Queen Anne’s girls going for Gold!
Thursday 3rd August 2017
Whilst most of the Queen Anne’s community were looking forward to a well-earned rest and the eagerly anticipated summer holiday, 31 intrepid Sixth Formers boarded a coach at 6am on the first day of their holidays and headed north to the beautiful mountains and tarns of the Lake District in Cumbria.
The five days ahead were always going to be testing but also great fun. Team work, achievements, self-discipline and discovering somewhere new were high on the agenda. The weather gods certainly got it right! The two expeditions (Practice for the L6 and Qualifier for the U6) both benefited from great ‘living outdoors’ conditions making life more bearable and enjoyable.
The practice expedition covered the Coniston, Langdale and Ambleside area and enjoyed a wonderful wild camp at Easedale Tarn, high above civilisation and without the type of facilities that are normally taken for granted. Our U6 Qualifying expedition enjoyed an equally wild camp surrounded by the amphitheater of remarkable mountain tops in the Ullswater area. Both groups also enjoyed the luxury of camping at some picturesque postcard campsite locations – it wasn’t all survival conditions!
Yet again Sam Sykes Ltd staff were full of praise for our girls’ performance. Both groups navigated accurately and when they ever became ‘geographically incorrect’ – Mr Blunt’s words for being LOST – they would consistently correct their mistakes and get back on route with minimal fuss.
The Queen Anne’s staff really stepped up to the plate. Mrs Eagle and Mrs Norris tracked, supported and wild camped with the Qualifying group. Miss Ginders and Mr Blunt went one step further by either sleeping directly under the stars or using minimalist equipment.
Mr Blunt would like to take this opportunity to thank Mrs Eagle, Mrs Norris and Miss Ginders and all the Queen Anne’s girls for being totally brilliant throughout the whole expedition experience and making his job probably the best job in the world.
For all the U6 girls, it was their very last act under the Queen Anne’s School banner as pupils of the school. They have been a complete joy to be with on the two separate expeditions they have been required to complete successfully to meet the requirements of the Expedition section of the Gold DofE Award. Most have now completed the 5 elements of Gold Award or are just finishing off commitments from other Sections.
Very soon we will have our very first DofE Gold Award recipients attend St James’s Palace to collect their Pins and Certificates from Prince Edward who has replaced the retiring 96 year old Duke of Edinburgh as the new figure head of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme.
An additional mention must go to L6 girls Francesca Green, Alicia Green and Katherine Derde. Over the holiday period the intrepid trio have been completing both their Practice and Qualifying Gold Award Expeditions by horse back. That represents great commitment from the girls – giving up 10 days of their holidays to fulfil their commitments. Having never sat on a horse – Mr Blunt passed on the expedition!!
To view all the pictures from the expeditions, please click here