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A View from The Close 123 - 16th November 2018

Dear Parents and Guardians,

It has been an extraordinary week for the College. Remembrance Sunday was incredibly special, and the unveiling of the statue of Billie Nevill by the Chairman of Governors a poignant and historic moment for the College. I was delighted to see so many people at the service, and am especially grateful to the Choir, to the Director of Music, the Chaplain, Fr Michael Farthing who assisted, and all those who laid wreaths. It was especially wonderful to welcome relatives of Billie Nevill to the service, some of whom had only made contact due to the BBC news report that broadcast two weeks ago.

I spent two rather hectic days in Paris whilst the College continued to forge forward. We’ve had a number of successful matches (see below) as well as a very enjoyable St. Martin’s Day Feast last night. This weekend there’s lots going on, including a School House Adventure Weekend Trip and a group visiting Twickenham for the England vs. Japan rugby match.

And to top it all, the College has been shortlisted for three TES Independent School of the Year Awards for 2019. This is an awesome achievement, especially after we were shortlisted last year for two awards, namely the Creativity Award and the Marketing Award.

This year we’ve gone one step further. We’ve been shortlisted for the following:

In recognition of the connected curriculum and the work that the College undertook on developing the A Level+ and Careers Programme alongside the enrichment options in the form of the Thinking Differently Course and the Leadership and Skills Course.

In recognition of the leadership of the College, the research and introduction of the development plan and the turnaround of the College’s fortunes in terms of its pastoral provision and academic ambition.

In recognition of the new curriculum, the College’s leadership and the pastoral care for pupils, most specifically the celebration of the pupil voice and the systems in place to protect and support children.

Needless to say we’re absolutely delighted. It will be publicised widely, and the awards take place in February. I am incredibly proud of the SMT for this achievement, and the staff for all they are doing, and the pupils who are all absolutely wonderful!

As ever,

Gareth Doodes.

Remembrance Day 2018
As a mark of respect to the 177 World War One fallen Old Dovorians, Dover College held a passionate service in the College memorial chapel on Remembrance Sunday. The service incorporated an unveiling ceremony of a statue of Captain Wilfred ‘Billie’ Nevill. Billie led the renowned football charge, kicking a ball into No Man’s Land against the enemy on the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

Sculpted by talented sculptor Hannah Stewart, ‘Billie’ now stands proudly in the centre of the College campus dressed in his uniform, with the football at his feet, looking out across The Close contemplating what lies ahead. The statue serves as a lasting memorial to the 177 Old Dovorians who died in the Great War, sacrificing their lives for freedom and justice.

The Headmaster, Mr Gareth Doodes, delivered a powerful, thought provoking address bringing home the enormity of the challenge faced by young men who as boys ran around the Close, sat in the seats we sit in today, played in the school teams and worked hard for their bright futures which were cut short by the onset of war.

Pupils across the College marked one of the most notable dates in the College’s history by creating a sea of red poppies across the lawn inspired by the ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’ display at the Tower of London in November 2014. Each of the fallen Old Dovorians was represented by an individual poppy produced using recycled materials including plastic spoons which were melted down to create the vibrant petals.

Guests to the College on Remembrance Sunday, included parents, pupils, staff, Governors, Old Dovorians and local dignitaries, who concluded the day with a hot mug of soup and chunky bread in the College’s Refectory. The oldest Refectory in England still used for the purpose for which it was built was lined with pupil works paying tribute to those that had gone before them.


Tuesday 6th November
U15B Football vs Gad’s Hill
A development side faced a physical Gad’s team at Farthingloe in what turned out to be a thrilling encounter. Despite being 6-1 down at one point, our boys fought back superbly, narrowly losing 6-5 after four goals on less than ten minutes, including a hattrick from Jarred Tobin (10, Leamington) who found his scoring touch again, finishing with aplomb. The strong winds made for a very lop-sided match, as all aspects of play were affected

U15 Hockey vs Ashford
A 1-1 final score was a great return for the girls, playing against a strong Ashford A team side away from home. Lottie Hide (9, St Martin’s) scored a goal, hitting across the keeper into the far corner and Libby Turbutt (9, St Martin’s) was nominated as Player of the Match by the opposition for her all action performance.

Wednesday 7th November
U13 Hockey vs Northbourne Park
Despite a Player of the Match performance from captain Avy Taylor (8, Priory), the U13s went down at Three Hills to Northbourne who followed up their home win with a powerful victory against our girls.

Battle Abbey Exchange
21 Priory pupils travelled down to East Sussex for the first leg of our annual exchange. After an evening of outdoor play, bonding and all you can eat pizza, topped by a sleepless night, staff were delighted to find spirits and energy still high on Saturday morning for the football and hockey matches. The boys triumphed in their football match, scoring four goals in the process, including one from A team debutant Hayden Pepper (7, Priory), but the girls could not follow up their win from earlier in the season, losing their fixture. Nevertheless, it was another superb experience for our pupils, who remained excellent ambassadors for the College throughout.

Junior School Sport
The U11 Football Team took part in the prestigious Metherall Cup Tournament at Junior King’s School, Canterbury. Having never progressed through the group stage, Dover College were determined to achieve that this year. They were in a tough group with Junior King’s, St Edmund’s and Northbourne Park. The first game went well with DC achieving a 2-0 victory over Northbourne Park. A great team performance with Chayce Tobin (6) scoring two great goals. DC didn’t concede in any of the other group games but couldn’t find the back of the net either, drawing 0-0 with St Edmund’s and Junior King’s. Both games the team dominated but ended in a stalemate. However, DC’s points tally was enough for us to make it through to face Ashford in the semi-final. The boys were nervous as Ashford have been a bit of a nemesis recently and have put the team out of the last three tournaments played. The semi-final was a nervous affair and it went into extra time after a 0-0 result, Ronnie Meadows (6) keeping things alive with a fabulous save. With seconds to go before penalties, Chayce seized upon a defensive error and whistled one in the far corner. The final whistle blew and Dover College were in the final!

The team faced Junior King’s again. A few minutes in saw Freddie Fairclough (6) put through by Chayce and he slid in bravely to put the team 1-0 up. Everyone battled their hardest. Monty Taylor (6) and Thomas Walmesley (6) were defending valiantly and the midfield were still running hard despite being exhausted. Three minutes to go and disaster struck. A mix up in defence let King’s score directly from a corner. With extra time beckoning, Chayce unleashed a thunderbolt only to see it rebound off the inside of the post. The whistle went immediately after that strike and went into extra time. It was now difficult to see as it was getting dark. The extra time had all but elapsed and a loss of concentration allowed King’s to score the winner. So close!

Well done to all the boys who played their hearts out and represented Dover College with pride against some larger schools.

Young Writers Competition
Eight Priory House pupils have had their Stranger Sagas chosen to be published in a recent Young Writers competition. Inspired by a story starter sentence they each had just 100 words to complete their entry. The work was chosen for: perception, imagination and creativity as well as expression, originality and use of language. The standard of entry was very high therefore congratulations go to the following:

Archie Seward for Escape from Area 51
Clayton Ferguson for D-Day
August Moos for The Secret Passage
Avy Taylor for Always Do What You’re Told

Nathaniel Turner for The Dangers of Robbery
Nicholas Proctor for Falling
Xavier Foord for Trapped
Harry Martin for The Cabin

Year 9 students chosen were:

Jodie Runciman-Jones (St Martin’s) for The Lockdown
Max Ritchie-Coombs (School) for The Beginning Of The End
Tyler Henderson (Duckworth) for When They Come, Darkness Follows
Charlotte Hide (St Martin’s) for Searching, Waiting
Maisie Wells (St Martin’s) for The Statue
Kirsten Blackburn (Duckworth) for The Witch’s Flame

Amira Ostalski-Khan (Duckworth) for Desperate

Year 11 students chosen were:

Harrison Seal (Leamington) for Grandma
Mia Deverson (St Martin’s) for Beast From The East
Layth Khader (School) for Scorched Luck
Harvey Mashiter-Yates (Leamington) for The Journey
Shania Marriott (Duckworth) for The Twin
Tilly Turnbull (St Martin’s) for Bewildered

Stranger Sagas – Kent Mysteries is due for publication on 31st December 2018. A copy will be available for all of the School to view in the Learning Resource Centre after that date.

St Martin’s Festival
On Thursday 15th November, all boarders were treated to a German feast. Year 12 pupils, Ida Obermann, Paula Fischer and Mareike Doerflinger were hands on the Dover College kitchens, showing the chefs how to make knoedel bread dumpl

‘Return of the Unknown’
Last week members of our Chapel Choir were involved in a big community theatre presentation marking the end of World War One and significantly focusing on why we remember and the unknown soldier. This took place in the historic setting of the Dover Marine Station where soldiers would have embarked to go to the front to fight.

Our choir started the performances on Thursday and Friday night singing “Keep the Home Fires Burning” on their own, though there were many choirs taking part. We were taken on a journey of what it is to remember and how we might view it in the future. There were original memories from soldiers and family, scenes on moving staging that reflected entertainment and real life issues of the time. There was also dance, acting and a final whole cast ensemble song, “How Can We Remember?” which was poignant and moving.

This was a fantastic opportunity for our pupils to engage with the history of this country in the very place that was at the heart of many people’s journey – a journey from which huge numbers would not return. It was also a valuable performing experience and an engagement with the wider community that was appreciated by all who witnessed it.

Lions International Peace Poster Competition

Congratulations to Demira Govender (7, Priory), Jimmy Irwin (7, Priory) and Maddie Warnock (7, Priory) who have submitted designs for the 2018 Lions International Peace Poster Competition. The art contest for children encourages young people worldwide to express their visions of peace and this year's competition theme was 'Kindness Matters'. We are very grateful to Dover Lions Club who have sponsored their entries. We wish them every success as their work starts the long judging process and we look forward to hearing the results.

Certificates of Achievement & Effort (Awarded 12/11/2018)

Demira Govender (Priory) & Luca Spencer (Priory)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 7

Nathaniel Turner (Priory)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 8

Charlotte Hide (St Martin’s) & Amira Ostalski-Kahn (Duckworth)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 9

Ana Pardo Torres (10, Duckworth)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 10

Harvey Mashiter-Yates (Leamington) & Anna Kupka (St Martin’s)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 11

Bob Ren (School) & Ben Preusser (School)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 12

Tim Liu (School)
For outstanding effort and leading the merit table in Year 13

Jonny Heaver (13, Leamington)
For consistent hard work

Layth Khader (11, School)
For achieving a Level 6 in a recent assessment

Amira Ostalski-Kahn (Duckworth)
A comprehensive and well thought out piece of work on United Nations

Purificación Olimpia Gutierrez Lopez (10, St Martin’s) & Sofia Martin Fuentes (11, St Martin’s)
For showing determination and producing excellent work

Computer Science
Jarred Tobin (10, Leamington) & Yzin Khader (10, Leamington)
For showing commitment and submitting outstanding work

Computer Science
Layth Khader (11, School)
For being committed and paying attention to detail

Achievement: Gleb Gorodetskiy (11, Leamington): Excellent test results

Effort: Jiangnan Xiong (11, Leamington): For always listening well and trying his best

Effort: Yzin Khader (10, Leamington): For his excellent contributions to class discussions

Effort: Kirsten Blackburn (9, Duckworth): Consistently works hard in lesson and prep

Achievement: Angelique Taylor (9, Duckworth): For fantastic poster describing the role of ICT department.

Special Award: Archie Groves (8, Priory): For being the most improved student and Star of the Week


Our OCC Shoebox Chapel service will take place on Tuesday 20th November, we will come together as a whole school community for a special thanksgiving service and each box is placed at the Chapel altar.

Leaflets have been distributed to pupils which give information about the appeal, however, if you wish to know more information, please visit 

The link provided gives gift ideas and instructions on how to pack your shoebox, including a list of items that cannot be included within the boxes. Should you wish, you can make your donation online and then print a barcode off to attach to your box. The barcode enables the charity to send you an email informing you of the final destination of your box.

Thank you for your continued support.