Monthly Archives

July 2016

Silver Duke of Edinburgh Final Expedition

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Congratulations go to our Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award group who have now successfully completed their final expedition

After brushing up on their skills in the Ribble Valley over Winter, and then undertaking a 3 day practice expedition in the North Yorkshire Dales in April, they headed up to Keswick on the 18th July for their assessed expedition.  Their 50km route was challenging right from the start with the terrain of the Lake District presenting some long and steep ascents, taking in the summits of Hopegill Head, Cat Bells and Glaramara over the three days, camping at Braithwaite and Seathwaite in between.  The Lakeland weather also added an extra challenge, ranging from torrential downpours to baking sunshine.

The teams worked well together, looking after each other and working hard to pass their assessment.  They did an excellent job and enjoyed the adventure.  Well done everyone, and thanks too to the D of E staff volunteers for giving up their time to guide them through.

Lancaster University Language Enrichment Event

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The Lancaster University Language Enrichment Event was a fun and exciting day!

At the beginning of the day, we had our first experience of a lecture theatre where we discussed how important it is to learn a foreign language.

Then, we participated in our first language taster session. There were three taster sessions in total where we were introduced to the languages of Mandarin, Italian and Latin.

These were very informative and interesting and were taught by enthusiastic teachers who involved the whole group.

There was also a Chinese cultural lesson where we were able to attempt calligraphy, including the writing of Chinese symbols and drawing a picture with Chinese brushes.

This was certainly a worthwhile event where we all learned a great deal and which renewed our enthusiasm for language learning.

Jac’s Candles Charity Donations

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Jac’s Candles donated their profits following the successful trading of candles in the Tycoon for Schools Enterprise Competition. The team: Sam, Jack Amy and Charlotte competed against over 400 other teams to finish 7th.  The charities to benefit for their success are Macmillan, Children with Cancer UK and The Pink Ribbon Foundation.


Bowling Treat

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After a number of inter house activities over the course of the year between our two houses martyrs and scholars.

Scholars earned the most points and went out on a trip to the bowling alley in Burnley in celebration of their win.

Over the past years Martyrs have won but this year Scholars pulled through and won for the first time in a while!

We enjoyed playing bowling, playing in the arcade and overall it was a successful and fun time for all involved and a great end of year celebration.

World War 1 Battlefields Cycle Tour Day Five

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This morning’s skies were scattered with cloud and flashes of sunshine and on and off periods of strong wind which continued throughout the day. Our first stop was at Sanctuary Wood intended literally as a sanctuary for wounded Allied troops. The farmer who owned the land there returned after the war and ever since his family have been displaying the military equipment, guns and fantastically detailed, recreated photographs of the war in 3D in a small museum. These 3D photographs offered real depth and realism to the horrific conditions endured by the soldiers, civilians and horses. There were also original trenches and a concrete tunnel rediscovered after the war. We then visited the nearby cemetery and found the grave of the brother of Neville Talbot who created Talbot House and named it after his fallen sibling.

Then we visited Hill 62: the main memorial to the fallen Canadian soldiers in the Great War and was a very strategic position over the surrounding lowland for the army that could capture it.

Onwards to the Messine Ridge we were drenched in heavy rain and hailstones from a passing thunderstorm. Here we learnt (from Mr Jepson) how important it was for the British to hold it to protect their own forces from German shelling due to its own elevation above the surrounding area.

On this ridge was the Irish Peace Park, a memorial to the Irish soldiers who fell in the war both Protestant and Catholic. In the centre stands a huge Gaelic tower reminiscent of the Irish towers inhabited by monks in the Middle Ages.

We then saw Lone Tree Crater a large pond and surrounding depression created by one of 19 high explosive mines which were detonated in underground tunnels in July 1917 as part of the offensive on the Messine Ridge.

Back at Talbot House, we were allowed into the on site museum about the entertainment at the house and its famous landlord “Tubby” Philip Clayton who was an incredible character.

We then took the train to Ypres and took part in the daily ceremony at the Menin Gate laying a wreath with other schools groups and representatives from the army.


World War 1 Battlefields Cycle Tour Day Four

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Today it was cloudy to start and very chilly compared to the hot weather we have enjoyed so far. In the morning, we visited the ‘In Flanders Fields Museum’ which gave a comprehensive account of the Great War and the people who fought in it. The museum itself was in a huge building rebuilt after being levelled in the war.

We cycled out into the windy countryside until lunchtime where we stopped in St. Julien to see the Brooding Soldier; a memorial to the fallen Canadian forces who encountered a gas attack on the hill the memorial was placed.

We then had a brilliant lunch of baguettes, ham and creamy cheese, yum.

Next, we cycled down the road to the German Langemark Cemetery which was noticeably less well tended. There multiple soldiers in each grave and one mass grave since, after the war, the Germans looked back on the war in shame.

We then cycled to the Cross of Reconciliation which itself was on the site of a previous memorial destroyed by the Nazis because its phrasing insulted the German people.

The sun then came out warming us all up but the wind only got stronger.

After that, we visited the Yorkshire Trench North of Ypres which remains an extensive underground bunker system used to take cover from the German attack. It was discovered by the leader of the amateur archaeologist group ‘De Diggers’ led by a man called Patrick who had been excavating the trenches for 17 years before breathing in mustard gas from a gas canister and falling very ill. We met Patrick himself and his wife who showed us his own photo collection of his findings which included 155 remains of soldiers, half of them British. He then invited us to his museum which showed us how the war affected the surrounding area.

Lucy then smashed into her second bollard of the day taking out Isabelle too! Luckily neither were injured.

Finally, we payed our respects to the Essex Farm Dressing Bunker, a medical safe haven, and the adjacent cemetery. The Bunker itself was little more than a thick concrete box with every other ward being no more than three feet wide.

The teachers are now sitting outside sharing fruit juice while the rest of us are watching sport on the TV.



World War 1 Battlefields Cycle Tour Day Three

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Today we began exploring the Battlefields area around Ypres, heading first to the town centre to see the Menin Gate.  This is a memorial to the fallen who were never recovered, and with around 72,000 names recorded it brought home the devastation of the Great War.

We then cycled on to Zonnebekke, to visit the Passchendaele museum where we saw many artefacts from the war and sampled life in the trenches.  After lunch we cycled up to Tyne Cot, the largest war graves cemetery in the area which was also a breath taking sight and reminder of tremendous loss of life.   Here we also located the name on the memorial of a local soldier we had researched, Frances Davis, who was from Whalley and died in the 3rd battle of Ypres

We left Tyne Cot and cycled south to Zandvoorde, to visit the grave of the second soldier in our research, Allan Edwin Barnes, who was born in Billington.  We took a picture to add to the local history collection in Whalley library.

We then headed back to our base at Talbot House.  On the way back we visited Hill 60 which was a site of conflict, involving trench and tunnel warfare.  It was a busy day in hot weather but everybody did very well cycling a total of 59km.  We have just finished off the day with an excellent meal in Poperinge.


World War 1 Battlefields Cycle Tour Day Two

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Today began with an early start in Ramsgate as we travelled to Dover for the ferry. During the boat ride, all enjoyed a hot brunch. Then we arrived to sunny Dunkirk where the weather greeted us finely as we began our bike ride of 33 miles to Poperinge.

The ride was beautiful and through many pretty hamlets, chalets and fields. When we arrived at Talbot House – our residence for a few nights, we unpacked and headed off to the town centre where a fair was set out.

Next we enjoyed a good dinner at a pizza restaurant and finally relaxed into a gorgeous evening at the hotel.


Year 8 Olympics

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Year 8 were getting ready for Rio as they were challenged to make the Olympic Rings in the correct colours and in the correct position using chemical reactions. It was quite a tough task as it used Chemical reactions from Biology and Chemistry to generate the right outcome.

However Amy, Phoebe, Freddie and James romped home with the gold as they methodically worked through the reactions to get the rings right! A great end of term activity – well done to every team who all deserved to stand on the winners podium!

Year 8 Activity Week Day Three

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On Day 3, Year 8 ventured out and about dressed in classic British summer gear of wellies and raincoats. The staff at Gawthorpe Hall made us very welcome as we tackled their orienteering course in the morning in driving rain! Arthur and Niall were the first to complete with all 10 letters correct.

The cafe provided some hot drinks to warm us up and then we toured the beautiful and fascinating home of the Kay-Shuttleworth, family answering a quiz about the history of the hall in our teams. It was the final day of the team competition and the results were very close. Isabelle and Ellis won overall but all teams performed brilliantly and worked well together. Tomorrow we undertake our hike and overnight camp. Let’s hope the weather stays dry!

Year 8 Activity Week Day Two

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Today was about cooking on a budget and a DT project. In the morning we made our own dough and then went to Clitheroe Market to purchase our toppings for homemade pizzas BUT only with a limited amount of money.

Students then ate their pizzas and were judged on design, cost and teamwork.

In the afternoon we thought about the capsule which returned Tim Peake to earth and built our own space capsule to deliver our eggs safely to earth from the Science Room window.

Mr Lacy kindly dropped the final builds out of the window and judged the designs overall. Amazingly two capsules returned the egg intact- we are awaiting a phone call from the ESA!

Another brilliant day by Year 8 with excellent cooperation, kindness and creativity!

Year 8 Activity Week Day One

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Year 8’s activity week is about team work and outdoor learning which doesn’t cost the earth. Students are in paired teams for the first three days and competing on working well together and completing tasks. On our first day, they played team sports in the morning and then undertook two field crafts- building a fire and boiling a kettle and putting up tents.

The students all worked brilliantly and have really entered into the spirit of the week. All successfully established a fire and boiled their water. Tents were also put up and packed away which will help them on our camping trip later in the week.

Art Exhibition

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June saw the culmination of two years of hard work by the Y11 Art and Design students in the end of year Art Exhibition.

Students presented a dazzling display which included blown glass, oil painting, pen illustration, digital art, sculpture, watercolour and ink, mixed-media, textiles and installation fine art.

The visiting examiner praised the dedication and skills of the students.

The exhibition also included some superb examples of the creative talent from the up and coming Year 10 students.

Look out for them next year!

Let’s Go Fly A Kite

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Year Three had great fun flying kites last week. However their kites were no ordinary kites. Year Three have been studying kites as a focus for their design and technology lessons this term.

They have been looking at kite designs in detail and then had a go at making a first kite from a design kit. All the kites managed to get into the air…despite a severe lack of wind.

Year Three are now in the process of building their own kite, inspired by their own designs…and praying for wind!