Bedford Modern School


Image for Bedford Modern School

  • Category: Preparatory / Senior / Sixth Form
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day
  • Religious Affiliation: Non-Denominational
  • Roll: 737 (Boys) 484 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 7 - 18 years
  • Founded: 1764

General Information

Bedford Modern School is an acknowledged centre of excellence. We are a forward-looking and rapidly developing school, which has a long history and flourishes on the challenge of integrating the best of the new within a tried and trusted culture of success. We are proud of our academic standards, our wide range of cultural and sporting opportunities and our exceptionally caring pastoral structure. Our greatest “value-added” factors are not so much in the excellent examination results the students achieve, but also the confidence and self esteem a Bedford Modern education imparts. Our students will leave us able to stride confidently into a world where their talents will be recognised and fulfilled. Pastoral care of the individual is at the heart of what we are as a School and pupils are happy here because there is a common sense of being involved, supported and successful. Bedford Modern School marked ten years of co-education in 2013 and celebrated its 250th anniversary in 2014


Bedford Modern School occupies a 40 acre wooded site encompassing a Junior School, Senior School and Sixth Form building together with playing fields and swimming pool. The School boasts an impressive and diverse range of facilities to complement the progressive and specialist teaching staff. A new state-of-the-art Science Centre will be ready for occupation in September 2017.

Entrance Requirements

Written and verbal assessment, interview and Taster Day. Sixth Form entry : min of 5 x GCSE (grades A-C)


Music, Art, Drama, Sport and Science. Some bursaries are available.

Open Days

For details about visiting Bedford Modern School, please email Pauline Heappey, Admissions Manager or telephone 01234 332690.


2017/2018. Sixth Form: £13,038 per annum. Senior School: £13,038 per annum. Junior School: £9,504 per term.


ISI Inspection 2014

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mr Alex Tate

Contact for enquiries: Pauline Heappey, Admissions Manager

Bedford Modern School
Manton Lane
MK41 7NT

[t]: 01234 332500
[f]: 01234 332550

Location Description

40 acres of grounds, north of Bedford on A6.

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School News

On Friday 16 June Space Scientist, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, officially opened Bedford Modern School’s state-of-the-art Science Centre at an event attended by staff, students and

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special guests.

Following an investment of more than £9m the new Science Centre includes 17 laboratories; three in each subject for specialist use and eight multipurpose laboratories together with adjacent preparation space. A separate floor is devoted to each discipline: Biology, Chemistry and Physics and a central learning atrium provides a flexible teaching and display area.

Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock inspired students from across the school during the day and said: “It has been wonderful to visit Bedford Modern School today; there is a real sense of community here.

“I have spoken with several students who have asked me so many impressive questions and I can see that this level of interest is as a result of the fantastic encouragement from their teachers.

“I am looking forward to returning to see everybody back in action!”

Headmaster Michael Hall said: “The Science Centre is by far the most significant capital investment in the School’s history and seeing teachers and students using this exceptional teaching and learning environment this afternoon is wonderful.

“Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Psychology are already popular subjects at BMS and currently more than a third of our sixth formers study three sciences including Maths. Many of these students will go on to study a science-related course at university. This is in no small part due to the efforts of the excellent teaching staff who inspire students of all ages every day and in this incredible new facility will continue to inspire countless young scientists for many years to come.”

Bedford Modern School independent day school Bedfordshire

In this first year of reformed ‘linear’ examinations, covering 13 subjects, staff and students at Bedford Modern School are celebrating today as they receive impressive

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A Level results once again. Of particular note are those students who studied Product Design (Design and Technology) all of whom received A*-A grades highlighting the School’s continuing success in this area.

Vincent Rustill received the highest grades in the School with four A*s in Maths, Further Maths, History and Economics. He said: “This really is such a surreal feeling and it still hasn’t really sunk in. When you’ve waited so long to hear you just feel so relieved. I’m so excited to now go on and study Economics at the University Cambridge.

Top performing female student and Head Girl Rose Cocks has secured a highly sought after place to study Hispanic Studies and Linguistics at the University of Warwick after obtaining three A*s in Maths, Spanish and Latin.

Rose said: “I am completely shocked but also relieved. I have been studying at BMS since Year 3; this moment has been a long time coming!”

As with previous years we are celebrating some incredible individual success by students who may have encountered difficulties during their time at school but who have been encouraged and supported by staff here at BMS to achieve their full potential. One such student is Tom Lay who, against the odds, has gained a place to study Business Management at his first choice university, University of Manchester. He explained: “I got 2 As and a B; I can’t believe it! I have had a few ups and downs during my time at BMS but the teachers here got me through, it’s all down to them.”

Bedford Modern School Headmaster, Michael Hall, said: “I am so delighted that this wonderful group of students has received such impressive results. With nearly a third of them receiving straight A*-A grades they should be extremely proud of their achievements. I am confident that the ethos and atmosphere here at BMS has prepared them well for life after school and I wish them every success in the future.”

Bedford Modern independent school Bedfordshire

Bedford Modern School (BMS) staff and students are celebrating outstanding GCSE examination results bucking the national trend which has shown a dramatic fall in A*-C

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grades. BMS students achieved an impressive 98% of grades at A*-C with 35% of those at A*.
BMS continues to provide the highest quality education with an exceptional two thirds of all grades awarded at A*-A. More than a quarter of the 138 students who sat their exams achieved straight A*-A grades.
The top performing male students Tom Allen and Zain Khan achieved 11 A*s plus an A in Additional Maths. On receiving his results Zain said:” I’m really happy that I put so much effort in. I was actually quite worried about my English and Physics results because I didn’t think they had gone that well but I ended up getting A*s in both!
“I’m now looking forward to studying Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry and Biology in the Sixth Form at BMS.”
Top performing female student Katy Smith achieved 9 A*s and two A grades. Equally as impressive Emily Waterfield, Lamisha Ahmed and Eliza Ball all secured 9 A*s and one A.
Headmaster, Michael Hall, said: “Once again our students have done themselves proud and I could not be more delighted that all their hard work has paid off. 35% of grades at A*; a 6% increase on last year, is impressive indeed but to have 66% of grades at A*or A is exceptional. Notably, these young people achieve outstanding grades as well as participating fully in sport, drama, music and other co-curricular activities. Congratulations to them all.”
100% of students received A* – C grades in Maths and English.

Bedford Modern independent school Bedfordshire

Whilst across the UK top grades are down Bedford Modern School students are once again celebrating consistently high A Level results with an impressive 52%

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achieving A* – A and a fantastic 96% obtaining A*- C. Nearly one third of all the students who sat their A Levels this year obtained three A grades or better.
Sam Butler received the highest grades in the School with four A*s in Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry.
He will now go on to study Mathematics at the University of Cambridge along with four other BMS students who have successfully secured places at either Oxford or Cambridge.
Sam said: “I had some idea of how well I had done this morning when I learned that I had been accepted at my chosen university. I’m incredibly happy and would not have been able to have achieved these grades were it not for the support I received at BMS.”

Top performing female student Kiana Mostaghimi has secured a highly sought after place to study Medicine at the University of Southampton after obtaining A*s in Biology, French and Maths and an A in Chemistry. She also achieved an A* in her Extended Project Qualification.

As well as her academic achievements Kiana has made an outstanding contribution to the life of the school, working tirelessly on charity projects and being a positive role model for younger students.

Bedford Modern School Headmaster, Michael Hall, said: “Our students have once again done themselves proud. Despite concerns about grade variability nationally, our students continue to achieve consistently year on year with an impressive 52% of all grades at A* or A and 96% at A*-C.

“I am always delighted that those who go on to university often choose vocationally specific subjects securing them every best chance of success in the future. To have 11 students secure highly competitive places to study medicine, dentistry or veterinary science is tremendous.”

On Thursday 30 June a packed minibus left Bedford Modern School heading for Liverpool Hope University, host of the European Youth Parliament (EYP) UK

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National Session.
Matthew Grant, Year 12, writes: “Accompanied by Mr Baker and Dr Boa, the team consisted of nine students; Zoe Connew, Millie Cook, Warren D’Souza, Daniel Filippov, Rohan Katargamwala, George Keech, Thomas King, Vincent Rustill and myself. BMS won the regional round at Newnham College in March and we are only the second team from the school that has ever reached the EYP UK National Session.

“Before departing all of us made detailed notes on our allocated topics. Vincent very patiently compiled these notes into a booklet, which was more than 105 pages and sixty-thousand words long! This preparation gave each of us a very broad knowledge although we did get some quizzical looks as we carried nine giant booklets around with us.

“Upon arrival into Liverpool, the team split into committees, with our team collaborating with students who had come from all corners of the UK and even with astonishingly eloquent international students. In these committees we constructed resolutions about genuine and pressing current affairs that we had researched thoroughly, mine, for example, looked at ways of mitigating the effects of the European migrant crisis.

“After a long day of resolution writing on Friday, all committees had created very detailed resolutions which were now ready to be debated. Saturday and Sunday saw all of the resolutions debated in the General Assembly and delegates had to make speeches and answer questions in defence of their own committee’s resolution. After the individual clauses were scrutinised, the resolutions were passed or failed by a system of voting. BMS played a key part in these debates and every single member of the team made persuasive speeches.

“Throughout the four day event there were many fun and engaging activities including the opening dinner, where each school brought a selection of food from their designated country. BMS represented Italy and so contributed more than one hundred small Italian cakes, a box of breadsticks and charcuterie to the meal. A highlight of the session had to be the Euro Concert, a talent show for the most talented delegates amongst us, where Warren D’Souza dusted off an old street dance routine accompanied by the questionable talent of background dancers George, Millie and Rohan, it was undeniably the act of the night.

“There was only space for one school to go through to the International Session in Laax, Switzerland and unfortunately BMS just fell short to the City of London School for Girls who were strong throughout. Nevertheless, I think it is fair to say that BMS really engaged with the very essence of the competition, it was tremendously successful for our school and all who went have gained valuable life experience from it.

“Thanks must go to Mr Baker and Dr Boa for making this trip possible and all the organisers at EYP UK for organising such a well organised competition.”

On Wednesday 01 July a team of nine students from Bedford Modern School competed in the Formula 24 Green Power regional heat at Rockingham Motor

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Speedway in Corby, Northamptonshire.


The Formula 24 race is for students aged 11 to 16. All teams have the same motor and one pair of 12 volt batteries per race. During the race at least three team members must drive the car, and up to six further members can act as pit crew. Drivers may only drive for one car and for one team and each driver must drive for a minimum of 15 minutes.


The team consisted of students from several year groups. Year 10 students; Hannah Phillips, Tom Allen, Alex Brand, Jamie Canning, Christopher Gell, Milen Patel and Year 9 students; Joe Davis, Archie Denne and Harry Schlote competed in the races and worked in the pit lanes, servicing the vehicles. A group of students from Year 7; Ben Cox, Michael Chamberlain, Amina Eldin and Ellen Fletcher accompanied the main team to get a taste for the Formula 24 race and prepare them for entering next year.


Both the BMS cars performed well with The Pink Panther completing a distance of 33 miles, further than it has managed before, and the second car finishing its first ever race. The students worked well together as a team and used their organisational skills to overcome hurdles in changing drivers and working in the pits against the clock.


Paul Kennington, Head of Design and Technology, commented: “Race days rarely go as planned, and this was no exception, but in the end the cars and the team performed well. It was particularly pleasing to see the whole team working so well together, and the way in which some of the new members got involved.”

On 11 June ten Year 12 Bedford Modern School Business Studies students joined teams from 12 other schools in the county to take part in

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the 19th annual Business Challenge at The School of Management, Cranfield University. One of the BMS teams won their market and achieved second place overall, just missing out on first place to Mark Rutherford.


The Business Challenge is a joint initiative by the Centre for Customised Executive Development at Cranfield School of Management and Develop Education Business Partnership which gives young business students the opportunity to think like real business leaders. Each team consists of A Level Business Studies or Economics students who take on the role of a top management team just starting up in business in a strategy simulation exercise. The teams faced an uncertain market and had to make decisions about capital investement, marketing, sales and pricing. Each team was mentored by a manager from a local business including; Novacroft, Parrish’s Farm, Woodfines, Pearson-Edexcel and Shelton Development Services.


The BMS team consisted of Lucy Jackson, James Millard, Jack Haith, Tom Hislop and Ben Staniforth and on the winning market team; Chris Shepherd, Ruth Pyall, Oliver Lee, Lewis Mynard and Rob Vanbeck who were supported by their mentor James Laird from Shelton Development Services.


Event organiser, Karen Valverde, Business Simulations Director in the Centre for Customised Executive Development at Cranfield said: “The teams were as eager as ever this year with an enthusiasm to engage and learn and of course win! The challenge provides students with a wonderful opportunity to work with mentors from the business world and apply their strategic thinking with classroom theory. We are again very grateful to all of our mentors and sponsors who continue to make the event the success it is today.”


Richard Smith, Head of Business Studies at Bedford Modern School, added: “The team performed really well and we are all looking forward to the next round of the competition.”

The winning team from Mark Rutherford and BMS will now progress to represent Bedfordshire in an inter-county competition in October 2015.

On Thursday 18 June, 200 years to the day of the Battle of Waterloo, Bedford Modern School student Bayley Hockham and Rachel Gleeson, Head of

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Humanities Faculty, travelled to London to attend the bi-centennial commemoration service of the 1815 battle at St Paul’s Cathedral.

The Prime Minister, David Cameron, Prince Charles and many other dignitaries were amongst the guest list which also included descendants of those who fought in the battle.


Bayley Hockham, Year 12, described the day: “We were led into the stunning St Paul’s Cathedral at 10am and began to take our seats to the sounds of the military band and the phenomenal sight of dozens of regimental colours; all representing units that fought at the battle. At 11am the service began with prayers and songs but soon moved on to readings of personal accounts of the battle- from the French, German, British and Dutch soldiers.


“Towards the end of the ceremony we were able to reflect on that fateful day in 1815 and how it came to define Europe for the next 100 years. Together we contemplated the statistic that three quarters of people know little to nothing of Waterloo – a shocking figure for a battle that defined Britain’s place on the world stage and influenced European politics up to and throughout World War I. As we left St Paul’s we were certain of Waterloo’s significance – the service had brought it alive.


“In School we will be researching Matthew Clay, a local man who fought at Waterloo. He was a Private in the Scots Guards and fought at Hougoumont, the escarpment where British and other allied forces faced Napoleon’s Army.


“This day was just the beginning of the Waterloo calendar, but it served as a pertinent reminder of how past events can have a great influence on our future.”


Rachel Gleeson, Head of Humanities, added: “The Waterloo 200 project is a fantastic opportunity for students to get involved in research and to reflect on the past. The Humanities Department look forward to doing more work towards a national e-book that’s being created.”

Bedford Modern School student Alexander Brand, Year 10, has won a trip to New York City (NYC) as a runner up in the SINCE 9/11

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National Schools Competition following his submission of a short film answering the question: How did 9/11 change the world?


SINCE 9/11 is an educational charity set up to ensure that the legacy of 9/11 is one that builds hope from tragedy. Their mission is to develop, out of the horror of the events, an educational programme for schools, devoted to a proper understanding of what happened. The competition asks for students to submit a short essay or film which is then judged against; originality and inventiveness, clarity and communication, knowledge and understanding, aspiration and inspiration.


Alex, aged 14, found out about the competition through his English teacher, Steven Bywater. The class were learning more about the significance and consequences of 9/11 and the topic sparked Alexander’s interest.


Alex said: “It is really exciting to have been a runner up in this competition. I really enjoyed making the film and the story of 9/11 interests me a lot, especially the long term effects of the event. Even people who were only very young when it happened, like me, want to know more about it.”


Alex will be visiting NYC from 9-13 of September and will be staying on the infamous Wall Street. He will have the opportunity to visit the memorial and meet both the Mayor and survivors of the attack to hear first-hand about how it affected them. In addition Alex has been invited to attend the US Embassy in London on 28 July for a formal dinner with his family.


Steven Bywater, Head of English, commented: “Alex responded positively to the task set in English. Rather than produce another essay, he decided to create a video. What he has produced is obviously a worthy winner and I wouldn’t be surprised if he now opts for Film Studies in Year 12 – he certainly has it in him to become the next Hitchcock!”

Bedford Modern School students triumphed at the annual Chemistry Olympiad held by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) earlier this year. BMS students received two

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gold, nine silver, six bronze and one participation certificate making this year’s Olympiad entry the most successful in recent years.


The Chemistry Olympiad is a national competition for students aged 16 or over who are studying chemistry. It involves a two hour written paper which is extremely challenging and highly regarded in the world of chemistry. The questions are designed to stretch the students and are based on real world chemistry problems which often stimulate much debate, raising awareness of what chemistry is all about. The competition provides a good opportunity to develop some of the skills required for study at university and beyond.


A total of 18 students took part, five of which are members of Year 12.

BMS students Sam Hosegood and Zakir Khokher, both Year 13, were awarded gold certificates; an outstanding achievement. Silver certificates went to; William White (Year 13), Rian Howe (Year 13), Tobias Dawson (Year 13), Zain Charfare (Year 13), Samuel Butler (Year 12), Philippa Edge (Year 13), Ranjeev Menon (Year 13), Charlotte Rex (Year 13) and Joseph Spencer (Year 13). Henry Folds (Year 13), Miles McEwen (Year 12), Sulaimaan Mughal (Year 12), Zachary Whitelaw (Year 12), Aston Brand (Year 13), and Jake Wilson (Year 12) were all awarded bronze certificates and Hannah Wright (Year 13) was awarded a participation certificate.


Clare Jones, Head of Chemistry, commented: “It is very encouraging to see such a large number of students with a keen interest in extending their knowledge of the subject. Well done to all who took part.”

Alex Clewlow, Year 12, was among almost 100 young people invited to the St John Ambulance annual Young Achievers’ Reception in London on 29 April

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where he met HRH the Princess Royal, patron of the charity.


The event honoured St John Ambulance badgers (aged five to ten), cadets and young carers who all made outstanding contributions during their time as young volunteers with the organisation. Alex, who has spearheaded many new initiatives at the Bedford John Bunyan unit, has risen to be the most senior cadet at his unit. Alex organised a new annual plan including running fundraising sessions and first aid tuition for his fellow cadets each week. He has also used his first aid skills at public events, treating minor injuries and assisting healthcare professionals with more serious incidents.


Each young achiever was given both the honour of meeting HRH the Princess Royal, who has official title of Commandant in Chief, Youth for St John Ambulance, and the opportunity to discuss their experiences as a volunteer during the reception with fellow cadets.


Alex, aged 17, commented: “Being recognised as a Young Achiever shows me that, after years of hard work and dedication, what I have been doing is right and is helping others. One of the best parts of St John Ambulance is the opportunities it offers to young people. When I joined six years ago, I would never have thought I could save someone’s life, become a lead Cadet or go to Australia last year as part of the International Cadet Camp.”


John White, Director of Sixth Form, added: “Alex is selfless in his approach to volunteering with St. Johns Ambulance and we are very proud that he has been recognised with this wonderful award.”

To find out more about St John Ambulance’s youth programme, including how to join as a badger or cadet, and for information on becoming a youth leader, visit

Bedford Modern School students and brothers, Ben and Toby Cox, have made it through to the Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge Northern Gigafinal, to be

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held in Manchester on 11 and 12 July.


On 03 May both boys successfully qualified for the West Anglia Megafinal which comprised students from Huntingdon, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire. At the Megafinal Toby and Ben played six games against other players in their age categories and both brothers qualified for the next round.


Ben, aged eleven, and ten year old Toby have been members of the BMS chess club since they joined the School. It was in the Junior School that they were introduced to the Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge. The competition has 50,000 entrants each year from 1500 schools and clubs who organise their own tournament over seven rounds. The winner of each age group and some runners-up qualify for the regional Megafinal.


At the Megafinal matches in groups are played over six rounds with winners and some runners-up qualifying for the Gigafinal – equivalent to a national semi-final. The best from the Gigafinal qualify for the Terafinal or national finals.


Ben, who is currently in Year 7, said: “Chess is a brilliant game which encourages you to use your mental powers. I would recommend it to anyone. House chess really helped me to prepare for the upcoming Gigafinal.”


Younger brother Toby, added: “I like chess because it’s fun and it makes me think. I’m excited about going to the Gigafinal.”

On 06 May The White Horse pub in Bedford hosted a traditional pub quiz to raise money for The Tibbs Dementia Foundation. 20 teams took

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part, including a team from Bedford Modern School, who donated two hamper prizes, raising a magnificent £1126 on the night.

The Tibbs Foundation is a long term Outreach partner of the School. They work tirelessly to provide activities and social groups for those diagnosed with dementia and the people who care for them. BMS students who take part in the Outreach programme are involved in a variety of projects that support The Tibbs Foundation such as The Dementia Walking Group which is now well established with walker numbers steadily increasing.

Sarah Russell, CEO of the Tibbs Foundation commented: “I’m so proud of all the young people who’ve supported Tibbs over the last year, to see how the boys have grown and developed in confidence and understanding and how the girls worked so hard to produce such an outstanding poster.

“The enthusiasm and goodwill of everyone shows we are very lucky and the support provided by the BMS staff and students really does enhance and add extra energy to what we’re trying to achieve.”

Chris Wood, Mark Heard, Roy Scott, Harjeet Sehmbi and Sam Railton are five former Bedford Modern School students graduating from Loughborough University this summer.

Chris Wood

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has been nominated for the Young Designer of the Year and has a contract with Nestle in their manufacturing division. Chris gained experience as a manufacturing technologist with Unilever before writing a dissertation asking ‘Do products of the personal care industry influence body image in today’s society?’

Chris has allowed Bedford Modern School to display his degree show work in the School’s Design and Technology department from September.

21-year old Mark Heard joins the prestigious and innovative company, Dyson, this month, as a graduate design engineer within the Research and Development department.  His role involves designing and innovating new products from concepts, to testing and implementing for manufacture.

All five students were generous enough to host several of Bedford Modern School’s current Year 12 students for an interesting and informative visit to their degree show recently.

John White, Director of Sixth Form at Bedford Modern School said: “We are pleased with the positive links we have built up with Loughborough University and more particularly the industrial design based courses over many years. To have five students graduating in the same cohort is unprecedented and we are naturally proud of the progress they have made.”


Photo: Five BMS students are graduating from Loughborough this summer


Bedford Modern School Year 11 student, Daniel Barton, has been selected for the England Alpine U18 squad.

He achieved the required results whilst competing this season

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and has recently passed the Snow Sport England fitness test held at Loughborough University.

15-year old Daniel has shown a steady determination from learning to ski in Year 5 and every year has seen progression. He attends fitness sessions both at Bedford Modern School and with Aiden Jones Fitness Academy as well as spending as much time out on the mountains as he can with his alpine coach, Duncan Freshwater. When in the UK, Daniel trains with Jon Reidy at Hemel Snow Centre.

He will be spending the summer in New Zealand to ensure he is ready for the winter season on this side of the world.

Louise Williams, Strength Coach at Bedford Modern School said: “Daniel has made great improvements in his strength and conditioning programme over the past two years and he is now able to use this additional strength and body control during his mountain time.  He pushes himself hard during training sessions and I feel this physical effort has also sharpened his mental focus and helped him to understand what he is capable of.”


Photo: Daniel Barton has been selected for the England Alpine U18 Squad

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