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Eisteddfod Band Night Back To The Eighties Travelogue Fashion Show Husky - Sweden Sport ..... and much more.

welcome Front / back cover shots: Ben Lunato Doyen

A warm welcome to the Spring edition of the Lion magazine, and there has been much in the way of excitement this term to shake off the winter chills. For St David’s Day, we held our own Eisteddfod and, although it has been difficult to capture the essence of such a unique event (Mr Bohana up on the stage in full song, the grimacing of faces during the leek-eating competition or the whole school bellowing out ‘Men of Harlech’), there is a double-page spread in this issue which attempts to do some justice to the occasion. We have had several other equally memorable events such as the ‘Band Night’, during which we were entertained by our young up-andcoming musicians, or the much more sedate House Reading competition which had so many of us spellbound. The ‘Back to the 80’s’ school production transported many of us oldies back to an era of silly hair styles and ridicuolous clothes, and the various house matches brought out the competetive nature in all of us. Events like these, help us as teachers to stand aside and look at our pupils from a different perspective and to realise how far so many of them have progressed in terms of confidence since joining St David’s College. Whilst on the subject of pupil achievement, I must mention that we have no less than three

of our girls; Ashley Meigh, Georgia Garner and Harriet Frobisher, who have been selected to carry the Olympic Torch during its journey across the country - congratulations, and we wish them well. Our pupils’ various successes do not stop on our immediate doorstep either; James Trebinski, James Webb & Jake Roden were presented with their Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards on Feb 28th at St James’ Palace. Tom Murray & Ed Gillham will also be attending the next presentation ceremony (check out their photos on the school website). Enjoy this current edition of the Lion, and I will leave you to ponder this image of Michael Birch (Y12)........

Martin O’Leary

Chapel Highlights this term have included the usual wealth of visitors (including a Bishop from Southern Sudan, Pastor Emmy and Grace from Uganda, Rev John Fieldsend, a K i n d e r t r a n s p o r t s u r v i v o r, a n d S a l t m i n e T h e a t r e C o m p a n y ) .

In addition we had run two hugely successful RE Days in conjunction with the Outdoor Education Department. The Ye a r 7 d a y w a s l e d b y g u e s t a n d p a r e n t R e v d J u l i a B arthlomew, and together we explored what it means to be fully human, as God intended. The day was completely experiential, with pupils comparing their physicality with animals and then discovering their uniqueness as creative b e i n g s w i t h a s e n s e o f w o r s h i p . T h e Ye a r 8 d a y t o o k u s t o Liverpool to explore the two Cathedrals. The Anglican Cathedral visit touched on the sense of awe in a worship space, basic Christian teachings as we explored the windows, the font, the communion table, and the Gothic Te x t o f J o h n 3 : 1 6 i n t h e L a d y C h a p e l . T h e p u p i l s f o u n d the Roman Catholic Cathedral inspirational in its art forms in the side chapels and the Stations of the Cross. A deep sense of spirituality overwhelmed many of the pupils as they spent time in silence reflecting on the majesty and creativity of the worship space. Saltmine Theatre Company spent 4 days in school using our resources as a rehearsal space and allowing pupils to be watch their rehearsal times and to have conversations a n d d i s c u s s i o n s i n l e s s o n s o n T h e a t r e a n d Fa i t h . S a l t m i n e also presented two performances of their production “Who D o Yo u S a y I A m ? � A s a s c h o o l i t w a s a h u g e p r i v i l e g e t o have Saltmine in residence. Tim Hall

To m m a s o B r e g a

Every year I attend the Venice Carnival which takes place in February. Although I live in Milan, my grandparents have an apartment in Venice, so I stay with them. This year I took my friend Max Hastings with me. A flotilla of gondolas and other boats sail down the Grand Canal with lots of people in different styles of flamboyant costumes, with amplified classical music blaring out from speakers on the boats. In St Mark’s Square old and young meet together in a variety of costumes and masks. Sometimes you are not even allowed in restaurants unless you are wearing a mask. In the theatres there are many performances, some based on the history of the carnival. The climax is on the last day when a vast paper model of a bull, a historical symbol, is set on fire in the Santa Maria della Salute Square, next to the Grand Canal.

After many stressful weeks of planning and organising, the 6th Form Masquerade Ball had very positive feedback from pupils and teachers. The Ball was a great opportunity for many to celebrate the results from their January exams. It was nice to share the evening with pupils from Moreton Hall and Howells School, who also got involved with our award ceremony for best costume and best mask. Huw Alexander and Michael Webster were very keen to judge the girls. Timothy Muller did a brilliant job of entertaining our guests with a witty speech and was very well assisted by Thomas Graham in his long red dress. I will never forget the memory I have of seeing so many St David’s 6th Form lotharios being primped and pampered in the hairdressers the day before in preparation for the Ball. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone, on behalf of Head Girl Cleo Milburn and me, who was involved with the helping and organising of the evening.

George Ketley

Kiani Geldard, Lead singer of the band ‘Osmium’, in full swing

Every journey, we are told, has to start with a first step and whilst this normally holds true it‘s equally true that it can start with a fumble, a trip, or, like so many You Tube videos, a dramatic face plant.

Considering this, the stakes were high for the bands starting their journey into rock stardom at St David’s Band Night, on Friday 24th February, but they rose magnificently to occasion - very literally putting their best feet forward.

First up were the Year 10 ensemble, ‘Pulse’, a quiet and contained harmony of three vocalists and a supporting band, which provided the perfect start to evening, and treated us to a star turn by Bethan Foxall.

After Pulse came the ska-infused slowed-down rock steady beat of ‘We Climb Trees’. Powered forward by the Tiddly-Beat of Harry Roberts; their acoustic take on ‘Our House’ was a definite crowd pleaser - made all the more unique by Cloela Bolt’s enchanting vocals contrasting with Suggs’ original cockney twang.

The evening had an abrupt change of direction with the arrival of the St David’s Ukulele Band. The band took the bold step of performing in the audience- a gamble that paid off with a great wave of participation, with Dan Mason and Emma Mulvihill playing their hearts out. The controversial choice of ‘Swing Low Sweet Chariot’ of the eve of a Wales-England Rugby clash proved to be extremely popular as the crowd even drowned out Dr Ward’s enthusiastic lead singing, a result for all concerned (except it seems, England).

Next came the surprise package of evening - ‘Mad Haven’, comprised, as they are, of Years 6 and 7, with no one single member over 4’2” tall, the wall of sound that crashed over the hall was all the more extraordinary. Showcasing two of their own compositions and an instrumental cover of ‘Smoke on the Water’, the band did not put a foot wrong and must surely have a very bright future.

After the highly enjoyable aural onslaught from ‘Mad Haven’ came the time to slow things down with a couple of unplugged numbers from two very strong partnerships. Firstly John Cadd and Kiani Geldard treated us to a fragile and faithful cover of ‘Jar of Hearts’, then Owen Simpson teamed up with Molly Jenkins for a fresh twist on the Britpop staple ’Wonderwall’.

It was soon back to rock as ‘Osnium’ took to the stage- a 6th Form and Year 7 collaboration. The first song was a ‘Nickleback’ cover, but despite this they soon had the audience on side before finding a strong driving rhythm in their version of ‘Danny California’ featuring a show-stopping guitar solo from Asif Shah.

Next came the aptly monikered ‘Under Construction’ who wisely chose to remove the words from their Blink 182 cover- a move that has never failed to improve to band’s output.

The evening was polished off with a set from ‘Catfish and the Bottlemen’. This professional four-piece are so far along their particular journey to rock stardom that they are at the metaphorical service station gawping at the sheer cheek of asking £4:90 for a sandwich. The band had the audience immediately on side and launched into tight set that showcased their angular agripop off to its best. It was a fine ending to a very impressive evening.

Cheshire 7s Ashton on Mersey

A contemplative Raife Gaskell...

Our young and inexperienced 7’s squad elected to enter only the Cheshire 7’s this year to gain valuable experience before entering the traditional three, which include the Birkenhead 7’s and the prestigious National 7’s at Fylde R F C next year. In our first game we came up against a well drilled and muscular team from Lymm High School! We came a poor second best. After a rallying call from Evan Rae and Huw Alexander, the squad dramatically improved its performance over the course of the next three games. Narrow defeats followed to St Anselm’s and Grange School, but a victory against Caldy in our last game of the afternoon showed improvement and the potential of the squad. Harbourne School from Sheffield came to North Wales on a sports mini tour with a Girls’ Under 14 Netball Team and a Boys’ Under 14 Rugby Team. Our rugby team showed them how the game is played, but our girls narrowly lost in the closing stages of the game.

Georgia Garner continues her impressive form in both middle distance running and cross country. She finished in eighth place in the Welsh Schools National cross country championships in Brecon. As a result of this performance, she was selected to represent Welsh Schools at an event prior to the London Marathon. Alun Evans

The Inter House School Cross Country was again keenly contested, with Tryfan coming out champions followed in second place by Cader and in third by Snowdon.

Trawling back through the years, we now can publish the records for the different age groups: Cross Country Records

Lower Junior Boys (Years 6 and 7) James Anderson 2008 15:33 Junior Boys (Years 8 and 9) Arran Williamson 2006 17:57 Middle Boys (Years 10 and 11) Matthew Cripps 2007 18:25

Senior Boys (Years 12, 13 and 14) James Watson 2008 20:43 Junior Girls (Years 6, 7 and 8) Georgia Garner 2008 16:46 Middle Girls (Years 9 and 10) Georgia Garner 2011 19:22

Senior Girls (Years 11, 12, 13 and14) Georgia Garner 2012 20:04

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Iwan Lewis

Sarah Stanbury models the ‘Red Dress’

The Collection: White Dress, White Dress Pearl, Black Dress, Biblt Text Dress, Record Dress, Ten Commandments, Snake Dress, Purple Dress, Red Dress, Toga Dress and Coke Dress

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Whilst crossing the lake we witnessed the spectacular sight of the Northern Lights – an enormous undulating curtain of neon green.

Jo Stewart

March 1st is St David’s Day, the national day of Wales. St David’s is the patron saint of Wales, and our school shares his name. We thought it only fitting to celebrate this day in style by holding our own Eisteddfod. Normally an Eisteddfod is a competition held in Wales every year, and it is one of the oldest and largest cultural festivals in Europe. It is a celebration of Wales, its culture and its language, and it includes music, dance, visual arts, and dramatic performances. We had Welsh-themed competitions for each year group and subject. We also had a Welsh cakes competition, a fancy dress competition, and a Welsh-themed lunch in the canteen. There were also fantastic on-stage competitions for poetry, dance, readings and song. We had a leek-eating competition, the story of St David, and the Welsh National Anthem. Everyone got involved, pupils and staff alike! Winners of the competitions received certificates during the celebration assembly, and House Points were awarded for winners and participants. Overall, it was a great day. Everyone really enjoyed the celebration and it was a good opportunity to show off our various talents. Thanks so much to everyone who took in part competitions and helped to organise such a wonderful day. Diolch yn fawr iawn pawb! Jo Stewart

An eisteddfod is a Welsh festival of literature, music and performance. The tradition of such a meeting of Welsh artists dates back to at least the 12th century, when a festival of poetry and music was held by Rhys ap Gruffydd of Deheubarth at his court in Cardigan in 1176 but, with the decline of the bardic tradition, it fell into abeyance. The present-day format owes much to an eighteenth-century revival arising out of a number of informal eisteddfodau. The closest English equivalent to eisteddfod is "session"; the word is formed from two Welsh morphemes: eistedd, meaning "sit", and bod, meaning "be".

Since there is no life on Mars as we know it, there can be no intelligible Marsish language. Batman

Mohammed Abudhir

People could just get arrested and disappear.

Mohammed Abudhir joined St David’s in September last year after having to leave Tripoli in Libya. He returned to Tripoli in the Christmas break and kindly shared some of his thoughts about life in Libya now and before the revolution. Mohammed joined Cader House, who have been keeping track on events during the ‘Arab Spring’ during assemblies throughout last year. Can you give us an insight into your childhood and education?

My parents are both Libyan and were in Britain studying when I was born in London. My father trained to be a doctor and after that we returned to Libya. I had a normal ‘Libyan’ childhood; I went to the state schools and lived in a typical street in Tripoli. Looking back things were pretty normal really, I suppose because I knew nothing different. I carried on in the state school until about year 10, when I decided I wanted to get a better education as I want to be a doctor like my father, so I was sent to the International School in Tripoli.

How did you end up coming to St David’s College?

Things changed pretty fast for us in Tripoli last year. After the uprising in Benghazi, demonstrations started in Tripoli. The school closed as all the teachers were British and had to leave. Things started to get dangerous and so my father sent me to stay with a family friend, my guardian, in Rhyl last Easter. I spent the summer term in a boarding school in the south of England and then returned to Rhyl for the summer. My father stayed in Tripoli working as a doctor through the revolution. It was only by chance really that I ended up at St David’s. I didn’t want to return to the boarding school down south and couldn’t get visas sorted to get into the local state schools. Luckily we saw the sign for St David’s and visited, and things were arranged for us. What was it like growing up in Tripoli and how have things changed?

As I said, it was normal because I didn’t know anything else. But there were obvious problems, like the roads and buildings were in a bad state; just everyday services were pretty poor really. We all knew from an early age that you just couldn’t criticise the government, well Gadaffi really. It wasn’t even talked about really, you just knew not to criticise, from when you were really young, somehow you just knew. People could just get arrested and disappear. We all knew what Gadaffi was like and had real hope that his son was a better person. We really thought he cared and was going to transform the country and modernise things. But, this all died when he went on TV after the demonstrations calling the people rats and things like that - that was the end for him really. When I returned over the Christmas break things had changed lots. You felt like you could say what you wanted and it was strange as there were no police or security forces around. Really it’s pretty dangerous I suppose, as lots of people were walking around with guns left over from the revolution. What are your hopes for Libya, and what are your goals?

I think the next couple of years will not be easy for Libya, but I hope things get modernised and the services are improved. I hope that a proper government is set up that is fair for all people. I’m not sure about my future; it depends upon whether the schools re-open really as I’d like to go back. I am very happy at St David’s and felt accepted in the community so quickly. Perhaps I’ll stay for the 6th Form, perhaps I’ll go back, who knows. I want to be a doctor, to go back and live in Libya.

As part of the World Book Day celebrations, the English Department held a 50 Word short story competition run by Young Writers publishers.

Students from all year groups were given the opportunity to write short stories in their English lessons. The number selected for publication has been highly impressive, demonstrating the outstanding talent and imaginations St. David’s College students bring to their writing.

d i sh e Publ ors

Jen Smith

auth Ice Skating

When we went ice skating on a Saturday junior trip, it was really fun. We went to Deeside Leisure Centre and when we got there we put on the hired ice skates and started to skate round the rink. People like Anna Webster, Jacob Stocking, Jordon Lovelock and Jack Harley-Walsh were really good, but people like Rebecca Lawrence-Jones, Jordan Reilly and me were not the best skaters in the world, but we got much better by the end. After we had finished skating, we all had a drink in the cafĂŠ and then drove back to school in the minibus. It was a brilliant day out, and Sam Ellis said that it was the best junior trip he had ever been on. Sarah Marsh.

The students selected for publication are: Ben Lunato (Year 12), Tiffinni Edwards (Year 12), Hannah Forte (Year 11), Tom Bennett (Year 11), Raife Gaskell (Year 11), Robert Jackson (Year 11), Callum Bartley (Year 11), Oliver Goldring (Year 11), Robert Booth (Year 11), Reece Thomas (Year 11), Nick Roden (Year 9), Alex Maguire (Year 9), Jake Jones (Year 9), Louie Forte (Year 9), Mia Best (Year 9), Charles James (Year 9), Zuzanna Kawalek (Year 9), Doug Seale (Year 9), Cameron Lane-Williams (Year 9), Molly Jenkins (Year 9), Olivia Tyrer (Year 9), Matthew Mitchell (Year 7), Dylan Ford (Year 7).

A Hotel for Bugs, and Caves for Bears are two of the more unusual achievements by pupils in Y9, as they undertake their latest conservation project.

The youngsters have spent the last 6 weeks working part time at the RSPB’s nature reserve on the banks of the River Conwy, near Llandudno Junction for their John Muir Discovery Award, which forms part of the Volunteering Section of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme. The John Muir Award in particular requires youngsters to discover a wild area, explore it, and carry out conservation work, before sharing their experiences with fellow pupils, friends and the general public, using the media where possible.

“We had great fun working on the ‘bear caves’ and reed beds,” said Mollie Jenkins of Year 9, as she made her way through the thick undergrowth. The bear cave idea is a novel way of making use of overgrown areas of bramble hedge and reeds, which the youngsters have opened out into an extensive tunnel system with small open ‘classroom’ areas where younger visitors can safely get in close to many small species of wildlife found on the reserve.

Putting the finishing touches to the “Bug Hotel”, Nick Roden and Gemma Edwards said, “The thinking behind the compact habitat is to provide a safe and viable environment where all manner of tiny woodland creatures such as hundreds of insect species can be observed and studied by visitors to the nature reserve, particularly younger children on outdoor education trips.”

Al e d Ed w a rd s

The January saw our annual pilgrimage to Bala change venue slightly, with us staying at Gwersyll yr Urdd Glan-llyn, on the shores of Llyn Tegid, just outside Bala. From here we were able to make great use of the lake, and on the first day, we constructed three trimarans out of six canoes, and took to the water. Considerable effort was required by all to get the canoes out of the bay, as a stiff wind was blowing down the lake. Out of the bay however, the wind was behind us as we flew down to our lunch spot in some woods. Here, we got the Kelly Kettle (a water kettle in which it is possible to light a fire to heat the water, the smoke coming out of a small chimney in the top) roaring to make some hot chocolate‌until someone piled loads of wet wood into it and we had to revert to gas stoves‌still warm, but everything seems to taste a bit better when it has been heated naturally! Unfortunately, we now had to slog back into the wind to get back to Glan-Llyn, but we had nothing to worry about. Even through the

stronger gusts, the two teams of paddlers managed to get the boats back into the calm of Glan-Llyn Bay, and to shore. In the afternoon we had the chance to go ten-pin bowling, followed by a brief look around Bala before heading back to the hostel for food. After this, once it was properly dark, we headed out to find a suitable venue for a night walk. Armed with head torches, we ventured along the old railway line between Bala and Trawsfynydd, crossing the Nant Prysor Viaduct. Quite a few of the group enjoyed trying to make themselves invisible and jumping out from behind bushes, while a few more tried a bit of star spotting with the help of a star gazer app on a phone. The next day, we travelled back to school via the high ropes course at Betws Y Coed, giving some the chance to jump around in the trees and experience a short freefall on the powerfan drop at the end of the course. It was another successful exeat trip to Bala - a big thanks to all who came along and made it work.

Do you enjoy a good exciting story? If you do, read Kitten Club by Sue Mongredien! The story is fun, sad and very exciting. I bet you, half way through you will think, “I need to see what happens next,” because that’s what happened to me!

Kitten Club

The Kitten Club is a story about how hard it is to start a new life and about courage. Six girls meet a girl called Amy who has just moved from the town to the country. Amy finds it difficult to move and to make new friends. She feels it is very stressful to cope and she makes lots of mistakes.

What is the conclusion and are you as curious as I was and a tiny kitten would be?

I am sorry to say I can’t tell you the end but I will tell you what I like about the book. I enjoy the way Amy handled meeting new friends and how the atmosphere was at Amy’s auntie’s house. I also liked the bit when Amy and her new friends were all sitting in Sarah’s kitchen and I liked the way they all had their own kitten. I liked this part because it was a big surprise to Amy and it was to me when I got my first kitten. Amy’s parents decided to get her a kitten so she would settle in well and not be home sick.

200 miles in ten days..

I would recommend the book if you like animals and if you like exciting stories. It’s a great book to read!

Annie Bartholomew Mr Charlton hopes to raise £5,000 for Ty Gobaith Children’s Hospice by skiing 200 miles of the Kungsleden ski trail in northern Sweden in the Easter holidays, starting 150 miles north of the Arctic Circle.

Snow storms and temperatures to -20 will add to the challenge of skiing through the remote mountains of northern Sweden. If you would like to sponsor Mr Charlton and help Ty Gobaith, donations can be made online at: A group of six students are celebrating after being crowned regional winners of the CocaCola Enterprises Real Business Challenge, a national competition to inspire the business leaders and entrepreneurs of the future.

The team, made up of Hugo Bennett, Cameron Bell, Simon Dutton, Ashley Meigh, Harvey Maguire, Mark Lambert, was eventually named the regional winner following a ‘dragon’s-den’ style pitch. The teams impressive presentation demonstrated comprehensive business plan for a campaign to encourage consumers to recycle more and litter less in the run up to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The students will now progress to the National Final in London on 25 January next year, where they will compete against 10 other regional finalists from across the UK.

Unveiling the business minds of the future

As a reward, the students’ poster, designed to encourage recycling, will be professionally produced and displayed on a billboard, providing an opportunity for their work to have genuine impact on the local community.

Berlin is the capital of Germany. Even though it is a beautiful city, much of it is still run down from the Communist era before the Berlin Wall came down. The first place I visited was Checkpoint Charlie, which was the cross over point between Russian East Berlin and American West Berlin; there wasn’t much left to see, but the museum showed how people tried to escape to the West. Then there was a concentration camp, Sachsenhausen; the weather was grim which increased the feeling of sadness; on the gates there were a few words engraved in German which said ‘Arbeit macht Frei’, which means that work will set you free, but of course it didn’t – 60,000 inmates died there in three weeks. As we walked through we came to the Jewish sector; most of the huts had been destroyed but there were still two remaining, the irony being that at the end of the war the SA had tried improve them to show that conditions had been too bad. Even though being a Nazi is now illegal in Germany, there are still hate crimes being committed today; one of the huts had been firebombed and synagogues have to protected by the police. As the tour progressed we entered Section Z, which was the part of the tour which shocked me most because it was the area where people were shot through the back of the head, which was the system of extermination before gas chambers were invented. The last exhibition we saw before the tour ended was about the death march; this was when the SA knew that the Russians were invading, so they marched the remaining healthy inmates to the sea with the intention of sending them out on boats and sinking them –luckily they were stopped by the Russians before this monstrous act happened.

Out and about....

On the 29th of February 10 A-Level Biologists had the chance to visit Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, Hertfordshire. Rothamsted is the longest running agricultural research station in the world, providing cuttingedge science and innovation for nearly 170 years.

The pupils had the chance to engage actively in the research that the laboratories undertake- including taking samples in the field and identifying insect species under the microscope. The scientist took time out to show the group around their sampling stations, even visiting the giant 40ft hoovers that are used to suck in passing insects.

The highlight of the day was a tour of the insect quarantine lab that houses the live samples of the insects under

study. The wisdom of taking of taking ten 16-18 year olds into one of the most biologically sensitive environments in the country was called into question, but to their eternal credit the Rothamsted team took it all in their stride and barely looked pensive at all. The pupils then had a chance to ‘dose’ aphids with a drop of substitute pesticide, although some unfortunate individuals did succumb to a ‘heavy poke’ from the micropipette and are now on the giant rose leaf in the sky! After this miniature slaughter of the innocents the pupils were given a tour of the Electron Microscopes and were even treated to a chance to see an experiment in action.

Overnight accommodation was courtesy of Rothamsted’s own Tudor manor house, a home from home for

the boarders, before heading off to London for the Natural History Museum. After a short diversion to see Buckingham Palace the pupils had a chance to roam the hallowed halls of the museum. At lunch the pupils had a talk from one of the museums taxonomists- the ‘Curator of Worms’ no less (although she did admit to occasionally moonlighting with jellyfish). The pupils got to hear how a career devoted to the small and slimy can take you to such diverse locations as Venezuela and Vietnam, and how one can go about thinking up a name for a new species. A fun and informative trip was rounded off with a quick shopping spree in Harrods before long slog back up north. Luke Petit

under the microscope


What is Electron Microscopy?

The electron microscope is a type of microscope that uses a beam of electrons to create an image of the specimen. It is capable of much higher magnifications and has a greater resolving power than a light microscope, allowing it to see much smaller objects in finer detail. Rothamsted has two types of electron microscope- an SEM and a TEM. The TEM looks through a very thin sample whilst the SEM bounces electrons of a 3D object (see right).

Rust Mite - this is a bug that, like Eeyore, eats thistles.

As the first bars of Kim Wilde’s’ Kids In America’ struck up, I was instantly transported back more than 30 years to the 1980’s. The time of big bright clothes, big hair and even bigger tunes dominated the Assembly Hall, belted out by an enthusiastic cast who would have been no more than twinkles in their parents’ eyes at the time a young and nubile Kim Wilde sent young men such as me wild. It was a daunting task for these young performers to recreate an era which their audience would know so well but to them is ancient history. However they managed it with aplomb and a great deal of panache. Although the whole cast showed great skill and delivered a polished performed with a style well beyond their years, particularly noteworthy performances included Owen Simpson as Corey, Kiani Geldard as his love interest, and the scenestealing Sara Beesley and Sophie Hendy who added a delicious touch of nuttiness to this American teenage drama. While it was fantastic to see the old hands such as Nic Roques rock the stage and Tom Costello find his voice, it was also great to see newer faces emerge into the spotlight. The whole place had a special party atmosphere, boosted by the fabulous addition of the live band which helped the whole evening go with a swing. It was an unforgettable evening! Steve Jarvis

A Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award Expedition By Ned Rae

Last October, a group of upper sixth pupils set off on a four day expedition in the Lake District. Ned Rae tells of his experiences…

As we climbed into the minibus at school, with all our gear, we felt both optimistic and excited at the prospect of camping and walking for four days in the Lake District. However by the time we woke up the following morning, we had started to feel a little nervous as well! Our tents, which were thoroughly dampened by the Lake District dew, were soon packed away into our bulging rucksacks, as we met our assessor, Dave. After going over the route with him, and making some last minute checks, we set off for the first day’s walking full of energy.

We were following the shore of Lake Windermere (which, as we discovered, is in fact not a lake but a mere) for most of that day and turned off towards Hawkshead about four kilometres from the end of the lake. We had many adventures along the way, including rescuing a balloon which we decided to keep and make our mascot. During this aside we managed to miss our turning and so about two kilometres on realised we were lost. Eventually we managed to find our way to our first campsite. It was almost a swamp as the ground was very water logged. The second day’s walking brought us to a mountain upon which I assured the rest of the group that I didn’t want lunch, and where, subsequently, we had lunch. This mountain was steep and it was hard going, however it made us feel better when we could see the top up ahead; although when we finally reached it our relief was quickly dampened when we rounded a corner and saw the actual top still some way ahead of us. From here on the days blurred into a mass of painful feet, wet tents, heavy bags, and endless chat. However many rest stops, lunch breaks, and complaints later we finally met up with Dave on the final day who, after presenting us with a few treats, walked into Ravenglass with us.

It was with a mixed sense of melancholy and relief that we settled down for a drink in the Ratty Arms, before presenting Dave with Johnson (our mascot balloon) and bidding him farewell. We then heaved our weary bodies into the minibus and Ian drove us back to school. I’m very glad to say we all passed and we all look forward to meeting the Duke at Buckingham Palace.

Jen Smith

7 Go Wild at Chester Zoo!

Aiden O’Leary and Euan Williams had the opportunity to meet their heroes

A group of Year 7 English students had the opportunity to monkey around at Chester Zoo as part of their non-fiction Scheme of Work.

The trip, which took place on Thursday 15th March 2012, was an enjoyable experience for all involved as students conducted research for a range of media work they will complete in school.

Having already identified animals of interest in their persuasive speeches before the trip, nothing could beat seeing the animals up close. Certainly nobody will forget the sight of lions and meerkats enjoying the joys of spring in a hurry!

The group was ably led by Miss Smith and Anna Webster’s mum, Helen, although they did have their personal sat-nav in the form of Matthew Mitchell who knew every bridge, path and tunnel in Chester Zoo! Reluctantly, he led the group in to the darkened Bat Cave where the Fruit Bats swooped past Sarah Marsh’s head which she almost willingly entered.

Aiden O’Leary and Euan Williams had the opportunity to meet their heroes – the giraffes and penguins respectively – and it was surprising the boys didn’t ask them for autographs.

The media skills were already being utilised as the celebrity animals were ‘papped’ by Sarah Marsh and Tybalt Melia, while Alexander Mudge and Dylan Ford had to be held back from climbing into the animal enclosures to get near the stars and Katie Daviot and Will Cardwell were among the wannabe models on one of the Zoo’s Jeeps.

Check out the next issue of Lion Magazine where the group’s articles on Chester Zoo will appear.

This year it was decided that the ski trip would return to Italy and to our favourite haunt of Passo Tonale, so February half term nineteen students and three members of staff packed their bags, got on a bus and headed to Heathrow Terminal 5. We got there without a hitch and were eager to go shopping; however Tim Muller decided to take with him enough baggage for six people instead of one, and we were held up while he paid for excess baggage. Shopping time lost – much to the relief of Mr Demery!! We arrived in Italy, met up with our rep Rene and travelled to the resort. We were staying at the Hotel Piandineve, a hotel that we had stayed in for many years. We settled into our rooms and then went to ski fit, and got all of the equipment back to the hotel. We then found out that Rene had sent us to the wrong shop, so before skiing the next day, new equipment was issued and the skiing began in earnest! Our group was having four hours of ski lessons every day with two great instructors, as well as free skiing with Mr Demery and Mr Charlton, who took the groups in their free time around all the slopes in Tonale. It was fair to say that everyone was skiing from 9:30 in the morning till 5:00 in the afternoon. Some of them had the odd afternoon off, or went out later, but credit where credit was due - they skied hard. The weather for the whole of the week was good but we had a few storms during the day and night and at one point we thought that the roof of the hotel was going to come off!

Food at the hotel was excellent and there was so much to choose from. While we were away we celebrated two 18th birthdays – Nick Barnes and Tiffinni Edwards, and we arranged for the hotel to make a chocolate cake for the two of them. Despite the hard skiing during the day, some of the group still managed to go out night skiing for two hours under floodlights for two nights. We also went to a disco and strutted our stuff of the dance floor. We all had a great time but hats off to Sam Ellis, a demon on the dance floor - even some of the 6th Formers were put to shame by him!

Soon we were packing, leaving the hotel and going to the airport in Milan. At the airport we got our tickets, Tim Muller yet again had to pay for excess baggage - again our shopping time was cut in half - and we proceeded through security. Mr Charlton and I were bringing up the rear, as I went through the bleep machine I was asked to go back through. I turned and the next thing I knew I was on the floor in a heap. I had slipped on the marble floor and according to Mr Charlton there was air between me and the floor. Not a ski slope or ice in sight! I had badly turned on my ankle and was taken away by the medical services of the airport. I was strapped up and put in a wheelchair and wheeled to the gate. No time for me to shop but fair play to serial shopper Iwan Lewis, who, despite everything, managed to get to the designer shops in the airport and purchase a Gucci i phone cover! I was pushed by wheelchair onto the plane, settled in my seat and everybody else boarded the plane. We took off on time and had a pleasant flight back to Heathrow. Back at school, the boarders went to their rooms and the day pupils went home while Mr Demery and I headed for Ysbyty Gwynedd Casualty! The entire ski trip was brilliant and the students were excellent ambassadors for the school. 2013 ski trip here we come, details to be published soon.

Anne Demery

...hats off to Sam Ellis who is a demon on the dance floor ...

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