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From the desk of the Head Master 18 May 2018

I think I have genuinely run out of anything to say – perhaps a sign that the time is nearly right to bow out. So, instead, I will just tell you a bit about the fun we have had in the last couple of weeks.

We had our first ever female Guest of Honour, Danielle Waterman, who was recently voted Women's Player of the Year, at our Rugby Presentation Evening. She spoke brilliantly and, I hope, challenged boys’ perceptions about gender and rugby.

The Deputy Headmaster and I sneaked out for a terrific day up at Beeston Hockey Club, Nottingham, to watch our Under 13 team compete in the National Hockey Finals. They were super and came away undefeated, winning three and drawing two matches, to leave them third in the country – an incredible achievement. I was delighted (and saddened) to see that we were the only school there to take any pupil supporters with us to enjoy what was a really great, if nail-biting, day.

Our absence also meant that the soon-departing Upper Sixth were spared us both for the day; this was good as, apparently, we do not have much of a sense of humour when it comes to boyish antics (they are correct of course – we would rather they were doing some work in the lead up to their exams… probably a rather old-fashioned view). Anyway, we returned home in time to host a really enjoyable, black-tie dinner to say thank you to our departing Prefects, who have been a truly outstanding team and have worked jolly hard.

The Upper Sixth Sunday Chapel Service duly followed and was both extremely well-attended and moving, even more moving for me than in previous years both because I joined the school just as this cohort joined the Lower Fourth and for the other obvious reason. And, after lots of goodbyes, the Upper Sixth did leave us this Tuesday and, hopefully, their exams will go well. We are rooting for them.

The Upper Fifth are getting further into their ‘ordeal’ as well and are starting to look a bit beleaguered, poor chaps. All fingers are crossed for them as well as they do battle with the beast. They are well-armed and should come through victorious.

And, finally, today should be uplifting as we hold our inaugural ‘Big Sing’ at lunchtime, inviting everyone to come along for 40 minutes of stress-busting singing for fun, billed as the perfect preparation for exam week!  Then the Junior School play, BATS, tonight, which is reported to be superb and I know will be.

Next week is going to be quieter, hopefully. Just a small matter of internal exams and that brilliant event that is the Lower Fourth sleep-out. How they stay up as late as they do at the end of a half term remains a mystery…