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Twelve Days of Advent

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Everyone has had an amazing time participating in the festive activities recently. Thank you to the Oakhill staff for your fantastic efforts and thank you to the pupils who continue to make us all very proud.

If you missed any of our festive videos on Facebook, head over to our YouTube page: youtube.com/user/OakhillCollege1

Wishing you a peaceful, holy and happy Christmas from everyone at Oakhill School and Nursery.

Twelve Days of Advent

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We are very keen that our students do not miss out on the normal Christmas activities, and we will be keeping you up-to-date with all the festivities that are happening at Oakhill within the next few weeks on our Facebook page.
We are also looking to share our videos with residents of local care homes and people who are known to us through our local churches who would appreciate a little cheering up this Christmas.
We hope you enjoy it!

Delicious New Appointment!

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Oakhill School has risen to culinary heights with the appointment of a Chef to cater for pupils and staff alike. Mark Wilkinson, who joined Oakhill after Easter and has a prestigious résume´ having worked in Michelin starred and famous restaurants throughout the country. Mark is passionate about nutritionally balanced meals and encouraging young people to try new flavours and a very special recipe is causing quite a stir!

His career path is impressive and started at the Sharrow Bay Hotel in Ullswater where he worked for two years post graduating and brings with him the famous ‘Sticky Toffee Pudding’ recipe. His next posting was with John Burton Race at then 2 Michelin star ‘L’Otrolan’ near Reading. Mark rose from Commis Chef to Chef de Partie in this time. Paul Heathcote and ‘The Longridge Restaurant’ followed and this is where he feels he really honed his skills working with butchery, fish preparation, desserts, sauces and the appreciation of the provenance of local foods.

Meeting his wife Catherine at the Bailey Arms in Hurst Green and starting a family brought about new adventures. Whilst working with his wife in a Blackburn Care Home, Mark was awarded ‘National Chef of the Year in the Care Sector’ in 2007. The arrival of their second child bought another change, this time gaining a Teaching qualification at Harrogate College and ultimately being the teacher there for Level 1, 2 and 3 Professional Cookery. This year their third child was born in January and Mark really wanted to be near home, enter Oakhill and the opportunity to make a difference without working evenings, weekends or away.

At school all the dishes are freshly prepared and some of the favourites appear to be the fresh Fishcakes, the poached Salmon with Dill, Spinach and Ricotta Lasagna and fresh fruit tartlets. Furthermore, Mark has specialist skills in Patisserie and Chocolate work which will come to the fore in September when Oakhill celebrates it’s 40th Anniversary with a Ball catered by Mark and the team.

Everyone is enjoying the benefits of delicious, nutritious food in their school day.

The Big Bonfire just got BIGGER!

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Friday 10th November saw a record 600 people enjoy a spectacular firework display, roaring bonfire and Meat and Potato Pie supper. Drinks were flowing in the Atrium bar and this year the Churros van was exceedingly popular, as were the neon sticks and cakes on sale by the PTA. Thank you all for supporting the event and the home team for all their hard work.

Annual Book Fair

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The Pre-Prep and Prep School Annual Book Fair returns next week. There are books galore for all ages and it’s never too early to think about Christmas pressies! So come along to the Millennium Hall at 3.50pm on Thursday 5th, Friday 6th, Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th October.

For every one pound spent the school gets 50p back in books. Last year the book fair raised nearly £800 so the school got back nearly £400 which was spent on class sets of dictionaries, thesauruses and group reading books.

Hope to see you there.


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The Art GCSE course for both Year 10 and Year 11 begins with observational drawing.

The Year 11s visited Whalley Abbey to take photographs and sketch the ruins as part of their Architecture project.

Meanwhile Year 10s have been producing fantastic line drawings of flowers and plants for their Flora and Fauna project.

Year 4 Classification Of Animals

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Year 4 had a ‘real’ treat in store for them when they arrived at their Science lesson last week. They have been looking at the classification of animals into the main groups of vertebrates and invertebrates so what better way than to look at the real thing.

Jack kindly brought in his African snails and shared his extensive knowledge with us telling us about their diet and habits. We then dissected a trout to observe the backbone and identify similarities and differences that exist between the organs of other animals.

We all found out a lot about the two different creatures and thank Jack for allowing us to use his pets.

Languages Week

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On Thursday morning, we began a week-long celebration of languages with an assembly from Madame Crouch, wearing the colours of the Tricolore, entirely in French. Monsieur Lacy and Monsieur McGuinness captained house teams who battled to identify the languages of the songs they heard. Eventually, les Savants (Scholars) were narrowly beaten by les Martyres. We’re looking forward to more language-based activities this week culminating in the annual lunch menu of foods from other cultures on Thursday.

Oakhill School Challenge Cup winners 2017

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Yesterday Mrs Smith attended the Ribble Valley and Hyndburn school sports partnership annual conference and came away with a handful of awards! The awards were given out by Jenna Downing, the world champion inline skater.

Last year Oakhill were awarded second place, at that point Mrs Smith set herself, the department and our pupils the challenge of going for the top spot this year! This mission was accomplished and Oakhill were awarded The Challenge Cup for the academic year 2016/17.

This award recognises busy, active and successful PE departments within schools. Schools are awarded points for every team that they enter into competitions within the borough. Bonus points are given if a school is placed at the event. With Oakhill entering A, B and even C teams in a number of sports we obtained a good amount of points.

With successes in football, dodgeball, basketball, orienteering, girls and boys cricket, tri golf and sports hall athletics due to fantastic hard work and commitment from our pupils, staff and coaches we came away the overall winner of the whole borough! This is a fantastic achievement that we are all very proud of.

Three of our pupils also won individual awards in the cultural competition to design a flag to represent our borough at the level 3 school games. These had to encapsulate a passion for sport, the ethos of the games and an artistic flair. Poppy, Pippa and Joseph all from Year 6 won these awards. These 3 pupils were invited to lead out the borough at the opening ceremony of the games with their flag made up.

Senior Student Council

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We are delighted to present our new Senior Student Council who will be working under the guidance and leadership of Molly and Tyler, our Deputy Head Girl and Boy. All students elected their representatives at our school polling station last week and competition was fierce in some forms with excellent speeches made by all candidates. Miss Cunningham and Mrs Pugh are looking forward to working alongside the new Council and sharing their good ideas. Keep up to date with their work on the Oakhill website

World Faiths Day

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This year our world religion focus is on Buddhism and for World Faiths Day Seniors went to the Buddhist Temple in Ulverston.

We were guided by our Buddhist teacher, Jeff, who led us in meditation and guided us around the Temple, explaining many different aspects of Buddhism.

Lunch was taken in Conishead Priory and then students were able to take a reflective walk to the beach.

The Temple is a very impressive building and the atmosphere in and around the retreat centre at Conishead Priory is very peaceful and relaxing.

A very interesting and informative day and many thanks to Jeff and the Buddhist community for warmly welcoming us.


Prep Student Council

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A new school  year and we have a new Prep Student Council. Last week the children were busy campaigning for their place and on Friday the children voted for the people they thought would best represent their class and school.

The votes have been counted and verified and the results are as follows…

Reception – Jasper
Year 1 – Lucia
Year 2 – George
Year 3 – Jake  & Isabelle
Year 4 – Zakary & Jamimah
Year 5 – Taylor & Mairead
Year 6 – Joe & Pippa

We are very excited to get started and stuck in this year and hope we can do just as well as last year.


Reception Class 2017

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We would like to introduce our Reception class for 2017, who are all looking very smart.

They have all settled in really well making friends and enjoying their lessons especially their Spanish lessons. We are sure they will continue to enjoy their time with us at Oakhill.


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The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) lessons continue to grow stronger here at Oakhill. Last year there were 52 students from Prep all the way through to the Seniors who took these lessons with our teacher Claire Haymes.

The LAMDA lessons are a great extra curricular lesson for our pupils as they help with reading and literacy skills, confidence, communication skills, diction and of course performance skills. The examinations with LAMDA also enable our students to gain extra UCAS points if they wish to attend University in the future.

Recently 29 of our LAMDA students took examinations with LAMDA in June. The results were outstanding, with students gaining either a Merit or Distinction, 25 out of the 29 gained a distinction!

The results are fantastic and we would like to say a huge well done to all those who took the recent examinations, the results really are a testament to all their hard work and talent. A special mention must go to Scarlett Year 1, Imogen Year 3 and Olivia Year 4 who all gained full marks, 100%! We would also like to say well done to those students who didn’t take exams this time but have all still been working so hard during their Speech and Drama lessons and their progression has also been outstanding.

LAMDA lessons have already started in school so students are well under way to achieving excellent exam results again this school year! There a few spaces available for lessons but they are very limited so will be allocated on a first come, first serve basis.

The full marks are below:

Lottie Ashby Verse and Prose Intro Stage 3: Distinction 87
Rocco Lewis Acting Entry: Distinction 89
Isabella Zappa Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 89
Katie Hennighan Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Merit 76
Imogen Wilson Acting Entry: Distinction 80
Francesca Brett Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 84
Caspar Cort Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 81
Jemima Cort Verse and Prose Intro Stage 1: Distinction 88
Eliza Taylor Verse and Prose Grade 1: Merit 69
Lilly- Ella Smith Acting Entry: Distinction 98
Scarlett Smith Verse and Prose Intro Stage 1: Distinction 100
Jacob Walsh Verse and Prose Intro Stage 1: Distinction 95
Isobella Howson Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 95
Noah Howson Acting Entry: Distinction 83
Thomas Ashworth Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 89
Ivy Ashworth Verse and Prose Intro Stage 1: Distinction 91
Evan Black Verse and Prose Intro Stage 2: Distinction 88
Roman Allison Acting Entry: Distinction 85
Imogen Allison Verse and Prose Intro Stage 3: Distinction 100
Zara Pycock Acting Entry: Distinction 81
Olivia Currie Verse and Prose Entry: Distinction 100
Georgia Rishton Verse and Prose Entry: Distinction 95
Jessica Rishton Verse and Prose Intro Stage 1: Distinction 80
Isabelle Baron Verse and Prose Intro Stage 3: Distinction 95
Edward Starkie Acting Entry: Distinction 83
Esme Hargreaves- Norris Verse and Prose Entry: Distinction 92
Emilie- Anne Hudson Acting Grade 1: Merit 69
Thomas Kelly Verse and Prose Grade 1: Merit 72
Nellie Wilson Acting Entry: Distinction 80

Rapping Success

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Year 8 had fun writing their own raps in the Summer term, getting out of their comfort zone to explore language in new ways.  Many members of the class did so well that they are going to be published in a new anthology, entitled ‘Busta Rhymes’.  Well done to all our published poets!

James’ Mountain Marathon

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James in Year Ten took on the OMM (Original Mountain Marathon) in Wensleydale at the weekend.  The competition brings together fell runners and mountain bikers as they tackle a gruelling two-day mountain orienteering challenge on a very large scale.  As one of the youngest competitors at the event, James joined dad John to form a generation team.

The challenge involved a 5 hour run on Saturday followed by a 4 hour run on Sunday.  The aim of the challenge was to navigate and locate as many control points as possible and build up team points over the two days.  As this was his first time attempting the challenge James wasn’t sure how far he would run or how hard it would be!  He did extremely well running a total of 44km over the weekend – an incredible achievement which was further than a marathon involving many long and steep climbs on the peaks around Hawes.  His achievement was all the more impressive considering the terrible wet weather on Sunday.  Well done James!

Year 11 GCSE Success

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We are delighted with this year’s GCSE results which once again prove the hard work of both pupils and staff to ensure that all pupils achieve their potential. We had 100% pass rate in many subjects including modern languages.  In Maths we had a 100% pass rate with one of our pupils achieve the highest grade 9. With an overall A*- C pass rate of 87%, the second highest in the last five years, we are confident that in spite of the challenging changes to GCSE we are in a very strong position with excellent teaching staff and pupils who are keen to make the most of the opportunities available to them. As a school we celebrate their outstanding achievements.


Day Twelve Dover to Durness

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We did it! After our final 2 days in the Highlands the D2D team dipped their wheels in the sea at Durness on Sunday afternoon. This marks the end of a great 800 mile journey from Dover. The adventure continues as we head to Cape Wrath this morning, thankfully on a ferry rather than a bike! Thanks to everyone for their support, kind words and donations. We look forward to heading home tomorrow to tell everyone about our adventure. The D2D team. 

Please visit www.justgiving.com/OakhillThePeruMission to support our cause


Day Eleven Dover to Durness

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Today we awoke to a rainy morning and were treated to a full Scottish breakfast at a local hotel in Braemar by Mr. Lutwyche. This was an excellent treat which allowed us to avoid both the rain and the midgies.

Day Ten Dover To Durness

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This morning we woke up to nice weather and we could see the mist over the Cairngorms mountains and the sun creating a fantastic atmosphere for our ninth day of riding.

We ride through quiet country roads and had coffee in Perth. We then visited Scone Palace where the kings of Scotland were crowned.


Day Nine Dover To Durness

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Today we left Melrose early in the sunshine and had a great start climbing through a valley towards Edinburgh.

Then we enjoyed a great downhill into the city and lunch in Dalmeny.

Day Eight Dover To Durness

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Today we started off in Chollerford (England) and we concluded the ride in Melrose (Scotland) a distance of 67 miles.

The border between the two countries was something that the group was looking forward to;  I certainly realised just how big England is…

Day Seven Dover To Durness

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Today we left Danby Wiske in North Yorkshire and enjoyed many miles of quiet country lanes.  We then passed into County Durham and had a morning coffee in Shildon.

The biggest shock for many today was the introduction of hills to our route after 5 days of cycling in flat country.

We had four big climbs, three of which were before lunch so we were glad to see the minibus in Lanchester to raid it for cake.

Day Six Dover To Durness

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We started day 6 of our great adventure beneath a clear and cloudless sky.

Our route north first took us along the southern bank of the river Humber to the inland seaport of Goole.

We then crossed the river Ouse at Boothferry Bridge, the lowest bridging point on the river before the construction of the great Humber Suspension Bridge.

Day Five Dover To Durness

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We woke up this morning to nice sunny weather, looking forward to another sunny day of cycling. The route started with a small batch of Lincolnshire hills which led on to a flat patch, then back to hills towards the end of the day.

During the bike ride, we stopped off in Lincoln for a coffee break and to meet up with a couple of Mr Lutwyche’s childhood friends.

About 10 miles later we passed the RAF Scampton, which is where the “Dambuster” aeroplanes of World War 2 set off to war. We paid our respects to the fallen airmen at the memorial dedicated to those that died at war for the country.

Day Four Dover To Durness

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Day 4 and we planned to progress north from Cambridge to Lincolnshire. Flat with a westerly breeze and blue skies; a perfect journey in the making!

After battling with the numerous workers for the campsite showers, we set off at 8:03; only three minutes later than Mr Peel expected. With firm instruction for no more punctures, at pain of death, all was well. We delivered the first 15 miles at great pace and enjoyed a delightfully unhealthy trip to the local bakery in Ramsey.

The next 20 miles took us though some utterly delightful countryside. Clearly the heart of the UK’s arable farming activities with mile upon mile of crops. Jumping into Lincolnshire the crop of choice converted to potatoes with the occasional very strong odour of onions hitting us on the westerly breeze.

We enjoyed lunch at the idyllic village of Crowland and the Spar did some great trade with 10 ravenous bodies in need of sustenance. Friday lunch, and the local lads from the pub opposite were most engaging in wishing us all the best for our journey.

Finally we reached our destination of Folkingham and headed straight to the local drinking frequent to join the progressing wake. We’ll cut the blog short as the evening feast is landing on our table as I type.

Jonathan Lutwyche

Day Three Dover To Durness

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After the atrocious weather yesterday, we all woke up feeling apprehensive about the day ahead. The ride was fairly easy and fortunately the sun started to show through the clouds which made us all feel better.

We stopped off for lunch at Hatfield Broad Oak where Mrs Sutterby met us for lunch with the sandwiches that we had bought earlier and we enjoyed the short break before heading on to the campsite in Chittering, which is just north of Cambridge.

Today was by far the worst day for punctures, with 8 popped tyres, but we’ve had a good dinner and are all feeling ready for the days that lie ahead!

Tyler Phillips and Louis Coupe

Day Two Dover To Durness

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Today was a day of two halves for the D2D team.  We started our 800 mile adventure this morning, leaving the cliffs of Dover in glorious sunshine under blue skies. We then enjoyed the rest of the morning cycling along quiet lanes through the Kent countryside.

Unfortunately the afternoon brought a change in weather and garden of England quickly became more like a big pond, receiving a months rainfall in one afternoon! Battling through the rain and endless puddles our team bravely made it to the Thames estuary.  The original plan was to cross on the Tilbury ferry but due to the weather we had to opt for Mrs. Sutterby’s bus instead!  We are now heading to the campsite to dry out and then the pub to get fed!  60 miles covered today and hopefully we’ve had all the rain for the entire journey.

Fingers crossed for a dry day tomorrow.

Mr Peel