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Autumn 2016

Strathallan News Scottish Schools Cup Final There was a great atmosphere at the BT Murrayfield Stadium on 7th December when the whole school, along with former pupils, families and friends, travelled to Edinburgh to support the U16 XV in the Scottish Schools Cup Final and the 1st XV in the U18 Shield final. This is the third time in four years that an U16 team from Strathallan has made it to the finals. The U16's played non-stop attacking rugby but were unable to convert that to points on the board and final result was 10 – 3 to St Alyosius College. On the back pitches, however, it was a different story with the 1st XV winning the U18 Shield final against Glenalmond. The first half was closely fought but the team, who played with great tenacity throughout, managed to create a healthy lead early on in the second half and won with a score of 36 - 19.

Musical Showcase Music is flourishing at Strathallan as evidenced by the spectacular Musical Showcase held at Perth Concert Hall in December. In an impressive feat of logistics, over 160 pupils, age nine to 18 took to the stage to perform 33 separate arrangements. Together they demonstrated a breadth of instruments and musical genres not often seen in a single concert. Ensembles included orchestra, string, wind and brass, percussion, vocal, choral, folk, jazz and rock, topped and tailed by the Strathallan Pipe Band who opened and closed the concert with an inspiring mix of traditional and fusion pieces. A record number of pupils, ensembles and soloists were featured in this year’s showcase. A gallery of performers on pages 12 and 13. More photos are available on Strathallan's facebook page.

Sport National Selection in Triathlon

British Selection in Skiing Riley pupil Maisie Morgan has been selected for the British Ski Cross Home Nations Academy and attended a training camp in Hamburg at the end of September. Maisie also won the Scottish Primary Schools Indoor Ski Cross Championships at Braehead in November.

Fifth Form pupil Campbell Hay has been selected for the Triathlon Scotland foundation squad following an assessment day at Stirling University. Campbell will attend a series of weekend training camps over the winter in preparation for triathlon and aquathon events next year.

Biathlon Twenty-two pupils competed in the Scottish Saltires Biathlon in Aberdeen, achieving some great results. Golds were won by three teams: Maisie Morgan, Chloe McMichael and Sophie Wallwork won the Girls U12 event; Pedro De La Puenta Hapka, Chris Aitken and Marc Martinez Valencia the Boys U14 event; and Georgia Taylor, Saskia Forman and Tiffany Chow the Girls U19 event. Individually, Pedro, Dylan Sommerville, Jonathan Wong and Sandy Aitken all achieved first place in their respective age groups. Chris, Pedro, Dani, Dylan, Jonathan, Sandy, Alex Cosano Bofill and Riley pupil Archie McMichael travelled to Solihull in late November to compete at the British Biathlon Championships, which saw over 800 athletes competing over two days. It was the first time most of these pupils had competed at this level, and all recorded personal bests in at least one discipline – Dylan won a gold medal for his swim which was a huge achievement and was placed an impressive sixth overall in his age group. The athletes are now looking forward to the British Schools Biathlon Championships in London in March.


Clay Pigeon Our clay pigeon shooters retained their Scottish titles again this year at the Scottish Schools Championships, which were held at Clunie Clays. Jack Turnbull, James Day, Lewis Turnbull and Iain Galloway won the Boys A team event. Finlay Laird, Gavin Stewart, Hamish Allen and Hamish White won the Boys B event and Polly Lightbody, Lucy Orr, Pippa Hay, Tanya Stephens and Charlotte Fraser won the Girls event, with Polly retaining her High Gun title.

Fencing Fifth Form pupil Ariana Serafinceanu won the Over-16 Sabre competition at this year’s Scottish Schools Championships. Ariana fought against some strong competition, but was able to keep her cool throughout to win her title.

National Selection for Cricket Over the summer, Sixth Form pupil Will Hardie played for the Scotland U17 and Kent CCC U17 teams. Will played in matches against Middlesex and Sussex, for the regional squad, Caledonia (U18) and continues to play for his club, Forfarshire.



Blair Horse Trials

The School’s teams have achieved great success at two equestrian events this term.

Riley pupil Maia Fleming qualified for two classes at the prestigious Blair Castle Horse Trials and was second in both the Open 13 hand Working Hunter Pony Scottish Finals and the NPS Scotland Mountain & Moorland Working Hunter Pony Scottish Finals.

In early October, the senior team of Brook Walker, Rowan Laird and Stephanie Craig won the 1m class at the Kilgraston school Hunter Trials at Foresterseat, Glenfarg. They all completed clear rounds and were placed individually. In the same event Hugh Nichols was first equal in the 90cm class.

Flora Wilson also qualified for the Senior Open Working Hunter Pony class and the Open Mountain and Moorland classes, coming third in both finals.

At the end of the month, Strathallan hosted our annual Team and Individual Show Jumping competition at the Highfield Equestrian Centre in Fife. Over 200 riders competed, and 15 Strathallan riders received rosettes. The top prizes went to Maia Fleming and Brook Walker who won the Class 1 and Class 3 events respectively. The senior team of Iona Wilson, Brook, Rowan Laird and Flora Wilson finished the day with a great performance which won them the trophy for the top team in the 1m class. In November, Sophia Henderson won her class at a British Show Jumping 80cm event, securing first place against 35 other riders, and Brook won The Midsummer Cup as a result of having achieved the most points throughout the year at Angus Pony Club.

Equestrian Vaulting Athol Pettinger won the Individual Junior Male category at the Scottish Championships to retain his Scottish title. Anna Petty also competed at the championships, finishing fourth in Novice class and wining the Artistic Interpretation.

Swimming National Age Championships Upper Sixth pupil Scott McLay is ranked number one in Scotland (U17) in the 50m and 100m free, 50m and 100m back and 50m fly. He also broke three national records. Scott was also selected for a British camp targeted at the potential next generation of Olympians. The camp was held in Aberdeen, and a total of 80 junior swimmers from across Britain attended.

Midlands Schools Championships Dylan Sommerville won gold in the 100m free, and Abbie Queen was a finalist in the 100m free at this year’s championships. Dylan, Oboe Chu, Campbell Hay and Donald Queen won silver in the boys relay, and Abbie, Stephanie Craig, Dani Doherty and Maria Watt achieved bronze in the girls relay.


Girls Hockey Midlands District Tournament

Basketball Our basketball team won the Merchiston Tournament in convincing fashion, winning all of their matches against Merchiston, George Heriot’s, Stewart’s Melville and Glenalmond. Both the boys and the girls teams are progressing well in their respective cup matches, the boys are currently unbeaten this season.

The 1st XI enjoyed success at this year’s Midlands tournament, where they met Dollar Academy in the final, which Strathallan won. Our captain, Abbie Lindsay, was awarded the Player of the Tournament trophy.

Midlands Selection Seven girls have been selected to represent Midland District at the Autumn Inter-District Tournament. Izzy Folan and Darcy McDermott were selected for the U16 team, and Kenna Francis, Jenny McGuire, Zoe Carracher, Anna Penas and Sarah Cameron-Sutcliffe were selected for the U18 team.

Boys Hockey Midlands Charlie Webster, George Culley, Rory Bayne and Struan Griffiths were selected for the Midland District U16 team which competed at the inter-district tournament in September. Matthew White and Jamie Miller have played for the U18 Midland District team.

Rugby District Rugby Selection Touch Rugby Four Lower Sixth pupils – Murphy Walker, Angus Vipond, Cameron Henderson and James McCaig – were selected to represent West U18 in a match against the East at Scotstoun, Glasgow, this term. Rory Bayne represented Caledonia U16 in the BT Sport Scottish Rugby Academy Regional Championships, where Rory was top try scorer for his team.

Lisa Walker, Gabi Adams and Kate Fawcett were selected for the Scotland U18 Mixed Touch Rugby team to compete at the Junior Touch Championships at the Olympic Training Centre in Holland. Following an intense game against England in the semi-finals, the team made it to the final where they lost to Wales.


Canoe Slalom Junior World Cup Upper Sixth pupil Angus Gibson competed in Europe for most of the summer, where he achieved a first and third place at the Junior World Cup in Krakow, Poland.

British Open Canoe Slalom Championships

Perth Rotary Young Artist Competition In early November, Leah Hamill won the senior category in this year’s Perth Rotary Young Artist Competition. She was presented with her prize by the president of the Perthshire Artists’ Association and president of the Perthshire Rotary Club at the exhibition’s opening night at Perth Museum and Art Gallery. Leah was competing against all seven Perthshire schools, with well over 100 entries submitted. Her painting has been framed and will hang in the museum until 7th January. Leah’s success is Strathallan’s fourth consecutive win in the competition, and the department is very proud of her achievement!

Angus Gibson, Fraser Glasgow and Natasha Pottinger travelled to London to compete on the Olympic Lee Valley course at the British Open Championships. Following an impressive performance, Angus won the Junior C1 event to become British Champion.

Golf Six pupils competed in this year’s Independent Schools Golf Scottish Open at Kings Acre Golf Club, Edinburgh. Pablo Messa Vilana won the individual nett competition and, along with Shannon Pook and Rory Ottley, won the team nett competition.

Arts Art Trip October Half Term 2016 saw 11 pupils, led by Mrs Davies and Mr Storer, set out across the Atlantic on a whirlwind trip to the United States. The first leg of the trip involved touring Washington, DC. Students walked round the monuments, visited Capitol Hill, including the chambers of the House of Representatives, and also experienced a host of museums and galleries at the National Mall. A stop by the famous Ben’s Chili Bowl for a half-smoke with chili cheese fries and a shake was a highlight for all! The group set out for their final destination, New York City, with a brief stopover in Philadelphia for lunch and sightseeing, which included a visit to the Liberty Bell. Arriving in The Big Apple at long last, everyone was stunned by the towering skyscrapers then quickly set off for an evening in town, visiting iconic spots such as the New York Library, Grand Central Terminus, Rockefeller Centre and Radio City Music Hall, capped off with a final stop at Times Square. It was an amazing introduction to an amazing city! Highlights of the days that followed included visits to the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, as well as the Guggenheim and Museum of Modern Art. What trip to NYC would be complete without a meal at Ellen’s Stardust Diner, where the group were entertained by some of the best Broadway tunes, sung live at their table by the waiters and waitresses. A superb trip, with a superb crew.


Riley Curriculum Day During Riley’s Geography curriculum day, we had a lot of fun doing all the activities such as a scavenger hunt around the school, learning about glaciation with a chocolate cake, making structures out of marshmallows and recreating coastal features with play dough. The best part of the day for me was running around campus with my team, finding out information and sketching plants and other things, although it is hard to beat pouring white chocolate onto a cake to demonstrate glacial movement. Lots of thanks to Miss Ambrose, Mr Mitchell, Mr Barnes and Mr Burnett. I thoroughly enjoyed it! Katharine Higginbottom, Second Form

Informal Concert On Friday 24th September, Mrs Sim Sayce organised our first informal musical concert of the year. These concerts are organised for children who wish to perform music or drama in front of an audience. They are very relaxed, and any parent who would like to come along is welcome. The dates of these concerts are published in the little blue calendar and also in the Riley Rag. The first concert was very enjoyable and it was super to see so many parents, grandparents and friends in the audience.

Primary Maths Challenge Nine Riley pupils took part in this term’s Primary Maths Challenge, Oliver Kent achieved a gold award, Grace Akinje, Rosalind Queen and Emma Fordyce achieved silver and Alexander English, Chloe McMichael, Annabel Webster, Sophie Wallwork and William Walker all received bronze.

NYOS Principal Viola Second Form pupil Daisy Richards has not only successfully auditioned for NYOS – Junior Orchestra, but has also been selected as Principal Viola, a great accomplishment at such a young age. Daisy was selected as a soloist at this year’s Musical Showcase and gave a very polished performance of ‘Allegro’, from Concerto in G major for viola by Telemann.


Duncan Scott, Strathallian and Olympic Silver Medallist There was much excitement in Riley on Wednesday 5th October as former pupil, now Olympian, Duncan Scott came back to Strathallan. Duncan won two silver medals in the 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle swimming events in Rio – it was amazing to see his medals and he looked so smart in his GB tracksuit. We all enjoyed having the opportunity to ask him so many questions about his time at Strathallan and about achieving his goals. Then off into the games room for a game of table tennis, Marcus McLaren v Duncan Scott. It was a good game, but let’s just say Duncan lost badly! Duncan spent a lot of time signing autographs and he even went up to visit his old dorm. It was an inspiring day and everyone very much enjoyed themselves. He also met up with his former swim coach Elaine Johnston and members of the senior swim team. Chloe McMichael, First Form


Riley Sport It has been a busy term for the Riley tennis players: Alexander English won the Boys U10 and the U12 at the Perth and District Tournament; Max Carmichael was runner up in the boys U14 and U12; and Annie Webster was runner up in the girls U12. Alexander finished top of the 2016 Summer County Tour in the 10 and under leader board for Scotland North and was runner-up in the U12 boys singles at the Gleneagles Open, and Annie won the consolation prize in the U12 girls singles. As a result of his successful year, Alexander was selected for the 11 and under Tennis Scotland Camp at the National Training Centre in Stirling in November and the 12 and under ‘Train like a Pro’ training session with Judy Murray and Louis Cayer ( Jamie Murray’s doubles coach). Marcus McLaren has also enjoyed a successful term, winning the Tayside Most Promising Junior Award 2016 for tennis and a personal development award from Perth and Kinross Executive Sports Council in recognition of his achievements in tennis. Marcus is now ranked in the top 20 in the nation following his performance at the Sutherland Grade 3 Regional Competition in early December. In team tennis, Marcus, Harrison Carmichael and Max Carmichael won the U14 Perth and District League. In swimming, Alexander English won a bronze medal in the 10/11 year old 200m freestyle at the Midlands Championships, having won six gold medals in 100m IM, 50m free, 50m back, 50m fly, 50m breast and 25m free at a competition the previous week. In the Minors Race at the Scottish Schools Dry Slope Championships before half term, Maisie Morgan was the second Girl Minor overall and our Minor Mixed Team consisting of Maisie, Chloe McMichael and Alasdair Macdonald came third overall. Archie McMichael competed in the British Biathlon Championships in Birmingham at the end of November. Both Maisie and Chloe competed in a Tetrathlon organised by Scottish Pentathlon at the end of November in which Chloe finished in first place and was the best overall fencer and Maisie finished third.

Fun with Pipes and Drums All the Riley pipers and drummers had a whole day out of lessons to learn and play their instrument at the annual Fun with Pipes and Drums. First we had a quiz with the pupils from Cargilfield and Ardvreck schools who were with us all day. Then we were put into groups – drummers, pipers and people still on the chanter. We were then given two tunes to learn, ‘An Eala Bhan’ and ‘Chasing Cars’ by Snow Patrol. At the end of the day we got to perform them for a small audience. It was an amazing day that we all enjoyed, and I would like to thank Mr Muirhead, Mr Armstrong and Mr Fleming, because without them this day wouldn’t be the same. Oliver Spalding, Second Form

1J Trip to the National Museum of Scotland We went on a school trip to the National Museum of Scotland because our topic is Ancient Egypt. When we got there we had to go around the museum and complete an Ancient Egyptian Quest! We then had a very interesting talk on ‘Death in Ancient Egypt’ and looked at some artefacts to decide what they were. After lunch we looked around the rest of the museum. Emma Fordyce, 1J


Academic Medical Ethics Groups Every Monday, a group of enthusiastic Sixth Formers, who are aspiring medical students, gather in the Biology office to discuss current affairs and social issues in the medical world. This is to prepare for questions we may be asked at interview and to be aware of these issues as young medical students. Over the term we have discussed quite a range of topics. These have included, organ donation, in vitro fertilisation treatments, stem cell development and embryonic screening, to name a few! Our debates focus on the ethical issues surrounding these topics, the morality of them and our personal views. Our discussions can end up becoming very lively debates, as some of the issues are very sensitive yet vitally important to the development of healthcare and medicine. These discussions have enabled us to expand our breadth of knowledge and are a very interesting way of keeping up to date in the medical world. Most importantly, however, they allow us to catch a glimpse into some of the moral issues health professionals face every day. Rachel Foulsham, Lower Sixth

Higher Bioinformatics On the first Monday of the term, Heleen Plaiser of Edinburgh University gave a workshop on Bioinformatics to the Upper Sixth pupils studying Higher Human Biology. This tailor-made presentation is very much at the forefront of modern Biology and was both interactive and hands-on, using mini computers (Raspberry Pi) to access a worldwide database and use it to identify an unknown section of DNA. The workshop was designed to help pupils understand the concepts of what we can tell from a small DNA sample found at crime scenes, etc. The Department also held a film night for the same group of pupils. We watched the film The Double Helix, a docu-drama about the discovery of DNA and the scientists involved in the history-making developments at the time. The film showed how groups of scientists from both sides of the pond competed to reach the goal of being the group who would go down in history for unravelling the structure of this fundamental chemical found in all living things.

Maths Team Competition For the third year in a row our senior Maths team has qualified for the National Final in London. They won the regional finals in Edinburgh, beating 25 schools in a fiercely competitive day. Huge congratulations to Norris Wong, Megan Chen, Andrew Smith and Fergus McKay, who did outstandingly well and have committed themselves fully to the team and the School.


History War Horse Lecture On 14th November, 2016, the History Society welcomed Andrew Robertshaw, lead historical consultant for Spielberg’s War Horse, to Strathallan. In his dynamic and enthusiastic lecture, Mr Robertshaw explained the part he played both behind the scenes and on the big screen and shared some humorous anecdotes of his experience of making of the film. It was fascinating to gain an insight into the movie world, especially how fanatical a producer Stephen Spielberg was on the military details of the movie. In some instances, Mr Robertshaw explained, it was very difficult to perfect Spielberg’s requests, giving the example that he had just a few hours to train hundreds of men on the military conduct of 1914. Listening to Mr Robertshaw explain the sheer scale of making this film was exceptionally interesting, and he astounded us all with his vast knowledge of World War I. This lecture was incredible and jam packed but had a very serious message: during the Great War the use of horses marked a transitional period in the evolution of armed conflict, with 8 million being killed. Learning about this forgotten element of the war made the lecture (and the film) even more moving and poignant. Emilia Barclay, Upper Sixth

Super Historians Johnny Boyd, Iain Robertson and Lisa Walker achieved impressive full marks for their GCSE course work, which they completed on ‘America: Boom or Bust’, as well as full marks in both written examination papers.

Cambridge Chemistry Challenge Our Captain of School, Andrew Smith, was awarded gold at the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge. Natasha Pottinger and James Day were each awarded silver and Cyrus Engineer, Karen Leung, Lyall Ross and Douglas Tait all achieved bronze.

Auschwitz At the end of the Summer Term we were selected to represent the School and become ambassadors for the Holocaust Educational Trust. Immediately on travelling to Edinburgh to attend the first seminar of the ‘Lessons from Auschwitz’ programme, we were immersed in the unique experience the Trust offered. We heard from a Holocaust survivor, who told us of her and her mother’s hardships during World War II. A week later we were in a Jewish cemetery in Oświęcim and quickly realised the horror we would be faced with later in Auschwitz. Upon entry to Auschwitz 1 we encountered the bareness of the camp. Seeing the possessions of those who had come through the camp, such as keys, suitcases and shoes, highlighted to us that behind all these statistics there are individual stories. Moreover, one exhibition that really struck a chord was a white room with projections of home videos of the victims prior to the war. This reiterated the fact that everyone affected had their own story. Then we were faced with the notorious scene of Birkenau. The railway arch was a chilling site for all, and we were speechless at the sheer scale of the camp. In particular, the length of the railway was staggering, as we imagined the length of the trains, and how many people would have been packed into the carriages that entered the camp. To end the day, we listened to a rabbi preaching in remembrance for those lost and placed candles to remember them. It was an emotional and harrowing experience that we will not forget, and we are honoured to be able to share our experience and learning with our peers next term as Holocaust Ambassadors. Saskia Forman and Jemma Stewart, Upper Sixth


Musical Showcase



Music and Drama “A Christmas Carol” As Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is now one of the set texts for GCSE English, it seemed absolutely appropriate that we should have a dramatised version as the annual Christmas play. The one chosen is the adaptation by playwright Neil Bartlett. We used this imaginative version when we presented the play a number of years ago, but this production was very different. Instead of a semi-realistic set with a backdrop of Scrooge’s house and office, we created a minimalist set, using scaffolding and lighting effects. It is an ensemble production with the cast of 22 actors playing multiple roles, including chorus, clocks and bells. The only performer in one role only was Dylan Patterson as Ebenezer Scrooge. The ghost of Jacob Marley was performed by Johnny Boyd and the other three ghosts by Charlotte Donnelly, Tanya Stephen and Aidan Fuge, with Bob Cratchit and Mrs Cratchit played by Rachael Foulsham and Darcy McDermott. We are indebted to Strathallian Oliver Beetschen, now an architect in London, for designing and helping to build our magnificent set, ably assisted by stage manager, Angus Lapslie and the stage crew. This is keeping A Christmas Carol ‘in the family’; when we last performed the play, Oli’s elder brother, Alex, played Scrooge. His younger sister, Izzy, a third-former new to the School this year, was also in the cast.


House Music This year’s House Music competition again keenly contested; with the standard rising year on year there were superb performances from every quarter and every House. We welcomed back London-based musician, animateur and Strathallian Becky Chalmers (W ’06) to adjudicate. Knowing exactly what the spirit and musical strengths of the event were, Becky skilfully guided the evening through to its highly enjoyable conclusion.

Photographs courtesy of Neil Hamilton


Visit and Workshop with the Royal Marines Band Scotland On Wednesday 28th September, Strathallan hosted Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Band Scotland for a series of workshops with members of our Wind Band and musicians from Ardvreck Prep School, to work on a medley of tracks from the soundtrack of Guardians of the Galaxy. This piece was to feature in the end of term Musical Showcase, and the workshop certainly paid dividends to the success of the eventual performance.

Pipe Band Plays with the Red Hot Chilli Pipers As part of Perth’s Winter Festival our Pipe Band was invited to join headline act, The Red Hot Chilli Pipers, on the main stage at the St Andrew’s Day celebrations to play ‘Highland Cathedral’ and Snow Patrol’s ‘Chasing Cars’. It’s great for our pupils to have these performance opportunities and one they thoroughly enjoyed, thanks to our Head of Piping Craig Muirhead.


Glyndebourne’s U30s Night Three upper sixth girls, Polly Lightbody, Sophie Johnstone and Emilia Barclay, travelled south to attend Glyndebourne’s U30s evening in the summer holiday. The girls enjoyed this wonderful black-tie event which culminated in a performance of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.

Stop the Rain In October, Stop The Rain signed a record contract with Eighty-Eight Records, based in Aberdeen. Stop The Rain, whose members include three Strathallan pupils – Blair Davie, Sam Steele and Ben Muir – released their first single, Home Is Where My Heart Is, and are releasing new material in the New Year. The band have played gigs across Scotland, and in January they are playing the main stage of the O2 ABC in Glasgow, their biggest concert to date.

Concert Series The term’s Scholars, Form and Informal concert series has been as broad and enjoyable as ever, with more than 53 musicians performing a range of solo and chamber ensemble repertoire. Particular highlights have included Robbie MacIsaac’s improvisation on bagpipes of a Mozart Sonata, Ishbel Lapslie’s ‘Idyll’ from Goddard’s Suite, the Senior String Quartet’s arrangement of ‘Eleanor Rigby’ and Jaypat Piamjariyakul’s spellbinding performance of Finzi’s ‘Who is Syliva?’.

London College of Music Performance Diplomas

Robbie MacIsaac Fifth form pupil Robbie MacIsaac won the prestigious Highland Society of London Championships in November.

Emmy Hall and Jenny McGuire both received their Diplomas in Performance this term, which was a great achievement. Zara Sutherland (Grade 5) and Blair Davie, Ella England and Darcy McDermott (Grade 8) received distinctions, and Caroline Mack (Grade 5), Maggie English and Tanya Stephen (Grade 7), Gabby Adams and Anna Clark (Grade 8) all achieved merits.


Choral Services It has been another busy term for Strathallan’s singers. The Chapel Choir returned to St Margaret’s Church, Braemar, to perform in a choral workshop and concert with celebrated composer, Professor Paul Mealor. A select group then paid a return visit to Crathie Kirk at the end of September to perform the morning service in front of HRH The Queen, HRH Prince Andrew and other members of the royal family. In December the Chapel Choir hosted their Carols in the City in Greyfriar’s Kirk, Edinburgh for the first time. The early evening event saw Strathallians, parents, staff and friends of Strathallan come together to celebrate the festive season. At the end of term, eight singers were invited to travel to London to combine with Strathallian singers at our second Carols in the City London service, held for the first time in Crown Court Church of Scotland, Covent Garden, as well as undertake some last-minute Christmas shopping. We intend to make both events a regular feature of the Strathallan calendar.

LAMDA It was 100% for two pupils in recent LAMDA exams; Angus Lapslie achieved full marks for Speaking in Public, Gold Medal, as did Tinley Dorje in Acting, Grade 4. Johnny Boyd and Dylan Patterson achieved 99% in their Silver Medal Acting exam. Pupils took grade exams in Acting, The Speaking of Verse and Prose, Reading for Performance and Speaking in Public. The following were also awarded marks in the 90s – Ben Morrison, Chloe McMichael, Daisy Richards, Darcy McDermott, Catriona Robertson, Anna Moody, Elvie Hamill, Alexander English, Grace Akinje, Zara Sutherland, Eleanor Neilsen, Bryony Barclay and Katherine Higginbottom. Other Distinction awards (over 80%) in grade exams went to Abigail Hay, Alasdair Macdonald, Morgan Patterson, Lara Crighton and Debasien Magyar-Shenk. Distinctions in Medal exams were achieved by Darcy McDermott, Ella England and Josh Mitchell (Acting, Bronze), Gavin Stewart and Emmy Hall (Acting, Gold), Lucy Orr (The Speaking of Verse and Prose, Gold) and Maggie English (Speaking in Public, Bronze). Gold Medals in acting also went to Isla Patterson, Kitty Robson and Pippa Hay, Silver to Anna Clark and Bronze Medals to Gregor MacDiarmid and Saskia Forman. Megan Thomas achieved a Gold Medal for Speaking in Public.


CCF Biennial Inspection On the Wednesday of House Music, the CCF were pleased to host Lieutenant Colonel Piers Strudwick, the Commanding Officer of 7 SCOTS, to conduct the Biennial Inspection for the Contingent. Colonel Strudwick spent the afternoon being shown the School and the CCF, where he watched the Royal Navy conducting personal leadership tasks, the Royal Marines conducting harbour drills, the Fifth Form army training for their overnight exercise after half term, and the recruits being taught the various topics in the Army Proficiency Certificate. After the training day had concluded, Colonel Strudwick addressed the entire Contingent in front of the Main Building, passing on some words of wisdom and handing out prizes to those senior cadets who had impressed him the most throughout the afternoon. He then took the time to have a cup of tea with the officers and senior cadets of the Contingent, before leaving us to prepare for the competition that evening. Strathallan’s CCF received a positive report for the inspection; one of the things picked up on was the professionalism of the senior cadets, and it was a good opportunity for us to develop links with the army units in the local area. Angus Lapslie, Upper Sixth

Royal Marine Cadets The RM Cadets have been very active over the term and have been involved with regular Royal Marines on a number of occasions. The term started with the Pringle Trophy team being trained by Marines from X Ray Company, at 45 Commando Group, Condor Barracks in Arbroath. After three Wednesday afternoons with X Ray Company, the team deployed to the Commando Training Centre at Lympstone, Devon. After a night in the field the team took part in a number of stances. They did very well, finishing fourth on day one, which is an excellent effort. They finished twelfth on day 2 and ninth overall out of 17 teams. Angus Lapslie did an excellent job as the team leader, and he was well supported by his second in command, Emily Watt. The team deserve credit for their efforts. The team members in the Lower Sixth and Fifth Form are determined to improve at next year’s competition. At Strathallan we have been visited by the local careers liaison officer, Lt Tim Pitcher. He put the troop through a physical session before giving the cadets a brief on careers in the Royal Marines.


Talks Motivating Strathallan’s Entrepreneurs Strathallian John Campbell OBE is a self-made business magnate in the farming industry. He and his wife started out at Glenrath Farm in 1959, where they farmed blackface sheep and a beef suckler cattle herd on the heather-clad hills of the Scottish Borders. Cathy Campbell ( John’s wife) diversified into egg production, and reared hens, gathered eggs and delivered the eggs door to door. The egg business expanded due to the demand for good-quality, locally produced eggs. The business has grown with the Campbell family, who are proud to employ 220 people; they have been producing free range eggs for three generations. The talk he gave us was full of insightful information, motivation and humour, and we quickly learned how much of a role model he is in both business and life itself. He stressed that you should aim as high as you can in life and that you should always make sure you do something that you love, which was extremely motivational for us. Being an old boy, my peers and I could relate to him and were shown that anything is possible. The talk was thoroughly enjoyable (there were lots of questions at the end) and I’m sure both John and his wife are welcome back to Strathallan any time for more talks. Thomas Holloway, Upper Sixth

The Positive Power of Poetry Taking a different approach from previous lectures we have had, Agnes Torak entertained the Sixth Form with her dramatic prose. Her poems focused on several themes, some more personal than others, but all revolving around the idea of happiness and what it entails. Her exciting and mobile persona captivated and engaged the audience, especially at points when she included singing in her pieces, much to the delight of the Sixth Form! We left the theatre with a new outlook on life, and how we should approach situations with a positive attitude, as well as remembering the happy memories we have already experienced, and how thinking about them can change our moods. Aside from the lecture, Agnes put on workshops with Riley and the Fifth Form about poetry and prose, from which they learnt a lot about the idea of happiness and zeal. Overall it was a great experience, one that we can draw on and relate to, especially when we feel overwhelmed or stressed! Emilia Barclay, Upper Sixth


Enlightening Insight into the Technology Industry On Wednesday 16th November, Duncan Logan, the CEO of Rocketspace and former Head Boy ’90, visited Strathallan to give the Sixth Form a humorous and fascinating view into the technology industry. There was not a single weary eye in the back row as Mr Logan gave an eye-opening insight into the inner workings of Silicon Valley, upon which the entrepreneurs within the group hastily noted the investment opportunities and began to prepare their business pitches to their parents for later that night. Mr Logan gave valuable advice on higher education and the inevitable automation within certain careers. This set off a chain of questions from pupils asking about the potential automation in their ideal careers. The lecture fascinated and intrigued many and, for me, opened the prospect of a career in the technology industry. It also depleted my piggy bank as I bought into Bitcoin that evening. We would like to thank Mr Logan for one of the most engaging lectures and hope he enjoyed his visit as much as we did. Gregor MacDiarmid, Upper Sixth

RAF Fun with Flight Second and third Form (and a few lucky upper sixth) pupils were treated to a “jet-fuelled” presentation on the Physics of Flying by representatives of the RAF. The dynamic presentation went through the four basic forces involved in flight – Lift, Weight, Thrust and Drag and each one was looked at in turn. Drones, balloons, airships and jet engines all contributed to a fascinating show. Physics certainly was fun when the team demonstrated their drone flying in the lecture theatre, the attached camera showing all the excited faces on the projector screen. The various use of drones in the RAF was explained along with the need for software engineers to keep ahead of hackers to avoid control of the drones being hijacked. Some lucky pupils had the opportunity to try out a virtual reality headset which proved to be very popular and amusing. The team even brought their own jet engines and everyone gathered outside – fingers in ears- to see a noisy demonstration when the topic of thrust was discussed. As well as the fun involved, the point of the presentation was to promote the STEM subjects to the pupils as well as inform them of the importance of Engineers in the RAF and the huge variety of different careers available. The session finished with questions and answers with an RAF officer.

Inspiring Young Innovators Passionate about innovation, Helen Potter, CEO of Potter & Potter Ltd., came to speak to our Sixth Form about innovation and engineering. Helen has enjoyed a diverse career specialising in new product development and innovation and was keen to share her enthusiasm and knowledge with our pupils. She started her talk by explaining a bit about the history of innovation and engineering and went on to speak of her work with universities, as education is a particular passion of hers. The aim of Helen’s talk was to inspire pupils to be creative, work to unlock their potential and broaden their outlook, and judging by the number questions that followed she certainly did just that. Earlier in the day Helen delivered a lecture to the Upper Sixth Business Studies pupils, highlighting a number of online facilities that might be of interest to them now and in the future.


Duke of Edinburgh Award Strathallan Gold DofE participants found themselves in a record-breaking enterprise this year, although not a record they wanted to even consider! The Gold qualifying expedition happened at the end of August 2016 in the Cairngorms, just south of Aviemore. The midges were appallingly plentiful, so much so that we met one local taking his son up to the glen to where we were camped, just to show the amount of midges, which was unheard of in his recent memory. NOT a nice record to endure! Despite our tiny ‘friends’, Strathallan students performed exceptionally well according to the assessors; all had a good time, challenged themselves and thoroughly enjoyed the incredible scenery. We’re hoping to return to the same area, but preferably during colder weather! Thanks to Outlook Adventures Scotland for their support.

World Clay Pigeon Shooting Championships At the very end of the last academic year, two soon-to-be leavers, Ben Addison-Scott and Alasdair Lightbody (both N ‘16), competed in the Scotland U21 team at the World Clay Pigeon Championships in High Wycombe.


Strath Mums Cocktails and Conversation What a wonderful bunch of ladies our Strath Mums are! Over 70 got together this term over three nights for cocktails, dinner and lots of conversation. Old connections were rediscovered and new friends made. If you didn’t manage to get along to one of these nights don’t worry, we are planning another event for next year.

Strathallians Under 25 Strathallians Drinks Reception We held our first drinks reception exclusively for Strathallians under the age of 25 in Glasgow on 8th September. The event took place in The Corinthian Club, a lovely venue in the centre of Glasgow, where former pupils reunited with each other and their old teachers. Strathallians came from around Scotland for the evening and ranged from those who had just left Strathallan in the summer to those who had finished school seven years ago. This meant that it was a great chance for Strathallians to network and find out what everyone was doing after school, and it was certainly interesting to hear about the variety of degrees people were studying and the careers they had chosen. Guests were kept entertained by the slideshow of old photos dug up from the Strathallan archives, and everyone laughed as long-forgotten pictures from Riley days and questionable outfits and hairstyles came up on screen, adding to the reminiscing of the evening. The event was also a great chance for friends to catch up, many of whom had moved to different parts of the country after school and hadn’t had the chance to see each other, sometimes for years! This was the perfect opportunity to see each other again and also to meet other Strathallians who were able to provide useful insights into different careers and give advice on future internships and finding jobs. Holding an event for Strathallians under 25 proved to be a great success and we intend to hold more similar events in the future. Harriet Smith, Glenbrae ’13


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Strathallan Newsletter Autumn 2016  
Strathallan Newsletter Autumn 2016