Page 30 - Independent Schools Magazine
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New boarding house opened
ACS Cobham International School, Surrey, hosted a summer garden party to celebrate the opening of its new £15m boarding house. Guests included the Mayor of Elmbridge, the Chief Executive of the Boarding Schools’ Association and members of the school community, as well as past boarding students and staff.
The new Woodlands house will provide an enhanced school
residency for an additional 113 boys and girls, with single en-suite rooms for all senior students.
The celebration saw speeches from Tony Eysele (Head of School) with the Mayor of Elmbridge cutting the ribbon and of cially opening the new boarding house ready for the upcoming school year.
As part of an initiative launched by the Boarding Schools’ Association to create an international orchard across the UK, an olive tree was planted outside the new house. Joining over 110 British boarding schools, the planting symbolises the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrates each school’s commitment
to growth and caring for the
environment and sustainability. The olive tree is also a potent ACS symbol as a similar tree was chosen to commemorate the school’s founder, EJ Poularas in the walled garden.
“The of cial opening today was a wonderful celebration
of our stunning new boarding house, which we are very proud to present to our guests and students,” commented Mark Venn-Dunn, Head of Boarding.
The new house has six common rooms and two quiet areas for socialising, studying and eating, including a cinema-style room, games room and work areas with  exible furniture and technology for group projects. A triple height atrium extending over three  oors maximises natural
light and space, giving boarders commanding views across the campus and woodlands.
As well as accommodation
for boarding house staff,
the development includes extensive landscaped areas
and a communal BBQ area.
The boarding house sits within the school’s 128-acre campus allowing boarders ‘out of hours’ access to the sports, academic, technology and performing arts facilities, including six tennis courts, a 25-metre pool and six- hole golf course.
A multi-million pound refurbishment of the existing boarding house Fields is now under way and this will include a new walk-in medical centre with a fully-trained medical team.
Pictured (l to r): Robin Fletcher (CEO of the Boarding Schools Association), Tony Eysele (Head of School, ACS Cobham) and Rachael Lake (Mayoress)
Inspirational evening
Box Hill School, Surrey, opened
the doors of Dalewood House to welcome guest speaker Karen Darke MBE; author, adventurer and GB Paralympian cyclist with silver and gold medals from the London and Rio Games respectively.
Karen was paralysed from the chest down at the age of 21 following an accident, whilst sea cliff climbing. During the evening she shared her remarkable story which is framed by her belief that disability is a state
of mind not a state of body. She believes that “our own minds are our biggest obstacles to living and achieving our wildest aspirations,
and if we set our heart and mind to it, then there are no limits”.
“To have the most impact in life we should challenge our constraints, adopt a positive mental attitude and support each other to become the best we possibly can” said Karen.
Throughout her presentation
she enthralled the audience with the details of her journey across Greenland’s ice cap on a sit-ski, scaling El Capitan, and when she hand-cycled the length of Japan and sea kayaked a 1200 mile length of the Canada-Alaska coastline.
Just add water...
Hundreds of children, parents and grandparents came together at Westbourne House School Pre- Prep, Sussex, to enjoy a raft of water-themed activities, including canoeing on the school’s lake.
The school was awash with
people aged 8 months to 80,
who  ooded in to take part in activities such as hook-a-duck, apple bobbing, building mini-rafts and sandcastles, as well as face- painting, a treasure hunt and craft table. Guests were entertained
in the playground by some of
the Prep School’s Year 8 music scholars and treated to a delicious lunch. The main attraction was
the opportunity to paddle in open canoes on the school’s lake, which saw over 120 children and adults from beginners to more seasoned paddlers take to the water.
Victoria Homewood, Head of Westbourne House Pre-Prep, commented: “After our successful Autumn Fun Day, we really wanted more people to come and enjoy the lake and grounds. Luckily,
the weather was on our side and parents and children paddled happily in the sunshine. The other activities gave the day a really fête-like atmosphere and the event proved so popular, we are already planning another for September!”
Pictured: Vicky Sherwood, assistant head, left, with Karen and students
30 Independent Schools Magazine
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