With mock GCSE’s looming, what better way to recharge the batteries than a day in the fresh air at Brokerswood with the Wiltshire Outdoor Learning Team? 

As the rain clouds gathered overhead our intrepid Year 11s boarded the coaches, clutching rain coats, spare hoodies and trainers.  Only a short drive away, Brokerswood offers a range of activities, from archery and laser tag to canoeing, raft building and wall climbing – the ideal opportunity for our young teenagers to let off steam and de-stress.

From the moment they arrived our pupils threw themselves whole heartedly into the challenges, supporting and encouraging each other as they rotated in small teams through the busy itinerary.  From under her large umbrella, Mrs Walmsley enjoyed a clear view of the lake pursuits, in particular capsized boats and sinking rafts!  “It really was a fabulous day out for the whole year group,” she remembers.  “Even when the heavens opened and the rain appeared relentless, nothing could dampen their spirts.  In fact, the harder it rained, the louder their shrieks of laughter!”  Mrs Walmsley added, “It’s a tough year for our Year 11 pupils and we recognise the potential stress and worry that can come from studying for and sitting GCSEs.  Effective ‘down time’ can help enormously when it comes to managing these concerns and as a school, we appreciate the benefits of organising these events in such a way as to enhance friendships and support networks across the year group as a whole.” 

Judging by the fantastic photos (click here) and hilarious video footage (click here) the day achieved everything we had hoped for as well as an unexpected increase in mud encrusted kit and spectacularly sodden foot wear! A big thank you to the staff who helped and supported our pupils on the day not to mention our gallant photographer, Jon from David Wiltshire and brave videographer, Andrew from Yellow Balloon, who all received an equally hefty soaking!

Our Year 11s will be swapping their wet trainers and hoodies for black tie and evening dresses for their Snow Ball at the end of this month.  Work hard and play hard – it’s a busy year for our Year 11!