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A View From The Close 119 - 5th October 2018

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I write this at BIS in Lagos. It’s been a real experience to meet prospective parents and pupils, as well as host an Old Dovorian Reception last night on Victoria Island. It’s been super to share with old boys and girls what is happening at the school and how the spirit of the school they love is so strong.

My travels as a Head has reaffirmed my passion to ensure pupils get as many international opportunities as possible. Whilst here, I’m working hard to create school links which can develop with the College. Nigeria is only six hours away, and there is much we can learn from this extraordinary country.

Enjoy the rest of the VFTC!

As ever,

Gareth Doodes


Tuesday 25th September

U15 Hockey vs Sir Roger Manwood’s School

On Tuesday the U15 girls welcomed Sir Roger Manwood’s School for their second Hockey fixture of the year.

After a comprehensive victory last week, the girls knew that this would be a much more challenging fixture, made even more so by a number of illnesses meaning that only 11 girls were available.

Manwood’s started strongly and quickly went two goals up after a well worked short corner and a fast break. However, the Dover girls responded magnificently and pulled a goal back through Tyler Henderson (9, Duckworth). Despite long periods of pressure, another goal from a quick break meant that the girls trailed 3-1 at half time.

Captain Emily Calder (10, St Martin’s) rallied the visibly tired troops and started the second half on the front foot. More pressure and some improvements in defence led by Maisie Wells (9, St Martin’s) helped to stop further Manwood’s chances and Angelique Taylor (9, Duckworth) scored from a well worked short corner. More excellent work from the ever-tiring girls created a number of chances and, with 30 seconds left, Tyler was on the end of some fantastic passing to snatch a draw.

The game was played in a fantastic spirit by both sides with Manwood’s awarding Player of the Match to Lily Reif (11, Duckworth), but in reality, every single girl deserves recognition for their wonderful attitude and desire to work for each other.

U16 & U14 Girls Football vs DGGS

An already superb afternoon of girls’ sport was capped off by two tremendous football matches on The Close versus Dover Girls Grammar. The Under 16s played first and in a full blooded affair, with challenges to make members of the watching 1st XI wince, the game finished 0-0 with skipper Alicia Myers (10, Duckworth) playing a crucial role in keeping the opposition at bay, aided by Evy Siddans (11, Duckworth) and Marlene Sperling (11, St. Martin’s), amongst others, in a great defensive effort,

along with María Muñoz Pérez (11, Duckworth) and Maisie Wells offering an attacking threat. The Under 14 game, involving some members of Year 9 who were playing their third match of the afternoon, was a more open affair and after a goalmouth scramble Isla Taylor (7, Priory) slotted home to take the lead. The Girls Grammar fought back well and after equalising looked the stronger team through the middle of the second half. Our attack was still firing though and after Tyler Henderson and Angelique Taylor had split the defence with great runs, Avy Taylor (8, Priory) was able to fire into the top right corner to secure a 2-1 win.

U15 Football vs Paulus Mavo (Holland)

Paulus Mavo started the game well with precise passing and good movement, threatening our defence of Sebastian Klappa (10, School), Adam Frost (10, School) and Max Eigen (11, School), who stood firm at the start of this 8-a-side contest. Jaiden Flisher (10, School) was able to score a well taken chance, making amends for an early miss and we went into half time 1-0 up. The second half was much more open with both teams having further chances to score but goalkeeper Sam Dehghan (10, School) held them out to record an excellent win, filling the boys with confidence after disappointment in the Cup last week.

Wednesday 26th September

U13 Football vs St Edmund’s

3-2 win in A team, loss in B team. The A team boys warmed up for the Shapira Cup on Wednesday with an excellent performance against St Edmund’s at home. Of note on Wednesday was the unveiling of the Friends of Dover College’s latest donation ( to the College on the sporting front, a pair of weighted rollaway Junior goals, enabling all age categories to play with the correct size goals, and looking superbly smart in the bargain. This is indeed much appreciated by the whole of the College community and will be used by Priory for the remainder of the season, and by the girls’ teams for home Cup matches.

U14 Girls Football vs Astor

3-1 win thanks to goals from Avy Taylor, Tyler Henderson and Angelique Taylor at home on The Close. A cohesive and disciplined performance from the girls resulting in a well-deserved win.

Thursday 27th September

1st XI Hockey vs Battle Abbey

2-0 loss but much improved performance from the team with excellent work rate and discipline, only conceding from two short corners and with Summer Leigh (12, St Martin’s) making a superb one handed save high to her side keeping the opposition at bay on another occasion.

U14 Kent Cup football vs King Ethelbert’s

A trip to the North East Kent Riviera was the order of the day on Thursday afternoon for our first ever involvement in the Kent Cup with a girls’ team. On a freshly cut and marked pitch (but extremely challenging due to a severe slope) we started brightly and soon took the lead through Angelique Taylor. Our defence was solid, and although the opposition was made up of only Year 9 girls against our mix from years 7 to 9, we were on top of them in midfield, winning all the 50-50 tackles. After a Mr Higgins team talk at halftime, imploring them to continue in the same vein, the girls went one better, scoring twice more, Angelique again and a finish from Avy Taylor sealing the win. A measure of our second half dominance was that the ball entered our half only twice and Alicia Myers in goal did not touch the ball in the second half, testament to the girls’ work rate and commitment. This was the fifth match across three days in hockey and football for many of these girls, a magnificent effort which highlights their resilience and enthusiasm to represent the College, huge congratulations to all of them.

Saturday 29th September

1st XI vs Sevenoaks

On Saturday the first XI played their second competitive fixture of the season against Sevenoaks, a new fixture this year. Two weeks of hard training working on both fitness and movement was displayed on the pitch with us going in at half time 2-1 up with goals from Bekas Yusuf (12, Leamington) and Jack Hanson (12, Leamington). We battled well and some fine play saw us go into the last 5 minutes leading 4-3 with two more great goals from Bekas, his third so good that Liverpool’s Daniel Sturridge copied it on Saturday evening against Chelsea. Unfortunately, the victory was snatched from us as Sevenoaks equalised from a set piece in the final minutes of the game. Despite the disappointing finish it was a fantastic match and shows this team has great promise to have more success his season.

Other Sporting News

Duke of Edinburgh

As part of our Round Square Preparation, Leadership and Service play a big part. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme is central to the Leadership and Adventure aspects and the Headmaster has been delighted to present BRONZE awards to Emily Calder (10, St Martin’s) and Thomas Baker (10, School).

Shooting – Tom Baker
Tom Baker (10, School) has had a magnificent season of shooting. He has been asked to attend the British Shooting Olympic Talent Pool training on the 3rd November which should be a superb opportunity to showcase his talents but the following is a rundown of his achievements so far this year:

Essex Masters C Class Sporting Champion

Clay Classic C Class Sporting Champion

Clay Classic 2nd in Colt Class

World Colt Sportrap Champion

World Sporting Colt Bronze Medal

South East of England Colt Sportrap Champion

South of England Colt Sporting Champion

Colt Challenge Shootout at the Game Fair- shootout between the top 10 Colts in the country, 6th place.

he Churchill Challenge 4th Place in Juniors (U21 category)

British Open Colt Sportrap Silver Medal

British Open Colt Sporting Bronze Medal

In what has been his first real season of full competition this is an unbelievable effort, and one that he and the rest of us are very proud of.

Martial Arts – Emily Calder (10, St. Martin’s)
After years of training and with increased physical training this past five months, plus curriculum training over the past two years just six months since she achieved her 2nd Degree, Emily Calder travelled to Swindon on Friday evening to attend her 3rd Degree panel grading on Saturday 29th September, which proved to be an intensive four Hours of physical fitness and skills examination.

Emily was the only Martial Artist on the day going from 2nd to 3rd Degree – and as such had to perform continuous sparring with the other martial artists (so they all sparred against her and then came off while she had to continue onto the next opponent). We are delighted to say that Emily passed her 3rd Degree Black Belt – a total of 11 years in the making.

Emily is the sixth female to achieve this and the youngest in the UK!

Massive congratulations to Emily for this superb achievement, she is pictured below with Master David Finch

Swimming Success – Nathaniel Turner (8, Priory)
Over the past two weekends, Nathaniel Turner competed in a White Cliffs Short course and a Crawley long course gala against a large number of clubs. In total he swam 18 events, and achieved 16 golds medals, two silvers, eight Dover club records, 15 personal bests and several Kent County Championships 2019 auto qualifying times already! He was also the winner of the age 11-12/Skins competition in a continual race whereby the slowest swimmer is eliminated until one swimmer is left standing as the winner.

Motor Neurone Disease Cheque Presentation

College elected the Motor Neurone Disease Association as our charity of the year. The charity was specifically chosen in memory of Ronnie Philpott, who was our much-loved Independent listener and twice Dover Town who sadly passed away from the disease in May 2017.

During the year a large number of for the academic year of 2017-2018, Dover fundraising events were held, including a 15-mile whole school sponsored walk, themed non-uniform days, garden parties, cake sales, themed non-uniform days, garden parties, cake sales, ‘Whiskers for Ronnie’ and ‘100 Mile Month’ campaigns, and a whole host of other activities and events.

Due to the extraordinary work of pupils, parents and staff we were exceptionally pleased to be able to hand over a cheque of £10,431.35 to Clive and Lynn Hudson from MNDA East Kent on Monday 1st October. This sum of money will make a massive difference to the charity and the lives of many people living with MND in the East Kent area as well as their carers and families.

Thank you to the whole Dover College community for your support in our fundraising campaign for this charity.

National Poetry Day
Thursday 4th October was National Poetry Day. In order to inspire a love of literature and poetry Year 10 and Year 11 became guerrilla poets during their English lessons. This involved small groups performing poetry unannounced in other lessons. Their mission was to empower, uplift or inform others through this art. Poetry was read in unexpected places in the hope that it would touch the lives of those who perhaps normally would not listen to poetry. The guerilla tactics were thoroughly enjoyed by everyone.
Yzin Khader (10, Leamington) read Mr Patterson his favourite poem ever:

The Life That I Have
by Leo Marks

The life that I have

Is all that I have

And the life that I have

Is yours.

The love that I have

Of the life that I have

Is yours and yours and yours.

A sleep I shall have

A rest I shall have

Yet death will be but a pause.

For the peace of my years

In the long green grass

Will be yours and yours and yours

Volunteer Programme

This August, Mingxi (Emma) Xu (13, Duckworth) and Yaxin (Tim) Liu 13, (School) took part in a volunteer programme teaching English to students from Y1 to Y6. This is an incredibly worthwhile and selfless activity and the College is really proud of both Emma and Tim, and the Headmaster has a very special certificate of appreciation from the Principal of Wat Maeka School Thailand, Mr Duanglaew Lekpanyarot.

Global Radio: Make Some Noise!

On Friday, a team from Heart FM, Kent’s local radio station, spent the morning at Dover College as part of the celebration of “Global Radio Make Some Noise Day” – raising money and raising awareness of and for local small charities.  Live interviews with parents, staff and pupils in the LRC, and a flash dance for internet TV, was followed by a very loud “shout” event in The Great Hall involving all the boarders. The fun then moved on to the celebration assembly in the chapel where the loud noises and even louder clothing worn by pupils was much enjoyed -

Are you under 18 and in Year 12 or 13?  Want an amazing experience?

If your child is in Year 12 or 13 but not yet 18 years old, they are still eligible for the NCS Autumn Programme. This takes place over the October half-term and costs just an amazing £50 for the whole experience. 

This is an amazing experience for a hard-to-believe low cost.  It really IS just £50 for all of the experiences outlined in the flyer (including transport, meals and accommodation in Phase 1)! 

The spaces on the Autumn programme are limited and allocated on a first come first serve basis – so a speedy response is advised. This scheme is open to all Year 12 and 13 pupils – UK and International. 

Pupils in Year 12 and 13 should speak to Mr Cox for further details.  Alternatively, please log on to: or call the NCS team on: 0330 414 2504. The NCS office is open Monday – Friday, 9am to 9pm.

Digital Literacy Ambassadors

In addition to our PSHE programme, we have our new Digital Literacy and Citizenship curriculum that will be launched to all senior school pupils after half term. We also have a new group of Digital Literacy Ambassadors. These pupils are volunteers from the upper school that are being trained to support pupils with their day to day issues that can occur through the use of electronic devices or social media in its many guises.

The pupils, under the direction of the Deputy Head, will meet regularly to discuss issues that they feel are pertinent to them and the school. They themselves will offer a drop in session twice a week that allows pupils to ask questions about things that they may not be comfortable asking an adult about in the first instance.

The ambassadors will also be creating an area accessible by all pupils and staff on the shared area where all of the key websites and links are located. These can range from mental health to online bullying. We will still continue with our half termly Digital Literacy bulletin/newsletter for parents.

SRE Talk to Year 7 and 8

The College welcomed in Old Dovorian Georgia Dobbs and her colleague Freya from the local NHS Trust on Thursday morning. As part of the school’s Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) programme and our continued work with Sexual Relationships Education (SRE), The Year 7 and 8 pupils had their presentation for Sex and Personal Relationships. The remaining year groups will have their talks over the following weeks. The pupils came out of the lecture theatre suitably enthused and they all said how they enjoyed the interactive nature of the presentation and the depth of knowledge Georgia and Freya could deliver.

The purpose of these presentations is to provide knowledge and understanding of safe and healthy relationships based on love and respect. This is to encourage the eventual development of safe and healthy relationships in later life. The presentations will develop understanding and attitudes which will help pupils to form relationships in a responsible and healthy manner and to appreciate the value of stable family life, including the responsibilities of parenthood and marriage.  Each of the presentations are age appropriate and consist of a lecture followed by a discussion. The nurses stay for a short time after each session to answer any questions that the pupils may have in a smaller forum.

The dates for the next set of talks are below:

11th October:  Year 9
1st November: Year 10
8th November: Year 11
15th November: Sixth Form