Tennis Tournament in aid of Save the Children
Pupils, Parents and Friends at Blundell's school have just held a tennis tournament to raise money for Save the Children Fund. The annual event was held at the school and despite some poor weather conditions all the competitors had an enjoyable time and managed to raise £2662 for the charity. Organiser Alison Frankpitt said it was a fantastic response from all those who took part and even more important at this time considering the famine currently affecting many parts of East Africa. The winners of the hard fought final of the Men's doubles were Richard Youngman and Simon Coombe, with the runners up being the family duo of Simon and Sam Kingston.
In the Ladies the Competitive tournament was won by Ms Norman and Madame Wright with runners up Vivienne Bess and Hilary Caldwell. In addition, the fun/noncompetitive ladies tournament winners were the headmaster's wife Kate Davenport and Save the Children chairlady Julie Edge.
In the Mixed tournament the overall winners were Will House and Emma Cooper who just beat Simon Kingston and Jennifer Bricknell in the final tally of points.
In the junior section over 100 year 7&8 pupils took part and the boys winners were Nathan Green and Ben Morgan. The runners up: Jack Lockwood and Tobias Francis. In the Girls section the winners were Annabel Sexton and Alix Mountbatten, and the runners up: Georgie Scott and Emily Coombe.
Cricket: U13 in Devon Schools Cup
The U13 cricket team have been involved in the Devon Schools Cup which was played at Cornwood recently. The semi-finals and finals were played on the same day with a twenty-over format. In wet conditions Blundell's took on Exmouth College in the semi-final and restricted Exmouth to 60 runs. In reply Blundell's passed the total with two wickets down. Man of that match was county player, Dan Pyle who scored 29 runs. In the afternoon the final was played against a strong Exeter School side. Blundell's batted first and found the going tough, managing to amass a reasonable score of 89-5. Keeper Ben Phillips top scored with 32. In reply Exeter were always up with the rate but lost wickets at regular intervals and in the final over were left on 83-9 making Blundell's County champions. After Ben Philips was named man of the match, coach Leigh Menheneott commented that the boys' all round display was the key to success, with all the players making a contribution.
Athletics: NSAC Qualifiers
Ben Clarke and Michael Peper have just qualified for the National Schools Athletics Championships in Oxford at the beginning of July. Ben is a year nine pupil and has regularly been winning javelin events. At the East Devon event he won with a throw of 44.0m and repeated this performance at the Devons. His PB is 44.3m and this was sufficient to guarantee his place at the Nationals. Year 13 pupil Michael has been a long distance runner for many years and won the prestigious Russell this year. He has come down to 800m and has coped with the transfer with great success. He won at the Exeter trials and then ran 1 minute 57 in the Devons. He then went on to the South West tournament and knocked a second off his time to win again. This has also seen him selected for the Nationals and he hopes to surpass his PB of 1.56 minutes.
Blundell's School Gardening Club achieved runners-up spot in the Most Original category of the Budding Gardeners' Competition, organised by the Royal Horticultural Society at Rosemoor. The task was to design then plant out a garden in a metre square raised bed to encourage others to get involved in this leisure activity.
Entitled, 'La Dolce Vita', the Blundell's entry depicted a derelict, rustic farmhouse scene using a broken window frame as a focal point with a tumble-down dry-stone wall on the perimeter. A variety of lavenders and other sun-loving plants further enhanced the Mediterranean feel.
Three year ten pupils have recently received Gold awards for Biology. Bryce Clark, Gus de Falbe and Jim Bremner took part in a national Biology Olympiad for all year 10 students in the UK. The Olympiad, organised by the Society of Biology, is designed to test the students' overall biological knowledge, particularly beyond the restraints of the syllabus they study. The standard of competition this year was very high and it was also pleasing to see Silver awards for Saskia Simonson, Luke Ansell, Henry Barlow, Paddy Canterbury, Tristan Free, Jonathan Hoaen, Dave Kellett, Sam Mills, Clym Montgomery and Ben Rice. Head of Department Duncan Rhodes commented that the scheme is very challenging and as this is only the second year we have entered the results are particularly pleasing.
All three Ten Tors teams finished in fine form this year: -
35 mile team: Harry Bodington (Team Leader), Freddie Morris, Tristan Free, Bryce Clark, Dale Fletcher, Tom Youngman – finished at 9am (the fith team back!) and in fancy dress!
45 mile team: Thea Dickinson (Team Leader), Lottie Free, Will Mildren, Simon Tang, James Dean Sidgreaves, Jamie Baughan - finished at 3pm and were in fine, humorous spirit which is very rare amongst teams after walking 45 miles!
55 mile team: Ben Grayson (Team Leader), Sam Anderson, Freddie Evans, Guy Clatworthy, Cameron Grainger and Chris Bodington walked from 7am until 1.30am the following morning, where they gained three hours sleep before continuing on Sunday morning; they returned on Sunday at noon absolutely exhausted – a super effort.
U13 West of England Girls' Hockey Finals
The U13 squad travelled to Millfield as Devon Runners Up to play in the West of England Finals. There were 16 teams participating and Blundell's played some great hockey and won their group. They beat Taunton 2 1 with goals from Alice and Emily, Natalie made one outstanding save with her hand to set up the victory. They then beat Truro 2-1 with goals from Izzy and Ellie. They then faced Dean Close and beat them 4-2 with a hat trick from Alice and Izzy scored one. This was an excellent game and Blundell's really worked extremely hard.
After the elation of winning the group they were most unlucky to lose 1-2 to The Elms School from Hereford in the Quarter Finals, which put them joint 5th overall. Alice scored the goal, but everyone contributed to a very encouraging result.
Fives Success for Sam
Fifteen year old Sam Wyatt Haines has just been crowned National U16 Fives Champion. Sam won the U14 trophy last year and moved into the U16 age bracket this year to compete against players a year older. The competition was held at the prestigious St Paul's School in London over the Easter holidays. In his pool matches Sam managed to defeat players from Winchester, Whitgift and Merchant Taylors. In the quarter finals, in what was a repeat of the last years' final, he defeated Yul Pascal of hosts St Pauls 11-9, 10-12, and 11-6. In the semis he defeated Zan Burkhardt from Alleynes 11-5, 11-3 to set up a final against sixteen year old Ed Wilde from Winchester. In an amazing display of agility, tactics and guile Sam won the first set 11-6. This broke his opposition's spirit and Sam romped home to win the final set 11-0.
Sam is a keen all-round sportsman and also captained the Devon Schools U15 cricket team which toured South Africa in February.
Football: a Good Season for the 1st XI
Rugby Sevens: A Good Season for Blundell's
U13: Following their success at Port Regis, the U13 went on to win the Devon School championship. In an awesome display the team obliterated all the opposition by over thirty points and only conceded one try. The team then went to The National Schools sevens at Rosslyn Park for the first time. In their pool matches they managed to beat Bryn Tawe 62-0, Christ's Hospital 34-0 and Kink's Macclesfield 47-0. Having won their pool they were then in the last sixteen and the knock-out stages. In an exciting encounter with London Oratory the bubble burst and against a bigger side they lost 7-24. However they had done extremely well and lost to the eventual winners!
1st VII: After an excellent season of sevens having won the Devon Schools and been finalists in three other tournaments, the first seven moved on to Rosslyn Park. They managed to win all their pool matches beating Christ's Hospital, Prior Park, Hymers, and Harrodian. This took them to the last 16 and they managed an excellent win 36-0 over Loughborough. So, in the quarter finals they met old rivals Monmouth. In a scintillating match Blundell's just failed to progress, losing 19-21 to finish what had been an excellent tournament and maintained Blundell's as one of the top sevens Schools in Britain.
Art: Ashfords Competition
Earlier in this spring term, Ashfords Solicitors approached Mr. Matthew in our Art Department with an exciting proposal; make an art work for their huge and impressive boardroom. Three other schools in the area were asked to submit pieces too. They agreed to pay all the costs for canvases, paint or other more unusual materials, such as Barbie Doll Cake Sprinkles, and the students would enter some pieces of work.
8G put forward their pointillist canvases that had been on display outside Big School and Corren Kvesic and Bethany Cross from GH bravely volunteered to create an art piece as well. All the Art work is handed in now and we keenly await the results.
Rugby Sevens: U15 Win Devon Championship
Not to be outdone by their seniors and juniors, the U15 rugby sevens team have just won the Devon Championship. In good conditions at Kelly College they won their pool matches against Coombeshead 43-0, Pilton 46-5 and Kelly 40-5. The top four teams then met in the semi-finals and the boys had a much sterner test against a physical Torquay Grammar team. However, the well-disciplined Blundellians managed to maintain their composure and won by 12-7. This set up the final versus Exeter School. After a poor start Exeter took the lead and then extended this after some poor tackling. At 12-0 down things were looking bleak. However, a well worked try from Andrew Hamilton reduced the deficit. Undaunted Exeter scored again just before half time to make the score 7-17. Coach Dylan Smart then gave a Churchilian half time talk and this did the trick. The boys managed to retain possession and eventually scored two tries to take the lead. This broke the opposition and further scores resulted in a 40-17 victory, giving them the Championship.
Live and Imagined Music Competition
Joe Wander, 17, from Poughill near Crediton has just been selected for the regional finals of a national music competition. The competition called Live and Imagined is for young musicians who have to perform a composition of their own. Joe entered the first round in Plymouth with 1200 other musicians and managed to be selected by a board of judges to go through to the Southwest regional finals later in March. Joe has been a singer all of his life and only took up the acoustic guitar four years ago. He has been influenced by legendary rock guitarists Aeric Roche, Neil Young and Jeff Beck. Joe is currently studying music at A level and hopes to continue his music education at university before setting up his own recording studio. He would ultimately like to have his own record label.
Royal Academy Lifedrawing Workshop
Members of the Blundell's Art Society have been treated to a specialist life drawing workshop run by Jeanette Barnes RA. With the stage seating cleared, Ondaatje Hall provided an excellent space for drawing on an ambitious scale and though exhausted and covered in charcoal by the end, most agreed that much had been learnt. We were joined for the day by sixth form artists from Taunton School. Alice Lindley's drawing, pictured here, was one of the strongest pieces and all the work is currently on exhibition in Ondaatje Foyer.
Rugby Sevens: U13 Win Port Regis Sevens
U13s win Port Regis 7s: The U13s continued their magnificent unbeaten season in all types of rugby by winning the prestigious Port Regis 7s. They won their pool comfortably by beating Sandroyd 38-0, Port Regis 28-7 & Perrott Hill 43-0. In the quarters they overcame Farleigh 35-5 and then in the semi-finals national regulars Caldicott found them too hot to handle by 24-14. This led to a mouth-watering final against a strong Millfield team. After a tentative start the Blundell's boys dominated the second half with Millfield barely seeing the ball at all. The 14-7 score line makes the game seem closer than it actually was. This was a weight limited tournament so National Barbarian Finn Neusinger and Will Scott were not allowed to play, which makes the result all the more impressive.
Equestrian: Schools National Finals
Having qualified in May at Bryanston, Lola Watt as an individual and the team of Alexa Batting, Rupert Batting and Emily Mayes represented Blundell's and the South West in the Jumping and Style competition at the Schools Equestrian Finals, which combines show jumping, cross country and style. Lola Watt, competing at her first NSEA Championship, produced two superb individual clear rounds and wowed the judges with her riding style such that she gained 7th place individually in the Mini Class and in the more challenging Novice Class achieved 3rd place. The team competed in the Open Class over a particularly challenging course and all three attacked it as was needed. They had to compete first, so were the path finders for the benefit of all the other teams to follow. Whilst a team placing was not to be, Alexa came 11th overall in the Open Individual competition.
National finals attract the best in the country; this was a wonderful experience for them all. We were delighted with their performance representing the South West.
Blundell's Prep Art Week
The Art Department has been running creative workshops as part of the Blundell's Prep Art Week. The theme set was 'Roots and Wings' and the pupils experimented with the processes of etching, pinhole photography and collage to produce some really exciting work. It was also a good opportunity to introduce them to the Senior School facilities and staff. There will be an exhibition of all the artwork created at the end of June at the Prep School.
Ollie's Hockey Success
Ollie Clarke, from Pennymoor, has just been selected for the Devon Schools under-15 hockey team. Ollie has been a keen hockey player for many years and currently plays in the first eleven. Fourteen year old Ollie is undaunted by playing teams above his age and says this has probably helped him develop his game. The mid-fielder will play in two tournaments at Exeter University later in the month against neighbouring counties. Senior coach Guy Bucknell stated that Ollie is a very tenacious player and, despite his lack of physique has used his skills to good effect and fully deserves his county cap.
Equestrian: NSEA Jumping and Style Qualifier
The team of Lola watt, Emma Selby, Amy Clarke and Emily Wardle met intense competition at the SW qualifier. They put on an impressive performance, managing three clear rounds over a technical track. Whilst their collective jumping penalties positioned them 3rd equal, the time taken overall relegated them to 5th overall out of 14 schools represented. Lola produced the best score of the team and this resulted in individual placings of 4th and 5th in the two classes she entered. Sadly, this wasn't enough for qualification to the championships but an impressive performance nonetheless as the standard was very high, highlighted by the fact that there was only 5 penalties separating 1st placed Stonar from Blundell's in 5th.
Alex MacBean, Ed Crawford and Laura MacBean have all received offers for places at Oxford and Cambridge Universities for next year. Alex has an open offer to read Law at Oxford, Ed has a conditional offer to read Archaeology & Anthropology at Keble College, Oxford and Laura has an offer to read Natural Sciences at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge. The girls hope to complete a hat trick for the MacBean family, following in the footsteps of older brother Dominic.
Valentines Day Roses
Girls from North Close were raising funds for Children's Hospice Southwest last Monday by selling Valentines roses. The year twelve girls managed to get Pupils and Staff to buy the roses for their loved ones and profits from the sale of 600 roses managed to raise in excess of £700. Head of house Martha Seymour said she was very pleased to help such a good charity and added that House Matron, Louise Wilder was also going to be running in the London Marathon for the same cause. Former head of Tiverton School and current Housemistress, Rachael Crease, added that she was incredibly proud of the amount of effort the girls had put into the venture and hoped that they would continue this annual event.
Prep Schools Barbarians
Four boys have been selected for the England team following trials at Rugby School recently. The boys had been selected for the Southwest team which played against the other regions of England. Representing Blundell's were: -
- U11: Ben Stevens and Sam Maunder
- U13: Finn Neusinger, Ben Steer, Cameron Seymour and Ben Summers
In the U11 competition the Southwest team came second behind the Southeast. Both Blundell's boys excelled during the day and were given special mention by their coach from Cheltenham College. In the end Sam Maunder was selected for the national team while Ben Stevens was unlucky to miss out.
In the U13 the boys played wonderful rugby and Cameron, Ben and Finn were selected for the national team. This was an outstanding effort, particularly as Ben Steer was voted, by the coaches, as player of the day and Cameron Seymour was voted second behind him after scoring more than half of the Southwest team tries.
The U11 boys will be touring Dublin in March, whilst the U13 boys will be touring to Toulouse in April. Finn, Cameron and Ben Summers are also members of the very talented Tiverton RFC U13 team. Jack Maunder has also been selected for the U14 England team.
Equestrian: Blundell's Qualifies for the NSEC
Blundell's School has qualified for the National Schools Equestrian Championships for the 6th year in a row, but this is the first time they have done so for the Show Jumping final. The team of Maddie Simonson, Amy Clarke, Alexa Batting, Rupert Batting put on a sterling performance at the South West qualifier hosted by Millfield school, gaining qualification in both the Intermediate and Open Show Jumping classes against strong opposition from over 40 teams. They will represent the South West at the NSEA finals to be held at Addington Manor in the autumn.
This is a first for Blundell's as we've not qualified a team for show jumping before and we've never qualified for two heights in the same year for the national finals in any discipline.
Intermediate: 1st Heathfield 2nd Blundell's 3rd Gillingham, 4th Wells Cathedral School, 5th Plymouth College, 6th St Swithun's
Open: 1st & 2nd Millfield, 3rd Blundell's, 4th Stonar, 5th Thomas Hardye 6th Millfield.
National Youth Orchestra
Year seven pupil Antony Liu has just been selected for the regional section of the National youth orchestra. Antony is a grade five violinist and also plays the piano and French horn. He attended auditions before Christmas and has been told that he has been selected to play with other gifted musicians who meet at Weston-Super-Mare each month on a Saturday. From here there is a possibility that he could continue on to further auditions which would see him playing in the prestigious National Youth Orchestra. Antony, who is from Barnstaple, is keen on all sorts of music but prefers the Classical genre. He would like to be a professional musician in the future and would particularly like to be a soloist.
Devon Schools U18 Sevens
In the Devon Schools tournament held at West Buckland, Blundell's first seven started well, beating the hosts 44-0. In the next pool game they defeated Petroc B team by 38-0 before winning again against Exeter College B. This saw them progress to the quarter final versus Torquay Grammar. This was a stiffer test but the team remained disciplined to record a 22-5 victory. The semi-final was against Exeter College first team who are the academy for Exeter Chiefs. Despite some ferocious play the attacking flair of the Blundellians was rewarded with a four try to one victory 22-5. This sent the boys through to meet Plymouth College who are the academy for Plymouth Albion. The college had an undefeated season in the fifteen aside code and their form showed. The game was well contested with Blundell's taking the lead. However, Plymouth never gave up and came back to level the scores. Excellent defensive work kept them at bay and Blundell's managed to score two more tries to seal a satisfying win, to be crowned the Devon Champs for 2011.
Rugby: Gifted and Talented
Some young rugby players from local schools attended a 'gifted and talented' rugby training session at Blundell's recently. The boys were under the guidance of Charlie Gabbitass from Blundell's who organised the day. They were put through their paces with coaches Tony Yapp and Jason Luff from Taunton RFC, Dan Richards from Blundell's and former England Womens' captain Jo Hubbleday. The boys were split into different groups and learnt new techniques and drills for both forwards and backs. Having been put through these gruelling sessions the boys finished with two games of full contact. Director of sport at Blundell's, Ed Saunders, commented that the afternoon had been a great success and he hoped to hold a similar session for even more schools in the future. Schools represented were Tiverton High, Heathfield, St Peters Exeter, West Exe College, Uffculme and Sidmouth.
Art: Saatchi Sculpture Prize Finalists
Blundellian artists have been once again recognised on the international stage with two pieces of sculpture being shortlisted to the final ten in the Saatchi Sculpture Prize for Schools. Saskia Simonson's (yr10 GH) 'Hairy Caterpillar' and William Scott and Christopher Hamilton's (8L SH) 'Treeman' will both go on exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery in London from 19 January. They stand a good chance of winning the £250 prize but simply being selected from the thousands of entries is rich reward for their efforts. Congratulations to them and their work, plus all the other excellent work we submitted, can be seen on the Saatchi Gallery website at www.saatchi-gallery.co.uk/portfolio/.
Clothes Show 2010 Trip
We arrived at the massive NEC Clothes Show Live 2010 and ranged out to cover as much of the visual feast as possible. The College forum and Designer catwalks this year were absolutely stunning but the jewel in the crown was, as ever, the main Catwalk show.
Being the second biggest stage in Europe it takes some filling, but this year it was breath-taking in its myriad of beautiful fashion, set design and dance performance.
Fundraising for Children in Need
Members of School House recently managed to raise almost £200 for Children in Need. The pupils made cakes at home with a Spotty Pudsy theme and sold them at School the following day. The sale occurred at break time and a tray of cakes was also sold to staff. Annie Hibberd made the biggest contribution, making over three dozen items. Pictured with some of the cakes are year eight pupils Georgie, Lydia, Charlie and Emily. House mistress Kate Woolford said she was very pleased at the wonderful response the pupils had made to the appeal.
Rugby: Prep Schools Barbarians
Four year eight boys have recently been selected to play for the South West division of the Prep Schools Barbarians. The selection process included a morning's coaching session which was attended by three Exeter Chiefs players. In the afternoon each year group played two matches and selection for the next stage was then decided. The boys were selected in the following positions. Fin Neusinger No. 8, Ben Steer No. 10, Cam Seymour No. 14 and Ben Summers at No. 7. The boys will now go on to play in the final trial at Rugby School before Christmas. Organiser Rob Holman was most impressed by the overall standard of the boys and said the Blundellians fully deserved their selection. The event was kindly sponsored by Ashfords Solicitors.
Baroness Dean Visits
Baroness Dean visited Blundell's recently. She has had a quite fascinating career, initially making her name as the leader of print union SOGAT in the clashes with Murdoch and the Thatcher government in the early 1980S. Since being ennobled she has served on a number of interesting committees including the powerful Lords committee on European Affairs and served as opposition whip in the mid-1990s.
Her talk gave some insight into British politics and the workings of our parliamentary democracy, with a special emphasis on the work of the second chamber. Her talk was an invaluable experience for our students and will hopefully motivate them to be increasingly engaged in political issues.
Laura MacBean has just passed her grade eight Associated Board exam in Violin with distinction, with a total of 140 out of a possible 150. Laura has been playing the violin for over six years and also plays the piano and is currently working towards grade eight in this discipline. She is the leader of the school orchestra and also sings in the choir and chamber choir. When not studying, Laura has been the goalkeeper for the girls' first eleven hockey team for the last three seasons. Her twin sister Alex is also studying for her grade eight at the moment. Although the girls are not studying music at A2 level they have worked particularly hard and fully deserve their success.
U14 Girls' Hockey success
The U14 girls hockey team have just been crowned Devon Champs. In the Exeter and district tournament held at the Blundell's astros last week the girls managed to defeat Okehampton 3-0, Maynards 1-0, Kings Ottery 7-0 and Exmouth 5-0. In the semi-final they dispatched Colyton 2-0 which sent them through to the county finals held at Exeter University. The girls' form held with further victories against West Buckland 3-0, Kelly College 2-0, South Dartmoor 6-0 and a 0-0 draw against Exeter. This secured overall first place and Blundell's will now represent Devon at the West Tournament at Millfield in December. Coach Debbie Hosking said the girls played particularly well and to score 29 goals and concede none was a remarkable achievement.
End 2 End: John O'Groats to Land's End Cycling Challenge for Charity
Lewis Honey and Max Neusinger (with friend Callum Stone) completed a John O'Groats to Land's End cycle ride this summer. In atrocious weather conditions in early July they managed to complete the distance in 10 days, averaging 100 miles a day. They managed to raise nearly £5000 in the process, for Exeter Leukaemia and the Devon Air Ambulance. The boys had been in training for several months prior to the ride and will be making a presentation at a forthcoming ball at Uplowman village hall on Friday 15th October.
Equestrian: Cattistock Pony Club and Bruton School's One Day Event
Blundell's had further equine success at the Cattistock Pony Club and Bruton School's One Day Event held at Aldon on Sunday 19th September, when Lola Watt and her pony Bledridge Maximillian, competing as an individual on behalf of Blundell's, won their Section. A lovely dressage test, proving the best in the arena, gave Lola an early lead and subsequent clear rounds cross country and show jumping meant that no-one could catch them.
U15 Girls' Hockey
The U15s girls' hockey team won the Sherborne tournament last Saturday. Wins against King's College and Leweston and a draw against Prior Park in the group stages meant the team progressed to a semi-final clash vs Sherborne. This match was decided on short corners, as was the final vs Prior Park.
Art Trip for Year 7
Year 7 pupils were treated to an excellent day at Broomhill Sculpture Park and Saunton Sands. The sun shone throughout and some very good work was produced, first sketching and then building sand sculptures with just enough time for a quick paddle at the end of the day. Many thanks to Miss Drew for organising the trip.