Friday, 27 June 2014

27 June 2014

Last week, Bolton School hosted the Bolton Children's Fiction Award Ceremony! This was a fantastic event, with all six nominated authors in attendance! Year 7 and 8 pupils from sixteen schools in the region arrived in the morning for talks from the authors, and stayed to enjoy the lunchtime Awards Ceremony itself. Joe Craig, who won the award himself in 2006, presented the 2014 award to this year's winner: Gillian Cross, author of After Tomorrow.

The Year 6 Junior Girls were also busy on the literary front. Following on from their study of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, they put together their own scripts and staging for a shortened version of the play, which they performed in front of parents. This forms part of the school's celebration of Shakespeare's 450th birthday.

The Girls' Division's GCSE and A-Level artists were given a great opportunity to showcase their talents and the best of their work at the University of Bolton! This was part of the Best of Bolton Schools' Art and Design Exhibition. Bolton School Year 13 pupil Jessica Broome won the Best Fine Art prize at the exhibition.

The Sixth Form linguists were busy with trips in the past week. On Monday, Year 12 boys and girls studying Spanish travelled to Aston University in Birmingham for the International Relations and Languages Sixth Form Conference. They listened attentively to two lectures, which were both fascinating and informative.

On Wednesday, three A-Level French students visited Liverpool University to meet with Dr Ian Magedera. They have been invited to assist him in his research into Representations of India in French Literature and Culture from the eighteenth century onwards, and went to the university to receive the appropriate training.

The Joint Jazz Band will in a few short weeks be setting off on a trip to Switzerland for the Montreux Jazz Festival! They will be performing two sets at the Parc Vertex venue as part of this prestigious festival, and to celebrate are holding a Pre-Tour Concert on Wednesday 2nd July.

The Boys' Division Brass Ensemble gave a special performance at Kearsley West Primary School as part of the Community Music Programme. They delighted the pupils and teachers with well-known pop tunes and themes from TV and film.

In sport, the week began with lots of fun in the sun at the Primary Schools' Sports Festival. Budding athletes from sixteen local schools were invited to Bolton School for a carousel of sporting activities designed to test their skills and to allow them to compete for the trophy.

On Thursday, the Marylebone Cricket Club visited the school. This led to two fantastic cricket matches which were watched with great interest!

Bolton School U13's cricket team enjoyed a very close T20 match against the MCC Hub team, which is based at the School. This was followed by an awards ceremony for the MCC Hub players which named two boys the U15 and U13 players of the year.

The Bolton School 1st XI team welcomed the MCC for what has become a prestigious annual fixture in the school's cricketing calendar. With opponents including opening batsman Tom Liversedge, a former captain of the school team, as well as a plethora of other established local cricketers, this was a great challenge for the 1st XI team. The MCC side ultimately proved victorious, but it was a great afternoon of cricket for all involved.

The Boys' Division celebrated the past year's achievements and successes at Prizegiving. Students collected over 100 awards and listened attentively to the words of Headmaster Phillip Britton, Chairman of Governors Mr Michael Griffiths, and Old Boy The Venerable Jonathan Boardman, Archdeacon of Italy and Malta, Chaplain of All Saints, Rome and a Canon of Malta Cathedral.

Year 12 pupils in the Boys' and Girls' Divisions were also given the opportunity to learn from another former pupil this week. Group Captain Mark Northover of the RAF returned to school to give a talk on leadership. The Girls' Division Great Hall was packed for this event, which stressed that anyone can learn the correct skills and behaviours to be a great leader.

Boys' Division pupils also remembered the sacrifice of their predecessors this week. The boys who will be attending this year's Battlefields Trip received copies of Remembered with Honour, a book compiled by Dr Eric McPherson to commemorate Old Boltonians who died in the First and Second World Wars. This book will be presented to all boys who attend the trip between 2014 and 2018 to mark the centenary of the First World War.

Finally, the Junior Boys finished collecting in the last of the sponsorship money from their annual fancy-dress Fun Run this week. They presented the cheque for £5000 to a representative of Bolton Hospice during morning assembly, as well as learning a little more about the history of hospice care, the work Bolton Hospice does, and how the money raised will help.

Friday, 20 June 2014

20 June 2014

The Bolton School in Space project has finally achieved lift-off! The capsule climbed to a height of 108,000 feet and captured incredible footage and stunning photographs of its ascent and descent. The Bolton School in Space team overcame technical difficulties in order to retrieve the capsule and recover the camera with these amazing images:

The end of last week saw the Years 7-10 Summer Production of Oliver Twist, based on the classic novel by Charles Dickens. The cast can certainly consider themselves a huge hit with the parents, teachers and friends who came to watch the performance on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening!

This week started off with a couple of cricketing success stories. Last year's U13 team completed some unfinished business and finally played Merchant Taylor's for the Lancashire Cup. The team played in brilliant sunshine at Formby Cricket Club, and Bolton School won the Lancashire Cup 2013! They are hoping to repeat the success in this year's competition.

The 1st XI team were out playing cricket last weekend. They faced off against GSL Leeds and also came out victorious.

On Monday, pupils studying GCSE and A-Level history in the Girls' Division received an excellent talk from university lecturer Dr Martin Alexander. He spoke about the causes of the First World War and gave students plenty to think about.

The school also hosted the annual Sixth Form Volunteering Celebration Evening on Monday. This was a fitting celebration of the Year 12 pupils' dedication to voluntary work, and the time they give up for their local community - which totaled 11,798 hours this year!

Watch the short film "Bolton School Volunteering - Making a Difference for Good" here.

The Riley Sixth Form Centre received its official opening on Tuesday. A plaque was unveiled in the Sixth Form Centre Reception by Governor Ian Riley, who was also the chief benefactor of the building, in front of dozens of guests that included donors, governors, present and former Head Teachers, current and past pupils, and other friends of the school.

There was an impromptu beekeeping lesson on Tuesday, as half of the Bolton School hive decided to move house alongside a newly-hatched queen bee! The honey bee swarm was very calm throughout, and provided an excellent education opportunity for students.

On Wednesday morning, the Year 2 pupils at Beech House played host to two special guests: RAF pilot Paul Hutton and ex-RAF pilot John Dunning, who are both Old Boys. They came in to speak to the pupils about their experiences with the Air Force and about flying more generally. The Year 2s were delighted by the visit, and had plenty of questions to ask!

Both Old Boys then joined eight other alumni for the Hesketh House Careers Carousel. These ten former pupils inspired Year 6 pupils from Park Road Junior Boys' School and the Junior Girls' School with tales of their chosen careers.

Old Boy Sir Ian McKellen received an honorary degree from the University of Cambridge. He was made a Doctor of Letters as part of the ceremony.

Four boys travelled down to Oxford to receive prizes on Wednesday. In a ceremony which took place at Oxford's Bodlean Library, they were awarded second place for their entry into the Oxford German Network's German Olympiad. The boys also received tours of two of the colleges from Old Boys who are now studying at Oxford.

Finally, Matthew Boyers recently earned a place on the Lancashire U18 rugby squad! He is also attending a training academy with Warrington Wolves.

Friday, 13 June 2014

13 June 2014

Various Boys' Division musicians travelled to Brownlow Fold this week to give two concerts to the primary pupils. The Intermediate Guitar Group, Classical Guitar Quartet and Parallel Oreos performed alongside soloists Jake Rajbhandari and Arran Ireland.

Forty Year 4 pupils from ten local primary schools were invited to the Girls' Division on Thursday for a Technology Day based around a Carnival theme! They had a fantastic time trying out three technology subjects: Food Technology, Resistant Materials, and Textiles. At the end of the day, they had colourful masks, fancy headdresses and hand-made pizzas to take home.

Year 2 pupils from six primary schools in the area were also invited to the Leverhulme Pavilion to develop their ball skills. There were several competitive challenges, each one focusing on a different sport, all of which were designed to increase the children's ball skills.

Thursday evening saw the Treasures of Bolton School revealed in an evening focusing on Lord Leverhulme. Historical artefacts, including the School Chest, Headmaster's Chair and Chained Library, were explored, whetting everyone's appetite for the 100/500 Celebrations which will start in 2015.

On Friday, four Boys' Division cricket teams doffed their academic caps after a week of school exams and headed out onto the pitch for a series of matches. Although the U13 team were unsuccessful this year, the U12, U14 and U15 teams played admirably and are now at the quarter final stage in the LSCA County competitions!

In the Junior Boys' School, the football team who played their way to Wembley - and won - are still buzzing from the experience! The boys are enjoying celebrity status even three weeks later. The stories from the day are sure to be remembered for years to come.

There was also some good news from one of the school's Old Boys this week. Clarinetist Arun Ghosh was recently awarded Instrumentalist of the Year at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards!

Finally, thanks to a report commissioned by the ISC, it came to light this week that Bolton School contributes £17m to the local economy! This is in addition to the school's input through charitable and volunteer work and the various programmes of events that the school organises for the wider community, including the Primary Liaison Programme, music concerts and recitals, and physics events in liaison with the school's Ogden Teaching Fellow.

Friday, 6 June 2014

6 June 2014

There were a couple of history trips before the half term break. The Year 8 girls visited Squire William and Mistress Mary at Turton Tower for a day of history. Their ‘Tudor-era’ hosts were really welcoming, and talked to the girls about the house and what life would have been like back then.

 Meanwhile the Year 3 Junior Girls travelled to Chester to enjoy the Dewa Roman Experience! They had a great time learning the ‘tortoise’ battle formation from a Roman soldier and trying on Roman-style armour and clothing for themselves.

Over the half-term holiday, Alumni who left school in the 1940s and 1950s returned to school for their reunion. There were 140 Old Boys and Old Girls present, and everyone had a great time reminiscing with their friends!

Last weekend, Old Boy Matthew Lamprey scored his first try for his county in the Beaumont Cup Final. His efforts helped Lancashire beat Cornwall to win the trophy.

We also learned this week that school Governor Charles Cowling completed the Brathay Trust 10in10 Challenge by running ten marathons in ten consecutive days! This amazing achievement raised money for the Brathay Trust and the Company of Actuaries Charitable Trust Fund.

When pupils returned to school, some pupils had a few additional treats in store. The Year 4 girls’ classroom was invaded on Monday by a friendly Viking, who came to tell the girls about the Vikings’ lives and that the ‘bully-boy’ stereotype is not entirely accurate.

The pupils at Beech House Infants School were visited on Tuesday by two first nation Canadians, who came in to speak to them about the American West. They wore traditional costume and brought with them a number of artefacts, including some which were over a century old. One of the children even got to wear a 185-year-old wolf headdress!

On Thursday, the Year 3 girls were off timetable for the first ever Outdoor Learning Activity Day. With archery, orienteering, bush craft and team building activities on offer, the girls were really excited to take part and the day certainly did not disappoint.

This week, the final launch preparations got underway for the Bolton School In Space Project! The capsule has been painted, and the boys and teachers involved are now watching the weather in the hopes of launching their high-altitude balloon next week! The launch document with full details will be posted on and, and the balloon can be tracked on 434.650MHz RTTY 50 baud. You can also follow @BoltonSchTech on Twitter for updates.