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A View from The Close 145: Friday 14th June 2019

Dear Parents and Guardians,

With the inclement weather postponing our Primary Games Invitational this week, we were all glad the sun came out for today’s Junior School Sports Day. This afternoon saw our younger pupils racing and competing in a selection of sporting events, followed by strawberries and cream. Parents were able to indulge in a coffee at our Horse Box Coffee Shop, which was a popular attraction for everyone who attended. Well done to Christian for their well-deserved victory ad Ciara Flisher (6) and Toby Grove (6) for best performing athletes.

Tomorrow, we return to Farthingloe for the Senior School Sports Day, which begins at 10:00. Please do join us for another excellent sporting event!

Yesterday, we welcome new Priory House parents to a dinner in the Refectory, organised and attended by Laura Walters (Priory Housemistress) and Priory tutors. I was delighted to meet the lovely Year 7 and 8 pupils joining us in September.

Next week, on Monday and Tuesday, I will be visiting Switzerland and Italy, where I shall spend time visiting agents and updating them with College news and developments. These developments include the introduction of our new pattern of the day for the Senior School, which Therese Taylor has emailed separately about.

I hope the sun stays shining over the weekend and the best of luck to our Year 11 and Year 13 pupils whose examinations are coming to an end.

Yours faithfully,

Gareth Doodes.

Sports Report

Wednesday 22nd May

Priory Rounders vs Wellesley House

Amy Brown (7) took a fantastic catch in the field and Isla Taylor (7) batted well, always looking for space in the field where she could place her shots, but the girls from Wellesley were too strong on this occasion.

Priory Cricket vs Northbourne Park

Although Northbourne got the win with three overs to spare, we bowled and fielded very well. Nathaniel Turner (8), Archie Grove (8), Jimmy Irwin (7) and August Moos (8) all took wickets and Libby Frawley-Bailey (7) bowled very economically. August Moos also had a fine game with the bat, providing some lusty blows and did well to boost our target with Oakley Price (8), who top scored, in the middle of our innings.

Wednesday 5th June

Priory Rounders vs DOYRMS

Despite home advantage, the Priory girls found it hard going against a skilful tam from Duke of York’s. Katie Cowell (8) was the pick of our batters with some powerful striking and the bowler-backstop combination of Chloe Leedham (8) and Belle Klappa (8) was effective in restricting our opponents.

Saturday 8th June

Kent Schools Athletics Championships at Julie Rose Stadium, Ashford

Libby Turbutt (9, St Martin’s) completed a clean sweep of her two events at the County Championships, steaming home some 10m clear to take the 200m and jumping to first place in extremely challenging blustery conditions. With the victories she not only sealed County selection but also cemented her place in the English Schools setup after her qualifying Long Jump earlier in the season.

Sam Smith (8, Priory) and Ilyad Motiei (8, Leamington) were awarded their Priory Sports Contribution awards in Assembly after being absent for the Sports Dinner before half term.

Super Swimmer!

Adam Frost (10, School) competed and represented Dover College in the Ashford School biathlon recently.

Over 150 children took part with Adam winning the swimming section by over a length and beating his personal best! He also came 3rd in the 800m run and 2nd overall for the biathlon.

Dover College Wave in D Day Heroes

On the 9th June, the ship carrying 255 D-Day veterans back from the commemorations in France was diverted to Dover because of the weather.

The MV Boudicca had been due to dock in Portsmouth for an official welcome home party and fireworks. The Royal British Legion said adverse weather caused by Storm Miguel meant the ship had been diverted to Dover. The charity urged people in the Kent town to "step up and give our Normandy heroes the welcome back they deserve".

Therefore, Mr Kibler and Mr Irwin rallied the boarders and took two busloads of boys and girls down to the port to see the Boudicca cruise liner moor up. Bob Gamble, the charity's Assistant Director of Commemorative Events said: "Unfortunately the weather conditions mean that our veterans will miss out on the activity the people of Portsmouth had planned for them as they arrived back. We're encouraging people to do whatever they can this evening from heading to the coast to wave the ship in to holding lit phone screens towards the ship so the veterans can see them."

We joined the thousands of people on the seafront and then the pupils got to see the boat being moored up, a band playing 1940’s music and some splendid dancing (not from Mr Kibler or Mr Irwin, thankfully). After a short while, the pupils returned to school with some fantastic photos and fabulous memories.

Bronze Breakthrough!

On the weekend of the 8th and 9th June 2019, 11 Dover College pupils completed their qualifying expedition for Bronze Level of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. To even be allowed to take part in the qualifying expedition each pupil had to: undertake a training day on expedition safety; follow a programme during Wednesday afternoon activity sessions on aspects of expedition; and complete a weekend of further training/practice on a local area expedition.

For this qualifying mission, the eleven pupils had to divide into two teams (because DofE rules state that there must be a minimum of four people and a maximum of seven people in any one walking group). One of the fun aspects of being in a team is that participants are encouraged to have an appropriate team name that they have chosen for themselves. One team chose: “Crackalackin” and the other team chose “The Cow Whisperers”!

Team Crackalackin are: Charlotte Hide (9, St Martin’s), Gabriella Hood (9, Duckworth), Max Ritchie-Coombs (9, School) and Maisie Wells (9, St Martin’s).

“The Cow Whisperers” are: Kirsten Blackburn (9, Duckworth), Anna Grant (9, St Martin’s), Erin Harris (9, St Martin’s), Tyler Henderson (9, Duckworth), Angelique Taylor (9, Duckworth), Louise Wallace (9, St Martin’s) and Verity Watkins (9, St Martin’s).

Both teams had to devise their own two day routes, walking to and then away from, a shared campsite (in the Elham Valley). The campsite was the only time that the two groups met during the whole of the weekend.  For each day of their walk, each team had to plan six hours of activity – either walking or exploring. Because this was the qualifying expedition, the two groups had to work their way through the countryside using their own initiative.  They were not allowed any assistance and had to make all decisions for themselves. During this time, the assessor monitored how well they were doing on all aspects of their journey; how safely they travelled along and across roads, what their teamwork skills were like, how they looked after each other and who emerged as leaders.

Team Crackalackin started from Elham Church on Day One and walked 12 kilometres to get to the campsite. They should have arrived at 14:42, according to their route card, but arrived at 20:30 instead!  “The Cow Whisperers” started from near Kearnsey Abbey, completed 16.3 kilometres and arrived at 19:30 – instead of their planned arrival time of 17:00. Because each team is responsible for itself, they are the ones making the decisions about how quickly to walk, when to stop for a rest and how long to stop for at each rest break.

At the start of Day Two, each team had to decide when they were going to wake and when they were going to set off.  “The Cow Whisperers” set off first, leaving half-an-hour earlier than planned at 08:30.  They walked for 15km this day.  They should have finished at 17:00 but were two-hours later!  Team Crackalackin –starting at 09:20 - had 15.4km to walk to finish in Lyminge at 15:00 (they eventually finished at 18:30). 

The safety team of Mrs Aylward, Miss Chen, Mr Fillipou-Walker and Mr Cox spent the weekend monitoring planned checkpoints and supervising teams when they had to cross busy A-roads. Mr Cox said, “I am so grateful to the other staff volunteers.  They have given up their whole weekend so that these 11 pupils can achieve their Bronze and it would not have been possible to run this expedition without them.”  

For most of the Bronze participants, this is the last activity they have to complete before the end of their Bronze DofE. The Assessor was very pleased with each group. Not only is each group judged on its performance but the assessor notes the contributions of individuals within the group and writes the report accordingly. With such a positive contribution from all participants, Mr Cox strongly recommends that each and every one of them enlists for the Silver Level when they begin Year 10 after the summer holidays.

Go Bug-Eyed for Science!

The Bay Trust (who work with us on DofE projects) are organising a fun family weekend at The Pines Calyx. On Sunday 30 June, they warmly invite everyone from the Dover College community to join them in a massive bug hunt conducted by Canterbury Christchurch University Environmentalists and Biologists. The young people will get to do surveys, look at traps and study insects under microscopes.

On Saturday 29 June and Sunday 30 June The Pines Calyx will support St. Margaret’s village Garden Safari by running a Garden Safari at The Pines Calyx. 

If your child is a budding scientist – then these are must-do events!  And the cakes in the café are amazing!

The events start from 10:30 until 16:00 at The Pines Calyx – a stunning garden situated at: Beach Road, St. Margaret’s Bay, Dover, CT15 6DZ. Phone: 01304 851737 for further information.