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A View from The Close 143: Friday 24th May 2019

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Our guest of honour for this year’s Junior School Prize Giving on Friday 28th June 2019 will be Jonny Meah, one of the most exciting young presenters on Heart Radio. We warmly welcome Jonny to Dover College and hope that parents can join us for what will be a wonderful event.

Invitations for this year’s Senior School Prize Day are being posted to parents this week. Please ensure you submit your RSVP card by Wednesday 14th June in order to reserve your tickets. We are thrilled that Lord Jeffrey Archer will be this year’s Prize Day guest of honour.

I am delighted to announce the Prefect Appointments for 2019-20:

Heads of School

Isabella Nudd (D)
Tul Lekhyananda (S)

Chair of School Council

Summer Leigh (St M)

Head of Duckworth House

Louisa Demleitner

Head of Leamington House

Jack Hanson

Head of School House

Khodani Mudogwa

Head of St Martin’s House

Lily Rashbrook

Prefect for Internationalism

Ethan Zhao (L)

Prefect for Environment

Freya Laidlow-Petersen (St M)

Prefect for Adventure

Elly Laflin (D)

Prefect for Service

Paula Fisher (St M)

Prefect for Round Square

Dillon Clarke (S)

Prefect for Chapel

Toby Clarke (L)

Prefect for Admissions

Valentine Kopf (D

Congratulations to this wonderful group of pupils.

Junior School Prefect Announcements will be made after the half term holidays, on Tuesday 4th June.

Yours faithfully,

Gareth Doodes.

Sports Report

Monday 13th May

Priory House had both U13 A and B team cricket matches against St Edmund’s School on Monday. In the A team game, Thai Deekes’ (7) batting was steadfast and resolute and Luca Spencer (7) played a mammoth innings in the B team game, but both were unfortunately to no avail as the results slipped away after some powerful opposition batting.

The Senior Boys Tennis team also played on Monday, away at St Edmund’s in the last 16 of the County Cup. The team of captain Lucas Wood (11, Leamington), Simon Gignoux (13, School), Alex Despres (12, School) and Vincent Clausen (11, School) played very well in dispatching their opponents 4-2 overall, earning us a quarter-final match against Sir Roger Manwood’s, to be played in the week after half term.

Wednesday 15th May

Priory House took centre stage again with Rounders versus Northbourne Park and Cricket away at Wellesley House. The Rounders girls played well, Isla Taylor (7) hit two and a half Rounders and Belle Klappa (8), Chloe Leedham (8) and Avy Taylor (8) were an efficient combination of backstop, bowler and second. The cricketers showed a considerable improvement from Monday’s performance, with Archie Grove’s (8) 35 a highlight as he looked to improve on his excellent average from last year.

Thursday 16th May

A mixed Senior Tennis team totalling 13 pupils travelled to Kent College for a friendly fixture, involving many new faces, which was very pleasing to see as more pupils look to represent the College’s sports teams. Simon Gignoux and Alex Despres were the most

successful pairing, winning their three matches and the Clarke twins, Toby and Dillon also performed superbly well, winning two from three. Joining them in the team on a very windy afternoon were the following pupils: Tul Lekyhananda (13, School), Vincent Clausen, David Yeadon (13 School), Izzy Nudd (12, Duckworth), Marlene Sperling (11 St Martin’s), Marie Ramme (12, Duckworth), Elise de la Bouillerie (9, St Martin’s), Zoe Lorenz (10, Duckworth) and Maxi Timmermann (10, St Martin’s).

The U15 Cricket Girls played a home match on The Close following Games on Thursday against local rivals Dover Girls Grammar and in a fantastically competitive match lost out by just one run. Maisie Wells (9, St Martin’s) top scored with 17, Libby Turbutt (9, St Martin’s) took a brilliant running catch in the deep and Angelique Taylor (9 Duckworth), Lottie Hide (9,St Martin’s) and captain Emily Calder (10, St Martin’s) all bowled well to take wickets. In both this match, and the last against Manwood’s, the girls have shown a real improvement that reflects the work they are putting in during Games sessions with Messrs Brooks and Horner and we look forward to future fixtures against Ashford and the return versus Dover Girls with much optimism.


The highlight of the week was Tuesday’s Steeplechase. The presence of the Headmaster on the start line spurred pupils on to some tremendous performances on a beautifully sunny, but very blustery, afternoon. Ella Ray (7) and Nathaniel Turner (8) won in Priory, Anna Grant (9, St Martin’s) and Jaiden Flisher (10, School) came in first in the U15 category and Juliette Jordan (13, Duckworth) and Dillon Clarke (12, School) triumphed in the senior race. No school records were broken this year but I would like to highlight a few individual performances. Archie Seward (8, Priory) shaved just over six minutes off his time from last year, Jarred Tobin (10, Leamington) reduced his personal best by nine minutes and Juliette took 12 minutes from her 2018 mark. Ben Preusser (12, School) was the most improved; however, taking a full 22 minutes from last year’s run, having worked very hard on his fitness during Games sessions. A top ten finish beckons next year Ben!

The results breakdown was as follows:

Duckworth and School House tied 1st place in Priory with 39 points, Leamington with 66 and St Martin’s with 70.

Leamington romped home in the Under 15 category with 79 points, St Martin’s in 2nd with 87 points, Duckworth following with 131 and School languishing in 4th with 143 points.

School House won in Senior with 77 points, St Martin’s just behind with 81, Duckworth in 3rd with 97 and Leamington in 4th with 102.

St Martin’s won the battle of the girls’ houses (Anna Grant and Summer Leigh to collect trophy) and Leamington the battle of the boys’ (Jarred Tobin and Toby Clarke to collect trophy).

Overall results as follows:

4th place Duckworth – 267 points
3rd place School – 259 points
2nd place Leamington – 247 points
1st place St Martin’s – 238 points

Congratulations to all competitors, not least the Headmaster who took 33 seconds off his own personal best!

Kingswood Residential Trip 2019

The highlight of the Year for Years 5 and 6 had arrived! The action packed adventure and water sports programme residential at Grosvenor Hall, Ashford fulfilled all its expectations!

The excitement had been building in the children for a number of weeks and the tension was palpable about which activities they would do and probably more important to them, which room were they in?

Some were away from home for the first time and this was a trip where the children were to learn so much about themselves and each other in the vast and unfamiliar surroundings.

The focus of all the activities was linked to our skills based curriculum. The challenges set were to enhance teamwork, increase resilience and to reflect on their experiences and how they could take them into all other aspects of school life in general. Oh yes, the main thing was to have an enormous amount of fun! The last objective was certainly achieved! The constant sight and sound of children smiling, laughing, giggling and occasionally shrieking with excitement was a privilege to witness.

The activities chosen to fulfil the objectives included the all-time favourite, The 3G Swing; Abseiling; Canoeing; Buggy Building; Bushcraft; Late night Campfire and Movie Night.

The 3G Swing is not for the faint hearted! The children sat in a pair and were hoisted to a height that they felt comfortable with, where one of them had to yank a cord to release the swing. Sounds straightforward doesn’t it? Well it wasn’t as I can personally testify! Once the cord was pulled, the swing dropped (quite alarmingly) before it swung! The moment of the initial drop

was a real ‘heart in the mouth’ moment. The daredevils, of which there were many, went to the top. Others challenged themselves to go higher than their previous turn or their visit last year. Every single child had a go, which is the first year this has happened. I was even duped by a certain young lady in my class to go on it with her. As we ascended, I confessed to her that it’s ok to be concerned about these sorts of things, as I actually hated them myself. As we approached half way (more than high enough for me), I said, “You can stop whenever you want to you know.”

With an impish grin, she looked straight at me and coolly stated, “I know!”

Thanks Genevieve! Anyway, we rose further before the release and all I can say is that, while exhilarating, I was truly terrified. However, that smile on her face was worth the near heart attack! Miss Mills was convinced to go to the top by Ava James and the look on their two faces at the moment of release is something that anyone witnessing it will never forget. In fact, I am pretty sure Mrs Doodes has a photo somewhere!

Abseiling saw many conquer their fear of heights with many showing considerable skill in descending in a professional bouncy style down the 50ft wall. Some even managed to accept the challenges from the instructors to high-five their partner on the way down or be in charge of each other’s descent ropes!

Canoeing was a fantastic new addition to the programme with almost every single child embarking on a journey into the lake with the assurance that they would not get wet! The children decided otherwise once they had mastered the skills of the paddle. The session ended with almost everyone in the lake trying to capsize each other! The warm shower afterwards was certainly appreciated by all!

Buggy Building saw different pupils shine with their technical skills, rope-tying capabilities and leadership attributes coming to the fore as their groups had to build and race a buggy constructed of wooden poles, plastic barrels and a few ropes around a variety of racecourses.

The late night activities were a fitting way to end each day’s action packed programme. The campfire was entertaining with a variety of songs and dances that produced a lot of laughter. The more sedate movie night on the second evening allowed the exhausted children to ‘chill out’ for a while. At least that was the attention but the Haribo, fizzy drinks and other confectionary items put paid to that! Each night finished with hot chocolate and biscuits before bedtime. The first night was a late one! The second was more subdued with children asleep within minutes of heads hitting the pillows. As always, the trip came and went in the blink of an eye! I think I can confidently say that everyone enjoyed themselves, including Mr Annakie and Mrs Groombridge who deserve enormous credit for being fully involved in providing a wonderful experience for the children. The bonds between children, between children and teachers

who see each other in a different light can never be overestimated and if I am absolutely honest, these are the moments that we enjoy most about our jobs and why we became teachers. So, the last thank you must go to all members of Year 5 and 6. You were an absolute joy to be with and I hope you enjoyed Kingswood 19 as much as we did!

Junior Informal Concert

The Junior School delighted parents and staff on Monday 20th May in the Tallis Music School with a short Informal Concert. These occasions are always well received, giving children the opportunity to gain confidence by performing in front of a sympathetic audience. The programme was, as always, varied. Mrs Myers started the proceedings by leading a short vocal and physical warm up. A few children then gave a spirited and tuneful interpretation of the song “Ugly Bug Ball.”

Other vocal contributions included first time performer Sophia Zammit (3) singing “Happiness” by Schubert, (which indeed lived up to its title!) and a confident rendition of “All things bright and beautiful” by Humphrey Doodes (2). Here is a chorister in the making! Alex Gunn (5), Anton Moos (5) and Beatrice Lockyer (4) displayed their developing skills on the piano, and James Warnock(5) provided us with “Cake on the Ocean” by way of a guitar solo. Ray Charles featured next, inadequately represented by Mr Lockyer, but more than adequately backed up by the children of the rock group.

Finally, Mr Young presented a few of his Class 5 recorder group with a couple of enchanting pieces by Sarah Watts.

If you are a parent reading this, do please encourage your child to take part in these concerts.

Senior Informal Concert

A wide range of students performed on Wednesday (22nd) evening in the Tallis Music School, several of whom were performing for the first time.

As always, there was a real mixture of styles and genres represented and students came from every year in the school.

The performers were:

Liulian Zheng
Tim Wu
Edward Aylward Lopez (piano)
Libby Martin
Rosie Baldwin
Luke Reeve
Lottie Hide (voice)
Amy Brown
Sebastien King
Nick Proctor (drums)
Guglielmo di Francavalli (guitar)
Imogen Langley (‘cello)
Paula Fischer (flute)

And ensembles from:

Paula Fischer
Mathilde Leprovost (flute & violin)
Poppy Tillin
Hannah Cummings
Isla Taylor
Tilly Curtis (vocal ensemble with piano)

Year 10 GCSE group of:

Tim Wu (piano)
Imogen Langley (cello)
Libby Martin (glockenspiel)
Rosie Baldwin (voice)

Many of the renditions showed quality, careful practice and an emotional connection with the music, but stand out performances came from Amy Brown, Tim Wu and Guglielmo di Francavalli.

Well done to all the performers – may there be many more like this!

Dover’s Got Talent

This week saw the first Dover Junior Talent Show. It was a highly entertaining event showcase some of the outstanding talent we have at Dover College. The winner ‘Tilly Seward’ was awarded the Junior Talent Cup for her beautiful rendition of ‘Million Dreams’ from ‘The Greatest Showman’. I have to give special mention our Snake Charmer, James Warnock; his act was original, funny and extremely well-rehearsed!

A big thank you to FODC for their help and support and also to all the Junior School staff who came to support their pupils.

We hope next year sees more talented acts emerge from the woodwork!

Wonderful Wonders

Year 7 are studying the novel ‘Wonder’ and as part of our understanding of the themes, we have been thinking about what makes each of us individual and special just like the main character, August. The class shared their personal achievements and things that make them amazing – a wonderful way to end the half term.

Gold Standard Word

The Year 12 Unit 1 Business Studies moderation came back from the standards verifier this week. All students have been awarded their criteria with Ben Preusser (12, School) and Elly Laflin (12, Duckworth) surpassing their target grades. In fact, the SV was incredibly impressed with the quality of work produced by our students, especially Elly’s. This is what the SV wrote in his report:

Of those that were sampled EL is what I would consider the “Gold” standard that you should aim towards.

Overall he wrote:

The work for this centre is of good standard, accurate and appropriate to National Standards. Well done’.

A fantastic achievement to all our business students.

It’s GOLD for Sina!

Sina Farhadi is the latest Dover College pupil to achieve Gold on the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme.  This is a great achievement.  Sina joined the scheme as soon as he joined the college and worked tirelessly to complete the challenges leading to his award.

The outline of work – all in his own time – shows how much he deserves his award.  Volunteering: For an hour a week, for a year, Sina coached pupils in the Junior School. Physical: For an hour a week, for 18 months, Sina worked on improving his fitness levels by gym work. Skills: For an hour a week, for 6 months, Sina has been learning to play the flute. Expedition: Training sessions on expedition skills was followed by a week on a practice expedition in the Brecon Beacons followed by the qualifying expedition in The Lake District of 4 days and 3 nights on the hills covering about 50 miles.  Residential: Sina organised a placement for himself on a working farm back in Iran.

In recognition of these fine efforts, Sina will be invited to Buckingham or St. James’ Palace to receive his Gold certificate from one of the Royal Family. 

Well done, Sina! We are really proud of you!

National Pilgrimage

May I draw your attention to an event taking place in and around the College in August? Our Chaplain, Toby Marchand, and two others, are organising a National Pilgrimage based on Dover and Canterbury. It is under the auspices of a body called the British Anglican Cursillo Council. “Cursillo” is a renewal movement within the churches of Great Britain and abroad. The event is called “The Pathway to Pilgrimage: Becket and Beyond”.

Up to 40 “pilgrims” can be accommodated, in School House at Dover College. There will be visits, in the School minibuses, to Dover Castle, and to Canterbury. Lectures, visits, worship, feasting and entertainment are all on the programme as befits a traditional pilgrimage.

Dates: Tuesday 13th August 16:00 - Friday 16th August 10:00

Cost £250

Full details and application forms can be found on the British Anglican Cursillo Council website. Look for “Information for Dioceses”.

It’s open to anyone, of any Faith or none. You will be assured of a warm welcome and a great experience.