It was as if we had never been away. It was the first ‘in-person’ Speech Day since 2019 and, as he never tired of telling us, Mr Williams’ first one, but you would not have known.  As always, it ran like a carefully oiled machine. The Thanksgiving Church Service produced strong singing and well-chosen readings; it was lovely to hear once again from Rev. David Prescott before his return to us in September.  As ever, the valediction to the those leaving produced a lump in the throat – not the last one of the day!

After coffee on the lawn, we had our first change. Those pupils not receiving prizes were able to go and work in departments and parents had the opportunity to either be in the Sports Hall, watch the proceedings via live feed in TA Hall or visit areas of the School they may not have seen for a few years. For those of us in the Sports Hall, we were treated to a lively speech from OV Kwame Kwaten, now a doyen of the music industry. His interaction with the audience ensured he kept to time! Kwame also had words with all of the prize-winners, taking an interest in their book choices and chatting about their futures…despite Mr Jones’ attempts to hurry along proceedings.

Perhaps it was the fact that we were all so pleased to be able to gather once more and say goodbye to our leavers but I was not the only one with a tear in my eye as the pupils gathered together for a final group photo.

The sun continued to shine on us as we enjoyed fish and chips on the lawn and there was one fervent hope amongst the gathered throng: that we are all able to do it again next year.

J. Robertson

Headmaster's Address (including link to the EDGE film)