Rydal Penrhos newsletter
Our new interactive newsletter starts here
Welcome to the all new Rydal Penrhos School newsletter. We have recently agreed terms on a contact with leading online publication designers Turtl, which will enable us to bring you the news faster and easier on a variety of forms.
Turtl will allow our newsletter to be produced in a faster fashion and is now far easier to access on your smartphone or tablet. It will also bring with it a number of exciting options including video, polls and galleries, all at the click of a button.
Due to this new equipment we will now be bringing you newsletters every month, with special features on departments such as Sport, Drama and Art and Design.
Some of our top stories this term
Sunday Times tables name us best in Wales!
A prestigious table from a leading national newspaper has named us as one of the best school's of its kind in the UK.
The Sunday Times Parent Power League Tables named us as the number one co-educational/boarding school in Wales that offers both A-level and International Baccalaureate to its pupils, and 19th overall in the UK.
In addition to this honour, we were also named in the top 50 independent schools offering the IB diploma.
There was further cause for celebration for the school as it shot up 43 places in the independent secondary schools list from the same newspaper.
Our superb ranking is down to the fantastic A-level, GCSE and IB results our pupils achieved this year.
For the first time in our history, A* and A were the most frequently awarded A-level grades with 31.5 per cent of pupils achieving this.
In addition 76 per cent of entries achieved passes at A*- C with an overall pass rate of 98 per cent.
Thousands raised from inaugural Christmas Market
Our inaugural Christmas Market took place on Friday, December 11 and was organised by a charity committee consisting of Sixth Form pupils in aid of Ty Gobaith Children’s Hospice.
There was a huge turnout and a host of fun-filled events kept people entertained throughout the three-hour event, which raised around £2,500.
Hannah Cashell, said: “Considering it was our first year doing something like this it was a fantastic occasion.
“It was a tremendous amount of hard work but when you see the total we raised then it was definitely worth it. Ty Gobaith so amazing things and we were happy to support their cause.”
There was also a Santa’s Grotto, with Mr Sanders playing the role of Father Christmas for the evening.
The market was kept entertained throughout by our resident band, who played festive songs to keep people entertained.
A raffle and silent auction had a number of superb prizes including a signed Arsenal Football Club shirt, while an abundance of refreshments were available in the form of a cake stall and barbecue.
Would you like to see the Christmas Market return next year?
Hundreds raised from annual RNLI Christmas Concert
The RNLI presented us with a special plaque to acknowledge our ongoing work with the charity.
The annual Christmas Concert was held for the 21st year in succession in aid of the RNLI Thursday, December 10 and branch chairman Peter Weekes presented the school with a plaque after the service.
Among the dignitaries in attendance were Clwyd West MP David Jones, and our Choir were on hand to sing a number of festive hymns throughout the service.
"The school would like to thank everyone who took part in preparing the service and looks forward to continuing to support the RNLI for many years to come."
Rev’d Sissons, said: “During the service I spoke about the recent floods in the north which had involved RNLI lifeboat crews from Rhyl, and also of the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean.
“Using the powerful image of a nativity scene set up in a boat last weekend in St Francis' basilica in Assisi, he spoke of our duty at Christmas not only to help those in need, but also to remember that the nativity itself is presented as a divine rescue to save humanity from a sea of troubles.
“The school would like to thank everyone who took part in preparing the service and looks forward to continuing to support the RNLI for many years to come.”
Payne house take home Christmas Carol singing crown in hilarious end to year
There was plenty of festive cheer as all four houses battled it out for the Christmas Carol singing crown.
A long standing tradition here, all pupils gathered in-front of guest judge Alan McGuiness, director of music at St Asaph Cathedral.
The winners would be granted the privilege of getting to be first in line for the annual Christmas Dinner, and bragging rights went to Payne house, who were led by sixth form pupil Lydia Dixon.
While the votes were being tallied up, staff also gave a performance of their own, which was the Pogues’ cult classic featuring Kirsty MacColl ‘Fairytale of New York’.
How did it go?
Annual Open Morning event hailed a success
The school was a hive of activity as we hosted our annual Open Morning this term.
During the four hour event there was plenty for visitors to see, including various demonstrations from different departments including Drama, Home Economics and Physical Education.
Mr Sherrington, said: “This is a great event as it shows people just what we have to offer here.
“The school is a fabulous place to both work and be educated, and there is so much going on, so it is great that families thinking about sending their children here have a first-hand look at just what facilities are available at events like this.”
After the tours had been completed, staff were on hand in the Ferguson Centre to answer any questions from visitors relating to the school and what is available to those who are taught here.
The event, one of the prominent dates on the calendar, has been hailed as a huge success once again.
Our Head Boy had a busy term
Pair praised for Nuffield Project work
Two of our brightest pupils achieved success on a prestigious summer science project.
Shaswath Ganapathi and Alexander Bytheway beat out 300 applicants to take part in the four-week Nuffield Placement Scheme at Bangor University, which was set up to allow students from across the country to participate in research projects.
The duo successfully completed the project and travelled down to Cardiff on Monday, September 28 for a special presentation event, where they displayed their findings and received their certificates.
Shaswath, said: “It was a fantastic experience and it was great to learn about research methods and test my knowledge in a real-life research environment.
“This is definitely something I would recommend and it has been a valuable learning method for me that I will take on into further education and my working life.”
Shaswath was based in the photonics department working on a device that measures angular motions of hand movements.
Much of his worked focussed on soldering together circuits in order to produce a prototype that can be trialled, with a view to it being used in the medical field.
Alex worked in the Chemistry department and his task was to obtain pure alkaloids from plant of the genus Narcissus with a view to them being used as new antimalarial drugs.
During his research he managed to obtain a sample of a substance called haemathamine, which was then sent for further pharmaceutical testing at the University of Nottingham.
At the presentation event the pupils also got the chance to meet the Nobel Laureate Professor Sir Martin Evans, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for medicine in 2007.
Alex said: “The research I took part in was a brilliant and they have since informed me that they are going to continue with the project, and are going to keep me in the loop in regards to their outcomes, which is fantastic.”
Shaswath becomes first non-medical student to speak at symposium
In proved to be a busy few weeks for Shaswath, who became the first sixth-form student to present his findings from the project at a a major surgical research symposium.
He said: “It really was a fantastic experience and I am delighted with how it turned out.
“They have never had a sixth-from student been accepted for this event and I was delighted to win one of the podium spots for the presentation, which I was not expecting.”
Following his talk Shaswath was awarded with the runner-up medal in the Oral Presentation category, while coming also coming away as the winner in the surgical skills competition.
“I was very shocked as I wasn't expecting to finish runner-up in the slightest,” he added.
“Beating seven other medical students in the oral presentation who have spent a full year compared to my four weeks was amazing."
Rydal Penrhos remembers fallen heroes
Colwyn Bay Remembrance Day service
Fallen War heroes and veterans were honoured at a Remembrance Day Service in Colwyn Bay.
A host of our staff and pupils once again played a significant part in the event, which took place on Sunday, November 8 at Queen’s Gardens.
A large crowd gathered near the war memorial to pay respects to those who had fought and died during battle, with pupil Eddie Farrell playing the trumpet following the two minute silence at 11am.
The service was conducted by Reverend Christine Owen, before the parade moved on to St Paul’s Church.
Dignitaries at the service included Clwyd West Assembly Member Darren Millar and Councillor Sibani Roy, mayor of Colwyn Bay.
The school community came together to remember veterans at a special Armistice Day Service.
Staff and pupils gathered at the Memorial Hall on Wednesday, November 11, where a service was held before a two minute silence at 11am to mark the armistice signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany at Compiègne, France, for the cessation of hostilities on the Western Front.
During the service there were readings from a number of pupils, including Shaswath Ganapathi and Hannah Cashell, in addition to a host of different languages that are represented at the school.
Following the service 91 individually named crosses were planted in the Memorial Quad to commemorate the members of the school who lost their lives during the two World Wars.
African charity work receives praise
Major charity praise for Uganda charity work
Our charity work in Africa during the summer received some high praise recently.
Throughout the year we had been raising funds for a new primary school building in the small Batwa community of Rwamahano, Uganda, which was devastated by severe storms and flooding.
As part of their July mission the team, which consisted of ten pupils, spent two days laying the foundations for primary school buildings near Lake Bunyonyi, Kabale.
Faith Tushabe, executive director at charity African International Christian Ministry, who worked with the school during the project, said: “Their free interaction, participation in carrying sand, bricks and in building the school is an experience still fresh in the minds of the people in Rwamahano.
“None of the AICM staff and the community anticipated the hard work of the staff and the team, and it will always be memorable to us.
“How humbling it was for the teenage students to leave the comfort of their homes to come to Africa to help our cause. We cannot say thank you enough.”
Uganda Open Evening
Around 30 people gathered at the Ferguson Centre on Wednesday, November 18 for a Uganda Open Evening, where those attending heard first-hand accounts of what their trip to Africa was like last July.
Rev’d Sissons, who co-ordinated the trip, began the evening with a slide demonstration showing some stunning pictures of the main events that took place during the 18-day visit.
This was then followed by presentations from three pupils who visited Uganda, with Hannah Cashell and Maddy Wright illustrating their talk with selected photos that were designed to capture the essence of their African experience.
Elishia Phillips concluded the pupil side of the evening by sharing her memorable moments with the audience.
Rev’d Sissons, said: “What came across very strongly was the huge enjoyment the students had derived from the adventure and the real enthusiasm they had for the people they met and projects they took part in.”
West End stars pay us a visit
West End stars impressed by pupils on visit
Two West End stars visited us for a series of activities this term.
Renowned Welsh actor Iwan Lewis was joined by Olivia Brereton, where they sang and took part in a question and answer session with both senior and prep pupils.
Mr Lewis graduated from the Guildford School of Acting in 2010, and is best known for his roles of Emmett in the UK tour of the stage version of Legally Blonde and Bahorel in the film version of Les Miserables.
Ms Brereton is known for her roles in the Phantom of the Opera UK Tour and The Brilliant Original, London, and the pair were impressed with the eagerness of our pupils during the visit.
Mr Lewis, said: “Everyone was really attentive and seemed to enjoy themselves, and it is great to see so many young people interested in acting and everything else that comes with it.
“You can clearly see how passionate the teachers are about their work, and this is clearly translating to the pupils, which is great.
“Acting can be extremely important for a young person’s development and teaches them a number of characteristics and disciplines that they can take forward with them into later life, and it is wonderful to see it being utilised so heavily here.”
During the question and answer session Mr Lewis told a number of interesting anecdotes regarding his co-star in Les Mis - Russell Crowe – before judging the school’s Inter-house Drama Competition later that evening.
A-level Drama pupils take part in dark performance as part of examinations
Three drama pupils put on a dark play as part of their A-level examinations.
Lydia Dickson, Alexa Rowlands and Scarlett Salisbury adapted the Five Kinds of Silence by Shelagh Stephenson to perform “What is Love?”, and after a series of rehearsals throughout the day performed in-front of an audience on Monday, November 9.
The story revolves around a family of four in which control has become a driving force.
"If the pupils were looking to shock then they achieved their objective."
Two adult daughters, along with their mother, attempt to free themselves from their father’s control by killing him, but his influence remains following his death.
After opening with Billy’s death, the play then fast-forwards six months on, where the impact of the murder are hitting each woman individually.
Miss Earle, said: “It was a brilliant and truly harrowing performance.
“If the pupils’ were looking to shock then they achieved their objective, but their performances were emotional, powerful and really got the significance of the story across.
“All three girls worked tremendously hard and they should be proud of their final product and how it was received.”
Pupils get insight into life during WWI from theatre group performance
Our pupils also got a chilling look into life during World War One from a theatre group performance.
They were treated to a performance from the Badac Theatre Company, who opened their tour at the school.
Set during WWI, “The Flood” focusses on the intense physical, emotional and psychological effects of war.
It follows the story of a couple - a nurse and soldier on the frontlines who are separated by battle - and her dreams of the darkness enveloping her loved one haunt her until his dying day.
Steve Lambert, from the Badac Theatre Company, said: “The original idea was based around a family story of my great aunt who had a fiancée that was killed during the war.
“She never got over his death or never married even though she lived into her eighties. It struck me that there must have been thousands of other love stories throughout the war that ended in tragedy and that is how The Flood came about.”
Following the performance there was a 25 minute question and answer session with the two actors, where we found out more about the company and the sort of work it takes to make a show such as this a success.
Rugby star breaks into RGC senior squad
Efan Jones scores first ever try for RGC 1404 senior side
Rugby sensation Efan Jones had another tremendous term as he looks to establish himself in the senior game.
The scrum half enhanced his growing reputation by scoring his first ever try for RGC 1404 in their 28-16 Swalec Championship victory at Newcastle Emlyn in October.
The Wales U18 international recently presented one of his international shirts to Mr Boyd as a memento, with Efan coming through the ranks via our Rugby Academy.
Mr Boyd, said: “Efan has worked incredibly hard on his game since over the last number of years and it is fantastic to see him getting the rewards he deserves.
“It is a remarkable testament to Efan that he has been selected for this squad whilst still at school.
“He is following in footsteps of former 1st XV player Danny Cross who was selected to play for Wales U20 last season before moving on to Bangor University.
“Both players are products of the Rugby Academy and have also benefited from our very close links with RGC 1404 and have now progressed through to their senior squad.”
Alex makes major award shortlist
Pupil Alex Bytheway nominated for prestigious award
Our budding scientist Alex Bytheway has been named as a finalist in a National Science and Engineering Competition after impressing judges in his first round application.
The 17 year-old will now give a public talk at the Big Bang Fair in March, which expects to bring more than 75,000 people to the Birmingham NEC.
His talk will also be judged by a celebrity panel that has included Professor Brian Cox, Professor Jim Al-Khalili and Sir Tim Hunt in previous years.
In order to reach the national finals, Alex had to produce a video describing current research to an audience without a strong or experienced background in science.
The pupil discussed Haemanthamine extraction from Narcissus to treat Malaria, and judges described his entry as “clear that the student fully understands the project and its importance to society”.
Alex said: “I wasn’t really expecting to do so well but I am delighted to have made it to the final.
“Giving a public talk in-front of esteemed judges and a large crowd will no doubt be daunting, but it will also be a fantastic experience and one I am really looking forward to.”
If the young scientist is successful, he will receive a cash prize at a glitzy awards ceremony to be held next year.
Biology pupils take part in DNA experiments at Manchester Museum
The A2 Biology class experimented with the processes of PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) and Gel Electrophoresis at the Manchester Museum.
Having learned about both biological methods in the classroom, they looked to enhance their knowledge by attempting each method.
The pupils used their own DNA, taking cheek cells from the inside of the mouth, and then adding the samples to many different mixtures, including enzymes, primers, and buffers.
When ready for amplification to create many identical fragments, they put their complete sample in a thermal-cycler, which adjusts temperatures to activate the amplification.
Lynne Purshouse, Sales Support Manager at Breckland Scientific Supplies, visited us for a day of experiments on Wednesday, October 14.
The STEM ambassador thrilled pupils with her experiments during her Dry Ice workshop, which also included a “controlled explosion” test and making bubbles float using CO2 emissions from the ice.
Ms Purshouse, said: “This is the second year that we have been up to Rydal Penrhos and I don’t get to work with students much, so it is a refreshing change for me.
“They all seemed to really enjoy the demonstrations that I was showing them, and they all conducted themselves really well throughout and showed a keen interest, which was also great.”
IB Biology pupils' show off final projects
International Baccalaureate pupils have been busy showing off their final projects in Biology.
The projects were wide ranging, with one group basing their study on what effect disused cigarette butts have on the environment once they are discarded.
Another group was producing their own eco-friendly paper as part of the module, which has proved to be a stern test of the pupils’ capabilities, while one set of pupils asked the question “How does light intensity affect the percentage if mould growth on bread?”
Mr Robson, said: “The displays were absolutely fantastic and all our IB pupils showed a high level of commitment and dedication throughout their projects, which was evident in their final outcomes."
Pupils' support worthy causes
The school held their Ty Gobaith Day on Friday, November 27, where pupils dressed up in casual clothes or anything beginning with T or G for a small donation.
There were a host of activities throughout the day, including a pizza sale during morning break which Chicago Pizzas generously donated towards.
In addition there was also a special Office Olympics event, where teams took part in a series of tasks to win a special prize.
Hundreds of pounds were raised from the charity day, with all proceeds going to Ty Gobaith.
Shaswath Ganapathi, said: “We would like to offer our thanks to Chicago Pizzas for their generosity, and for everyone else who took part in making our Ty Gobaith Charity Day a success."
Big thanks should go to our generous pupils, who once again gave a significant contribution to our annual autumn food drive.
The items were on display at St John’s Church during the annual Harvest Festival, and all food collected was donated between Action for Children and the Conwy Food Bank, who will distribute the produce to needy families throughout the region.
Fancy dress cross country raises funds for Armed Forces charity
A fancy dress cross country was also held to raise funds for an Armed Forces charity.
Sixth form pupils were invited to run the gruelling course in fancy dress providing they made a contribution to chosen charity the Forces Children’s Trust, which is devoted to helping children whose father or mother has died, or has sustained life threatening injuries whilst serving as a member of the British Armed Forces.
Despite the muddy conditions the pupils managed to tackle the course, despite a few falls down the hill as demonstrated by our resident swimming star Teddy Roberts.
A number of staff also tackled the course to raise funds for the charity, which was chosen by Mr Boyd.
He said: “We wanted to something a little different this year to get as many people as possible involved in the cross country, and having the fancy dress option hopefully raised some much needed funds for a fantastic cause.
“The weather wasn’t great and that made conditions difficult, but everyone seemed to have a good time getting muddy and I would like to thank all pupils and staff who played a part in making the event a success.”
Amy opens our new short game area
LET star Amy Boulden opens short game area
Golfing superstar Amy Boulden praised our new short game area when she visited us to open the facility.
During the visit, which took place on Wednesday, November 18, Boulden was presented with a plaque to mark the opening before giving a short game masterclass with pupils and taking part in a question and answer session.
She said: “It was a great day and I am very impressed with the facilities here.
“Learning and improving your short game is something that I feel is essential, as it is probably the hardest part of the game to master, and giving pupils the chance to practice it on a regular basis will be a huge benefit for them.
“It is fantastic that Rydal Penrhos is promoting young golfers and allowing them a platform to develop their game, and there aren’t many short game facilities at golf courses that are better than this.”
Mr Richardson, said: “It was a fantastic day and one that staff and pupils enjoyed immensely.
“It has taken a lot of time and effort to get the Golf Academy up and running, and receiving praise from a player of Amy’s stature really makes all the hard work worthwhile."
Louisa Weber claims ISGA Scottish Open title
A pair of our pupils achieved phenomenal success at a golf event in Scotland.
Louisa Weber and Wilson Reyhan came away with the Team Nett title at the ISGA Scottish Open, held at the Kings Acre Golf Club, Midlothian.
If that wasn't enough, Louisa also claimed individual honours, securing the Overall Nett competition and the Girl’s Nett/Gross trophy.
She took home the individual nett title after shooting a 77 on the day, a score that was brought down to 62 in accordance with her handicap.
American Wilson carded an 81 score for his 18-holes, which gave the pair an overall nett total of 134 - enough to take the Overall Nett title from Loretto B, who finished one shot back in second place.
Action group make presence felt
Our Amnesty group have been busy raising awareness and funds for Syrian refugees.
On Tuesday, October 6 the group held a collection event in the quad area, where pupils and staff were asked to give their loose change to help aid refuges of the war torn country.
This event was held just a few days following the groups’ collaboration with the Amnesty Group at Ysgol Eirias, who organised a powerful and poignant demonstration on the plight of Syrian Refugees on Friday, October 2.
Mrs Richardson, said: “The pupils were all keen to do something to both help and keep the suffering currently being experience by Syrian refugees in the spotlight.
“Thanks must go to Eirias Amnesty who allowed us to join in on their demonstration, which was an incredible success and was a chilling picture into what is currently happening.
“Events like this are important as it is easy to let something like the situation in Syria fall to the back of your mind, and the students are to be congratulated for taking an initiative and being proactive to raise awareness.”
More than 100 campaigners, which included 40 pupils from both schools joined forces for the “Don’t let them down” protest, which saw group members’ line up in body bags along the beach near Colwyn Bay derelict Victoria Pier.
Ex-pupils flourishing in numerous fields
Tennis star Ellie Scarff makes it two in a row at Conwy Sports Awards
Our former pupil and tennis star Ellie Scarff was awarded the Junior Sportswoman of the Year award for the second year in succession at a glitzy ceremony at Llandudno’s Venue Cymru on Friday, November 27.
Another standout year for Ellie saw her crowned national champion in the U18 and U16 category in convincing fashion, before being offered a place at the Patrick Mouratoglou Tennis Academy in the South of France, which she started in September.
In addition to her success on the court, Ellie also gained two A*s and seven A grades in her GCSEs despite her tennis commitments.
Cricket star Will Sissons was up for Junior Sportsman of the Year, but unfortunately missed out on the award, while we also sponsored the Special Achievement award, which went to Matthew Kennedy.
Laura Nunez-Mulder, who left us in 2013, lined up for Cambridge University’s Ladies’ Rugby side as they took on Oxford in the first ever women’s varsity match at Twickenham on Thursday, December 10.
This is the first time that women took part in the clash, which has been played by men from both universities for over a century.
The Cambridge side rose to the occasion at what is generally considered to be the home of rugby, and defeated Oxford 52-0 in fine style.
The game was screened live on the BBC via the red button, and highlights of the game were shown on BBC 2 at half-time during the men's match.
Success at prestigious challenges
James Sanders strikes gold in UKMT Senior Maths Challenge
A team of our talented maths stars achieved success in the annual UKMT Senior Maths Challenge.
The top 10 per cent of pupils were awarded a gold certificate, and upper sixth pupil James Sanders managed to achieve this feat.
In addition Anjalina Mitra, Sion Myers, Ben Squibb, Valentyna Sydorenko, Tim Huang and Jack Sissons were awarded a silver certificate, which is given to the top 20 per cent of the pupils’ taking part.
The top 30 per cent received a bronze award, with Shaswath Ganapathi, Sanjita Kumar, Will Marston, Sara Owen, Adam Sabri, Andrii Shvets, Kalina Tsaneva and Olivia Williams successful in making this grade.
Mr Richmond, said: “We are delighted that once again so many of our pupils have achieved highly in what is a demanding competition.
“With only the top 10 per cent of participants receiving a Gold Certificate and the next 20% receiving Silver, the achievement of our pupils is outstanding.
"Special congratulations go to James Sanders who gained gold for the second consecutive year.”
There was further success in the team event, where Kalina Tsaneva, Anjalina Mitra, Jack Sissons and James Sanders won the UKMT/FMSP Senior Maths Team Challenger Regional Heat.
This is the first time that one of our teams has won the regional, and the foursome will now move on to the national finals, which will be held at Lindley Hall in London in February.
Mr Cashell, said: “This is a marvellous achievement and one the school is very proud of.
“This is the first time that we have won the regional heat of the challenge and now preparations will begin for the national final, which promises to be a fantastic experience for the pupils.
Despite having little time to prepare, our fab four team breezed through the challenge, and will test their brain power against some of the best young mathematicians in the country.
Primary Schools across region descend for maths challenge
A number of primary schools visited us this term for a Junior Maths Challenge.
Teams of four tested their number crunching skills in a day of activities, which took place on Thursday, October 15.
Among the brain-challenging activities were a speed test, cross number round and a logic round.
The competition finished off with a full relay round before the final scores were collated and the team from Ysgol Pen y Bryn were named as winners.
Ysgol Nant y Groes finished some way back in second place, with Rydal Penrhos just two points adrift in third.
Former pro Owen takes coaching role
Former Glamorgan star Will Owen takes up coaching role
Will Owen, an ex-Glamorgan bowler, was forced to retire in August following lengthy back and hip injuries, but has started a new chapter by agreeing to coach both pupils and non-pupils with us.
He said: “After retiring from professional cricket with Glamorgan this summer, I have moved back to my roots in Prestatyn.
“I am looking to pass on my knowledge and experience to the next generation of cricketers in the area and Rydal Penrhos is a great facility for me to do this.
“After speaking with Mr Boyd I was really impressed with how he goes about things at the school and I wanted to be part of what he is building.
“I am really looking forward to getting started with the players and excited at what the future holds.”
Owen has been tasked with preparing the pupils for the upcoming season with coaching sessions every Monday from 7-9pm following the Christmas break.
He will also be overseeing a special Sunday session from 10am-12pm, which will be open to all elite cricketers from across North Wales as part of the Rydal Penrhos High Performance Centre in association with Helygen Cricket.
Cricket star Will Sissons nominated for Conwy Sports Award
Our superstar cricketer Will Sissons was nominated for Junior Sportsman of the Year at the Conwy Sports Awards.
It has been another great year of sporting achievement for Will, who earned Welsh under 14 squad selections last season, while also earning a spot at the Glamorgan Cricket Academy.
In addition to his cricketing success, Will is also an accomplished Fives player and has claimed a number of national competitions.
Will has been aided by professional coaching at the school by Samad Fallah, the Indian swing king who has helped guide Colwyn Bay Cricket Club to their first ever Welsh Cup and achieve promotion to the Liverpool and District Premier Division.
We had the privilege of being named as one of the top cricketing establishments in the country by a leading magazine.
The Cricketer has placed us at number 66 in the top 100 schools in Britain after being selected from hundreds of applicants to make the list.
It is the only school in Wales that was chosen, and one of only three in the North West that made the cut.
As a result of this recognition, we were also featured in their November issue entitled The Playing Fields of England: An A-Z Guide to the Summer Game’s Top 100 Schools, both in-print and online.
RNCM visit for masterclass
Royal Northern College of Music masterclass
We welcomed members of the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, which is regarded as one of the finest conservatoires in the world, as part of their String Focus Day.
There were intermediate classes for pupils studying levels 2-5, where they learnt special techniques and methods to help improve their craft.
The college visitors, which consisted of two college professors and two postgraduate students gave a short concert of three pieces, before they took part in a question and answer session with the audience.
The afternoon finished with level 5-8 musicians getting an advanced masterclass from the visitors.
Mr Wright, said: “It was a fantastic honour for us to host the Royal Northern College of Music, who are in my opinion tone of the finest establishments of its kind in the world."
Pupils make music like the pros thanks to new state-of-the-art equipment
We have made a significant investment has been made on a state-of-the art Apple Mac system, featuring GarageBand – which gives pupils the opportunity to make quality recordings.
Mr Williams, said: “We have a lot of talented musicians and singers here at Rydal Penrhos and this new equipment will give them the option of making proper recordings.
“Although it is still in its infancy, the new software has been very well received and we have plans to install some other exciting options in the near future to enhance the experience further.”
The new equipment has now been installed for two weeks and pupils are already getting to grips with it, and have already begun recording and learning additional elements such as effects mastering.
Pupil Alex Roberts, said: “It’s really changed how things sound, and made our recording sound like they could be from a professional musician.
“The software is really easy and fun to use, and it is also giving us additional skills so I am looking forward to using it a lot more in the future.”
Mr Williams revealed that they are planning a number of projects to maximise the use of the new software, including implementing it during lessons and using external sound cards.
There is also high demand for use during extra-curricular activities from pupils’ of all ages.
Musicians praised following successful Young Performers' Concert
Pupils of all ages gave rousing performances at a special Young Performers’ Concert, which was held at St John’s Church on Tuesday, October 13.
Miles Poller kicked off the concert with a stunning performance of the popular Baker Street, and this was followed by Nick Dundee thrilling the audience with a rendition of the Ed Sheeran smash hit Give me Love.
Mr Wright, said: “There was a really nice atmosphere at St John’s for the concert and after talking with the audience following the performance I know that everybody had a wonderful time.
“Some of the performances really were exceptional and it just goes to show just how many talented musicians we have here.
The concert did not go out on a whimper, as Luke Foerester brought the event to a conclusion with a drums rendition of Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Green Day.
Pupils debate with MEP at Westminster
Pupils debate with Welsh MEP on Westminster visit
Economics and Business Studies pupils had an impromptu debate with an MEP during a project visit.
The group have been working throughout the term on a Euroscola project, which works in a similar way to the Model United Nations but uses the European Parliament as its guide.
This culminated in a visit to Westminster on Thursday, November 19, where they presented their research on the Turkish accession to the EU to a panel that included Dr Kay Swinburne, Conservative Member of the European Parliament for Wales.
The MEP gave an informative talk where she explained about her role, before taking part in a question and answer session with pupils.
Economics pupils take part in prestigious Bank of England Challenge
A team of four pupils, who are studying both A-level and International Baccalaureate took part in the Bank of England Target 2.0 Challenge.
During the event Lloyd Parry Williams, Anjalina Mitra, Henry Williams and William Marston had to give their views on what the Monetary Policy Committee should do in order to meet the UK Government’s two per cent target for inflation.
The foursome undertook an incredible amount of research for the challenge, including investigation into the many causes of possible inflation, disinflation and deflation, while also examining conflicting data to gauge the overall impact upon the UK economy.
"The pupils did a terrific job of getting their point across, and this was down to all their hard work in preparing for the challenge."
Following the presentation the group received a commendation by judges from the Bank of England, which was given for their insights supply side shocks and the role the external value of sterling is likely to have on future price levels.
BT Sport visit highlights successful term
Senior squad rub shoulders with greats at BT Sport show
Our senior rugby team rubbed shoulders with some of the sport's greatest ever players during an appearance on a popular BT Sport show.
The team travelled to the BT Studios in London to participate in Rugby Tonight, a highlights and discussion show which is recorded in-front of a live studio audience.
During the program the team presented former England international Ben Kay with a framed shirt to open the show, which will be placed on a memorabilia wall situated within the studio.
In addition to the presentation, the players also took part in a static demonstration and got up close with some of the most experienced and best rugby stars in history, including New Zealand All Blacks legend Jonah Lomu, a special guest on the show who died later this year.
Mr Boyd, said: “Being on live TV was an experience in itself but being on there in the presence of such legends of the game was a fantastic occasion.
“The pupils’ really enjoyed the occasion but it is hard not to be star struck when Jonah Lomu sits down beside you and asks you to pass him a can of coke.”
Next Generation 7s rugby camp set for February half term at Rydal Penrhos
We are delighted to announce that a special Rugby Sevens camp will take place here in February.
Coaching specialists Next Generation Sevens have been confirmed for the three-day event, which will take place from Wednesday, February 17 to Friday 19.
This will give budding sevens players the chance to develop their skills under top international coaches, including Paul John, a 2009 Rugby World Cup Sevens winning coach who also has experience coaching the Welsh national team and Cardiff Blues.
Wednesday’s session will be open to under 12 and 14 players, with Thursday and Friday coaching available to under 15-18s.
Next Generation Sevens was set up with the aim of taking the best coaches, with international playing and coaching experience, and using them to deliver elite level coaching to the next generation of sevens players and future Olympians.
Religion at Rydal Penrhos
Pupils learn school's Methodist links
Pupils explore our Methodist links
Year 7 pupils got to learn more about our Methodist foundation.
The entire year group spent the afternoon at St John’s Church with Religious Studies department staff where they took part in three sessions.
The first was thinking generally about being connected and belonging to different groups locally and across the world, where the pupils’ created a huge chain of belonging which is now hanging in chapel.
In addition to this there are now four large posters detailing the lives of the four founders of the school houses: Bishop William Morgan, the Rev’d John Wesley, the Rev’d Frederick Payne and Mr Thomas Osborn.
To find out the information on these gentlemen, pupils had to hunt the clues down around the church and then present their findings to the others.
They finished off the day by taking a famous event from the life of John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, and explored the idea of the warmed heart.
Rev'd Sissons, said: “I was very impressed with the energy and enthusiasm of the pupils and the way they worked together as a team.
“They were keen to understand about where the school had come from and to learn about the pioneering work of the four founders."
Doctor visits to teach pupils about Hinduism
In what was a busy term for the Year 7 class, Dr Manju Bhaskar, mother of pupil Gowri Pradeep, paid a visit to teach our pupils about Hinduism.
Dr Bhaskar gave an introduction to Hinduism and also had pupils learning a traditional dance, which represents the gods of the Trimurthi.
She also spoke of life in her home state of Kerala, India, including festivals and rites of passage, and how Hindus in the North Wales community come together to celebrate and worship.
Lily-Rose Leong and Benjamin Purcell also volunteered to try on some traditional clothes.
The visit ended with a demonstration of Puja (worship).
Standout term for sporting stars
Numerous pupils receive national sailing squad call-ups
Our vast array of gifted sailors have been praised for their outstanding season on the water.
Brothers Eddie and Kevin Farrell have long been two of the most talented sailors in the region, and they enhanced their reputation even further during the campaign which earned them a call-up to the Welsh RS Feva National Squad.
In addition the pair have also been chosen for the Northern UK RS Tera squad for their native Ireland for the second consecutive year.
Father Ed Farrell, said: “This is a great achievement for both of them as they have only just started sailing in the RS Feva, but they have already proven to have significant potential in the double handed boat, and they are both delighted to receive the call-up.”
Joining them in the RS Feva national squad are Ewan Luke and Zac Blomeley, who impressed selectors by winning the RS Feva class at the recent Welsh Zones event in Bala.
This is Ewan’s third year with the squad, while it will be Zac’s second year with the team.
Rounding off the national picks for us is Daisy Lee-Browne, who will join up with the RYA Cymru-Wales Youth 29er squad after a number of eye-catching performances in recent events including first girls in the 29ers with her partner Chloe Butterworth at the Welsh Zones in Bala.
Another success story is Felix Corson, who has been selected for the RYA Cymru North Wales Regional Feva Squad, and will now join up with the group for their winter training sessions.
Hockey star Hannah Cashell has been in fantastic form for Colwyn Bay Ladies this term.
The head girl, who has received international honours in the past, continued her impressive progression with a series of fine displays, including a hat-trick Colwyn Bay Seconds’ 3-1 win over Ffestiniog.
Skiing programme praised
Our impressive skiing programme is going from strength-to-strength after another successful season.
With our girls' side reaching the British Schools Indoor Championships, Mr Robson, who has a number of British University Ski Race Championships to his name, has praised our forward-thinking by offering Skiing to its pupils.
He said: “We are fortunate to be within an hour’s drive of three artificial ski slopes and the snow of the Manchester Chill Factore is just a little further away.
“Skiing has been a significant part of the schools extra-curricular programme for a number of years.
“Around 70 Pre-Prep and Prep pupils, from as young as four, take part in weekly ski sessions through the autumn and winter, along with race training and racing in both the Senior and Prep."
Becky Lawton selected for Eryri U16 netball squad
Becky Lawton was chosen for the squad after impressing for Conwy County U16s in their clash against Gwynedd and Ynys Mon.
The Goal Attack will now move on to the Eryri squad, who will compete at the Welsh netball inter-counties tournament in March.
This feat was made even greater by the fact that the squad now selects from across North West Wales, a move that has made getting into the squad more difficult as they select from a wider group of players.
Becky said: “It was a nerve-wracking experience but the main thing was to get into the squad, something which I managed to do.
“I am looking forward to going to Cardiff for the Welsh inter-counties tournament, and hope I can help the team do well.”
"It was a nerve-wracking experience but the main thing was to get into the squad"
Miss Head, said: “Since joining us in Year 7 Becky has demonstrated a natural shooting ability.
“This is the second time Becky has had the honour of representing Eryri, this first time was as an U14. We are all very proud of her achievement.”