Headmaster's Blog


Friday, 25th May 2018


Dear Parents

This week if you go anywhere near the Thames or the Isis as it is called, you will hear the sound of a megaphone. It is the voice of an announcer, telling the assembled crowds about the results of the bumps races which are being held at the moment. As many of you will know, the College crews will line their boats up at regular intervals on the far side of Donnington Bridge and when a cannon is fired, the long procession of boats will row as fast as possible towards Folly Bridge, each one hoping to catch the boat in front and then bump it. If that is done, the boat swaps place in the procession for the next day. If a boat bumps on five consecutive days, the victorious crew is entitled to win its blades. On Saturday afternoon all along the riverbank of Christ Church Meadow, the College boat-houses will be busy with people watching their crews. Christ Church is renowned for its rowing so its boathouse, the last one in the line of boathouses, turned very slightly away from all the others given that it owns the land upon which all the boathouses are built, will be awash with passionate supporters. It is a wonderful event with a really carnival atmosphere and one which you may want to enjoy. Do go to the College boathouse and you would be most welcome to view the action from there. Eights week is one of those occasions which make living in Oxford such a treat.

We had a wonderful Prince and Princesses Royal Wedding After-Party on the Meadow yesterday. Next to the Pavilion, marquees had been set up in which a catwalk had been constructed. All the members of Pre-Prep had come to school with crowns and they were now being judged by our special guest, Mrs Allen, former Head of Pre-Prep, who was elegance personified. As we waited the School brass band entertained us as did a group of choristers who sang Jerusalem. Following the judgement, the princes and princesses were able to run through the Woodland School where a trail of crowns had been set out and at the heart of the wood, some activities such as face painting and pin the tail on the Corgi were on offer. The afternoon concluded with a Prize draw; B and B at Christ Church, an annual family pass for Blenheim, £100 voucher at Tuscan Pots on the Botley Road, A family ticket to Gifford Circus amongst others. All of this was in aid of this year’s School charity, The Guide Dogs for the Blind for which we raised £677.70 and indeed we were fortunate that two dogs and their handlers had come to the party. As one can imagine, the dogs were the only ones at the event who were not wild with excitement! All in all it was a most wonderful afternoon and much enjoyed by all who attended.

I’m sure that everyone has thoroughly enjoyed the glorious weather we have had over the last fort-night. Let us hope that the break in the weather does not spread into half term. As ever, though, I very much hope that everyone will rest and relax over half term. I would advise everyone to do a little bit of revision for the exams which will occur for everyone in the two weeks after the break. This is especially of course the case for the Form 8 pupils who will be revising hard for their CE exams. I wish them all the very best – the next two weeks are the culmination of everything that they have worked towards over the last two years and indeed throughout their time at the School and what happens during this period will shape their future.

Mr Murray

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