Rydal Penrhos newsletter
Foreword from the Headmaster
Seven months on from first sitting in my Headmaster’s Study on 9th January, I can write of a magnificent Celebration Service, a busy activities week in the Senior School, the welcoming of our new Year 7 pupils ready for September and a memorable Prep School Speech Day during which we bid farewell to a wonderful colleague, Mr Roger McDuff. I want to thank all of my colleagues on the teaching and support staff for making all these moments possible.
We have had a glorious Summer Term with weather ranging from Mediterranean-like to a rather more familiar grey of a British January, but the weeks have been full of activity – not least by our pupils who, collectively, have taken well over a thousand public examinations. I do wish everyone involved the very best of outcomes.
Away from the exam hall, we have witnessed some tremendous occasions, of which there are too many to list here, but I must mention Speech Day, Sports Day, the Summer Fete, our Leavers’ Chapel Service, the Summer Concert and the events of National Boarding Week. All were delightful examples of pupils, parents, support staff and teaching staff working together for mutual benefit and long may that continue.
There are a number of projects taking place over the summer holidays and stretching into the next academic year.
I look forward to reporting on these in September, but you will notice a real difference in some key areas of the school.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr Richard Smith, our Estates Manager, and his team for managing theses various projects whilst many of us are taking a break.
I would also like to bring to your attention that, as part of the Rydal Penrhos Strategic Development plan, over the coming months the School will be considering the disposal of a number of its underused and unused capital assets.
This is the start of a plan to revitalise and utilise the school facilities to their fullest extent and to reinvest in new projects. At the moment the future projects are in the consultation phase but I hope to bring you more news of this at the start of the next academic year.
I would like to thank all of you, as parents, for having faith in Rydal Penrhos.
I thank you too for your openness in communication with me, for taxiing your children around, the late pick-ups after rehearsals, encouragement with Prep, the early Saturday starts for sport fixtures, your generosity in supporting projects and attendance at the many, many events which take place throughout the academic year.
I hope I can count on such loyal support in the months and years to come. It is my sincere hope that you have found (and will find) your extraordinary investment in your children’s education to be one of the best decisions you have ever made.
For now, I must return to Hertfordshire to pack up our house and finally be reunited with my family as we prepare to move our home, at last, to Colwyn Bay. I wish you a restful summer and please do encourage your children to read at least one good book over the coming weeks!
I look forward to seeing your children returning happy, looking smart and ready to make real progress next year.
Cymerwch gyfle i ddarllen a mwynhewch eich gwyliau, gyda eich ffrindiau a'r teulu.
More success for candidates
Rydal Penrhos pupils are celebrating another year of achievement as the provisional International Baccalaureate Diploma results were announced earlier this month.
The school announced that an impressive 75 per cent of all scores were higher than 30 points, which is higher that the global average once again.
The standout performer was Isabel Demel who achieved an incredible 44 points, one point from a perfect score.
The Edwards House boarder and Prefect is now hoping to study Medicine later this year. This achievement also puts the 17-year-old in the top one per cent of total scores worldwide.
Mr Smith, said: “Every one of this year’s cohort can be proud to have studied such an academically challenging and globally respected curriculum.
“Not only have they continued with six subjects, in addition to the Theory of Knowledge course, but they have completed a 4,000 word unique piece of research whilst maintaining a healthy involvement in a range of creative, sporting and service activities.
“The provisional headline results are very pleasing and I look forward to seeing what the University of Durham’s CEM Centre says about the value-added too.
"I congratulate not just those pupils who have achieved the headline grabbing scores but all those pupils who feel they have done themselves and their parents proud with these results.
“I thank all the staff too for their contributions, in so many ways, in creating such a supportive academic environment. I wish all the pupils well as they consider their next steps and set about making a difference in the world; I hope they will remember the values as well as the subjects they have been taught to such good effect during their time here.
“Finally I want to thank them for all that they have contributed to Rydal Penrhos School be it in their two years or 15 years here. They have certainly left their mark and I now look forward to seeing how their A-level peers have fared too.”
Other performances of note came from Amelia Perring, who has applied to study Veterinary Science, while Michael Hogan, Joshua Schultz, Louisa Weber, Anton Holthaus and Anatoliy Andryeyev also scored highly.
Junior team best in Wales
A group of talented mathematicians have achieved notable success in a national competition.
The team of Baptiste Mazars, Juan Rajagopal, Jerry Zhao and Alicia Zhou travelled to London to compete at the United Kingdom Maths Trust Team Challenge national final last month.
Working well as a group, the foursome produced another memorable effort to come away with the Best in Wales crown after a highly competitive day of action.
Mr Smith, said: “We are a school which prioritises learning and a love of that learning.
“These talented pupils and their maths teachers are to be congratulated for their efforts and the hard-work which goes into preparing for such events."
The Lindley Hall final featured a number of other qualifiers who had won their regional heat, something the quartet achieved in fine style, where they finished above Ruthin School to make it through to the showcase.
It has been another standout year for the Maths department in all areas of the competition, with a number achieving gold certificates and Emily Li being invited on to the British Mathematical Olympiad squad.
Mr Cashell, added: “To be crowned the Best in Wales just demonstrates the hard work that our four pupils have put in throughout the competition and everyone at Rydal Penrhos is thrilled for them."
Juan Rajagopal scored a highly impressive 53 out of 70 in the Junior Mathematical Olympiad, which put him in the top 50 entries from the 1,200 that qualified for the event.
The 13-year-old managed to successfully achieve three perfect solutions to a series of difficult questions, which secured him the silver medal, just one mark shy of gold.
He will receive a certificate of Distinction, a silver medal and a book prize in recognition of his accomplishment, in addition to a large round of applause at the school’s end of term Prizegiving Assembly.
This is the latest in a long line of triumphs for the pupil, who qualified for the prestigious showcase after gaining a Gold certificate, Best in School and Best in Year 8 for his efforts at the recent UK Maths Trust Junior Challenge.
He was also part of the team that gained the Best in Wales crown at the UKMT Junior Maths Team Challenge, after winning the regional heat alongside Alicia Zhou, Baptiste Mazars, and Jerry Zhao.
Mr Cashell, said: “What Juan has managed to accomplish this year in the field of Mathematics is nothing short of extraordinary, and this result confirms his status as one of the brightest young minds anywhere in the country.”
Maths subject of final seminar
In the final session of the year, Academic Scholars were guided through a journey of mathematical curiosity, designed to instill systematic, rather than random, working, and to promote the use of conjectures over simple pattern spotting under the guidance of Mr Richmond.
After beginning with a mathematical 'trick' involving dice, pupils were presented with the problem '1089 and all that' before moving on to the task of finding, without the use of a calculator, the sum of the first 100 natural numbers, something that notorious mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss, was allegedly able to solve in a matter of seconds.
The latter half of the session led pupils on a whistle-stop tour, from a geometrical problem involving regions in a circle through a popular theoretical river crossing involving a wolf, a sheep and some cabbages, before moving on to one of the most famous mathematical curiosities of all time; Fermat's Last Theorem.
Pupils were given a brief introduction to this age-old problem, which baffled even the greatest mathematicians for centuries, from its inception in 1637 through to the final 129-page proof, provided by Andrew Wiles, some 357 years later in 1994, something that he had spent around eight years of his life completely dedicated to.
Rounding off the session, the academic scholars were invited to consider one of the oldest and best-known unsolved problems in number theory and all of mathematics, the Goldbach Conjecture, and to spend some of their summer holiday working on one or more of the Millennium Prize Problems.
These are a set of six problems in mathematics, at least one of which has remained unsolved since 1859.
A correct solution to any of the problems results in a US $1 million prize being awarded by the Clay Mathematics Institute to the discoverer(s).
Quartet triumph at Olympics
A team of talented physicists emerged victorious from a high-profile district competition.
The quartet travelled to King’s School Chester for their annual Physics Olympics, which featured a total of 30 teams from across the North West.
Kevin Farrell, Anna Parry-Williams, Eleanor Osbourne and Richard Wolfendale took part in a number of testing practical challenges throughout the day, in addition to the Fermi quiz which saw them tasked with working out questions such as ‘How many Olympic swimming pools could be filled by the Atlantic ocean?’.
After the final results were calculated by the competition’s organisers, the foursome were awarded the title and progressed to the next round after a superb effort.
They all received a commemorative t-shirt recognising their achievements, in addition to a special acknowledgement at the school’s end of term Prizegiving.
Mr Cashell, said: “This is yet another superb academic achievement that everyone is extremely proud of, and congratulations go to Anna, Eleanor, Kevin and Richard on their superb performance.
“Our Physics department has enjoyed phenomenal success in both competitions and exam results on a consistent basis over a number of years, and this is testament to how hard our staff work to ensure that each pupil is challenged and supported throughout their learning.”
Year 7 learn about healthy eating
Year 7 pupils ended their Food and Nutrition exploits for the academic year with a special task.
The group got the chance to learn about and make their very own fruit smoothies as part of their final Home Economics lesson last week with Mrs Williams on Friday, June 30.
They found out about the benefits of drinking smoothies and what nutritional value they have, before trying out some for themselves after choosing their own combination of different fruits.
As a reward for all their hard work throughout the academic year, every pupil then had the opportunity to put their best foot forward in the kitchen and come up with their very own healthy eating cookie, which produced some fantastic and tasty results.
After their baking had concluded, the class then had the chance to sit and relax with Mrs Williams, who left at the end of the academic year.
She said: “All of our Year 7 have worked so hard and thrown themselves into everything that has been put in-front of them this year, and it was great to finish on a high with yet more superb work.
“They have been a pleasure to teach this year and this final task was something of a reward for them, while also emphasising the importance of healthy eating and how it can be beneficial to everyday life.”
6th form learn by doing
Lower Sixth form pupils took part in a series of activities as part of an ongoing initiative.
The school held its annual Leadership Course over two days for the year group, which took place at a number of different sites throughout the region.
Day one saw the group split up into different teams and head to Colwyn Bay beach, where they were tasked with three tasks including building a raft under the guidance of Mr Todd, sculpting a masterpiece from sand and using materials to make a stretcher to carry each team member.
This was followed by a special teamwork and leadership presentation with Mr Lavery, where they also had the chance to offer their own opinions in a discussion.
The following day saw the ever-exciting ‘Eggciting Challenge’, where the teams tried to create a safe environment for an egg, which would then enable it to float from the top of a building without smashing upon hitting the floor.
Short work was made of a treasure hunt which saw the group take in local areas such as The War Memorial, The Toad Inn, Cayley Promenade and the Rhos on Sea clock, while the afternoon saw a spin-off of the hit invention show Dragon’s Den, in addition to a pool and stepping stone challenge.
The conclusion of the course saw the teams take to stage for the Song Challenge, which produced a number of interesting performances together with some choreography, and they were rewarded for their fine efforts throughout with a barbecue.
Alumni return for Prep Day
A group of former pupils returned as part of a special event for university hopefuls.
As part of the school’s annual Higher Education Preparation Day, seven ex-Rydalians took part in a special question and answer session on Friday, June 16, where they spoke about their experiences since departing, and offered advice to the Lower Sixth about what they can expect when they head off on the next stage of their journey.
Sophie Cashell, who will spend a year in the Dominican Republic with the Project Trust, is also studying Law at the University of Bristol, while Drama student at Loughborough University Lydia Dickson stated she wishes to become a police officer once she has finished her degree.
Abi Klazinga also spoke about her gap year travelling through Thailand and Australia before heading into a Geography degree at Loughborough, with Sam Merrick also going to the same university this year, where he will be studying Politics and Economics.
Another to lend his support was Sean Robinson, who is currently studying Finance at the University of Coventry, and Sebastian Schmidt also offered his thoughts on first year study after successfully completing the first year of his Music degree at Manchester University.
The final guest was Alex Sharples, who has just finished his first year of pilot training and will soon be heading off to New Zealand for an eight-month stay to complete his course.
Mr Lavery, said: “The session was really informative and I think that all of our pupils got a lot out of it.
“Hearing first-hand experiences of our alumni gives them an indication of what they can expect when they head off to university, and I would like to offer my thanks to all seven of our former pupils that took the time to come back to aid our current applicants.”
Stage star gives Blood Brothers workshop
Drama pupils got the chance to learn from one of the best in the business at a recent workshop.
Sean Jones, who is currently playing Mickey in the smash hit Blood Brothers, visited the school on Wednesday, June 28, where he passed on some vital tricks of the trade to young hopefuls across a number of year groups.
During the day the actor went over a wide range of different techniques including posture, timing and delivery, before going over some of the musical with one of its leading men.
This is part of a number of special visits from some of Drama’s industry leaders throughout the year, which are set-up by department head Mrs Crimes in a bid to enhance the learning of each pupil taking part.
Mr Jones, said: “Mickey was a part I really, really wanted to play as many actors do, and that was from the first moment I saw it, about 12 years ago when I'd just left drama college.
"It's a dream part, because of the emotions needed and the technique in terms of the physicality of first playing a seven-year old and then going through the teenage years.
“I had a brilliant day with Rydal Penrhos’ Drama department with some really lovely children, and I would like to thank everyone at the school for having me.”
Swiss work experience honour for pupil
Eddie Farrell travelled to a medical device factory near Geneva, Switzerland for his work experience, where his work experience explored all areas of life at the factory and gained valuable knowledge that will stand him in good stead for the future.
The factory uses highly automated technology and robotics to produce the product, and a full range of educational skills are employed at the establishment from biochemists, to engineers, to business and finance professionals.
The 15-year-old took part in a number of tasks during the week, including helping the engineering and manufacturing teams to prepare material for projects to improve the manufacturing process.
Eddie is one of many pupils that have taken work placements across the country and beyond as part of the initiative, which has also seen pupils across all year groups take part in a wide range of fun-filled as testing tasks to round off the academic year.
Mr Cashell, said: “This was a fantastic opportunity for Eddie to learn more about this specific field, and I am sure that the whole experience will be of great benefit to him as he progresses through his education.
“He is a very driven pupil that has achieved an enormous amount in various areas of school life, and we are incredibly excited to see what he can accomplish in the future.”
Annual exhibition hailed a success
Our Art department hosted their annual A-level and GCSE exhibition on Friday, June 23, which featured the coursework of a number of pupils.
Mr Sherrington, said: “This year’s exhibition is the most diverse we have put on for about five years.
“We have everything from portraits, photography and textiles, and I cannot tell you how hard the pupils have worked during their coursework and exam pieces.
“For example, one piece had to be woven by hand during a 15-hour exam, so the focus and determination shown was quite extraordinary.
“It is heartening to see all the pupils reaching their potential and working from their own concerns and interests.”
Staff members, parents and pupils descended on the department to view the stunning work, with some of the artists on hand to answer any questions that those attending had on their respective pieces.
Upper Sixth pupil Sanjita Kumar, who produced a jaw-dropping final product, said: “I originally begun working on the theme of nature through the medium of wool, before I changed to faces in my second year.
“The piece is a commemoration to my mum who was ill at the time, so this was my tribute to her through art.”
National Boarding Week
Host of activities held
We arranged a host of activities in support of National Boarding Week, which was held from June 19-25 and was set-up to highlight the benefits of choosing a boarding school education.
On Sunday staff and pupils gathered to lend their support to The Great Get Together, an initiative organised by the Jo Cox Foundation on the first anniversary of her tragic death.
During the event those that attended took part in a three legged race and a bound together pivot, before joining up for a picture outlining the letter “JC” in memory of the former MP.
Teams gathered at the school’s Swimming Pool on Monday, where they competed against each other in the inaugural Inflatable Obstacle Course Race, which drew a huge crowd of supporters who cheered the competitors on throughout.
After a hotly contested evening of action, the staff team consisting of Miss Gibson-Smith, Dr Lewis, Miss Freeman, Mr Sanders and Mr Lavery were crowned the winners, making it a treble of victories following their recent success.
Tuesday saw the first round of a version of the ITV quiz show The Chase, with pupils and staff battling it out for further bragging rights.
Eight teams made up of representatives of the five boarding houses, a staff team and one from Year 9 and Year 10 respectively had one minute to build up their cash reserves by answering general knowledge questions before coming up against a Chaser in the hope of reaching the final.
The final saw Lower Sixth pupil Harry Dean coming up against Head of Business Studies and ICT Mr Farnell in an epic battle that eventually saw the teacher claim the crown in sudden death.
Wednesday brought with it the Great Bake-Off, with the Best Technical Skill award going to the duo of Anna Richardson and Elinor Davies for their stunning final product.
Friday saw a special Boarders’ Barbecue and Teddy Bears competition, while the week also saw the school join the British Boarding Schools’ Association over two days at the Royal Cheshire County Show.
The final activity saw a number of boarding pupils take part in a special video surrounding life at the school, which has had more than 1,000 views on social media in a few short days.
Pupil video highlights benefits
A group of pupils have been speaking on the benefits of boarding life as part of a nationwide initiative.
The four pupils were part of a special video created by Communications Assistant Mr Jones as the school lent its support to National Boarding Week.
It was officially aired on social media to a large response on Thursday, June 22.
Lithuanian boarder Augustas Skierus, aged 16, said: “What attracted me to boarding at Rydal Penrhos was the diversity of cultures, and that you can have the chance to practice different languages with people from different countries.
“For example at the moment I am currently learning Russian from scratch.”
Ukrainian pupil Ivan Shamrai, added: “Even though I am an International Baccalaureate pupil I can always ask advice from anyone and they will know how to help me.
“I am currently doing rugby and music but the range of activities we have to choose from is fantastic, and you have the chance to do anything you want really.”
Lower Sixth pupil Emily Li, who was part of the British Mathematical Olympiad this year, stated that the extra-curricular aspect of Rydal Penrhos is something that is a “big difference”, and highlighted her recent efforts during her Duke of Edinburgh expedition as an example of a “challenging and fun” activity.
This is part of a series of activities that the school has organised in support of National Boarding Week, which has been set-up to highlight the benefits of choosing a boarding school education including strong pastoral care, excellent learning and teaching and first-class facilities, in addition to the extensive activities outside the classroom and the chance for pupils to forge lifetime friendships.
Hundreds raised from FORPS event
The annual Friends of Rydal Penrhos Summer Fair took place on Tuesday, June 27 and it was once again a great success despite heavy rain forcing last minute changes to plans.
Normally held in the school quad, organisers moved the event into the Sports Hall, where there were a host of stalls, an auction, a bouncy castle and Inflatable Assault course, which was a hugely popular addition and provided by Commando X-Fit.
A pair of virtual reality stations were recently purchased on behalf of FORPS, and fairgoers had the chance to try out the equipment themselves throughout the event.
Those attending were kept entertained by a variety of music and drama performances from pupils and while refreshments were available in abundance in the form of a cake stall and barbecue.
There was also a grand raffle with a host of superb prizes on offer, with all proceeds going towards a number of projects in various areas of Rydal Penrhos.
Mr Cashell, said: “Although the weather did not make things easy, it was once again a fantastic event and congratulations go to the FORPS committee for their efforts."
Trio complete Golf challenge
Adrian Lewis, Charley Simpson and Reuben Bather took on a 72-hole Dawn-till-Dusk Golf Challenge on Wednesday, June 28 at North Wales Golf Club in Llandudno, with all proceeds from their fundraising initiative going towards Macmillan Cancer Support.
The three hopefuls braved the difficult weather conditions to plough through the challenge, with club members also lending their support throughout.
This is not the first time that Year 7 pupil Charley has taken on this challenge, with the 11-handicapper completing a similar event in aid of BBC Children in Need at a host of different clubs across North Wales in November last year.
All three are prominent members our Golf Academy, with Reuben – who plays with a three handicap – finishing third overall at the recent ISGA Junior League National Championships.
They are hoping to raise around £500 from their efforts, and have been busy collecting sponsorship from pupils and staff ahead of the event.
Mr Boyd, said: “The weather was not kind to the boys but they powered through and managed to complete the challenge, which was an absolutely fantastic achievement under the circumstances.
“This was a fantastic gesture from them all to raise what will hopefully be a significant amount of money for a very worthy cause, and everyone at Rydal Penrhos is thrilled with their selfless actions.”
– Mr Boyd
More than £1,000 was officially raised from a special charity match in aid of those affected by the Manchester Terror Attack.
We took on Llandudno FC Legends last month in the special clash, which was set up to raise money for the Penny Appeal’s campaign for the victims.
A highly competitive affair at the Giant Hospitality Stadium went the way of the home side, who triumphed 4-2 against the school side which was comprised of staff, current and former pupils.
The Legends, who had a number of standout performers including Mike Lundstram, Mark Orme and Lee Thomas, took a two-goal lead into the interval.
The introduction of Welsh Premier League standout Danny Hughes further aided their cause after the break, and Thomas rounded off a fine team move with a third shortly after the restart.
Rydal Penrhos missed a host of chances throughout the contest but finally got on the score-sheet courtesy of a Rev'd Sissons penalty midway through the half, before they reduced the arrears further thanks to neat finish from the impressive Mr Joyce.
After all donations had been counted, Communications Assistant Mr Jones confirmed that £1,034.05 was the final total, which has now been sent on to the charity.
Mr Jones, who organised the game with the help of Legends manager Sam Williams, said: “Initially I set a target of £500 so I am thrilled that we have managed to raise six figures from the event.
“It was a fantastic occasion that was extremely well supported by Llandudno FC and Rydal Penrhos, in addition to regional and national media outlets and I would like to thank them all for all their efforts.
“I also wish to thank everyone who donated to the cause, it really did mean a lot and hopefully it can do some good for those that were affected by the atrocity in Manchester.”
Libby Hughes joined a hoard of other female fundraisers at the Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, which was held in Rhyl on Sunday June 11.
The women-only event started and finished at the Events Arena situated on the town’s promenade, and the 14-year-old managed to raise a total of £700 for her efforts.
This is the latest in a long line of fundraising activities that pupils take part in throughout the year, with the school also holding a number of charity events for regional, national and international causes.
Kirsti Thompson, Cancer Research UK’s North Wales events manager, said: “The atmosphere on the day was electric – full of emotion, courage, tears and laughter – as more than 1,000 like-minded ladies came together to unite in the fight against cancer.
“Our participants play a crucial role in helping to turn discoveries made in the lab into better treatments for patients in North Wales and across the UK and we’d like to thank everyone who took part in the event on Sunday, hopefully raising an unbelievable £70,000.
“We’re now calling on everyone who took part in Race for Life in Rhyl to take the vital last step by returning their sponsorship, money so that our scientists, doctors and nurses can continue to make vital strides forward in research.”
Our Community Choir teamed up with Wales’ leading Cancer charity for a special fundraising event.
The choir, which is comprised of parents, staff members and friends of the school, contributed to a Summer Concert in association with Tenovus Cancer Care at St David’s Church in Penrhyn Bay on Saturday, June 10.
There were a host of performances throughout the event, with the charity’s Llandudno Sing With Us Choir also wowing the audience with a number of diverse song choices.
All proceeds from the concert were going towards Tenovus, who offer support, advice and treatment to cancer patients and their loved ones, promote healthy lifestyles and fund cancer research to find new ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat the disease.
This is the latest in a long line of events that the community choir perform at throughout the year, with their recent appearance at Creative Rhos drawing widespread praise from those who attended.
Mr Williams, said: “It was a fabulous occasion and one that our Community Choir were extremely proud to be a part of.
“Each performance was well received by the crowd and hopefully the event managed to raise a significant amount of money for a very worthy charity.
“Our Community Choir do so much good for various causes in the region and for the school itself, and there is no more deserving charity than Tenovus Cancer Care.”
Trio receive prestigious grant
The mayor of Colwyn Bay presented three pupils with grants for their high level of achievement in various fields.
Cllr Jeff Pearson presented the awards on behalf of the trustees of the Sir John Henry Morris Jones Trust, which was set up in 1975 at the request of the former MP and GP’s will, with young people under the age of 19 from the Colwyn area invited to apply.
Will Sissons and Imogen Camp have been given grants for their efforts in Cricket and Chess respectively, while Music sensation Niamh Cook was another successful applicant.
Cllr Pearson, said: “It is wonderful to know that our town can produce such a wealth of dedicated and talented young people and I congratulate all the award recipients and wish them all the best for the future.
“I would also like to thank their parents, teachers, coaches and mentors for their hard work and support.”
Imogen has continued her sensational young career with further success this year, with the Welsh international becoming a senior national champion after a fine effort.
Gifted pianist Niamh has thrilled audiences at various concerts in recent months, and also passed her Grade 8 piano exam despite only being a Year 9 pupil.
Former Wales U15 captain Will has enjoyed another standout year at the crease, and was part of the Llandudno side that were recently crowned North Wales Premier Division champions.
Scholar claims European title
Josh Lynch turned in another sensational performance to come away with Gold at the Junior Battle European Championships, which were held in Austria on Saturday, June 17.
The talented 13-year-old, who was representing Wales for the first time, not only dominated his weight category but also emerged as one of the stars of the tournament thanks to his eye-catching effort.
Lynch, who has been tipped for future Olympic honours by coach and Commonwealth Games hopeful Harry Mysangyi, produced three new personal bests to lift 70kg in the Snatch, 87kg Clean and Jerk with a total of 157kg.
This was good enough to gain the best Sinclair Score of the whole group, in addition to recording a better overall total of two weight classes above him.
It has been a memorable year for the Sale Sharks Rugby Academy prospect, who has gained a plethora of Welsh records and also qualified for the IAPS National Schools’ Athletics Championships later this year.
Mr Boyd, said: “Josh continues to show just what an enormous amount of talent he has, and to become a European champion is a simply sensational achievement.
“This is down to the hard work of both Josh and his coaches, who have put in a lot of time on improving all areas of his lifting in the lead-up to this competition.
“Everyone is thrilled for Josh and I am confident this will be a stepping stone for further international success in the future.”
Work on outdoor nets underway
Aspiring cricket stars will receive a boost later this year thanks to an exciting new development.
Work has begun on a new outdoor nets area at the school, which will take a number of weeks to complete and will further boost the impressive facilities already situated at the school.
This project has gained significant support from the Annual Fund, which raised more than £11,000 thanks to the generous donations from people associated with the school, with the campaign closing at the end of the academic year on Friday, July 7.
Anyone making a donation can designate which area of school life it should be put towards and can choose from Prep, the Arts, Sport or the Headmaster’s Fund.
Mr Boyd, said: “The outdoor nets will be a valuable asset to our aspiring stars here, and will further enhance the fantastic facilities we already have here.
“Many thanks go to Mr Smith and the Senior Leadership Team for their assistance in getting this project off the ground.”
Bowler gets star approval
Suhas Shekar was part of the U13 side that produced a stunning effort to claim a nine-wicket success over Oswestry School at New Field, and got more then he bargained for when he picked up his match ball.
The gifted bowler was in magnificent form throughout what was a stunning spell, which saw him claim four wickets in as many balls to leave the visitors all out on 92.
This earned the 13-year-old the Man of the Match award, which was presented to him by none other than legendary England all-rounder Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff.
The iconic figure visited the school in support of his son, who was part of the Lancashire U11 side that were taking on Wales at New Field later that day.
Josh Lynch, who had earlier taken three catches, aided his side’s cause with a knock of 34, before youngster Anthony Bowe played a number of classy strokes to end the day unbeaten on 36.
Another to impress was Tom Hughes, who lent support at the other end with 16 not out.
Triumphs keep on coming
Gareth Batty, who is currently the captain of Surrey and has been capped by England at both Test and One Day level, coached both boys and girls at the school on Monday, June 19.
During his visit the 39-year-old ran the rule over the U14 players and gave them some key pointers surrounding their technique with both bat and ball, in addition to some fielding tips to help with their development.
The spin bowler, who is the younger brother of former Yorkshire and Somerset off-spinner Jeremy Batty, made his international debut against Bangladesh in 2003 after earning his debut ODI bow against Australia the previous year.
He has made a total on 19 appearances for his country and taken 15 wickets.
The masterclass was well received by both male and female group members, with Batty also lending advice on how to get the most out of things such as their run-up, preparation and even field positions for prospective skippers.
Mr Leach, said: “Having someone with the experience of Gareth come and take part in a cricketing masterclass was a huge benefit to our pupils, who really got a lot out of the session and picked up some tricks of the trade that will come in use in the future.
“To have an England international here was a huge privilege and I hope that it has provided our young under 14 players with plenty of inspiration for the future.”
Roman Pyrih produced a series of sensational efforts to finish second at the Chester Chess Festival last weekend.
The feat was made even more remarkable by the fact that Roman was testing his skills in the U18 category, something that brought with it a string of fine performances.
The 11-year-old was the star of the show in the qualifying stages and was the number one seed going into the final after topping the leaderboard with 4.5 out of a possible five point to secure a place in the final.
Unfortunately for the Ukrainian boarding pupil he was unable to claim the crown as he fell to his first defeat of the competition to a much older and more experienced opponent.
Mr Cashell, said: “Despite not winning the title Roman can take plenty of positives from his performance, which was exceptional given his inexperience playing competitively and the age category he was entered in.
“This experience will do his confidence and development an untold amount of good and the sky is the limit in terms of what Roman can achieve if he continues to progress in this manner.
“Our Chess programme is something we are very proud of here and with talent such as Roman coming through then it is in very safe hands.”
Sporting staff were given a helping hand in their preparation for next year with the help of a Premier League academy coach.
Padraig Roche, who works as a Strength and conditioning coach at the Arsenal FC Academy, visited the school on Wednesday, June 14 where he aided staff members from both the Prep and Senior sites with their Athletic Development strategy.
Sport scientist Padraig joined Arsenal in July 2013, having already forged a successful career in rugby union.
After playing football for Cahir Park AFC and Tipperary, Padraig retrained as a coach and earned a BA in sports management as well as becoming a UKSCA accredited strength and conditioning coach, a Level 2 weightlifting coach and an IRB Level 2 conditioning coach.
Having obtained his qualifications, the NCSA certified coach undertook a year-long position as head of strength and conditioning at University College Cork in 2007 before moving to Munster's academy.
After that Padraig worked with the Irish national rugby union team as their first-team assistant strength and conditioning coach and had a similar role with their under-20 squad before switching back to football when he joined the Gunners.
Mr Boyd, said: “Padraig has a wealth of experience at the elite level of sport in both football and rugby, and it was great to welcome him here to aid with our plans for the next academic year.
“Our staff really did get a lot out of it and it will help us with our preparation as we look to continue the impressive development across all sporting areas in the future.”
Abhishek Bathula will part of the Welsh Table Tennis squad that head to Shanghai in October, where they will take part in a series of coaching sessions with some of the best and highly regarded table tennis coaches anywhere in the world.
The talented 15-year-old is the only North Wales representative to be selected for the squad, and the training programme is scheduled to last for ten days.
It has been a season to remember for Abhishek, who has claimed a number of tournament triumphs and will make another appearance for his country this weekend at a competition in the Jersey Islands.
There was further cause for celebration this week with the news that the pupil successfully passed his Karate Black Belt grading after impressing assessors to achieve the honour.
The martial arts discipline is one of Abhishek’s chosen sports subjects as part of his GCSE module.
Mr Boyd, said: “This is an incredible opportunity for Abhishek and one that he is thoroughly deserving of.
“He has worked immensely hard and out a great deal of effort into his development, and he has progressed significantly since being part of the national set-up.
“Table Tennis is thriving in China and the Far East so this will be another extremely worthwhile experience for Abhishek, who is one of a number of sporting internationals we have here at Rydal Penrhos.”
Golf stars Reuben Bather and Charley Simpson produced another eye-catching set of results at the ISGA Junior League National Championships, which were held at Radley College on Wednesday, June 21.
The duo, who both joined our Golf Academy in September, competed against other qualifiers from across the country in the searing heat, and after an impressive pair of rounds they managed to come away with fourth placed overall in the team event.
There was further success for Welsh international Reuben, who finished with the third best individual score after a round that featured a number of flawless shots.
This was the first time in history that a team from the school had qualified for the national stage of the competition, and is the latest in a long line of triumphs since the inception of the school’s Golf Academy.
Mr Richardson, said: “Reuben and Charley have been a huge asset to since they joined us on golf scholarships last year, and this is yet another significant milestone for both them and our thriving academy.
“They work very well as a team and are always looking for ways to improve."