Friday, 14 December 2012

14th December 2012

It was a reunion with a difference as representative Head Girls and School Captains of Bolton School gathered on Wednesday to lay the Foundation Stone for the new £7m Sixth Form Centre. The building, which will be ready for occupation at the start of the Autumn Term of 2013, has received substantial funding from alumni of the School and will be named after the campaign’s lead benefactor, Ian Riley, an Old Boy who was a pupil from 1974-1981.
2008 Apprentice finalist Claire Young also returned to Bolton School this week for Business Challenge Day, to help judge the preliminary round of the annual KPMG Enterprise Trophy. For the first time, the Business Challenge was joint between the Girls’ and Boys’ Divisions. In teams, pupils developed their own business ideas and delivered a ten minute Dragon’s Den style presentation to a panel of judges. The best four teams were chosen to compete for the KPMG Enterprise Trophy in the Spring Term.
And there were yet more visitors to the School this week as our pupils were joined by pupils from other local schools for a Royal Society of Chemistry Christmas Lecture entitled 'How Chemistry Works: colour, explosions and wonder'. Alan Goodwin, former Head of Sciences Teacher Education at Manchester Metropolitan University, demonstrated how chemistry makes sense of the world around us, through a series of fun and explosive chemical experiments.
While Max Griffiths, co-founder of the LivLive charity, returned to his old school to pick up a cheque for a massive £11,463.03 and to thank the pupils and staff of Bolton School for their enormous fundraising efforts earlier in the year. Just prior to the summer holiday, the whole school, which totals over 2,300 pupils, came together to raise funds for the LivLife Foundation which offers free and relevant education and vocational opportunities in Tanzania for children and adults. Further charity efforts saw year 7 pupils in the Girls’ Division donating hundreds of brand new toys and gifts to Cash for Kids and Key 103’s Mission Xmas. The girls raised the money through a sponsored silence last month and then went on a trolley dash around Toys R Us in Bolton to spend the money on toys for less fortunate children.
Girls' Division pupil Vasudha Marthi has been asked to join the National Children's Orchestra. Vasudha has been offered a full membership place for a 12 month period in the Under 13 Orchestra - a full symphony orchestra offering children their first taste of performing in a major UK concert venue. And the Junior Boys held their Christmas Carol Concert this week, filling the Great Hall with a host of festive music and song.

Friday, 7 December 2012

7th December 2012

The Year 9 Masterchef has been crowned, and the winner is Melissa Cordingley who won the judges over with her banana and walnut cake with toffee sauce. The final cook off between finalists Melissa, and fellow pupil Charlotte Winrow was a close fought battle with amazing food being produced by both girls, as each one cooked her 'signature dish'. Charlotte made a portobello mushroom and black pudding stack with cabbage and bacon, while Melissa opted for the banana and walnut cake. Down to just two girls the pressure was on as the girls had to cook their dishes in front of a live audience of pupils and staff.
Well done to several of our sixth form girls and staff who completed a ‘Santa Dash’ 5km run dressed as Santa in order to raise sponsorship money for a variety of charities. Eight and a half thousand people gathered from all over the UK to participate as Liverpool took on Las Vegas once again, for the ‘Largest Santa Gathering’ in a bid to win the World Santa Dash Challenge.
There were more Christmas festivities over at Hesketh House with their Christmas Concert this week. Dressed in winter woollies, the girls performed a number of readings, poems and musical items all about Christmas, in front of an audience of their family and friends.
Year 8 girls took part in a Crime Squad course this week as part of their enrichment at school. Girls worked in teams on a variety of activities, including decoding and defusing an explosive device, investigating a crime scene and examining forensic evidence, and solving a murder mystery using powers of deduction. The Crime Squad course was run by the company ‘Wiser Words’, who specialise in master classes and enrichment days for students.
And in sport, the Under 13 water polo team celebrated winning the prestigious 'President Trophy' tournament, triumphing over three other top class teams from all over the country - King Edward School, Birmingham, Kings School, Grantham, and Warwick School.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

5th December 2012

Bolton Wanderers Football Club is to collaborate with Bolton School Boys’ Division to launch a new two-year international sports course. The programme will allow 16 year old students from around the world to move to Bolton to spend 3 days a week experiencing elite football training and 2 days a week studying A-levels in PE and Business Studies at Bolton School. Participants will live with a local host family and experience total immersion within a professional football club, while mixing with Bolton School Sixth Form boys as they join tutor groups and make full use of the school’s new state-of-the-art Sixth Form Centre, which will open in September 2013.
Children at Beech House have shown their generosity by going through their own toy collections to find things less fortunate boys and girls might enjoy this Christmas. Representatives from Bolton Lions Club were delighted at the quality and quantity of toys that had been collected at the Infant School this year. While Girls’ Division pupils have been helping to prepare shoeboxes of Christmas gifts for needy children as part of Operation Christmas Child - the world's largest children's Christmas appeal. And Movember came to an end for teachers in the Boys' Division who joined the global campaign to raise awareness about men's health. The teachers were sponsored by friends, family and pupils to grow their moustaches and hope to raise over £200.
Able and talented pupils from local primary schools enjoyed a day absorbed in the Classics at Bolton School this week. Year 6 girls and boys took part in a series of workshops in both the Girls’ Division and the Boys’ Division in which they learnt about Roman warfare, Roman and Greek theatre and their Gods and myths. Seven pupils from Years 9, 10 and 11 from the Girls’ Division achieved highly at a Model United Nations competition held at Stockport Grammar School, where they represented the countries of Pakistan and South Africa. And Year 9 pupil, Jack Virgin, is the first pupil from the School to be awarded a Silver medal in the national Junior Mathematical Olympiad (JMO) - placing him well within the top 100 pupils out of the quarter of a million participants.
The two finalists for next week’s Bolton School Girls’ Division MasterChef Live Cook Off Grand Final have been announced as Melissa Cordingly and Charlotte Winrow, after a keenly contested semi-final where contestants were charged with preparing a wedding dessert.
And Bolton School is playing a starring role in the BBC's drama Last Tango in Halifax. The Boys' Division Great Hall, several classrooms and offices as well as corridors were used to represent a quality school in the filming of the romantic comedy series which stars Sarah Lancashire as Headmistress of a school. The series can be seen on Tuesdays at 9.00pm on BBC1.

Friday, 23 November 2012

23rd November 2012

Year 13 pupils took over the running of Bolton School for the day as part of the Children's Commissioner’s Children and Young People’s Takeover Day 2012. Students took on staff roles in all areas of the school from the Headmistress and teachers, through to pastoral roles, technical support and administrative roles. Taking part in the day allowed the students to develop time management, flexibility, organisation, initiative, problem solving, motivating others, and interpersonal skills. Outside of School, year 11 pupil Paul Greenhalgh became Mayor of Bolton for the day as part of the Take Over Day. Paul was chosen from scores of applicants in a competition to shadow on his civic engagements on the day.
In sport, the Girls’ Senior U18 relay team won the Medley Relay at the prestigious Northern Schools' John Parry Relays and also came second in the Freestyle Relay. Not to be outdone, the Boys senior team mirrored the result exactly with a win in the Medley relay and second in the Freestyle! Nineteen girls from Years 8 to 13 at Bolton School Girls' Division have been selected for the U15 and U18 Lancashire lacrosse squads. The girls trialled and have been selected to compete in the Northern Counties Tournament against Yorkshire, Cheshire and Shropshire. And year 12 pupil Jenny Heyes has been selected as a Youth Sport Trust Young Ambassador for school sport. Jenny’s role will be to inspire and motivate younger pupils to embrace sport at Bolton School.
As part of National Interfaith Week, the Girls’ Division RS department held a university lecture on the issue of interfaith relations by Dr Mel Prideaux from the University of Leeds. The lecture was open to sixth form students from both the Girls’ and the Boys’ Divisions with an interest in the politics of the role of religion in modern society.
Dickens the guide dog puppy visited the Girls’ Division this week, much to the delight of the pupils who raised £2,500 to sponsor his training. The guide dog’s name had been inspired by Dickens Day, which was held earlier in the year at the School, when 739 pupils set a new Guinness World Record by wearing Dickensian dress in celebration of the bicentenary of Dickens’ birth. This is the second guide dog that the Girls' Division has sponsored and the School is now eagerly raising further funds in order to sponsor a third puppy dog, which no other school in the North-West has thus far done.
And Beech House children (and their parents) offered over 200 boxes of toys and Christmas gifts to the Rotary Club which will go to deprived Romanian children - for many, the first present that they have ever received.

Friday, 16 November 2012

16th November 2012

Bolton School has been commended in the Independent School of the Year category at the 2012 Aviva and Daily Telegraph School Sport Matters Awards. Only two schools in the country came above Bolton School, Plymouth College - Tom Daly’s former school which boasts three other Olympians, and Victoria College, Jersey. Two high profile Bolton School athletes, Emma Saunders and Oliver Walker, accompanied by Mr Trevor Pledger, Director of Partnerships, attended the 2012 School Sport Matters Awards Ceremony at the highly prestigious Lord's Cricket Ground in London. The ceremony consisted of a gala luncheon, followed by the presentation of ten awards given by a range of prestigious sports personalities, including Jess Ennis, Christine Oruruogu, Richard Whitehead and Zoe Smith. Cricket Captain Callum Kay and Head of Cricket at the School, Andy Compton, were invited to the XL Club Annual Dinner, also at Lords Cricket ground, to receive the North West Regional Award for the best performance by a school against the XL Club during the 2012 season. And Boys’ Division pupils got the chance to see the Rugby League World Cup when the trophy made a brief stop at the School on a visit to Bolton Arena.

Following the national Community Partnerships School Conference held at the School over the weekend, community partnerships were as evident as ever this week in school. Year 5 pupils from schools in the local area enjoyed a day of foreign language lessons at this year's MFL Festival. The whole day event gave youngsters the chance to try out a range of new languages including Japanese and Russian. Furthermore, more local schools and more pupils than ever are getting involved in the SHINE project at Bolton School this year which kicked off this weekend. Forty five year 5 pupils from twelve primary schools in the local community will benefit from the resources and experience of teaching staff at the School.

More good news as Philip Britton, Headmaster of the Boys' Division, has been made Vice-President for Education of the Institute of Physics (IoP). This is the first time the Vice-President has been from a school instead of a university. Philip is also featured on the ITN Education news channel speaking about the importance of schools engaging with their local community, and what the Olympic legacy really means.

Also this week, pupils at Beech House enjoyed a bonfire party and fireworks in the grounds of their school. The event had previously been rained off but this time the sun was shining and the children were treated to a firework display, sparklers and toasted marshmallows from the bonfire. And there was more excitement for the children as the real Pudsey bear paid a visit to the school for Children in Need. Other Children in Need events were going on throughout the school including dress down day and at the Nursery staff have been pedalling away on an exercise bike all week to see how far they can go, and of course raise money.

Friday, 9 November 2012

9th November 2012

Congratulations go to Georgie Crowther, a Year 7 pupil at Bolton School Girls’ Division, who has made it through to the quarter final of the 2012 Junior MasterChef on CBBC. Georgie joined young chefs from across the country battling it out on national television to impress judges John Torode and Donal Skehan by cooking up delicious meals from scratch. Having won her heat, Georgie is now through to the quarter final, putting her in the top four young cooks in the country! The quarter final can be seen on Friday 9 November at 4.30pm on both CBBC and BBC1. We wish her the best of luck! And the Girls’ Division’s very own version of Masterchef continues, with this week seeing the contestants creating decorated cupcakes. The top eight cooks will go on to the next stage of the competition.
Bolton School is all set to host the national Community Partnerships School Conference this weekend. The event will be attended by delegates from independent schools from across the country and will celebrate partnerships between schools and the communities they serve. The keynote speech on Friday evening will be given by Paul Oginsky, Youth Policy Advisor to the Prime Minister. Delegates will visit Bolton Lads and Girls’ Club and there will also be a series of workshops.
Year 12 pupils Tejal Shanbhag and Jenny Heyes, were awarded prestigious Arkwright Engineering Scholarships at a ceremony hosted by the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Savoy Place, London. Tejal received her award from sponsor, Rolls Royce, and Jenny from her sponsor, Lloyd’s Register Educational Trust. Fellow year 12 pupil Lucy Croston also received an Arkwright Scholarship but will receive her award later as she was unable to attend the ceremony.
The Girls’ Division can report a number of sport successes - year 10 pupil Elise Middleton has been selected for the North West Girls’ Under 15 regional basketball team, while sisters Ellena and Georgina Owen have been selected for rival County Netball Squads in their age groups. Thanks to a magnificent season last year as a member of the England Hockey Squad, Year 13 pupil Hannah Pike has been re-selected for the England Under 18 Hockey Team, and year 12 pupil Emily Harper has been chosen as a member of the England Under 19 Lacrosse Squad, following a very intensive selection process.
And throughout the school today, staff and students at have attended Remembrance Day Assemblies and donated generously to the Poppy Appeal.

Friday, 19 October 2012

19th October 2012

Bolton School pupils joined around 20,000 children in over 40 countries across the world to compete in the World Marathon Challenge - a challenging simultaneous relay race in support of Save the Children. Children aged 11-13 raced around a track or suitable area in their country in teams. Each child ran a 200m stretch several times each, passing a baton to their team-mates, each team covering a total of 26.2 miles – a full Olympic marathon. GB Beijing Olympian Tom Lancashire came along to the Bolton Arena to officially start the Bolton School marathon challenge. Our pupils completed their marathon in 2h 22mins and 26 seconds putting them in a very respectable 151st at the present time out of over 400 teams from all around the world. The School also hosted a community football tournament at its Leverhulme Pavilion as part of our Primary Liaison programme. Over 200 children from 24 different primary schools from Bolton and Bury took part in a busy day of football. The year 3/4 tournament was won by Horwich Parish and the year 5/6 tournament was won by St John's Bromley Cross. A trophy was presented to both winning teams by Bolton Wanderers' captain Kevin Davies.

Old Girl of the School Dame Janet Smith is to head up the BBC’s inquiry into the Jimmy Savile scandal. It was announced that she and ex-Sky News executive Nick Pollard will jointly lead the BBC's independent reviews. The former Court of Appeal judge is known for her acute grasp of complex legal matters, highlighted when she chaired the Harold Shipman inquiry twelve years ago. As part of their careers programme, girls from years 10 to 13 at Bolton School Girls’ Division had the opportunity to listen to a number of speakers with successful creative careers, several of whom were old girls of the school. Some pupils were lucky enough to take part in workshops on the day, which allowed the girls to explore the variety of different routes available to them if they decide on a career in the Arts.

Junior girls enjoyed an afternoon of healthy eating with the H Factor - the annual healthy eating initiative which sees the children making smoothies, researching healthy food options using netbooks, taking part in quizzes and sampling a range of foods. One highlight of the afternoon was the Smoothie Bike where children got to blend their own smoothie by pedalling as fast as they could! And the hunt for the new Bolton School Girls' Division Masterchef is officially underway! Week 2 saw the remaining contestants battling it out with their stuffed peppers or mushrooms.

Monday, 15 October 2012

12 October 2012

Staff and pupils have been busy preparing for our Open Morning this week. Come and join us on Saturday 13th October from 9.30am to 1.00pm and see for yourself what our school can offer you.

Also this week Sixth Form students from both the Boys’ and the Girls’ divisions of Bolton School attended a lecture by Dr Jay Kennedy – the man who ‘cracked the secret code in Plato’. Dr Kennedy teaches at the University of Manchester and is a celebrated Science Historian and expert in the field of history and philosophy of mathematical physics. He is famous for his research which led to the huge discovery of a mathematical and musical code in the works of Plato. The School also hosted the Frontiers of Physics lectures, bringing together over 250 pupils and 60 parents and staff from 7 schools in the Bolton and Leyland areas. Pupils were treated to a series of lectures and the opportunity to asked real scientists questions. For the finale of the event the great hall was linked, via video conference, to CERN in Geneva where Scientists treated the audience to a short presentation on their work and pupils even had the opportunity to talk directly to the Scientists at CERN. Each year Bolton School plays host to an instrumental workshop, and this year it was the turn of the piano. The piano workshop was directed by Jonathan Middleton who teaches at Chetham’s School of Music and at the Royal Northern College of Music. The event was for all piano students, from beginner to advanced, and Music students from local secondary schools were also invited to join Bolton School students for the day.

The Boys' Division welcomed a delegation of Chinese Headteachers this week, who were visiting Bolton on a self-funded trip to the town after a group of Heads from Bolton had visited China back in 2010. The British Council had funded the Bolton Heads' trip as part of its drive to foster educational links between developing countries and the UK. The Chinese party was set to make a variety of visits as they got an overview of educational provision in the borough and the Bolton Headteachers attempted to replicate the hospitality shown to them in China. Whilst at Bolton School they met senior staff, had a tour of the School and visited several in session classes.

Also this week the Bolton School U13 footballers made it into the last 16 of the national ISFA Cup. The boys beat Leeds Grammar School 4-3 in the cup match after a very exciting penalty shoot out. And Beech House pupils presented a cheque for £312.60 to Bolton Wanderers Captain Kevin Davies, for his Charity ‘KiDs of Bolton’. The pupils raised the money for the local charity through a cake sale at the School.

Friday, 5 October 2012

5th October 2012

Exciting times for the new Sixth Form Centre build as the first steelwork is now in place! This puts the £7m build in the heart of the campus bang on schedule for the completion date in time for the 2013 Autumn Term. View a live feed from the build webcam

Also this week Bolton School hosted its annual Maths Challenge for local Primary Schools to help get young people involved in Maths in a fun way. Primary Schools sent out their best mathematical minds to compete in three challenges, including a maths crossword, head to head general maths questions and a maths relay. The Maths Challenge is fast becoming another established community event at the school, alongside the SHINE programme and the Language, Sports, Literacy, 5-a-side Football and Science Festivals which Bolton School run for local Primary Schools.

Ten year 13 students were fortunate enough to attend the Radio Five Victoria Derbyshire Live Debate at the Bridgewater Hall as part of the Labour Party Conference in Manchester. The boys joined an audience of over 200 Radio 5 listeners at the debate with Senior Shadow Cabinet Ministers and Trade Union Officials.

At Park Road the boys celebrated their annual Harvest festival in aid of the Drop-in Centre at St Luke's Church on Chorley Old Road. The Reverend Stuart Cornes of St Luke's Church. spoke about the importance of family and community and highlighted the Olympics as a great example of this. The boys and their parents brought in a wide range of food items to donate to the drop-in centre, which works to help the homeless, long-term unemployed and the elderly.

And our Nursery pupils were amazed and excited to receive a message of thanks from the Queen! As part of their Jubilee celebrations, pre-school children made a Jubilee card which was sent to Her Majesty, and were delighted to receive the response.

Friday, 28 September 2012

28 September 2012

The first few weeks of term have been as busy as usual!

Bolton School became the first school from the North of England to win the U15s’ ESCA/ECB T20 National Cricket Final with an emphatic 10 wicket victory over Whitgift School from Croydon. Across the country over 1,000 schools entered the competition and, earlier in the summer, Bolton School became Northern Winners after overcoming Sedbergh in the final. More sporting success as year 11 pupil Jonny Williams won the Under 15 National Series in the Youth Freestyle Kayaking competition in Nottingham. Following his win, Jonny then went on to win the Under 18s’ first of four heats for the Nationals.

Year 11 pupil Katie Hurt has been awarded a full membership of the Halle Youth Orchestra for her cello playing. Katie, who also plays the piano and flute, has been signed up for the 2012/2013 season following a successful audition on the cello which she has been playing since she was in Year 1. And year 13 pupil Rachel Zarrouk has won the Cambridge Psychology Essay writing competition. Rachel is the first ever winner from Bolton School and went to Cambridge to receive her £300 prize.

The School has had a number of visitors in the new term. Year 12 pupils in the Girls’ Division received expert business tips and motivation from 2008 Apprentice finalist Claire Young, as part of a Business Enterprise and Skills Training Day. Successful businesswoman Claire spoke to the girls about her own career, her time on The Apprentice, and the qualities she feels make her a successful businesswoman. Her overall message to the girls was that with hard work, drive and determination anything is possible.

Olympian Ed Scott, who left Bolton School in 2006, returned to school and wasted no time in returning to swimming pool where he first learnt to play water polo and where he honed his skills which allowed him to play in goal for Team GB at London 2012. Ed, just back from having taken part in the spectacular victory parade through the capital, spent an hour in the water passing on tips and coaching advice to Bolton School’s elite water polo players.

And National Geographic Cameraman, Leon McCarron, visited Hesketh House to talk to the girls about his life as an adventure cameraman. In May 2012, Leon concluded a 3000 mile walking expedition, trekking the length of China from Mongolia to Hong Kong and filming along the way. Leon spoke about his adventures, in particular his 3000 mile walk through China. He told of his experiences on the trip including meeting the people and seeing the country on foot, and of problems he faced and lessons learned.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

6th September 2012

It was great to see former Bolton School pupils playing a key role in the Paralympics opening ceremony, an event described as "both spectacular and deeply human" by the London 2012 organisers. Old Boy Sir Ian McKellen joined Professor Stephen Hawking to narrate a scientific ‘journey of discovery’, and also played Prospero, a character from Shakespeare's The Tempest in the spectacular ceremony. Fellow former pupil, Sir Philip Craven, entered the ceremony with The Queen, in his role as International Paralympic Committee President.

More good news as the Girls’ Division has been ranked in the top 100 Schools in the UK, based on GCSE results. The Girls’ Division was ranked 83rd in the table, released by the Independent Schools Council. The listings are based on the proportion of exam entries awarded A* or A, which was 72.48 percent in the Girls’ Division. It was one of just three schools in Greater Manchester to make the top 100.

Bolton School's History magazine 'The HistOracle' has won 'Best School History Magazine' for the second year running! To receive the 2012 title in the ‘Young Historian Project’ awards, is a huge honour for the School and the magazine, which is a biannual publication of eclectic historical essays and articles produced by boys of all ages. Two boys also received individual awards for articles they wrote for the magazine. This year, a new Lower and Middle School history magazine will be launched, hopefully to challenge ‘The HistOracle’ for the top spot!

There was more History on the menu during the summer break as Year 9 boys took part in a History trip to the First World War battlefields, and laid wreaths to honour Old Boys of the School who were killed during the war. Wreaths were laid at Vimy Ridge and Thiepval memorials in Northern France, and at Tyne Cot memorial in Belgium, where Bolton School Old Boys are commemorated. The four day trip included visits to the ‘In Flanders’ Fields’ and ‘Passchendaele Memorial’ museums in Ypres, a tour of the trenches and tunnels at Vimy Ridge, key sites on the Somme and attendance at the Menin Gate memorial ceremony.

And Philip Britton, Headmaster of the Boys' Division, now has over 100 followers on Twitter! The Head began his tweets in the Summer Term and he regularly comments on the day-to-day activities of the School and on wider educational issues. You can keep up-to-date with his tweets here:

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

August 2012

Pupils, staff and parents celebrated an excellent set of GCSE results at Bolton School. In the Girls’ Division, there were many individual success stories with 13 girls obtaining a full set of 11 A* grades; a further 3 girls obtained 10 A*s, 4 girls obtained 9A*s and 2 girls obtained 8A*s. All in all, 44 girls out of 110 got only A* and A grades. In the Boys' Division 26.1% of all papers were graded A*, 60.1% were graded A*-A and 85.4% were graded A*-B. Two boys achieved 10 A*s. A further eight boys attained at least 9 A*s. 100% of boys reached the government's benchmark of 5 A*-C passes, including English and Maths.

This follows the success of our Sixth Form students who performed outstandingly well in this year’s A levels with the overall results being almost identical! The percentage of passes at A* or A was 52.4% in both the Girls’ Division and the Boys’ Division. The Girls’ Division saw 79.4% of grades at A*-B whilst the Boys’ Division recorded a pass rate of 74.8% at A*-B. The percentage of passes at A* was very high across both divisions - 17.4% in the Boys’ Division and 16.2% in the Girls’ Division. Overall, the Girls’ Division achieved a pass rate of 99.1% and the Boys’ Division a pass rate of 99%. Well done to all!

Staff from Bolton School Nursery finished in 6th place in the Salford Quays Dragon Boat Challenge! The challenge was between charities ‘Child Flight’ and ‘When You Wish Upon a Star’ and Claire Thompson, Amanda Twigley, Sandra Woodbridge, Tracey Cairns and Catherine Manville were part of a team racing for ‘When You Wish Upon a Star’. Out of 29 teams they made the final and not only came away with 6th place raising lots of money for the charity, they also became the Mixed Champions of 2012, receiving medals and a trophy.

And young cricketers got the chance to meet their hero when Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff paid a visit to Bolton School. Freddie's visit was part of a one-week Cricket Academy for local boys and girls, aged 5-16 and of all levels of ability. The week was one of several academies run in conjunction with Activate Sport and the Co-operative, which are taking place across the UK with the aim of inspiring an early interest in cricket. Participants experienced professional coaching and skills sessions, mini-tournaments and, of course, the question and answer session with Freddie.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

July 2012

The Summer Term finished in style at Bolton School as over 350 pupils and staff took part in a colourful and spectacular world-record breaking African dance in the School's Centre Quad, sealing a day of fundraising activities. Meanwhile in Africa, Maasai warriors also danced at the same time and each event was relayed on a giant outdoor screen via a Skype link-up. The event was part of a whole day of fundraising activities - including a 10 mile walk to Rivington Pike - for the LivLife charity which provides free education and vocational opportunities to children and adults in Tanzania. And retiring Boys' Division Captain Nick Fairclough and new Head Girl, Heather Harrison, "cut the first sod" as work began on the construction of a new £7m Sixth Form Centre in the heart of the Bolton School campus. Staff from across the campus gathered to watch the symbolic cutting of the turf on the last day of term and work is now well underway on the new centre, which will be ready for Sixth Formers in September 2013.

It’s never a dull moment even during the holidays as Strictly Come Dancing star, Brendan Cole, visited the School to teach Bolton children some of his famous moves. Brendan’s visit was part of The Brendan Cole Dance Academy which took place in the Arts Centre. Students experienced professional choreography with head coach Chris Wilson and sessions include a steps workshop, routine building, an end of course performance and, of course, the question and answer session with Brendan.

While at 08:12 on 27th July, a group of Bolton School girls joined thousands of people across the UK to ring in the first day of the London 2012 Olympic Games in the national event ‘All the Bells’. The event was a London 2012 Festival commission by Turner Prize winning artist and musician Martin Creed, entitled ‘Work No. 1197: All the bells in a country rung as quickly and as loudly as possible for three minutes.’ This could be any sort of bell, by anyone, anywhere. The tower at Deane Parish Church took up the challenge and invited girls from Bolton School to take part.

Friday, 6 July 2012

6th July 2012

Year 10 pupils at Bolton School Girls' Division took part in two days of off timetable activities in a 'Getting Ready for Sixth Form Life' event. One highlight for the girls was a 'Commando Joe's' session where they took part in military-type exercises including an assault course, circuits, team relays and games. The girls took part in sessions entitled 'Young Thinkers', 'Young Citizens' and 'Young Consumers', and were given Sixth Form taster lessons. They also held their very own mini version of 'The Young Apprentice' complete with teachers in the roles of Sir Alan Sugar and his associates! The day encouraged transferrable skills such as team working, communication and leadership. Also in Girls’ Division, many pupils have had their work published in an anthology of short stories, after coming second in a 'Young Writers' competition for Greater Manchester and Lancashire. The competition was entitled Mini Sagas - Creative Capers (the title of the book), and girls from Years 7 to 9 each wrote a 'Mini Saga' to enter. The short stories were limited to just 50 words meaning the girls had quite a challenge on their hands.

Pupils from Hesketh House have won the Bolton Primary School Chess League for the first time. The girls finished top, above Edgworth Primary and High Lawn Primary, winners over the last two years. Their team includes a number of younger players, demonstrating a great deal of chess talent. While the Junior Boys have won the AJIS Cricket cup for the second consecutive year. After a hard fought semi-final, the boys beat Birkenhead in the final to take the trophy.

Sixth Form students from the Girls' Division attended a talk by HMPS North West Lead Psychologist, Carol Bond, aimed at giving them a better understanding of the negotiation skills needed to cope in a hostage situation. Carol spoke about the definition of hostage situations, their management and the psychological approach to resolutions, including 'what not to say and why'. Year 8 pupil George Blackwell is one of two Bolton School boys who have had their work published in the latest edition of Local History magazine. He and Alex Walmsley, from Year 13, wrote articles for The Historacle - the Boys' Division History magazine - which were then selected by the editor of Local History. George's article described how a distant relative, Margaret Blackwell, was able to survive the outbreak of bubonic plague in Eyam, Derbyshire, in 1665. Inspired by his Duke of Edinburgh Expedition to the Lake District, Alex chose to investigate the origins of the village of Buttermere.

And local Primary Schools were in School once again, this time for a Science Festival aimed at inspiring young minds. The festival provided an opportunity for gifted young pupils from Year 5 to make use of Bolton School's laboratories and resources and to absorb themselves in Science for the day. Local schools entered teams of four who spent the morning in the Biology, Chemistry and Physics laboratories undertaking a number of challenging practical activities, assisted by their own "Science Buddies" - pupils from the Girls' Division and Boys' Division. The pupils got to take part in forensic science activities including blood testing, fingerprinting, chemical analysis of soil samples, chromatography and microscopic fibre examination. They constructed marble runs taking the laws of Physics into account, and undertook a number of fun experiments involving chemical reactions and hydrogen explosions! In the afternoon, pupils were amazed by Richard Robinson's science show 'Life, the Universe and Everything', followed by an awards ceremony to recognise their efforts throughout the day. Each pupil was presented with a certificate, and each school received a copy of '100 Science Experiments' to take away with them.

Friday, 29 June 2012

29th June 2012

Old Boy and Sports Editor at the Sunday Mirror, David Walker returned to Bolton School to pass on his words of wisdom about the industry, and to inspire the next generation of journalists. David led a discussion with Year 10 pupils about careers in the Media and spoke to smaller groups of Year 11 pupils with an interest in pursuing a career in Journalism. The boys asked David questions about his career choice, and how he got to where he is today. David’s overriding piece of advice for the boys was to just go for whatever they want, believe in themselves and persist – a message David passed on to all the pupils at the Boys’ Prizegiving later that evening where he was the guest speaker.

In sport, our cricketers have been named the U-15 Lancashire County Champions, after finals day of the County Cup 20/20 competition held at Vernon Carus C.C in Preston. The boys overcame Merchant Taylors in the semi final, to face MGS in the final which they won 155 for 3. To make it to finals day, Bolton School overcome Lancaster at the quarter final stage and Parklands, St James, and Little Lever in previous rounds. It was a double success for the School in the annual Northern Schools Tennis event as our boys claimed both U12 and U14 Champion titles. Pupils from Hesketh House competed in the National Swimming Championships, taking on twenty four teams from all areas of the country. The girls had qualified to swim in both the Freestyle Relay and the Medley Relay by recording very good times in the preliminary round earlier in the year, and travelled to Ponds Forge Pool in Sheffield to compete. Both teams made it to the final and the Medley team swimmers were placed 5th .
Year 11 and 13 students from Bolton School Boys' and Girls' Division have been showing their art work at the Best of Bolton Art and Design Showcase, hosted by the University of Bolton. The exhibition featured the best work from pupils from Secondary Schools across the Borough, and Bolton School Year 13 pupil Claire Manley won the Best Fine Art prize.

The Olympic waiting game is over for former Bolton School pupil and Water Polo International Ed Scott, as it is confirmed that he will be a member of Team GB at London 2012. Ed has been selected as the first choice goalkeeper for the thirteen strong GB squad. And further news of former pupils as eight students who left last year are close to completing their Gold Duke of Edinburgh award, after completing a coast to coast canoe trip from Fort William to Inverness!

Friday, 22 June 2012

22nd June 2012

Pupils from 14 primary schools from across the region took part in this year's Bolton School Sports Festival. The annual event, now in its ninth year, saw teams competing in a variety of sporting challenges. Pupils took part in a wide range of events to test their sporting skills, including a rugby challenge and penalty shoot-out as well as having their golf, hockey, tennis, athletics and cricket skills tested. This year the overall winner was St Thomas Chequerbent with the runner up places going to Ladybridge and Claypool. Primary pupils were also in School this week for a ‘Taster Day’ for Year 5’s. Lots of boys and girls enjoyed having a look around and even got the chance to take part in lessons, while their parents were given tours of the School. The Senior Girls' Division will also open its doors to Year 5 girls, their parents and friends after school on Monday for ‘Discovery Day’. There will be a treasure hunt trail around the School with various departments offering short, challenging activities, and staff will be on hand to speak to parents and answer any queries. If you would like to attend this event, please telephone the Headmistress's secretary on 01204 840201 or email
Bolton School U15 cricket team has reached the County Cup Cricket 20/20 Finals Day, after beating Lancaster by 45 runs at the quarter final stage with 131 runs for 5 wickets in their 20 overs. The day will involve 2 semi-finals in the morning and a final and third place match in the afternoon. And Bolton School boys also put in an impressive performance in the Regional Final of the English Schools Athletics Cup, winning the B final by a huge 40 points. The boys qualified for the North-West B final after finishing third in the first round, against schools from Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire and Cumbria.
Year 6 Girls at Hesketh House have been busy working on short interpretations of Shakespeare's tragedy, 'Romeo and Juliet', to showcase in front of their parents in an evening performance. After studying and exploring the play, pupils challenged their own thinking and skills of interpretation to produce short devised pieces. Year 9 girls had the chance to peek inside the 'criminal mind' with a fascinating talk from Psychology teacher John Radcliffe, as part of the school's gifted and talented lecture programme. The lecture gave the girls a taster into the world of Psychology and they got to take on the role of a Criminal Psychologist when they were given a scenario and had to use criminal profiling techniques to guess who the murderer was. While a group of Sixth Form girls visited Manchester University where they discovered how Maths is used in 'real life'. The morning began with a lecture on the subject, before girls split into groups to work on a mini research project for the rest of the day.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

15th June 2012

Bolton Wanderers' football captain, Kevin Davies, was the guest of honour at Bolton School's Community Action Celebration Evening and he was fulsome in his praise of the Sixth Form students' work in the local community. He congratulated the girls and boys on their efforts and spoke about his own charity, KiDs of Bolton, and how it has raised over £200,000 through a number of prestigious golf days and a masquerade ball. Over the course of the academic year, the Year 12 students gave almost 12,000 hours of their time to voluntary work. This is the equivalent of one person working full-time for 7 years. Earlier in the evening, they spoke about their individual experiences of helping others. Every student was encouraged to volunteer a minimum of 20 hours' work in the community but most had done much more than this and many were acknowledged with "Gold" certificates for having committed more than 100 hours of their time. Some pupils had completed several hundred hours with Sarah Rashid having given a staggering 543 hours of her time!

Bolton School hosted a Technology Festival for local Year 4 primary school pupils, providing an opportunity for them to make use of the School's technology facilities and to absorb themselves in the subject for the day. Ten local Primary Schools each brought along four Gifted and Talented year 4 pupils, who got the chance to spend a whole day focusing on technology and to experience activities in different technology areas. The day had a carnival theme - in Resistant Materials the pupils produced plastic masks which they each decorated in their own way, in Textiles they made colourful headdresses decorated with printed fabrics, and in Food Technology they made their own scone based pizzas with a variety of toppings. At the end of the day certificates were awarded to all pupils for taking part. This is the second year the Technology festival has been held, part of the series of annual events in different subjects that the School coordinates for primary school boys and girls to attend, including festivals in Science, Maths, Languages and Sport.

And pupils at Hesketh House dedicated a whole day to jubilee celebrations. The day consisted of a House Meeting where pupils researched and designed their own Jubilee plates, designed Royal Stamps and found out interesting facts about the Royal Family. The girls dressed in Royal themed costumes and the Hall was transformed into a medieval Banqueting Hall for a Royal feast, opened by a traditional fanfare by Tiggy Blackwell.

Friday, 8 June 2012

8th June 2012

Over 1,000 flag-waving pupils, parents, staff and friends of Bolton School were on hand to cheer on the Olympic torch as it passed the School at 6.21am on the 1st of June! The joint jazz band ensured everyone was wide awake by the time the procession made its way down Chorley New Road. Nathan Zimmerling completed the leg that passed Bolton School, passing the flame to Anjali Shah who, in turn, passed it to Old Girl of the School, Rachel Flanders. During her time at the School, Rachel, aged just 17 at the time, became the youngest person ever to row across the Atlantic Ocean. After completing her run, Rachel brought the torch into School and showed it to excited pupils and staff at a celebration breakfast. This was Rachel’s second visit to the School in one week as along with other successful Old Girls, she returned to school to share experiences with current Year 8 pupils on Careers Day. The Old Girls ran sessions on the career paths they have chosen, offering tips and advice.

A team of Year 9 boys are the winners of the National IOP Exoplanet Project. The boys impressed judges with their video proposal based on the topic of Astronomy - each received £15 of iTunes vouchers and the Physics department received a Sony Bloggie camcorder. Another team of Bolton School boys also found success this time as runners up in the National Final of the Toyota Technology Challenge with their robot called 'Edge-Hog.

Year 13 student James Roberts captained the England Cerebral Palsy Development Football Squad at the 2012 Cerebral Palsy Home Nations Championships, and led them to Victory! James' England squad won the tournament, finishing undefeated against Northern Ireland and Scotland with two convincing victories. In Girls’ Sport, Year 9 pupil Nalisha Patel has been selected for the Lancashire County Cricket Women's first team, an amazing achievement for her age! Nalisha is the youngest player in the squad which usually ranges from age 17 upwards. She can now be selected for group matches against other county teams which will lead to a semi final and then a final. While Year 10 pupil, Larissa King, has been selected to dance in the National Youth Ballet's Jubilee performance at Sadler's Well in the summer.

The new Bolton School flagpole has officially been launched, celebrating 100 years of flying flags from our Chorley New Road campus. The new flagpole sits proudly atop the iconic turret towers of the Centre Arch 100 after the first flag flew in celebration of the baronetcy of William Hesketh Lever, the benefactor of Bolton School. When the Olympic torch passed the school, the Paralympic flag was flown in celebration of Old Boy and President of the International Paralympic Committee, Sir Phillip Craven. Over the Bank Holiday weekend, the Union Flag flew for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee – which was celebrated in style by Bolton School pupils holding a Park Road picnic on the school field and a Royal Tea Party over at Beech House Infants.

Friday, 25 May 2012

25 May 2012

It has been fundraising and charity efforts all the way at Bolton School, as the Junior Boys kicked off our whole school fundraiser for the LivLife charity. The boys took to the field dressed in an array of colourful fancy dress outfits in their annual Fun Run - the first event in a series of events at Bolton School to raise money for the charity. Football players, cavemen and cowboys ran alongside ghosts, daleks, bananas and even Olympic torch bearers! Joined by the Head of Junior Boys Mr Stephen Whittaker, and Mr Tim Dickinson, the boys ran around the Senior School running track for 40 minutes. For the first time in Bolton School's history, all parts of the Foundation, including pupils and staff, will come together to raise funds for a single cause, culminating in a day of action on Tuesday 10th July. In what will hopefully be a record-breaking day, all pupils and staff will wear Masaai clothing or red clothing to symbolise the Masaai, and undertake various fundraising activities including a sponsored walk to Rivington Pike. The LivLife Foundation is a charity set up two Old Boys that provides free and relevant education and vocational opportunities to some of the world's poorest people through educational centres in Tanzania.
Year 10 Girls' Division pupil, Eleanor Harding, ran the BUPA Manchester 10k run, raising over £1000 for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, despite being mid-way through an 18 month maintenance chemo regime herself. Eleanor ran the 10k in just 49 minutes, along with her parents and brother who supported her along the way. Since last year, Eleanor has moved from intensive chemo to a maintenance regime and has been working hard to regain her fitness. With the help of her gym, Virgin Active in Bolton, she has been following a programme to build up her strength and this, along with training with her dad, resulted in Eleanor being able to complete the run in a fantastic time without stopping.

And over one hundred staff, students, parents, alumni and friends of Bolton School enjoyed a glamorous black tie and evening dress dinner at the School's Arts and Conference Centre in order to raise funds for a forthcoming rugby tour to South Africa. A drinks reception was followed by a three course silver service dinner, and music on the night was provided by Ben Thompson (better known for playing Ryan Connor in Coronation Street), who plays with Manchester indie band the Rusholme Ruffians. Toby Cowling, a Year 12 student, also provided musical accompaniment on the night. The evening, which included a raffle, raised over £2,000 for the boys' forthcoming rugby tour to South Africa. The tour has also secured rugby shirt sponsorship from Deloitte, polo shirt sponsorship from Barton Grange Garden Centre as well as backing from local firms, DRL, Relph's Funeral Services and Silk Group.

And today the Headmaster of Bolton School Boys' Division has started tweeting.  You can view Mr Britton's Twitter account at!/Philip_Britton.

Friday, 18 May 2012

18th May 2012

Year 12 student, Stephanie Gabbatt, has been named runner up in the Amnesty International Young Human Rights Reporter of the Year competition in her age group. A glitzy London awards ceremony was the culmination of the competition launched at the start of the year to produce an article no longer than 500 words highlighting a Human Rights abuse. There were three thousand entries overall from UK schools, and of the thousands of entries submitted, in the end Stephanie's entry on human trafficking earned her runner up in the Sixth Form category - an amazing achievement! And Sixth Form pupils Yasmin Ahmed, Olivia Davidson and Adam Woolley were invited by the Bolton Lads and Girls club to take part in Rolling Globe - a national campaign run by Oxfam, aimed at raising young people's awareness of international issues. The three students attended a series of youth led workshops and discussions with local MPs in Westminster, with the aim of creating more positive change.

The Year 9 Masterchef of 2012 has been crowned, and the winner is Kate Moss who won the judges over with her chocolate bread and butter pudding. The final live cook off between finalists Kate, and fellow pupil Iman Orths was a close fought battle with amazing food being produced by both girls, as each one cooked her 'signature dish'. Iman made a red thai curry, while Kate opted for the bread and butter pudding.

In sport, our International U18 Hockey player Hannah Pike took part in a national charity event for Wellchild called 'The Big Dribble'. The event, organised by England Hockey, involved a 100m obstacle course which was set up in cities throughout the UK, from Edinburgh to London. Hannah attended the Manchester leg of the tour in front of the town hall in Albert Square. She even ended up being interviewed for BBC Newsround as they turned up to film the event. And our Boys' Division U13 and U15 teams are off to a flying start in the AEGON Schools National Tennis Championships. Playing in the group stages, the boys beat schools such as Broughton College, Arnold and Kirkham grammar without dropping a set! Both teams hope to reach the knockout stages later in the year.

Also this week, Beech House’s Ugly Bug Ball saw the Reception class dress up as bugs and insects to celebrate the work they have been doing around exploring living things with dancing and playing games.