Headmaster's Newsletter Friday 28th June 2019

Dear Parents,

So, the sun has finally shone back here in Oxfordshire, just on cue for pre-prep’s outing today to the Cotswold Wildlife Park. And judging by all the boys’ excitement as they returned this afternoon, they have had a wonderful time, building on their undimmed enthusiasm for ‘all creatures great and small’. Other year groups have had a head-start on the good weather: Year 8 have sizzled all week in Sicily, where I gather inimitable Italian ice cream mixed well with classical and baroque sights, while the French trip for Years 5 and 6 had just the right combination suitable equally for sightseeing and adventure activities, generally escaping “la canicule” (“the dog days”) which enveloped the south of France. Back in the UK, Year 4’s trip to the Malvern Hills was rather wetter, but I’m told it did not diminish the boys’ good humour and determination. In fact, they rather enjoyed the mud! A bit like the crocodiles who were lurking in wait for Year 3 on their outing to Crocodiles of the World. Apart from meeting crocodiles, Year 3 have been honing their artistic skills in activities ranging from drama to dance, from cookery to ceramics. I think they have especially enjoyed having the run of the playground to themselves and being the senior boys at Wednesday’s lunchtime ‘banquet’ with the pre-prep. (All the boys showed exemplary good table manners at that event: the pre-prep sat quite contentedly at the lunch tables for nearly an hour, enjoying the gastronomic and social novelty!) Year 7 have perhaps had the best of the UK weather with their adventures on the Isle of Wight where their teamwork skills and comfort zones have been put to the test in some glorious coastal surroundings. I am most grateful to teaching and support staff who have taken such care in arranging activities week and ensured it has been such an enjoyable and diversely educational time for the boys. As parents will know, school trips these days are no small undertaking and I want to acknowledge here the dedicated professionalism of my colleagues, which is particularly evident in weeks like this.

Activities Week: Pre-Prep picnic; Year 3 visit to Crocodiles of the World; Year 7 on the Isle of Wight; Year 8 in Sicily; Years 5 and 6 in France; Year 4 trip to the Malvern Hills; The Pre-Prep and Year 3 banquet; Aesop's Fables with Pre-Prep and Year 3

And a huge thank you, too, to all parents, boys and colleagues who contributed to such a successful Wykeham Day last Saturday. It was good to hear some of our senior musicians playing with some of our recent Old Boys at an excellent concert in the morning and then to have so many pupils and a good number of families playing cricket on Field, including a finely-attired ‘Edwardian’ Mums' team. I’m glad to report that the Headmaster’s Six won the six-a-side smash, although no thanks to the Headmaster! And the Year 8s narrowly beat the Year 7s by three runs in the final over: a nice victory for our departing year group. Lunch was a delicious barbecue, masterminded by the Bennetts of Sandy Lane Farm and there were plenty of delicious cakes on sale thanks to the bakers amongst pupils and parents. As ever, the boys and their form tutors, generously supported by parents, had come up with all sorts of bright ideas for the fête stalls. The day concluded with the final Evensong of term and the Old Boys’ Dinner in the College Hall, to which it was good also welcome a number of former and current parents. It was a great day thanks to everyone pitching in with their support.

Wykeham Day on Field

A reminder that there is no Saturday Morning Music School tomorrow (nor a chorister practice, since we are out of University Term).

Sports Day Arrangements. Mrs McCusker tells me that the majority of returns have come in letting us know what arrangments you would like for your son on Sports Day, but if you have not yet returned the online form, please could I ask you to do so as soon as possible. Alternatively, do phone the School Office to let us know your plans. Many thanks!

Mrs Brown is attempting The Richmond Runfest Marathon on 15th September and has recently set up a ‘Just Giving’ page to try to raise funds for the Oxford Food Bank (a charity for which the School regularly likes to raise funds) and the Fortune Centre of Riding Therapy, which educates young people through horsemanship to prepare them for independent living. She would be delighted if any in the NCS community would like to support her enterprise. Information on both charities is available via the following link and donors can choose the charity they wish to support. www.justgiving.com/teams/louisebrown

Events of the last week of term. It has been good to see so many parents and grandparents at our end-of-year events so far. You are always most welcome whenever you can spare time to be with us and I know the boys and my colleagues appreciate your support.

Monday 1st July Choristers’ Concert, Chapel, 5.30pm. Parking will be available from 5.00pm in the playground.

Tuesday 2nd July Sports Day. You will all have received details of arrangements for Sports Day. Pre-prep sports last from 10.00 – 11.00am and pupils may either stay on with their parents for the prep school sports at 11.00am and lunch then return home or return with form teachers to school. Prep school sports last from 11.00am until about 3.00pm, after which pupils may go home with their parents or return to school to be collected at the usual time. Limited parking will be available at Iffley Road and at School.

Wednesday 3rd July Leavers’ Service, Chapel, 10.00am; Pre-Prep Summer Show, Snow White and the 15 Dwarfs, School Hall 2.00pm. Parking available in the playground from 1.30pm. Leavers vs Fathers Cricket, Field 6.00pm

Thursday 4th July Leavers’ Concert and Reception, University Church, 7.00pm, followed by a reception at School. Parking available in School.

Friday 5th July Prizegiving for Years 3-8 to which parents of prizewinners have been invited. Term ends 12 noon. Parking available in school from 10.20am.

With good wishes to all NCS families,

Robert Gullifer

Forthcoming Events

Monday, 1 July 2019

No after school activities in the last week of term

17.30 Choristers' Concert, New College Chapel

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

Sports Day Pre-Prep 10.00am ; Prep School 11.00 a.m. Iffley Road

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

10.00 Leavers’ Service, New College Chapel

Speaker: The Headmaster

Coffee afterwards in the Undercroft for parents and visitors

13.00 Form Period and Distribution of Reports

14.15 1st XI Cricket vs Bruern Abbey, Home

14.00 Pre-Prep Summer Show and annual certificates, School Hall

18.00 Leavers vs Fathers Cricket, Home

Thursday, 4 July 2019

19.00 Leavers' Concert, University Church

followed by a reception at School

Friday, 5 July 2019

9.00 Final Assembly for Whole School, School Hall

10.45 Prize-Giving for Years 3- 8, Sports Hall

12.00 End of Term 12.00 noon

Sunday, 7 July 2019

12.30 NC Choir Cricket, Field

Monday, 2 September 2019

INSET for Staff 9.00am to 4.00pm

Tuesday, 3 September 2019

INSET for Staff 9.00 am to 4.00 p.m.

13.30 Pre-season Football Training, Field

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

Start of Term. 8.20 Prep School, 8.45 Pre-Prep

After School Activities start

NCSPA Coffee Morning at the University Club after drop-off

10.00 School Service, New College Chapel

Speaker: The Headmaster. Coffee in the Undercroft afterwards for parents and visitors

Friday, 6 September 2019

19.00 Drinks in HM Lodgings for Chorister Parents and Choir Staff

Saturday, 7 September 2019

18.00 NC Choir: Gaude Evensong

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