Kingham Hill School

Oxfordshire

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  • Category: Senior / Sixth Form
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day & Boarding
  • Religious Affiliation: Christian
  • Roll: 180 (Boys) 122 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 11 - 18 years
  • Founded: 1886

General Information

Kingham Hill School is in the heart of the glorious Cotswold countryside, just 80 minutes from London Paddington, in a 100 acre estate where pupils have a safe place to explore and make their home. With just over 300 pupils Kingham Hill remains small to allow the school to sustain its caring, home-from-home community where every child is nurtured, challenged and inspired to succeed academically and within their personal lives.

“A supportive community of pupils and teachers…in an area of outstanding natural beauty.” Good Schools Guide 2017

Highly qualified, specialist staff offer a broad and challenging curriculum (20+ courses at A level) to ensure every pupil has opportunities to learn, excel and realise their potential.

Creative arts are a strength of the school and there are opportunities for every pupil to find and express their creativity. All Year 7 & 8 joiners are given a musical instrument to learn and music events held throughout the year range from regular concerts to the annual Ceildh!  There are two annual drama productions, recently including Macbeth and Sound of Music.  The Art department offers painting and sculpting as well as photography and art history classes.

“The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of the pupils is excellent.” ISI, 2014

Our American Program is unique in that it is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) and the US Department of Education and we are currently the only British boarding school to offer this.

Facilities

Top class facilities, including a state of the art Maths and Science building and new award listed library, ensure pupils have the best amenities to enhance their learning. Small class sizes deliver a bespoke learning experience that can be tailored to individual needs to help discover the talent in every child.

The school has an extensive range of team and individual sports available, including sailing, swimming, mountain biking and fencing so that every pupil can find something to enjoy and succeed in. facilities include floodlit astro pitches, tennis courts and a leisure centre with a gym and indoor pool. Professional coaches, including Rugby Union Lifetime award winners, nurture high achievers and deliver excellent support so all pupils can maximise their potential.

There are three day and seven large detached boarding houses; they are family style houses with an average of less than 35 pupils per house, which is almost half the national average. Both full and weekly boarding is available..

Entrance Requirements

An Assessment Day held at the school: pupils take an English, Mathematics and General paper.

Scholarships

Seven categories of scholarship are awarded: Academic, Art, Founders’ (Sixth Form), Music, Organ (Sixth Form), Speech and Drama or Dance, and Sport.

Open Days

All visits are welcome, please contact the school.

Fees

2017/2018. Day from £5,525 to £6,350 per term. Weekly boarding from £7,850 to £9,660 per term. Full boarding from £8,100 to £10,600 per term.

One year Pre-A level Programme for international students: £11,100 per term.

Additional Charges: Specific Learning Difficulties tuition varies dependent on support required but full support is £1,330 per term. The US College Prep Program is £2,110 per term and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) support is £1,350 per term.

Reports

ISI Inspection 2014
CReSTeD Inspection 2016
NEASC Inspection 2015

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mr N Seward

Contact for enquiries: Mrs Jo Cavan, Registrar

Kingham Hill School
Kingham
Chipping Norton
Oxfordshire
OX7 6TH

[t]: 01608 658999
[f]: 01608 658658
[w]: www.kinghamhill.org.uk

Location Description

Situated on the borders of Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and Warwickshire, between Cheltenham and Oxford and with easy access to both M40 and M4. Train link to London takes 80 mins and to Oxford 20mins.

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School News

Kingham Hill School Independent Oxfordshire TOP POLITICAL JOURNALIST INSPIRES GUESTS AT KINGHAM HILL SCHOOL ANNUAL DINNER

Guests attending the annual dinner for Kingham Hill School’s Octagon Academic Society were treated to a talk by top historian and journalist, Peter Snowdon.

The event

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was held on Tuesday 24th April; pupils from Kingham Hill’s Octagon Society were joined for the drinks reception and three course meal by their parents, staff and head teachers from local schools.

Following coffee and petits fours, Mr Gareth Williams, Head of the Octagon Society, kicked off the evening’s speeches recounting his own experiences of being inspired by learning through being in an academic society. The achievement of those in the society was reflected on, with particular reference to Kingham Hill’s own version of Mastermind, which was held last term.

The highly respected political journalist, Peter Snowdon, author of Cameron at 10 and Blair Unbound, and BBC Radio 4’s Today producer, took centre stage to inspire the pupils with his stories of education and the workplace.
Reflecting on his time in secondary education, Peter spoke avidly about young people using their time at school to follow subjects that they are passionate about, as he did with politics, leading to his successful career in journalism and in the media.

Current pupils listened intently as Peter talked about his daily routines working for the Today Programme and on Nick Robinson’s podcast. Hearing someone talk about their career with such enthusiasm had a big impact on pupils, especially our Head of Octagon, Danika, who used her Vote of Thanks to talk about how it encouraged her to continue to explore her own interest in politics.

Gareth Williams, Head of Languages and Octagon at Kingham Hill School, said of the evening: “What a splendid occasion to celebrate our academic society! Having Peter Snowdon as our Guest of Honour was an absolute treat: he inspired our pupils to take risks and follow the argument where it leads. We’re already looking forward to next year’s dinner”.

On Monday Kingham Hill School’s Music department and pupils were honoured to welcome international opera star Simon Keenlyside CBE for a vocal masterclass.

Mr Keenlyside has

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been performing opera across the globe since the late 1980s and has joined the Vienna State Opera, the Royal Opera House and Metropolitan Opera in New York for some of their biggest works. He brought his wealth of knowledge and experience to the masterclass which saw six pupils from Years 7 to 12 singing solo or duet pieces accompanied by Head of Music Dan Chambers.

Kingham Hill pupils sang a variety of operatic arias including ‘La ci darem la mano’, ‘O mio babbino caro’, and ‘Sebben, crudele’. Each singer then had the opportunity to speak with Mr Keenlyside and get expert advice on vocal technique and feedback on their performances.

Mr Mark Glanville, peripatetic vocal teacher at Kingham Hill School, said of having Mr Keenlyside at the school; “Simon is one of the outstanding classical singers of his generation, acclaimed equally as a superlative opera singer who brings the detail of a great theatrical actor to his roles, and as one of the foremost recital singers of our day.

“These qualities make him the ideal person to pass on a vast reservoir of experience and knowledge to the next generation. It was a privilege to have Simon give a masterclass at Kingham Hill.”

With season 2 of The Crown, Netflix’s Golden Globe winning drama released today, Kingham Hill School pupils have been getting excited to see themselves in

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one of the biggest television shows as they make their onscreen debuts.

Last December 82 Kingham Hill boys, aged 11 to 18, joined one of the show’s lead stars, Matt Smith on location at a Cotswold estate to film scenes for episode 9 in the second series of the hit TV show, which has impressed critics across the UK and America.

The pupils’ were transformed from the 21st century into the 1930s and 1960s for their roles as school friends and peers of Princes Phillip and Charles. The budding actors got to experience the working life of professionals when they had their hair styled and costumes fitted by the on-set team, before taking their star turn in front of the bright lights and cameras.

Year 11 pupil, Felix Parkinson, spoke about the experience of filming on a star-studded set: “Working on a film set is quite an experience; it is unlike anything I’ve ever done before. The early wake up calls were worth it for the chance of being on the show. I will never forget it and it is certainly something different to have on my CV!”

The casting followed successful auditions from school pupils, held at the Kingham Hill School drama studio in November 2016.

Bonjour! Hola! Salve!

Earlier this month, Kingham Hill School hosted a fun and interactive languages day for a group of 52 primary school children.

The day started

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out with a warm welcome in our beautiful Chapel by Mr Gareth Williams, Head of Languages. Pupils from Bloxham Church of England Primary School, Stow on the Wold Primary School and Wychwood Church of England Primary School were then able to experience taster classes in French, Spanish and Latin.

Engaging and inspiring, the children learned to talk about different modes of transport in French, learned to sing “Old MacDonald had a farm” in Spanish and discovered that Harry Potter spells have Latin roots!

The day was kicked off by a lovely themed lunch where there was a choice of Toulouse sausages or paella, both of which were very tasty!

The day was brought to a close when Mr Williams gathered everyone back in the Chapel to say thank you before the children excitedly departed, biscuit in hand!

Au revoir! Adiós! Vale!

Last week, Kingham Hill School pupils were very excited to welcome Rio 2016 hockey gold medalist Susannah Townsend for a special training session.

Susannah kicked off

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her visit with a whole school assembly which saw pupils reliving team GB’s hockey success in Rio, before learning about how top athletes train, condition and work together to achieve their goals. Susannah shared her own personal experiences about playing hockey on the international stage.

The pupils in the junior and senior hockey teams then had an amazing opportunity to join Susannah on the astroturf, where they were given an insight into some of the drills carried out on a daily basis within the Great Britain hockey team.

Training in small groups, the pupils were coached by Susannah with tips on how they could adapt and improve their own game.

Reflecting on the day and the invaluable experience gained by the pupils, Houseparent and 1st team hockey coach, Tim Martin stated, “It was a real privilege to welcome Susannah to the Hill. Her words in assembly were inspirational to the children and to see her mixing in with the pupils in the masterclass is an experience that won’t be forgotten”.

Susannah commented, “I absolutely loved my time at Kingham Hill. The passion and enthusiasm of the girls was infectious and I enjoyed working on the different drills with them. It is great to see that hockey is played throughout school and I wish the girls well for the season”.

The hockey team are looking forward to putting everything they learned into practise as they continue their excellent start to the season.

Kingham Hill independent day and boarding school Oxfordshire

There were plenty of happy reactions as Kingham Hill School pupils collected their GCSE results. Building on the record A level results of last week

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the GCSE pupils made it a double celebration as they achieved a school record for the second year running.

The school saw 48 per cent of pupils gaining A* to A grades, an increase on last year’s results. A vast majority of pupils were awarded at least one A* to A. Stellar results continued as a school best of 71 per cent A* to B and 91% A* to C grades were achieved. With the new grading system in Mathematics coming into force this year our pupils impressed with 90 per cent gaining 4 or above and a third of entrants achieving an 8 or 9 grade.

A number of subjects saw fantastic results, demonstrating Kingham Hill’s high standard of teaching across the curriculum. Spanish and Latin both saw 100 per cent A* to B grades and 100 per cent of pupils taking English Literature and Language attaining A* to Bs.

Kingham Hill saw a number of brilliant performances from our pupils including Lochie Main who secured 8 A*s and 1 A in his chosen subjects.

The run of wonderful results continued with impressive performances from American pupils Lydia Terry who achieved 7 A*s and 2 As and Ethan Reid who received 3 A*s and 3 As after studying for their GCSEs in only one year. For A level Ethan has the unique opportunity to study the School’s American Program and work towards gaining his High School Diploma alongside three A level qualifications.

The Art department saw 100 per cent A* to C results with one pupil not dropping a single mark for their A* grade.

Headmaster, Nick Seward, commented: “It is a tremendous testament to the quality of teaching at KHS, and the ethos amongst our pupils, that we have achieved record results at both GCSE and A Level for the second year running. This comes against the backdrop of more demanding qualifications nationally; I’m proud to lead a school which is committed to providing a liberal education in a non-selective environment, and which achieves such fantastic success for the girls and boys who make up our community.”

Kingham Hill independent day and boarding school Oxfordshire

It was a day of success at Kingham Hill School as Year 13 pupils celebrated receiving their A level results. The School’s Sixth Formers arrived

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both excited and nervous to learn the outcome of their examinations. They were not disappointed as they achieved incredible results – the best the school has seen to date.

The school saw 45 per cent of the grades awarded in the A* to A grade band which is a school record. The excellent results continued for our talented pupils with 70 per cent of grades awarded A* to B and 90 per cent in the A* to C bracket. Academic success was achieved in a wide variety of subjects, demonstrating Kingham Hill’s high standard of teaching across the curriculum, with 75 per cent of pupils attaining A* to A in Mathematics as well as 100 per cent A* to C in both Art and Photography. We also saw 100 per cent A* to A in Further Mathematics for the second year in a row which is a truly fantastic achievement. Results in Chemistry, Biology and Physics were also impressive with 65 per cent A* to B grades awarded.

The amazing efforts of all our pupils has paid off with some wonderful results, individual achievements include; Jacky who received three A* grades in Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Chemistry and an A in Economics. Huge congratulations to Jacky who will now be going on to study Chemistry at St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford.

Lucy Wilkinson exceeded her expectations and secured a place at the University of Bath to study Biology. As an exceptional STEM pupil, Lucy obtained an A* in Biology and two As in Physics and Mathematics, and commented “I am so happy with my results, they were a really lovely surprise”.

Headmaster, Nick Seward, commented: “After record results last year, it’s good see the bar pushed up another notch, especially as A levels become more rigorous linear courses – that is testament to the quality of the teaching staff we have at KHS, and the aspiration and dedication of our pupils. It is a real joy after his prize on Speech Day as the outstanding performer of his year group, to be congratulating Jacky on a well-deserved place at Oxford – the cherry on the cake!”

Kingham Hill School Year 13 pupil Joshua Lima recently celebrated taking the next step in his rugby career after being accepted into the highly regarded

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London Wasps Academy.

Joshua began his training at the Wasps Academy earlier this month following successful trials in Coventry.

All players selected to join have to show a high level of rugby ability and commitment. This was tested during trials through a number of drills and matches that assessed speed, power and ball handling abilities.

During his time at the academy, where former and current England players began their international careers, Joshua will take part in weekly squad training, gym sessions and matches against other academies.

Speaking about being successful in his trials, Josh said, “It has always been my dream to play the sport I love. I hope to become the best player I possibly can be and to learn from the very best.

“The academy gives me an opportunity to develop at a higher level and to learn from the very best, whilst also giving me the tools to improve myself.”

Joshua’s rugby achievement follows fellow Year 13 pupil, Adam Smith’s summer of success after being chosen to play for the Irish Exiles, a rugby organisation that represents Ireland at youth international level.

Playing for the U18 squad’s tour of Ireland, Adam got to play in the team’s winning matches against the renowned Leinster and Ulster rugby clubs.

Kingham Hill independent School Oxfordshire

Kingham Hill School welcomed guests from the community to a special event to celebrate the opening of its new library and how reading can create

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a positive influence for those in education.

The day followed the successful official opening of the new school library by humanitarian charity founder Baroness Cox at the school’s Speech Day in July.

Celebrating the theme Tolle Lege, take up and read, the day gave the chance for invited guests to tour the new £3 million library and listen to a talk from award winning thriller writer and former Kingham Hill School pupil, R J Ellory.
Completely capturing the audience, Ellory spoke about how a number of historical icons and his grandmother inspired him to become a reader and how this encouraged him to pursue his dream of becoming an author.

Taking the time to speak to enthralled pupils at the school, Ellory said, “Once again, this was a wonderful opportunity to revisit a very significant period of my life. Every moment I spend at Kingham Hill reminds me how significant the years I spent there actually were in determining the direction I took in life. Not only academically priceless, but also an invaluably life-affirming and formative experience for everything I have undertaken as an adult. I am truly proud to be an Old Hillian.”

Nick Seward, Kingham Hill Headmaster, commented on the importance of reading for younger people: “Since opening our new library it has become the academic heart of the school. I am so proud to see our pupils grasping the opportunities to learn inside and outside of school with both hands. This is something we wholeheartedly encourage as reading allows children to explore and learn from the world around them every time the pick up a book.”

The school library build was completed earlier in year and designed by Kingham Hill School alumni, Mark Foley who is an architect at Burrell Foley Fischer. The new build is three times the size of the previous library and houses seminar, reading and studying space.

The library development follows the opening of Veritas, the schools maths, science and geography building in January 2015. A new sports hall complex is currently being planned as part of the school’s 15 year vision.

Kingham Hill independent School Oxfordshire

Kingham Hill School saw plenty of tries, conversions and line outs when the Oxford University Varsity Blues rugby squad visited for its preseason training.

The

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School’s outdoor rugby facilities and indoor swimming pool provided the stage for the university’s top rugby team to practise a number of technically challenging drills that tested and improved their conditioning and core rugby skills.

The Kingham Hill boys’ rugby team were delighted to extend an invitation to the Oxford team to join them at the School for training. The boys were thrilled to have the opportunity to watch and participate in the day long training camp, which gave them the chance to learn and improve their skills with such experienced players.

Kingham Hill Biology teacher and Oxford University rugby player, Basil Strang, who successfully led the Oxford University second rugby team to victory over Cambridge last year, was thrilled to be able to join his team in helping the School’s pupils develop their own skills.

Basil reflected on the successful training day: “The preseason day at Kingham was a fantastic day for the Kingham and Oxford boys alike. It proved a valuable learning opportunity for the Kingham boys as they tested themselves against some top quality players at Oxford University! I hope it is a relationship that will continue to flourish. A link between the rugby teams stands as testament to the direction rugby is going here at Kingham Hill. I am excited for what the future holds.”
The School team trained with the Oxford players in small groups practising their line out technique, kicking precision, and scrum and tackling abilities. Both teams joined together to play a fast paced touch rugby match.

“This was a unique opportunity for a school team to train alongside a professional set up, the boys benefited across the board from developing specific skills to seeing how the OURFC players enjoyed themselves in a serious and disciplined environment. It was an inspiring experience for the boys.” Chris Ashton, Head of Rugby at Kingham Hill School.

Following the top level training the Kingham Hill players were able to get more top tips during a meet and greet with the members of the Oxford team, a number of whom hold professional rugby contracts.

Adam Smith, Kingham Hill pupil and 1st XV captain said about the opportunity: “It was great to have a formidable opposition in front of us, upping the pressure and helping us learn a huge amount about our own positions. It made us want to improve our own game and see how good we can be.”

Oxford Varsity team captain, Fergus Taylor, reflected on the day: “It was good to be able to travel outside of central Oxford to such a scenic place to train. The swimming and rugby facilities were excellent and the Kingham Hill boys were very engaged throughout the whole day, there are a number of sharp players in the squad.”

Kingham Hill independent School Oxfordshire

Kingham Hill School’s GCSE pupils have added to the amazing results gained by A level pupils last week by delivering their own record high results

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today.

The school saw 36 per cent of pupils achieving the highest marks, A*-A, an increase on last year’s results and well above the national average. A vast majority of pupils were awarded at least one A*-A. The smiles continued for pupils as they achieved a school best of 63 per cent A*-B grades and 84% A*-C.

A number of subjects saw fantastic results, demonstrating Kingham’s high standard of teaching across the curriculum. French and Latin both saw 100 per cent A*-C grades and 100 per cent of pupils taking English Literature gained A*- Bs, bucking the national trend.

Results day saw a number of pupils gaining impressive grades with Amy Liao achieving 6 A*s and 4 As, George Morris receiving 3A*s, 5As and 1B and Danika Quick who gained 3A*s, 2As, 1B and 1C.

Also a big congratulations to Issy Tucker who received full marks for her A* grade in Art and Design, along with 3 A*s, 4 As and 1 B and will be returning next year for her A levels.

Headmaster, Nick Seward, commented: “I’m thrilled to see so many of our pupils achieving above expectations, and delivering such a fine set of results. Alongside those achieving strings of A*s and As, many pupils in this year group have faced big academic challenges, and I know they will now feel the hard work was worth it, with well-deserved success to celebrate.”

Kingham Hill School Independent Oxfordshire

As pupils across the country nervously gathered at their school to collect their A level results, Kingham Hill School’s Sixth Formers had cause for celebration

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and big smiles after achieving an impressive collection of results today.

The school saw 45 per cent of the grades awarded in the A* to A grade band, a record high for the school and well above the national average of 25.8 per cent.

The excellent results continued for our talented pupils with 65.4 per cent of grades awarded A* to B and 85 per cent in the A* to C bracket. Academic success was achieved in a wide variety of subjects, demonstrating Kingham Hill’s high standard of teaching across the curriculum, with 82 per cent A*-A grades in Mathematics and 75 per cent of pupils gaining A*-B in Physics. Every pupil taking Further Mathematics, was awarded an A* or A, which is a truly fantastic achievement.

The amazing efforts of all our pupils has paid off with some wonderful results, individual achievements include; Claire Gu received four A* grades in Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Physics, Chinese and an A in Economics, Claire will now be going to Imperial College London to study Mathematics.

Salome Khvistani achieved an A*, 4 A grades and a B and will be going to University College London to study Social Sciences with Quantitative Methods, and commented “Thank you Kingham Hill for the feeling I have right now. I am so grateful and always will be!”

2016 has been a strong year for pupils at Kingham Hill School with Adrian Leung and Claire Gu scoring 100 per cent in their Art and Design and Mathematics qualifications respectively.

Headmaster, Nick Seward, commented: “I am so proud of my pupils and staff for achieving our best ever A level year. The ‘personal best’ culture at Kingham Hill School reminds me of our successful Olympians, and with nearly half of all grades at A* and A, the results are similarly spectacular!”

The school also saw some fantastic AS level results, pupil Aaron Madden received three A grades and is looking at studying biological sciences at a Russell Group university next year. Aaron said of his learning experience: “I am feeling pleased and satisfied with my results after a year of hard work. The personal attention that the school’s teachers give to each individual pupil and the encouragement to aim high and improve has helped me to achieve my results. The support at KHS to push yourself for what you want and the extra mile the staff will go to help is next to none.”

Kingham Hill School Independent Oxfordshire

Following two weeks in Zambia volunteering with Life Support charity this summer, ten Kingham Hill School pupils returned home with big smiles and memories to

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last a lifetime.

The Sixth Form pupils, travelled to Chingola to support the work of Eden Farm, a children’s village that provides a safe home environment for orphaned and vulnerable children.

Whilst living on site at Eden Farm in the new visitors lodge, the pupils not only helped to paint and decorate the new Chapel, but they immersed themselves into the local communities of Kapisha and Kabundi.

The team took every opportunity to learn about and support the local community through teaching at the local school and running youth church sessions.

During one visit to Kapisha, the pupils had a wonderful time singing, dancing and talking with the Nurture Ladies, another Life Support project that empowers vulnerable and widowed women with enterprise and craft skills, enabling them to find freedom from poverty.

During their time on the farm our pupils were able to develop their communication, leadership and compassion through the arts and craft lessons, a youth sports day, games, and spending time being with the children living in the village.

Athena Harper, Latimer Girls Day Houseparent and trip leader, commented on the time spent at Eden Farm: “It has been a joy to see the team immersing themselves in the culture and community of living life on Eden Farm. Every day saw a new challenge, from running the sports days, dodging spiders, epic bus journeys, cooking on coals and making the most of the sanctuary time – the team gave it their all. Lifelong memories and experiences have been made and I am very proud of all of them and what they achieved for Life Support and Eden Farm.

Being able to see how far every penny goes and taking pupils to see how their fundraising has impacted a community is an amazing privilege. There is now a Chapel, two children’s homes and two more on the way, the farm is continuing to expand and develop – it’s a really exciting time to be involved with the project!”

The school has been visiting the farm since 2011 contributing over £14,000 to Life Support and the Eden Farm project. Before departing for Zambia this year the team planned and lead a huge range of fundraising activities, including selling Valentine’s roses, a Secret Garden Fashion Show and a pop-up shop in Chipping Norton. Everyone did an incredible job and raised over £4,000 for Life Support and Eden Farm, which will make a real difference to the children and local community of Chingola.

Kingham Hill independent school Oxfordshire

Thirteen Sixth Form and scholarship pupils from Kingham Hill School displayed their A level artwork and photography to impressed friends, family and staff at their

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own Art Exhibition.

The school’s state-of-the-art Maths and Science building, Veritas was transformed by Head of Art Mark Buckler and Art teacher Lilly Tigwell into an exhibition space to house a variety of pieces from the talented artists for the evening.

A wide range of topics were explored by the pupils through their artwork, including purity, spatial figures and memory loss.

Lilly Tigwell commented on the work in the exhibition: “The Art Department have been really impressed with the quality of the work from our current A level pupils as well as our Art scholars, who range from age 13 to 18.

“We had a number of pieces on display, from photography, videography, paintings and drawings as well as mixed media pieces. We were very excited to have others at the exhibition to see what our pupils have been working on throughout the year.”

It has also been a successful year for Kingham Hill Art pupils with Year 13 Adrian Leung and Year 11 Issy Tucker both being selected from hundreds of applicants to exhibit at the National Students’ Exhibition in The Mall Galleries in London.

Kingham Hill independent school Oxfordshire

Pupils from Kingham Hill School were on song this week as they travelled to Paris to take part in a commemorative concert marking the centenary

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of the Battle of the Somme.

Over 20 pupils, aged 11 to 18, travelled to the Dernancourt Church to take part in a special concert that honoured the thousands of soldiers who gave their lives in the Battle of the Somme.

The school choir had the privilege of performing a range of songs including, including a new arrangement written by Head of Music, Dan Chambers especially for the concert which combines the two national anthems of France and Great Britain into a single piece, which illustrates the partnership that has continued between the two nations from Dernancourt one hundred years ago.

Following the concert to invited dignitaries and war veterans, Gareth Williams, Head of Languages at Kingham Hill, exchanged gifts with the Association Centenaire de la Guerre 14/18 as a mark of respect to the fallen soldiers. The Association gave the school a collection of shell cases and barbed wire pickets dug up from surrounding fields, which will form a permanent exhibition piece in the school’s new library to commemorate the part Kingham Hill alumni played in the First World War.

Before this special performance, pupils had the opportunity to visit the grave of Kingham Hill alumni Private Sidney Collier of the 9th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment from Kingham Hill Latimer House, who was killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. Pupil Elodie Phillips laid a posy of poppies picked from the battlefield and Esther Savage laid a poppy cross at Sidney’s grave as everyone stood in silence to pay their respects and remember his sacrifice, and those of the hundreds of thousands killed in the battle.

Gareth Williams also visited the graves of Guardsman Sidney Reading of the Grenadier Guards from Durham House, Private Philip Pitt of the 1st Battalion Canadian Infantry from Clyde House and Private Charles Turner of the Royal Fusiliers from Bradford House who lost their lives during the battle and the First World War.

During the rest of the trip the choir were invited to sing on the Videopolis stage at Disneyland Paris. Everyone was very pleased to have been able to visit the park and to have been selected to perform at the internationally renowned resort.

For their final performance, pupils visited the picturesque Jardin du Luxembourg where they sang for a number of impressed local residents and tourists.

Dan Chambers, reflected on the success of the trip: “It was great to see so many pupils taking the opportunity to learn more about the history of France during our trips to Bastille, Place de la Concord and the Palace of Versailles. Everyone was especially moved to have been asked to perform in memory of those who died serving their country.”

Esther Savage, a Year 12 pupil, added: “The activities have been so diverse and yet there’s not been a moment I haven’t loved. Paris has been quite possibly the best trip I’ve been on at Kingham.”

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