We had such a sad start to term – the tragic passing of Anthony Loudon – that most other aspects of routine just quietly got underway without fuss. I know Catherine and the children have appreciated the enormous outpouring of kindness and practical assistance from many Twyford families. Anthony’s funeral will be held next week in the family chapel, with family and his oldest friends. There will be a memorial service in due course at St Peter’s Church.
A very warm welcome to all our new parents and children. We hope you will have a very happy time with us at Twyford. The TPA is energetic and extremely welcoming, as you will already have discovered through various events and communications. In particular the Prep Curriculum Evening and TPA Drinks were very successful, and I know the Pre-Prep meetings are straddling the weekend. If you have any concerns about any aspect of your child’s time with us, please talk it through with your child’s form teacher in the first instance (for children in Years 7 and 8 this should be the Tutor). The Parents Handbook shows the next steps if you still are unsure of things.
As many parents will know, we were able to put our new Pre-Prep playground into use on the first day of term. It was a massive project that spanned the entire Summer holiday, but the facility is brilliant! If your children have moved up to the Prep age groups, I would advise you to go to the Pre-Prep and have a look at how we have revived the southern aspect. I am sure you will be impressed.
Our rich offering of trips, activities and clubs began as usual. Pre-Prep welcomed ‘Perform for Schools’ with the Under the Sea theme for their drama. They also were suitable entertained by a prize-winning wildlife photographer who showed images of animals from his many overseas trips – as well as a few animals we are more familiar with. We managed to establish a new record for the number of teams put out on one day, when we fielded 28 different teams on Wednesday! We have often reached 14 or 25 teams over the years, but this was truly amazing.
As is reported elsewhere, the Senior Choir had an early return to school, coming in a day early to rehears for recordings being done this week of the Christmas carols we commissioned last year from Alexander l’Estrange. It is a very positive experience for musicians to work with new music, and to have the chance to meet and be directed by the composer is exceptional.
Last night we were treated to a talk by Jonathan Leigh, Master of Marlborough College. He spoke of his wide ranging experience in boarding education, in Canada and England. I know that the audience of 40 or so parents were very engaged, as the question and answer session went on for 45 minutes! I am grateful to Mandy Cooper and members of the TPA for serving refreshments before and after the talk.
Finally, a couple of requests:
1. NUTS! We have several children with severe nut allergies at Twyford. Children really should not be sent to school with any food or sweets at all, but please be very conscious of anything that may contain nuts. Even a trace of nuts can be life-threatening to a few of our children.
2. Admin: please would you email me if you wish a child in Year 5 to Year 8 to take prep home on one night a week, for any reason. It is best to consider that any permissions from last year need to be renewed. Thank you.