Page 48 - Independent Schools Magazine
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 Multi million pound investment
Giggleswick School, Yorkshire,
has started a multi-million pound investment in its boarding houses and classroom facilities with the first stage of development to be completed this month (September).
The redevelopment project will see an overhaul of the boarding houses to create the latest in modern home from home accommodation for
its pupils with open plan living, kitchen, social and study areas for everyone, including day pupils and boarders, and new single and double accommodation.
Work has started over the summer holidays with the refurbishment of Nowell House, one of the school’s seven boarding houses. The programme will continue to roll through other boarding houses in subsequent years. Each house will be
transformed with new light, modern living spaces on the inside whilst retaining the architectural heritage of the building externally.
Said headteacher Mark Turnbull: “Boarding is central to life and learning at Giggleswick and our new facilities are a statement of the ambition for the school.
“Boarding must adapt to modern demands and we have reviewed our provision to ensure the highest standards of facilities that provides the best family-friendly experience for the children.”
Also in the planning is a dedicated new build upper sixth form house, designed to provide bespoke facilities for more independent living and working, preparing each student for life beyond Giggleswick.
Girls fly in microlight they built
  MOTIVATIONAL, ASPIRATIONAL, ENCOURAGING
Girls at Benenden School, Kent, have flown in a light aircraft they built themselves.
A team of pupils have been constructing the microlight one evening each week and after 18 months’ work they have taken to the skies in the aircraft.
This engineering project has been run with the British Microlight Aircraft Association (BMAA) as part of the organisation’s New Horizons scheme. The BMAA funds the project and the school is responsible for building the aircraft.
Fresh from passing its official BMAA safety tests, the microlight was launched at Headcorn Aerodrome in Kent. It was flown by a team of different instructors on a number of separate flights
– one for each of the girls involved and one extra for the Headmistress, who was keen to experience the girls’ handiwork for herself!
Headmistress Samantha Price said: “At Benenden we are developing the engineers of the future. Engineering skills are invaluable
in today’s workplace and are only going to become more important as technology develops further.
I am so pleased to see how the
girls have embraced this project. Also, they have inspired girls in the younger years who I am sure will be looking forward to taking on their own engineering projects in the future.”
In September 2016, a team of 28 Benenden girls began work on the microlight, devoting two hours
to the project every Thursday evening. Over more than 50 weekly sessions, the entire aircraft was built by the girls themselves, under the stewardship of four staff members.
The girls have put their own stamp on the microlight in places: for example, it is decorated in Benenden’s colours and the registration mark is G-GRLS.
The BMAA owns the microlight and will now sell it, with proceeds going back into the New Horizons scheme. The BMAA New Horizons project is available to all schools and colleges, independent or state.
Ben Syson, the BMAA’s chief engineer, said: “The girls at Benenden School have done a great job and should feel suitably proud of their achievement. We’re really pleased that they’ve gained so much from the experience – and had the opportunity to fly in their own creation.”
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