp moment of realisation piercing through my skull, I have to run!
“Hello child, what brings you here?” She was soft and consolatory. “Beauty”, I stuttered. “Beauty?” I nodded vigorously. Beauty was what I desired. “Of course”. Laughing unimpeachably, she waved her hand. Covering me was a piercing array of holographic sparkles. I felt suddenly different, beautiful. “Take a look” she smiled. I glanced at my reflection in the lake. I looked exactly like her. We were identical. “Thank you!” I cried. She gave me a perfunctory nod and danced back into the sky. What seemed like days passed, in reality, merely hours. I could not stop gazing at my reflection. I was beautiful outwardly, yes, but what had I become inwardly? Vain. I felt nauseous. Suddenly, I wanted to go home. To become my old self, my real self. Beauty didn’t matter to me anymore. I caught a glimpse of light from the corner of my eye. The key! It’s brightness teased from the bottom of the lake. Grasping it, I rushed to the door and twisted the handle. I was back. I was myself; I WAS beautiful. I smiled inwardly. Bursting through the house door I saw my grandma’s familiar and beautiful smile as she waved. I saw the familiar curtains and rugs and they too were beautiful. This was where I belonged. I would never take it for granted again. True beauty isn’t shallow, selfish or vain. True beauty and its appreciation begins the moment you decide to be yourself. www.ackworthschool.com | 19
SENIOR SCHOOL William - Penn Dusk had come, the night was still. The sun bathed in the orange clouds. A full moon peered in through the thick foliage. The nest was warm, filled with soft feathers and plump moss. Below the grand oak, leaves rustled as the squirrels gathered the last of the acorns to stash away for winter. “I can remember every spot where those squirrels hide their acorns,” remarked Hool, “But they themselves can’t really remember any”. “They are not as wise as we owls,” I agreed. “Their heads are too small to hold brain power enough to remember every location”. “There may be good pickings today had there not been all that rain”. “If we lived in that barn over there there might have been, ” I complained. “We are not barn owls, therefore we will not live in a barn. Besides they are so noisy, always screeching at each other.” We sat for a while, me and Hool. Contemplating the superiority of us owls, and wondering if the harvest mice were still around. “Maybe we should take up Veganuary,” I said. “What is that?” Asked Hool. “I am not entirely sure, I think it is when the human add an extra moth to the calendar – and eat more plants”. “Like grass?” Asked Hool. “I assume so,” I told him. “We already have 4 moths in the calendar – cold, too cold, a bit warmer and too hot - I don’t think we need any more. At this rate we will run out of volunteer moths.” “Maybe grass is not as bad as it looks…” I told him. “… We will have a greener life style – the humans are going on about this too – but they have grass everywhere!” “Well, I don’t particularly fancy it,” stated Hool. We sat there, in the still, dark night. Wondering what subject we should talk about next. Listening to the soft crunching of the dead leaves, as a cat stalked through the wood against the loud rustling and creaking of the leaves and branches in the wind. A thin slither of light passed over the dense foliage, lighting up – for a brief moment – the world below. The silvery dew shone in the moonlight, making it look magical.
Lockdown Poems (First Year) Lockdown Lockdown was a cage The virus was its bird At first it was a warning People though it was a joke The children thought it was boring Then people began to go broke The moody teenagers agreed with the outcome They got to stay in bed, how much fun Parents with kids that argued a lot They told the kids to tie the knot The infants learnt how to run Some people learnt how to make a bun The bird laughed at what it had done All the school work was a tonne The screams from loved ones echoed a lot Most people started using a cooking pot Baking had become popular The streets were desolate without a single car Bang, bang, bang Guns were shot and people died People judged white and black People were protesting Saving lives? Endangering Lives? Lockdown was a cage The bird is still here People don’t judge as much It will all go away with just a bit of luck Lockdown was a cage Aimee J
Mysterious lockdown Imagine a world without going to school, Not having to get out of bed, eating crisps anytime. This is lockdown.
“Its majestical, don’t you think?” remarked Hool.
Wifi is a game of roulette, Lessons are slow. Motivation is lacking, Technology is as slow as a snail.
“That isn’t a word,” I told him.
But this is lockdown.
“Yes it is,” he said. “Someone said it a while ago.”
Infinite lunchtime, less tests, Easy lessons, comfy seats
“How do words become words?” I asked him. “That is a very boring,” The predawn light started to appear, fighting for a path through the canopy. Bathing the world in light. “We probably should go out for a quick flight,” I told Hool. “If I must,” he sighed. We took off. Wings flapping slowly, soaring silently as we glided through the air. The whole wood spread out before us as we circled overhead. The sun was up at last, covering the sky with, purples, reds, blues and pinks. We set off into the distance – a new beginning for a new day – a new horizon. 20 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
Lockdown is a bag of sweets, Sweet, salty, super sour. You never know. The sun no longer smiles on you, That’s the lightbulb’s job. For most of the day anyway. Would I do lockdown again? No. Not voluntarily anyway. Saving the world, I’ll do that any day. Ding! Hold on a second. My tenth parcel of the week is here. Alfred L
Lockdown is like a bird You feel like you’re always unheard You can either be wild and free Or you can feel like you’re trapped Without the key your stuck until you find it So far we still haven’t found that key, But we are getting closer Some people on this planet have found their key And are free and ready to live their life again Others, well, not so lucky But they will not lose hope But we all will cope We will be back to normal within a blink of an eye Our bird will be flying high in the sky Ava B
2 perspectives A few weeks turned into a month that turned into a year, It seemingly came out of nowhere, One day it was normal life, The next the world became hell. Some saw this as an awful time where we lost our ability to socialise, Others saw opportunity to do something productive or more fun. Some tried to protest and put people in danger, Others did what they were told, stayed home and stayed safe. There were other ways to do things such as school and work, When the real world fails, we turn to the internet. We began to learn online, work online, Though they weren’t perfect, they were enough. We used programs to simulate the reality we missed And it felt like a new, better, reality. Some days it felt like the world was going to end tomorrow, Other days it felt like safety was coming. Our country fell further and further into lockdown, And we continued to lose opportunities, Lose freedoms, But we listen for safety. James P
What is lockdown to me? Lock down is like the sea, It sits there just still until you forget, Then the boom of reality comes back and you realise it’s still there.
It’s endless will never go, Its waves crash to shore bring tragedies. Leaving despair and upset. Yet, fun can come too, Being with your family. And making memories through being together. Its terrible, terrific tragedy will stay, Forever and ever. Laurienne
The true values of life We’ve been in lockdown exactly a year and a day, It’s like an apocalypse and you have to stay in your house to be safe. Every day gets lonelier, As you can’t go across the road without putting yourself and others in Danger. And you don’t see nearly half the amount of people outside as you used to. But, with that comes a heart-warming fact; That people are not going out to keep each other safe. And loneliness is caused by people you love being taken away, But then seeing them seems ten times as special as it used to, And helps you see the true values of life. So, we’ve been in lockdown exactly a year and a day, And we’re staying inside to keep our loved ones safe. And we’re stuck in this sticky situation, But take that in as an inspiration. That you’ve made it this far. Exactly a year and a day since the start. If we do look on the positive side of things, That we don’t need to get dressed in the mornings? Then that’ll help you realise, The true values of life. Natacha
Endless entrapment The boring entrapment of the horrible pandemic, Even the tiniest bit of freedom would be fantastic, Like a lone wolf separated from its pack, Longing to see our friends and get back. As the dull days slowly pass by When you just really wanted to cry, Your mouth trying to escape from under your mask, During getting on with your task.
ACKWORTH TODAY Bang, an overload of homework at your feet, Its just another problem to complete, Dreaming…., dreaming all day long, Making sure to keep really strong. With the weather menacing and the death toll rising, The number of patients are surprising, People outside their houses waiting to clap, The doctors and nurses need to take a nap. It’s a bird flying looking for a worm, Waiting for the prime minister to confirm, There has been a lot of troubles around the bend, But now it all is coming to an end. Yisa
Look Look at the streets. The dusty, empty, barren streets. As if a tsunami of deafening silence engulfs the roads, The pavement no longer marked with the footprints of caring friends, The street no longer full of tire marks from the bustling traffic. Look at the streets. Look at their faces. Their sad, but loving, faces. The masks like walls of white and blue, Preventing friends from laughing together, Stopping their daily lunch at the café together, Look at their faces. Look at the children. The emailing, gaming and school working children, The little, innocent infant, thinking that all the bad will go away the next day, The teenager, not leaving their bed at all, “Hah! This is great! I can do everything in my room!” Look at the children. But look into the forthcoming future. The maybe nearing future. The thought of having fun with our friends again, The thought of being outside again, So let’s all contribute and we can go out again! Look into the future. Rhoda
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SENIOR SCHOOL Food Tech Fourth Form have been looking at high level skills to produce fruit tarts consisting of sweet pastry cases, cream patisserie and sliced fruit.
Art – Inter-House Competition For the inter-house art competition 2021, the theme was “Hope” this year. Every student from every year had to create an artwork based on this theme of hope. Some people did it on Black Lives Matter, others did it on other types of hope like world peace or the coronavirus ending. People from different years did beautiful pieces of art including posters, hand drawn pictures, digital art, or even sculptures. I won inter-house art this year by doing a hope tree uniting everyone around the world with peace, and every human, race, religion will some day come together, and hold hands no matter who they are, and the world is one big happy family. The tree represents the tree of life, and that the world will grow into this beautiful rose that will unite everyone together. This is my hope for the world, I want everyone to be happy and have peace no matter what. Takarra
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PE Back in June Second Form spent a lovely sports afternoon with Hull Collegiate. We arranged for our U14s to play hockey, rounders and netball games. This was enjoyed by all and allowed for students to play competitively within lesson time. Following this, our U13 team played against their netball team to allow some time playing competitively as they have really missed out on fixtures during the pandemic. They won 4-2 to Hull’s Fourth Form, although Hull did play in other positions to help match our younger year group. Here are some pictures of the Second Form netball team. They played exceptionally well with great skill.
Third Form CTEC PE students have enjoyed delivering a series of football sessions to the Third Form this half-term. The pupils have worked towards understanding the theory of coaching and leadership to enable them to plan, deliver and evaluate effective sports sessions. The lessons have allowed an insight into the roles and responsibilities of sports coaches, being able to plan progressive and differentiated activities to meet specific objectives and maintain safe working environments. It has been fantastic to see the students leading and teaching the Third Form with great enthusiasm. They are able to apply their enhanced knowledge and understanding of football to their peers with great success. The CTEC students have enjoyed developing their practical sporting knowledge, giving them an insight into other sporting opportunities that sport can offer, alongside being a performer. Kate Maeer and Chris Parker
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SENIOR SCHOOL Extra-curricular Some good news to share - Joseph has passed his tractor test - he can now drive the tractor and huge trailer on the road. Look out! Joseph is absolutely over the moon, and we are very proud of his achievement. Congratulations are also due to Harry who has passed. Great for the boys!
William has played regional Yorkshire games for East & Central region and scored a grand 56 recently against the North Yorkshire Region which was lovely to see.
Jack is currently 1st in the UK for high jump and on his first competition back this season he qualified for English Schools which he will attend next month. Jack has done extremely well to get there especially after a year of lockdown and a full missed season and missed training sessions. Jack also recently jumped a PB 1.78 at York. That’s 6cm over the qualifying standard for English Schools. Well done, Jack, for this massive achievement.
Back in June, William was invited to trial for the main U14s Yorkshire County Age Group which proved successful and made the squad! Chosen as one of twenty in his age group William will now represent Yorkshire and will therefore be invited to play games against other counties such as Lancashire, Warwickshire, Cumbria, Nottinghamshire among others.
Careers – ICAEW BASE Competition The Ackworth School Business and Economics department competed in the 2021 BASE ICAEW competition. The team consisting of Lower Sixth students Rhys, Matthew, Faris and Kim. The Challenge consisted of making a presentation on a Business issue that would be done during a live recording. The business issue was trying to improve a warehouse’s efficiency while balancing both the financial situation and the staff morale. The team was highly organised and motivated, and submitted the entry far ahead of schedule. We’re proud to say they have been invited to compete in the national final, being only the second from Ackworth to ever do so. It was a fantastic opportunity that the group highly enjoyed. 24 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
First Form We had David Kirtlan from Apple come to give workshops to the First Form classes on the Garageband software on their iPads. David is an accredited Apple Distinguished Educator; an Apple Education Trainer and an Apple Education Strategic Planning Trainer David is one of the UK’s most popular education consultants and foremost music education specialists, but his focus remains on cross curricular teaching and learning. David is renowned for his work with iPad bands. When the iPad was first introduced to the world David immediately saw the potential of using it to engage non-musicians with music and allow them to take part in performances – and so the #iPadband was born. David has worked very hard over the years to bring iPad bands into the consciousness of music teachers around the world. He has created bands with primary children, secondary pupils and SEN students. He works with schools to create, compose and rehearse their own iPad band. The iPad bands are a great way for schools to engage with parents, and also to collaborate with schools in their area. Many of the iPad bands David has created have performed at large scale events such as BETT and Apple Leadership Summits. Lizzie Hussey: David is a fantastically experienced Apple Educator; we are really fortunate that he is a Music specialist, and that he can come in and share his knowledge and practice with us.
The first form really gained in confidence during their IPad Band workshops with him, using the software GarageBand. They came to realise what they could do with it, layering parts and instruments, and playing different rhythms to make up the chord patterns. It was lovely to hear them demonstrate their “Band”. We hope to continue this knowledge into their future music courses. Ashton and Jack: During lockdown when I got prep with GarageBand I really struggled and could never do the prep, then when David came in, he helped me a lot and now I can do everything on Garageband.
Royal Society of Chemistry 53rd annual Chemistry Olympiad 2021 Awards: Taylor : Gold
Aldrich : Bronze
Harry : Bronze
Following the Chemistry Department tradition, A Level students completed their final Practical by making their own Silver Mirror flasks.
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SENIOR SCHOOL Geography Third Form
Last half term the lovely Third Form sadly did not get to go to Malham. Instead they completed fieldwork in the school grounds, investigating the environmental impact of travel to school, and the environmental quality of the school site. Their coursework based on this investigation will make up 30% of their grade.
In conclusion, the environmental quality around Ackworth School is different in different areas. Sites 1, 3 and 6 were the worst as they were near the roads, and scored poorly for smell, noise and green space. Site 7 was in the middle of Great Garden, and had the best score for environmental quality at 18/20. 33 of 45 people travelled to school from the ‘WF’ area, all travelled 9 miles or fewer. This is more than half of the pupils in the Third Form. However, 80% of people use cars to get to school twice every day; overall 84% use vehicles compared to the 16% who walk or cycle. This will contribute to different environmental qualities around school, and over years this could change or stay the same; fewer people might use vehicles or could get electric vehicles instead of petrol or diesel cars. Elliot 3D In conclusion, our data shows that there is a variety of environmental quality across the school site. For example, the located symbols and annotated photographs show that some areas, such as site 3 which is near a busy road, has an unpleasant smell with an average rating of 2/5 and is also very loud with an average noise level of 1/5, the worst rating. Other areas such as site 4 has a much better environmental quality with average smell and noise ratings of 4/5. We can see that there are some people who travel a long distance to school. Although this may not affect the school’s environmental quality it does affect the overall environment. It would be best for those who travel by individual cars to car share where they could, or take the bus for there to be a minimal impact. Even better, those individuals who live closer to the school site could opt to walk or cycle. 26 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
New pitch for the Football Academy Our Football Academy boys’ faces shone as they set foot for the first time on their new 3G pitch. Built by Academy Director, Jamie Fullarton, the purpose-built facility gives the academy the highest standard of pitch for all-weather training. This new facility has been the highlight of a difficult year for our footballers. The cancellation of fixtures has been understandable but disappointing for the boys nonetheless. With the opportunity to train and play on pitch, the boys will be ending the year on a high.
Table Tennis Table Tennis player, Felix, recently took part in the European qualification event held in Nottingham University. England’s top 14 junior players compete for three places at the European championships this summer in Croatia. Two groups of 7 players take part and if they finish first or second in their group, go into a semi-final play-off position (final 4). Felix beat England’s No.1 and No.3 junior and went on to face our old Ackworth player Amiral Hussain first thing the following morning. After a long weekend and many wonderful moments, unfortunately Felix lost to Amiral which took him one place back ending in fifth and unable to compete for the three available spots. Nevertheless, there have been many positives and Felix was the youngest player in the field, U19 category. So, a bright future awaits with continued hard work! Another update about our challenge match and potential collaboration with Newcastle University.
The format was 5vs5, but we had 8 players therefore I substituted our players to give everyone a few matches. Newcastle had a lot of top senior players including former England No.1 junior. Others included top 40 England men and former England No.5 junior. The match was set to be close, but their top player was injured which naturally shifted the match in our favour. Ackworth came out the eventual winners at 20-5. Dijon (Jack) was man of the match, coming out with some sublime shots and match wins. Even though the score line seems like a whitewash and many of the games were tight, our boys and girls managed to find winning formulas. At the end their sport leader (Liam) had a quick chat about university pathway and invited us for a re-match and tour at Newcastle University. A great experience and wonderful result all round. Eli Baraty Ackworth Table Tennis Academy, Head Coach www.ackworthschool.com | 27
Over the course of three weeks the Autism Resource had some fluttery friends… butterflies which were released into Ackworth School Great Garden.
Metamorphosis has always been the greatest symbol of change - imagine that you could be a caterpillar one moment and a butterfly the next… They grew from eggs that hatched into caterpillars which went on to spin a cocoon for them to turn into butterflies. Here are the caterpillars after they hatched from eggs; they were kept in a container for a week so they could form a chrysalis. After they formed a chrysalis, it took two weeks for them to emerge as butterflies. They then got released into the wild to live out their butterfly dreams! Lots of the Autism Resource students helped to feed and look after the butterflies. They were used in science to explore animal life cycles, as well as in literacy story time The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
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Textiles Elizabeth has made this wonderful dress in her Textiles lessons. Elizabeth used an original 1950s pattern and made the dress from scratch, from selecting the fabric to constructing the different sections to covering and adding buttons.
Business Enterprise Group Some pupils within the Autism Resource have been working together on a business enterprise project this term. They have been collecting unwanted crayons, sorting them into colour groups, breaking them into small pieces and melting them in silicon moulds to make new crayons. This aims to reduce waste and recycle; the new crayons will be available to purchase soon. Funds from the sales will help to buy new resources for the popular Lego Club that runs on a Tuesday lunchtime. This club helps to promote social interaction with peers and collaborative working. We would be grateful of any donations of unwanted crayons or Lego build sets to help support this initiative.
Acceptance A Poem
Just because of who I am, I may not sense or understand, Everything on what is happening, I need the time to perceive as it is challenging. I know, because I have differences, Sometimes if things get too much, I need to take my distances, It is often tricky to get used to this bit, But it is important for us to learn and accept it. You should not feel you have to fit in The Crowd,
Volunteering Last term, I have been volunteering at Snydale Riding for the Disabled on a weekly basis to gain work experience. They are an amazing Charity who support children with disabilities through experience with their horses. I am lucky to have the opportunity of a longterm work experience placement with them. Next year I hope to complete an ASDAN award in Horse Management. Hannah
Saying “no” to take time for yourself is allowed, You are doing this for your own benefit, To not feel the pressure to do more than your limit. If we know and learn about acceptance, The world for everyone will have more pleasance, Because of all differences being accepted, It will make us feel more loved and connected. Just remember you are all fantastic, Despite having differences, it is best to be authentic, Let’s hope to accept differences every day, Rather than just on April 2nd, World Autism Day. To begin with, autism is more than just awareness, Let’s treat it with acceptance, respect, and kindness! Written by Nichola Sun (OS 2019)
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OLD SCHOLARS Easter Gathering 2021
A Tribute to Cath Someone asked me this year why I was bothering to do Easter when I could have a year off, relax and enjoy a bank holiday for a change - apparently that’s what normal people do over Easter! This made me think about why I have been involved in running Easter Gathering for so long - what Easter at Ackworth means not only to me but to so many others - to Old Scholars who have attended in the past, to family of Old Scholars to whom Ackworth has become a second home by association, to those who have always supported Easter and continue to come back every year, to those overseas who wish they could get back for Easter, to families of Old Scholars who are no longer with us, yet the connection remains strong due to Easter being so close to their hearts - I decided these thoughts might make an appropriate Grand Finale this year. Usually, the President would take over at this point in the weekend - I hope that you and he won’t mind this year that I’m doing it myself - I’m sure he’ll probably be quietly relieved that I wasn’t chasing him for yet another video recording! This is for all of you and is dedicated to the memory of my friend, Catherine Bunney. Cath is the reason I am Easter Secretary, and she will always be an inspiration to me. Sal Wright
Easter in Lockdown Easter in Lockdown - what does that mean? Easter 2021 solo without my fab team; A weekend packed full of fun things to do, But Easter not at Ackworth leaves me feeling so blue.
No sports On the courts, No cake, A homesick ache
It isn’t just me though - you all feel the same, I know ‘cause I asked you - it’s all such a shame. But still it is Easter and go ahead it must, For age-long traditions we have to adjust.
No green, Except on the screen, No bus stop dash, There and back in a flash!
So out came the bunny ears, I dusted them first, Then got to work and tried my best to coerce You lovely people into doing your thing, My daft ideas came to life with the skills that you bring.
No car tetris with boxes, Or cricket pitch foxes, No Bucket or socks, No pretty spring crops,
And some of you literally had no notice at all, Gaps to fill, but you’re amazing, no favour too tall. And look what we did when we all worked together, Great minds, positive thoughts from birds of a feather.
No stayaway break For us to take, And John’s awake! But still no cake.
And now Good Friday is suddenly here, Yet in the blink of an eye Easter will disappear And all of those things we were going to miss; The atmosphere, the hugs, though we can still blow a kiss.
No wall to wall eating, No corridor pipes heating, No cupola striking, No Ackworth hiking;
But no clatter of crockery, No Great Garden rockery, No humming of fridges, Or squeaking door hinges,
No rickety trolleys, No tennis ball volleys, No echoing Easter chatter Of everyone having a natter.
No creak of the floorboards, No meals to look forward towards, No centre passage smell No slippery stairwell,
And no eggsited buzz of Centre Library this year; Who could have known - we had no idea That the little Easterisms we have all grown to love Would be ripped away from us, worse than losing one glove.
No swimming pool, No vestibule, No mealtime drool Or common room fool!
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And we’ve had internet glitches And technical hitches; If it wasn’t for Bill, I’d have lost the will!
New activities, Online festivities, Even breasticies, Eggsellent Creativities. We had no door codes to learn, But no arrivals to yearn.... (....eggsept baby Grace!) The Badsworth race In a faraway place; Tennis with Thomas - isn’t he ace?! Then baby lambs and baby calves; At Easter we don’t do things by halves! Now we’ve made it to the end of Easter 2021 It was different, yet still special, but now it is gone. We’d looked forward together with the same sense of purpose, Determined to carry on as acorns to quercus. And just as we did when we all were at school, We mingled and mixed but in an online whirlpool. Ackworth is special but Easter is more, Old Scholars gathering, old and new friends we adore. And we thought we’d be without the giggles and laughs But our memories are strong, and the photographs Remind us of those who once were our age, Thinking similar thoughts, on the same page. So - Easter in lockdown - what did that mean? The year we had fun on an internet screen? The year we missed out on all that we love? I think it’s probably all the above. But we celebrated in familiar ways for the whole weekend, At times with the technology driving me round the bend! And one thing’s for sure in a hundred years time, When the whole world will all probably have moved online, Someone will look back and be wondering how we got through; How we survived Easter not at Ackworth asking “what did they do? And for me it is simple, the answer is we remain Non sibi sed omnibus and keep bright the chain. Thanks for all your support via this online domain; And please, come join us next Easter at Ackworth again. But personally, I just hope that Cath is proud; That she enjoyed watching us from up behind a cloud, Drinking, having fun - just like she would have done; Eggsited the Easter Gathering tradition goes on and on.
Virtual Easter Gathering As you might see from the programme, Sal Wright again managed to conjure up another highly imaginative ‘virtual’ Easter Gathering with many familiar features for those Old Scholars & their families who were able to handle “Zoom” & other such Social Media platforms such as Facebook. Perhaps future actual gatherings might be shared around the world with those unable to travel to the school? Many regular attenders at Easter Gatherings enthusiastically cast off the gloom of Covid lockdown to show how life goes on & that if we all pull together, with Sal at the front of the rope we will win the tug-of-war & return to School at Easter 2022. Our household was a refreshing hive of activity with all of us getting involved in the variety of activities – Nicola took her “Early Morning Walk” each day & her Sunday photo encapsulated the Quakerly art of reflection. Thomas had enormous fun in front of the camera to produce his tennis practice videos and the “Spot the Server” quiz. There were so many highlights to remember Easter by – Chas’ Stuart’s inimitable and quirky quiz – Elspeth’s unstinting encouragement to get people smiling – to name just two! However, for me, the items which seemed most like the real thing were the “Common Room Zoom” sessions, when Old Scholars slumped in their armchairs with a glass of whatever & indulged in the time-honoured pastime of ramping up the rate of verbal exchange. It was so lovely to see both Tim Benson (1940-46) & Dorothy Walker Robbins (1933-38) from Canada as well as all those closer to “home” All in all, it was a thrilling substitute for Easter Gathering at Ackworth, masterminded by Sal and supported by so many others. Thank you all. Michael Hargreave (OS 1957-64)
Sal Wright - AOSA Easter Secretary Easter Sunday 2021
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OLD SCHOLARS Open Day (1979) 200 Year Anniversary
History of the School On the last weekend in June of the summer of 1979, Ackworth School was waking up to a weekend of celebrating the end of the school year. This particular celebration would mark 200 years since the school was founded, and would run from Friday to Sunday. Gordan R. Mckee was a head at the time (1971 – 1989). The event began on the Friday with a cricket match with current and Old Scholars playing against each other. Throughout the rest of Friday, attendees enjoyed exhibitions and displays throughout the school including the archives, natural history, model railway, science, flower arranging, art, and pottery, amongst many more areas of interest. Later that evening, the drama department performed “A Dream on a Summer Day”. As an alternative, a folk concert could be enjoyed in the Meeting House, before a reception was held for visitors to meet with Clerk of Committee, Roger Moore, along with the other members in Centre Library.
On the Saturday, an array of activities was enjoyed. In the morning, there was an auction held for the sale of art and craft items donated by parents and Old Scholars out on the terrace. Early afternoon commenced with greetings from The Society of Friends, The President of the AOSA, along with current and old scholars (including overseas visitors). In the late afternoon a Tree Planting Ceremony took place followed by musical recital which was performed by Old Scholars and parents. The evening ended with a barbecue, along with dancing (with a live band) and an impressive firework display out on The Green. After two days full of activities The Grand March finally took place after Meeting for Worship on the Sunday morning, a tradition which has continued throughout the years. This brought the weekend to a close, and parents, scholars (old and current), and teachers dispersed – heading into a long summer of rest and reflection. Rebecca Edgington
Old Scholar Stories A poor workman blames his tools … History was my favourite subject when at Ackworth. I was initially taught by Peter Norris, aka ‘Piggy’ and then through to my School Certificate by James R. V. Collin, aka ‘The Breather’. Don’t ask me the origin of either of the nicknames, although Mr Collin was very quietly spoken, even when taken to the point of extreme irritation by the likes of me. The photograph of him was taken when I was summoned to his side, to be admonished for some misdemeanour or other during lunch. Needless to say, the photographer, using my camera, escaped unscathed and unpunished. The other photograph was of G. Phillips Harris out on one of his many forays with a cine camera. Regrettably, a lot of my photographs from that period have not stood the 32 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
test of time and are of poor quality, as the only available materials in the 1950s were usually low-grade surplus ex. WD stock. A lack of competence on the part of the photographer did not help either. Tony Lucas (1952 – 1957)
A snapshot of history As I scour carefully the many photographs, I rack my memory for the days when Ackworth was my term time home (1940-1945). I observe for the first time that the Green is now grass from side to side and looking as though it has been like that forever. When it was only grass on the west side and tarmac or whatever on the east side it was possible in icy weather (if you were skilful enough) to slide from the terrace all the way right down to the bottom of Great Garden. The snow scenes in “Ackworth Today” remind me of the snowy year when the boys built a proper igloo on the Green, made of huge cubes of snow. It lasted long after the rest of the snow had melted. In those days Ackworth was a very cold place in winter with icy blasts whistling down from the Featherstone Alps. Boys were not allowed to set foot on the grassy half of the Green. There used to be seats under the trees at the bottom of the Green, and during break girls used to sit on the seats and boys would sneak into Great Garden (out of bounds) and fraternise with the girls from behind and below them. For some reason in the summer the girls did prep in the afternoon so were free in the evenings, and it was a bitter distraction for the boys doing prep on a summer evening to look out of the widow and see the girls playing tennis on the Green. Well, it was a distraction.
Obituaries Eleanor Jane Steele (Née Wiltshire) OS. 1946 -1949 Jane was born in Netley, Hampshire in 1933 and with her elder Brother Alan was evacuated to live with relatives in Bamford near Sheffield in 1940. She was subsequently to join Alan at Ackworth in the 1946 Autumn intake. Jane settled in well and made many lifelong friends while she was there. In her last year her younger brother Donald was to join her at School making the journey up from the South Coast to London to catch The School’s reserved carriage on the 1:18pm out of Kings Cross. After leaving School in 1949 Jane pursued a nursing career at Westminster Children’s Hospital where she gained her SRCN before moving on to Guy’s Hospital where she attained her SRN. Jane was subsequently successful in obtaining the post of Nanny to the children of the Daily Telegraph’s Representative in Washington USA where she got the opportunity of travelling extensively on the West Coast of the States. On her return to England in 1964 she got married having previously met her husband on the outward crossing to America. In 1967 baby Alice was born but the following years were to prove difficult and although surviving breast
During the war air raids were not pleasant. My home was in Liverpool, and we knew that the enemy planes we could hear over Ackworth were on their way to either Manchester or Liverpool. When the sirens went at night, we had to collect gas masks, put on dressing gowns and file downstairs to the cellars under the dining rooms. There we lay down on the wooden apple racks which had thin mattresses on them: - The worst place to be in was on the top rack, because this was just under the arched brick roof which would be just inches above one’s face. Very claustrophobic. The school rule was that if the “All clear” siren went after 3am, we got an extra hour in bed. We believed that Hitler knew this, because time after time the “All clear” went about 2.45, so we missed our extra hour. I must not ramble on and on, but talking of Hitler reminds me that one night, lying in bed in the dormitory, I was sharing an illegal radio with a friend in the next bed (we had one earpiece each), and the programme we were listening to was interrupted by a special announcement. Immediately after this the master on duty padded in, doing his dormitory rounds, and my friend blurted out “Sir! Sir” We’ve just heard: Hitler’s dead!” The master asked, “How do you know?” and then, because he was a very wise master, he said “Oh, never mind”, and hurried out. Peter Moore (1940 – 1945)
cancer the marriage was to break up. Jane continued to work tirelessly for the NHS as a health visitor in which role she greatly increased her circle of friends. During this period, she also found time to undertake an Open University course to obtain a BA in Humanities Jane married again but outlived both successive husbands and in so doing amassed a large and associated family in which she was always there to give help and encouragement. Jane was also fortunate in being able to travel widely abroad and to visit her daughter and grandchildren during their time in Malaysia. Jane was diagnosed with bone cancer in late 1999 and became confined to her home in Romsey where she passed away quietly just before the second Covid lockdown with both her daughter and step-daughter by her side.
Susan Margaret Hopton Sue Hopton, who joined Ackworth School as a Domestic Assistant in May 1998, sadly passed away on 11th May losing her fight with cancer. Over the years Sue had raised a lot of funds for Children in Need. She will be dearly missed.
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OLD SCHOLARS Andrew Bunney Andrew Bunney, who has died aged 65, was the second son of John W. (1934-39) and Margery (née Wilson 1941-45) Bunney and attended Ackworth 196774. He overlapped older brother David 1963-70 and younger sister Catherine 1972-77. He was a day scholar who rose to be vice head boy and enjoyed his time at Ackworth. He was able to develop his musical talent as well as enjoying playing and watching sport without neglecting his academic studies. After Ackworth Andrew studied music at Huddersfield Polytechnic where he enjoyed the teaching and musicianship of David Lennox and Prabhu Singh. This led to a lifelong study of music through listening, composing and performing, notably with the Chapter House Choir in York and the Beningbrough Singers. Andrew was a more than capable hockey player earning selection to the Wakefield 1st XI at a time when they were on the up but he never lost the sense that team sport was a social event off the pitch with all the participants, and that the spirit of sport was based on fair play. This also fitted with a strong belief in social justice for all, a lifelong cause. Andrew was a lifelong member of the Society of Friends, attending at Friargate in York where he served as librarian for a while.
After college Andrew worked at Banks’ music shop in the centre of York, then as a primary school teacher at Clifton Without and finally as a taxi driver based at York Station. The taxi life provided him with an audience for his store of tales and humour as well as meeting so many diverse passengers. Andrew met Frédérique Bachasson when she was the French assistant at the Mount School. After their marriage in August 1979 they were asked to run a house for 6th form girls offering a different experience of life away from the School confines. Although it was short lived the move helped the couple to settle into married life, all of which was spent in York. They had three children: Eleanor, now in Italy with husband Sandro and daughter Martina, was born in 1982, Sam, based in Worthing with wife Sarah and sons Loïc and Xavier, arrived in 1985 and Nathalie based in London but having spent lockdown in York helping to care for Andrew, born in 1989. Andrew had a long enthusiasm for railways and especially all things Great Western so he was delighted to see that LoÏc had somehow taken up that enthusiasm at the age of 3! Family was Andrew’s great joy. Andrew died peacefully on 25th March after seven years of serious ill health which tested his dignity in the latter years but amazingly, and typically, he retained his sense of humour to the end. He is survived by Frédérique, his children and grandchildren and by Margery and David.
Edward Hyslop Milligan (OS 1934-38) Edward (Ted) Milligan was born in Coventry on 27 March 1922, third child and second son of John Lloyd Milligan and Jane (Jennie) Elizabeth Milligan, who had joined the Society of Friends in 1908. The family moved to Maidstone in 1927, and to Reading in 1932, whereupon Ted became a member of Reading Monthly Meeting. He remained a member thereafter, except during his final years (he resigned his membership late in life), and for a few years when he transferred to Alton, Southampton and Poole MM (1949-54), while he was on the staff of Southampton University library. He was educated at Ackworth School (193438), and the University of Reading, where he read philosophy and English literature. He also took a postgraduate course in librarianship at University College London. Ted would gleefully recall his enjoyment of his first job, as a booking-clerk at Pangbourne railway station. From this, perhaps, stemmed his interest in railways which led to his book Quakers and railways (1992). His first professional post was as trainee librarian at Dr Williams’s Library, the library specialising in non-conformist Christianity founded in 1730 and housed in Gordon Square, London. Ted remained deeply loyal to the library. He was appointed trustee in 1967 and was at various times a much-respected chair of the library committee. He remained a trustee until he resigned in 2006. In that year his reputation as a scholar was cemented by the publication of his 600-page reference work, A biographical 34 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
dictionary of British Quakers in commerce and industry 17751920, which won the 2009 Besterman/McColvin Award. From 1957 until his retirement in 1985 Ted was Librarian of London Yearly Meeting (often known as ‘Friends House Library’). His professional achievement came to be overshadowed by his other activities, but it was considerable, since he ran and promoted the use of the library with exceptional administrative flair. More widely, he was better known for his enthusiasm for the Society of Friends, his knowledge of its history, and his gift for public speaking, all of which caused him to be much in demand in Quaker circles. He was constantly writing for publication, and by the time he retired a bibliography of his published articles and books ran to nine closely printed pages. No wonder that he was a long-time member and sometime clerk of the Friends Historical Society (1948 to 1989).
ACKWORTH TODAY As a senior member of the staff of London Yearly Meeting, especially during the time when Arthur J. White was Recording Clerk (1966-78), he found that his natural wisdom, combined with his knowledge of past precedent, expanded his role unofficially beyond the confines of the library. Separately from his position on the staff, he served London Yearly Meeting at different times on at least eleven committees. They ranged from Friends Home Service Committee and Yearly Meeting agenda committee to ‘Church government’ revision committee and Constitution Review committee. His connection with Berks & Oxon Quarterly Meeting (later General Meeting, then Regional Meeting) began in 1942 and lasted for fifty years. He firmly believed in its value, both spiritually and as a way of building friendships. Ted’s good counsel and natural empathy with others, of all backgrounds and positions, made him a truly well-loved Friend. It sometimes seemed that he personally knew almost every Quaker in Britain and Ireland. Ted was a member of the Friends Relief Service 1941-46, spending part of that time at Killeaton House, County Antrim, a hostel for elderly people evacuated from Belfast, which had been heavily bombed. A legacy of those years was his life-long love of Ireland. In 2003 he travelled under concern among Friends in Ireland supported by a minute of liberation from Reading Monthly Meeting. This was a time when Ireland Yearly Meeting was revising its book of discipline and finding difficulty in doing so. Ted’s presence amongst Irish Friends was valued because rather than bringing something to say, he came and listened. He returned to be present at the residential Yearly Meeting in 2004 when Irish Friends were celebrating their 350th anniversary: amongst his contributions was a quotation in the concluding minute – ‘The present moment is full of infinite treasures. It contains far more than we have the capacity to hold.’ In 2008 and 2009 Ted again visited Friends in Ireland, and in the latter year he brought with him members of Berks & Oxon General Meeting who travelled widely there with him and were present at Ireland YM in Dublin. In the years thereafter his visits were more sporadic, but he managed to be present at Ireland Yearly Meeting in 2012 when ‘Quaker life and practice’ was finally published. One Irish Friend has remarked that Ted seemed to have a particular affection for a certain meeting in Ireland; on reflection he adjusted this comment to say that Ted
Colin Mortimer Colin was born in Monton, on the outskirts of Manchester, into a Quaker family. His father, Edgar, worked with his own father as an insurance broker. His mother, Muriel, worked with a nearby insurance firm. Two years later the family moved to Southport. At eleven years of age Colin went to Ackworth School, where his brother Roger was already a pupil. He followed
seemed to have a way of having a particular affection wherever he was visiting. Though a long-term resident of Reading, Ted was not always a member of Reading meeting itself, often attending or being attached to one of the smaller meetings in the Area, notably the fledgeling Bracknell and Ascot meeting (19972005), which he staunchly supported. During his nearly sixty years of adult membership, he served the Monthly Meeting in many ways: for example as custodian of documents, as Reading Preparative Meeting clerk, as Monthly Meeting clerk, and as clerk to nominations committee. Often, he was a natural choice in the consideration of trickier matters, for instance as convener of the working group on revised regulations on marriage; being asked to update the register of Monthly Meeting trust property; and on another occasion to prepare a statement on the implications of a written constitution. Beyond formal service he was a great supporter of funerals, where he would often minister appositely towards the end, so as to produce a gratifying conclusion. Ted had a remarkable bond with his sister Mary (19122001: ten years his senior) and for many years they lived in adjoining semi-detached houses on the Shinfield Road opposite Leighton Park School. In 1989 they simultaneously sold their houses with their large gardens to a housing developer and moved to share a newer house nearer the centre of town. Visitors to Ted in their new house would find him regarding the visit as being for the benefit of Mary, who by that time was increasingly housebound. After Mary’s death Ted befriended a Big Issue seller in the town centre, a homeless young man whose mother, stepfather and brother he came to know too. He was fond of referring to them as his ‘surrogate family’. The unusual relationship, drawing on Ted’s compassionate and open nature, was complicated and was necessarily interrupted when Ted came under the care of the Public Guardian, and entered sheltered accommodation for the last few years of his life. True to his generation, Ted wrote a great many letters, and enjoyed writing them. He took a real delight in the rich variety of human experience, loved meeting people, and imperceptibly convinced everyone he met that he valued them in some special way. His love for the Society of Friends was perhaps his chosen way of handling an allembracing love for society as a whole. During his long and active life, countless individuals, and certainly the Society of Friends as a whole, enjoyed long-lasting benefit from his learning, wisdom, and warm friendship.
Roger into the school orchestra, like him playing the trumpet (several years later he also played the trumpet in the Keele orchestra). After school, where he was head boy in 1943 to 1944, he went to Manchester University to study chemistry. However, after one year he and his cohort were asked to take a two-year break so that returning servicemen could have places at university. Because of the photographs coming from Belsen Colin felt that, although having been brought up as a pacifist, he was compelled to join the army. This gave him his first experience of Africa – in Asmara. When he returned to Manchester, he eventually gained his PhD in 1953 and took his first job at the University of www.ackworthschool.com | 35
Khartoum. In 1955 he was appointed an Assistant Lecturer at the then University College of North Staffordshire which became the University of Keele in 1962. He had met Eunice on a student holiday in Austria in the summer of 1953.
Tim Henman Event
They eventually married in 1956. Keele became the main focus of their work and family lives. However, Colin was keen to help at the new universities developing in what had been the colonies that were now independent. Keele was then generous in allowing leaves of absence. Thus Colin, Eunice and 14 month old Aidan went to Ibadan in Nigeria for a short ‘fill-in’ at the exciting time of its independence celebration in 1960. Later, in 1978, they returned to Nigeria, to llorin, where new elections were about to take place following a period of military rule. The most demanding and exciting part of their work abroad was from 1966 to 1969, when Colin was appointed the first Professor of Chemistry at the University of Zambia. The whole family went for this adventure. Other visits and attachments were in Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong, Lesotho and Singapore (where Eunice got the job first and Colin had to ask if they could use him also!). Colin had always felt a great debt to Ackworth school, and he served on its governing body for 21 years, latterly as clerk. His other commitment was to the University and to Keele Ecumenical Chapel. When Sir George Barnes was appointed Vice Chancellor, he determined that the Nissan hut in which they worshipped should be replaced by a new chapel. Sadly, halfway through, George Barnes developed cancer, and the task of raising money for the building fell to Colin as Secretary to the Appeals Committee. The chapel was dedicated in early December 1965. Sadly, Colin missed this as he and Eunice’s brother were in a road accident. When Colin retired in 1988, he took on another commitment at Ackworth, and became the president of the Ackworth Old Scholars Association (1988-89). It was a pleasure to Colin that both Bruce and, for his sixth form, Aidan, were students at Ackworth, as was his eldest granddaughter Eleanor. Aidan and family joined Colin and Eunice at the Easter weekends for Old Scholars and their families, Aidan also becoming president in his turn. Colin got great joy from his family, and in walking the hills and travelling abroad. It was also great in 1992 and 1994 to do voluntary work at the Quaker Centre in Wellington, New Zealand, and to meet two cousins and their husbands who had emigrated to New Zealand and now had children and grandchildren. Colin has led a long and fulfilling life, given so much to family and friends. ‘We thank God for all.’ Eunice Mortimer 36 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
Tim Henman visits Ackworth School to spur on more youngsters to pursue their tennis dreams. Tennis royalty was in town on Wednesday 19th May as former British number one Tim Henman visited Ackworth School to celebrate a successful local project aimed at getting more young people involved in tennis and launch his foundation’s new fundraising campaign. The participation project, jointly funded by the Tim Henman Foundation and Ackworth School, in partnership with the LTA, the national governing body for tennis in Great Britain, has helped local coach Alice Robson bring tennis to nearly 2,000 pupils at 28 local primary schools, as well as to generate nearly 200 new members to Ackworth Tennis Club. During the visit, Alice, who was named Development Coach of the Year at last year’s LTA Tennis Awards, delivered coaching alongside the visiting primary school teachers to nearly 100 children at the school together with Henman himself, who was on hand to share his experiences from a 15-year playing career which saw him reach six Grand Slam semi-finals and win 15 ATP career titles.
Finding Your Spark The event also marked the launch of a new campaign by the Tim Henman Foundation – the #FindingYourSpark campaign – which is designed to help some of the country’s most vulnerable young people pursue their passions in disciplines like tennis. Events like today’s are all about spreading special experiences like accessing oneto-one coaching and giving more children the chance to find their spark. Tim Henman said: “I am delighted to be at Ackworth today and see more young tennis stars coming through the pipeline. Talent is spread evenly across the country but sadly opportunity is not, which is why this Foundation initiative in association with the LTA, Ackworth School and Ackworth Tennis Club is so important.” As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, children need these chances more desperately than ever.
“Some of us are lucky enough to remember the moment we found our spark and the people who inspired us, in my case through the tennis scholarship I was granted aged nine. By donating to the #FindingYourSpark you can give more special, life-defining moments to more of our most vulnerable children.”
Celebrating Tennis Across Yorkshire Paul Bennett, LTA Head of Region for North of England said: “The results of this partnership speak for themselves and it’s great to see so many of the schoolchildren that Alice has inspired to pick up a racket enjoying today’s session with Tim. We are continuing to work closely with the Foundation as we both work towards encouraging more and more young people from all backgrounds to get involved in our sport. There are plans in place to follow a similar model to this project in other areas of the country, and hopefully, we will see similar levels of success.” Alice Robson, Ackworth Tennis Club Head Coach and LTA Development Coach of the Year said: “It has been a privilege to give so many children around Yorkshire the opportunity to play tennis for the first time. Seeing them pick up a racket and learn new skills is wonderful. Ensuring they have a positive first experience with tennis is important when trying to engage them with the sport and inspiring Britain’s tennis players.” Anton Maree, Head of Ackworth School said: “Introducing activities to children to which they do not normally have access has to take place at their convenience. We work with our partner schools at their schools with the facilities they have at their disposal. This approach allows us to reach a significant number of children and we help them to find their spark!” Richard Garrett, CEO of the Tim Henman Foundation said: “The Tim Henman Foundation Community Tennis Programme
in Ackworth is a leading model for developing tennis participation. The programme involves schools and a club with outstanding levels of participation creating 1000s of “one life one opportunity” moments for young people to pick up a tennis racquet and potentially find their spark. The scheme’s success reflects a one education sector approach with children and teachers from both state and independent schools being inspired through tennis”. The Tim Henman Foundation is one of a number of charities the LTA is supporting through the effects of the coronavirus pandemic through grant funding from the Tennis Foundation.
Year 4 Perspective Year 4 children from local schools participated in this exciting afternoon. Tim arrived in the morning and was warmly welcomed by Coram House children. He participated in a short game of mixed doubles with Alice Robson, event organiser, Gabriella, Year 5, and Harry, Year 6. During the afternoon, many of the pupils attending were given a superb opportunity to play tennis with Tim Henman; they all looked to be having a wonderful time. He really supported the children, giving them encouragement and advice as he moved around each of the schools. Coram House children represented our school exceedingly well as they were photographed, filmed and interviewed during the course of our tennis activities. The children thoroughly enjoyed the variety of games. I think their favourite looked to be ‘head, shoulders, knees and balls’, everyone was very competitive! Year 4 would like to thank Alice Robson for organising this event and also our thanks go to Miss Hoar for leading Coram House through the activities.
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STAFF NEWS Leavers Katy Devine After 23 years of teaching in the Art Department, Katy Devine is stepping down from her role as Art Teacher at Ackworth School. She will continue to work in the Boarding House and is looking forward to spending time concentrating on her own Art practice and further exploring her vocation as a Mindfulness tutor and Yoga Teacher. “I shall never forget walking around Ackworth School for the first time in the summer of 1998 with the then Headmaster, Martin Dickinson. The beautiful grounds and historic building were so enticing. I took up my role as Art teacher and imagined that I would stay for a couple of years before moving on somewhere else. Little did I know that, as the years went by, I would grow more & more fond of these old walls and the experience that is housed within. I am most grateful for the time that I have spent teaching here. I have a deep respect for the Quaker values & ethos. Many students will know that ‘Ten Minutes Silence’ used to be something which I employed to settle the class but more recently, I notice that it has become an experience that students cherish - an opportunity to focus their attention and to engage fully in whatever it is that they are doing. The silence has in fact become a gift to share. Teaching is a privilege. At Ackworth School each student is valued as an individual and is given the opportunity to grow and to discover their potential. I have very happy memories of sharing time in my classroom with each of the students that I have taught and shall miss the experience very much indeed. I have, however, been well supported by the school in developing my interest in both yoga and Mindfulness and am now looking forward to the next chapter of my life.” NON SIBI SED OMNIBUS. Christopher Wriggleworth Chris has made the difficult decision to retire from his role in the maintenance team. For the last seven years, Chris has been building, tiling, fixing and generally doing anything that involved using hard materials. As a stonemason he takes with him a wealth of skill that we will undoubtedly miss, but the fixing of the floor on Middle Passage and the plant room extension at the pool will serve as just two reminders of the quality of Chris’ work. Christopher Bailey Christopher has decided to step down from Head of the Boys’ Boarding house. Chris will continue to teach as Head of Biology.
Throughout my six or so years at Ackworth, Mr Bailey was one of the most approachable, and genuine teachers/ mentors that I had. Despite my poor conduct and attitude, he never treated me differently, and showed a level of patience that I don’t think any other human being could, when dealing with a child like me. He always demonstrated an extreme level of chill, despite my gang and I always causing him grief...usually in the middle of the night, staging a 30-man pillow fight. My experience at BSH, being an ocean (technically a channel) away from home, was a tough one. No matter how homesick I was, how badly I behaved, Mr Bailey was always there for me and the boys. I appreciate him, and wish him all the best. Thanks dude – Ali Huntley (2005 Leaver) Mr Bailey made four years of Boarding some of the happiest of my life, he facilitated the feeling of community & fraternity. His Christmas karaoke with Paul Frith was always a highlight, he would genuinely have a good time and it was infectious. Coming to sign in with Mr Bailey in the chair was like coming home and saying hi to your parent, you’d have a biscuit, a cuppa and a chat. There would always be a Mr Bailey story to enjoy and even if you had heard it before it would still be hilarious. We would choose to sit with him and laugh rather 38 | SUMMER 2021, ISSUE 12
than be in our rooms. How well he interacted with every boarder at every level was amazing, greeting many with their home country’s language. He was as close to a parental role model many of us had in some of the most important years of our life, I never heard a bad word or thought a bad thought about Mr Bailey. The boarding house is losing its essence with you going Sir. Thanks for creating a home away from home for so many of us. PS. There’s a remake of Monkey on Netflix. - Jake Usman (2009 Leaver) Michelle Walker Michelle has worked at the school for 37 years, the last seven in boarding. Sadly, Michelle will be leaving Ackworth School this summer, but she takes with her a collection of irreplaceable memories gained whilst working at the school. The Boarding House won’t be the same without warm and nurturing personality Michelle. All the best! Maureen Gibbins Maureen is also due to leave us this summer. Maureen is celebrating her long-standing employment this year with 35 years. Maureen has worked in and out of boarding since 2009, eventually becoming officially part of the team in 2011. Maureen truly has a heart of gold and has welcomed girls into Girls’ School House for many years with an open heart AND mind. There is never a task too big for Maureen and she has contributed wholesomely to making the Boarding House what it is today. All the girls that have been in your care would say the same. You will be missed! Catherine Jackson Catherine will retire at the end of this year after 28 years at Ackworth School. Over the years she has been a monumental influence within the English Department where her love for literature and language have convinced many pupils to continue with the subject at A level. Her passion for the subject will be missed. Until recently Catherine was the driving force behind Ackworth Today, and always did a fantastic job of producing a sterling publication. We wish her all the best for her future plans. Stevie-Ann Harrison Stevie-Ann is leaving the school after 10 years as a fine teacher of English. Stevie is following her interest in SEN but will continue to teach English. We wish Stevie-Ann all the best. Liz Rayner Liz has taught French at Ackworth for more than 16 years and is leaving Ackworth School for a new beginning closer to her home. She is an inspirational teacher who has ignited a passion for French amongst the pupils in her care. Always prepared to go beyond the ordinary Liz has inspired many to persist with the subject at university where they have prospered from her diligence. Lizzie Hussey Lizzie leaves after 5 years teaching music in Coram House. Lizzie and her family have big plans to take a year off next year and tour the UK in a camper van. We wish Lizzie all the best for the adventure ahead! Jim Davies Jim has spent many years as a tutor in Boys’ School House. Generations of boys know him as a kind and considerate tutor always ready for a conversation and never short of time for a boarder who needed attention. He will be missed in the boarding house but will continue in his role as a peripatetic music teacher. Andrew Hilton Andrew is leaving Ackworth after 15 years to pursue a new path. He is more than just a language teacher, having led the Modern Foreign Languages Department whilst coaching football, his great passion, to scores of young pupils over the years. His spectacular command of German has led to excellent results and he has influenced many pupils to study the subject because of the confidence he inspires. We wish Andrew all the best.
A huge thank you to everyone who has supported us throughout this year. We have been unable to have any of our usual events, but we have had brilliant support with our wreaths and floral arrangements. Freya and Francesca were our fabulous little assistants handing out our Easter wreaths.
Beth and Alan Jordan welcome baby Leo Joshua Jordan.
Tom and Ben welcome baby Rowan Tom Shennan-Barker.
Long Standing Staff Chris and Alisha welcome baby Rafael Sameer Hyams.
Base Camp Everest I’ve always been a keen mountaineer, loving the challenges they bring and I have always dreamt of climbing to Mount Everest. A year ago I was offered the amazing opportunity to join a group of men in their quest to climb to the Base Camp of Everest. Of course, I jumped at the chance. Along with 14 other guys, we will set off on 4th March 2022 and cover a distance of roughly 130 kilometres to reach Base Camp, climbing to 5,380 metres above sea level, returning home on 19th March 2022. It’s not going to be an easy challenge, but that’s what makes it so exciting and I’m doing it to raise awareness of something that was certainly a challenge and a tough journey. The 14 men and I are all part of a group named HIMfertility, a support group that meets virtually once a month to discuss, support and share experience and knowledge of fertility difficulties. 1 in 6 couples will need some sort of medical intervention in their quest to become parents in the UK, and whilst women tend to find that there is a wealth of knowledge and support available for them during their fertility journey, men often find that there is very little in the way of support. When we started our journey to become parents, my wife found lots of support whereas I found that nothing was available for me and it was a very embarrassing time, no one wanted to talk about what I was going through
Dean Matthews is celebrating working at Ackworth School for 35 years.
as it’s not something that is easy to talk about. The 15 of us taking this challenge on, all have one main aim… to raise awareness of male infertility. We want it to be something that men feel able to talk about rather than feeling embarrassed. Whilst raising awareness, we also aim to raise money for Fertility Network UK, the leading fertility charity in the UK who set out to fight for fair funding, provide support, raise awareness and advance public education on fertility. Of the 1 in 6 couples who will need support with their fertility journey, it is believed that up to 50% is due to male infertility, despite this often being something that just isn’t spoken about. There are roughly 320 pupils in the senior school, therefore if we take these figures into account, there may well be 26.6 boys from the senior school who may be affected in the future… quite a surprising amount in my opinion. In my quest to raise money for my trip, I am going to carry out a number of different fundraising opportunities, one of these being a 29 mile walk in October, walking a mile per student that may be affected in the future, as well as a mile for each of my own children, who are my miracles. My son, Sebastian, who is currently in Reception in Coram House has decided that he will join me for one of these miles and will gain his own sponsorship which will all go into the fundraising for this trip. I will provide more details and updates of the different fundraising activities that I will be completing in further issues of Ackworth Today and hope that as many people as possible will join with Ackworth School in supporting me in this challenge. If by raising awareness and highlighting that this subject is ok to talk about, it doesn’t need to be embarrassing or something hidden away, supports even just one person, then I feel that this challenge has been worthwhile. Please contact the school if you would like to donate or sponsor me on my trip. Ciaran Hannington, Autism Resource Staff Member www.ackworthschool.com | 39
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