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A View from The Close 131: Friday 1st February 2019

Dear Parents and Guardians,

This has been another busy week starting with our French exchange students returning after the weekend with their partners, very happy and full of stories about how they managed to communicate and about what they had done over the two days. Needless to say, all their host families looked after them really well, feeding them the best of British (roast dinner and Karaoke, I am told!) and taking them to visit many places such as Dover Castle, Port Lympne Animal Park and even London. We are also very proud of how our pupils looked after them during the school day on Monday and ensure that they were fully integrated in lessons.

I was really impressed with the Chapel service on Thursday when St Martin’s House spoke to us about how important it is to conquer one’s fears. What better way to illustrate this than by encouraging one of our very shy pupils, from China, to speak up in front of the whole School, about her fear of facing people, speaking to them and of speaking English. She did this so well, with her confidence literally growing under our eyes. It is amazing what we can all do, with a little nudge, and how empowering it is to know that people believe that you can do it. 

The Boarding Houses have been ensuring, as always, that our pupils are having quality time together. This week, lots of day girls spent a great evening with the boarders in Duckworth and tonight our Chinese boys are preparing a meal to celebrate the Chinese New Year. I hear that, as it is the year of the pig, pigs’ livers, kidneys, trotters and possibly tail, are on the menu. Bon appetit!

The Headmaster and Deputy Head have attended the annual BSA Deputy Heads Conference over the last two days and tonight, they are, along with Brett Fairclough, Tom Butt and Jess Doodes attending the TES Awards Ceremony where we, as a School have been shortlisted for three categories: Boarding School of Year, Strategic Education Initiative of the Year and Senior Leadership Team of the Year.

Yours faithfully,

Therese Taylor
Acting Director of Studies


Sports Update

Monday 21st January

U13 Netball vs St Edmund’s & Wellesley House

The Priory girls had a double fixture week with two tough opponents. Demira Govender (7, Priory) was Player of the Match against Wellesley House and Isla Taylor (7, Priory) and Poppy Harris (7, Priory), in only her third week at the College, received the accolade against St Edmund’s. Chloe Leedham (8, Priory) was also recognised for an excellent, battling performance.

Tuesday 22nd January

U15 Netball vs St Edmund’s (Report from Captain, Tamzin Vickers)

It was a tough match as St Edmund’s were strong in defence and quick on the rebound, and we found it hard to get the ball through to the D and to convert into goals. Areas for improvement for our next match are our catching, timing, use of space and choice of pass, with less lobbed balls. Libby Turbutt (9, St Martin’s) was strong in defence and Tyler Henderson (9, Duckworth) worked very hard intercepting passes. Tamzin Vickers (10, Duckworth) was voted Player of the Match by the opposition and Erin Harris (9, St Martin’s) received Player of the Match in the B team game.

Wednesday 23rd January

The Priory boys had a daunting proposition ahead of them away at Norton Knatchbull School in Ashford. With a couple of Year 8 boys in the opposition well over six-foot-tall, the Under 13 A team put in an amazing shift in both defence and attack. We scored five tries in an excellent team performance with Archie Grove (8, Priory) grabbing a brace, having moved from hooker to fullback in the space of seven days. Sam Smith (8, Priory) also scored twice and made more tackles in on match than in the whole of last season, with Archie Seward (8, Priory) rewarded with a try for another all action performance. The group had spoken about a more positive and aggressive mind-set after last week’s defeat to Northbourne and this was very evident with a superb performance. Captain Seb Powell (8, Priory) again led by example in defence, with the returning Nathaniel Turner (8, Priory) making a big difference to the team. We look forward to the return fixture against the same opposition this Wednesday. The development squad showed increased cohesion in their match up with Norton Knatchbull, the highlight of which was Cameron Matthews (7, Priory) getting on the scoresheet down the left wing with what was, in his own words, “an epic try”.

Thursday 24th January

Senior Netball vs St Edmund’s

In the A team game all played really well and they really unsettled them. It was a good game of netball and we were miles better at footwork. The B team game was much closer, an amazing game and they were so unfortunate, going down 26-18 at the final whistle! Paula Fischer (12, St Martin’s) was excellent as GK, especially as she is very new to the game, and it was a really good match to watch.

Duke of Edinburgh

The latest participant to successfully pass The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme at Silver Level is Niall Noonan (11, Leamington). Well done, Niall - a great effort! Niall is only a matter of weeks away from his 16th birthday – which is the official start age for attempting the Gold DofE challenge. And yes, he has signed up to continue with the Gold! Outstanding!

If current Year 11 pupils wish to also take on the Gold challenge in Sixth Form, they can start on the day of their 16th birthday. This means that they can count activities completed over the summer towards the final award. 

Please contact Mr Keith Cox if your child wishes to take up this challenge on their 16th birthday!


Alicia Myers recently received a donation from the Royal Marines Sergeants Mess Pantomime Fund towards her World Scout Jamboree Fundraising.

‘The Wolves of Dover’

A special mention to the ‘The Wolves of Dover’ comprising of the following students: Layth Khader (11, School), James Hide (11, School), Elliot Nugus (11, School) and Dan Walters (11, Leamington) who have been successful in securing a place in the semi-finals of the Investor Challenge (the UK’s premier investment competition). Out of 23,540 students in 5,885 teams from 856 schools who traded in the first round they are one of the 500 teams who have made it to the semi-final.

Friends of Dover College Chocolate Bingo!

Date: Friday 8th February 2019

Time: Starts 19:00 Ends approx. 21:00

Venue: The Great Hall

Tickets: £2.50 per person. Cash bar and
bring your own snacks!

Donations of chocolate would be gratefully
received and can be bought into the Junior School
Office or Priory Lodge.

Guesthouse Chapel

For a whole term now the Chaplain and Headmaster have been organising a Service in Chapel on Sunday mornings at 10.00am, with the added help of Rupert Hill. We have deliberately made this open to the public as well as to members of the student body and the staff. Do please feel free to come and join us on any Sunday when there is no Whole School Eucharist. The service is normally Holy Communion but non-communicants are very welcome. It is a quiet, reflective, spiritual service, lasting 45 minutes, and followed by coffee and croissants. 

It takes place even in the holidays. Numbers are currently between 10 and 15 and we sit in the choir stalls. On Christmas Day, however, we numbered 65, with a good number of families with children. Why not give it a try?

School Notices

We are really excited to announce that Dover College is now a Member School with School Notices, a free online marketplace in which parents, alumni, staff and friends of the school can promote their businesses, buy and sell stuff, rent properties and look for jobs, interacting with thousands of parents in the independent education sector. There are also amazing exclusive offers for members. 

If you have a business that you would like to promote to this network or know one that does, business advertising is chargeable and 25% of any advertising that comes through a Dover College affiliated parent, alumni or local business, is given back to the school to put towards our internal & charitable initiatives.  

So please support us, have a look at and we would strongly encourage you to REGISTER HERE and enjoy the site.

Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Jessica Doodes –