Brentwoodian 2022

HEADMASTER’S INTRODUCTION Illustration by Sandy Zhu FEATURE ARTICLES With illustrations by Alexander Williams, Sandy Zhu & Sophia Assitzoglou The Timeline of Brentwood School By George Davies TRIPS Illustration by Jasmine Tunmer THE ARTS With illustrations by Jasmine Tunmer & Murray Peat SPORTS With illustrations by Alexander Williams HOUSE A year in summary for the existing Houses and introducing the new. Illustration by Alexander Williams CO-CURRICULAR From Chapel, Duke of Edinburgh and the Combined Cadet Force, we take a look at the past year outside of the classroom LEAVING STAFF Wishing fond farewells to staff JOINING STAFF And welcoming the new members of Brentwood School 6 CONTENTS 4 144 190 227 41 10 54 72 218 1

Each year, as I come to signing off the Brentwoodian, I feel a strange sense of nostalgia (and relief that the love-hate relationship I have with the Adobe suite is, for now, at an end). This edition, with the upper sixth who have just left, is the year group I joined Brentwood School with. Their first day was my first day. Their successes, which I have documented and placed in each page over the years, have felt like mine. So this year, a very meaningful one for me, is a chance to celebrate all the students who have journeyed with me through my career. This publication is testament to the students who make the most of every opportunity this school has to offer and the incredible staff who generously give their time to make sure that these opportunities are even possible. A huge thank you goes out to my student team and especially Alexander, who has made this edition as beautiful as the last. To my wonderful proofreader, Pam, who is the most thorough and patient of us all. To Ms Dortel, for creating some truly beautiful pages and being an emotional support when I didn’t know what a gamut warning was. To Mr Prinn who helped organise the ‘chaos’ of the media Drive and to Mr Charlesworth for his photographic skills. Finally, to Mr Lonsdale and Mrs Dobson who were there to support, motivate and boost my spirits (often with cake). By Miss V Cooper Editor's note 2


I am delighted to introduce the 2022 Brentwoodian, a publication that has landed on the desks and coffee tables (and now in the inboxes) of pupils, parents and friends of the School every year since 1891. Various front covers line the wall outside my office from years gone by, and as well as offering a fascinating insight into how times have changed (and how fashions come back around) it has also been a faithful record of key school achievements in the context of broader local, regional, national and international events. From the heartfelt anguish of the obituaries from the World Wars to the joy - expressed in minute detail - of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s visit to Brentwood in 1957, the Brentwoodian has been there throughout our modern history. 2022 marks another anniversary, 400 years after our School Statutes were written down. Written by John Donne, Dean of St. Paul’s and one of England’s finest poets, the statutes decreed that: ‘The said schoolmaster shall receive…..and him shall teach and instruct in vertue, learning and manners after the orders and constitutions of the said school…..’ [sic] This year’s Brentwoodian captures some of the ways in which we have celebrated the anniversary, including our Founder’s Service at St. Peter’s, South Weald, in May (where Sir Antony Browne is buried) and our 1622 Fête that followed a welcome return of Speech Day after two years of online events, in June. Our School enjoys celebrating anniversaries - in 1957, Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip visited Brentwood to mark the 400th year since our foundation, whilst in 1907, pupils were issued with a card from the Introduction FROMTHE Headmaster 4

Headmaster that included the words of Evelyn Heseltine, Chairman of Governors from the early 20th Century: “I shall pass this way only once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” As well as presenting a good opportunity to celebrate our past, the anniversary of the School’s values allows us to reaffirm our commitment to them. Virtue, Learning and Manners are as - if not more - important now than at any point in our history. In a world of change, where accepted truths seem to be questioned, it’s helpful (and reassuring) to have a set of values we can use to underpin everything we do here at Brentwood, and my hope is that you will see more than a sprinkling of them in the events and achievements described herein. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have contributed to this year’s Brentwoodian - by doing so, they have stood on the shoulders of the giants who have gone before us, and played their part in maintaining this wonderful tradition. I hope you enjoy reading about what has been a remarkable year. Best wishes Michael Bond 5

The Summer term brought exciting changes to the School’s House system. For over a hundred years now the School has followed a familiar system of six houses: North, East, South, West, Weald and School (split into Mill Hill and Hough). Although these houses have been familiar identities for students in the past, a growing number of students has led to a new era of houses and competition between them. From May, we introduced four entirely new houses for day students. These houses took the names of wellknown nearby locations and parks, including Hampden, Thorndon, Hartswood and Merrymeade. They took on new colours too, including orange, grey, teal and purple. Although now it may take a few seconds for you to work out which colour is which house now, this has led the way to ten individual houses of around 150 students in each. The ethos behind a smaller house is to encourage more community amongst students, whereby different year groups will be able to recognise others and create more relationships. As a result, this will hopefully lead to greater involvement of students in house competitions. Since the initiation of the new House system, it was decided that the entire tie system would be overhauled with a new, more cohesive design that allows as many students’ house identities to be shown as possible. These include the regular house ties in their popping new colours, a Full colours tie (an eagle and house stripes), a Distinction colours tie (similar to the old one, but in house colours), and the Senior Prae tie (the School crest and house stripes). Now, it is much easier to discover which house all of the students around school are in, which makes life so much easier for the Sixth Formers … In addition to a greater sense of clarity for the houses, the amalgamation of Hough and Mill Hill Houses has created an overarching “School house” tie, so a greater sense of community has been built for the boarders here. Brentwood School's 6

In previous years, special ties for Praeposters and Half colours students were in place. Whilst these have now been discontinued, in addition to the Academic Scholarship pin, we have introduced pins for these roles. These include exciting eagle pins, a blue eagle and crest pin, and others. These changes to the House system and ties going forward are likely to have an enormous impact on student life (but in a good way of course). A smaller group of students across the year groups, a wealth of staff and the connection of the two School houses has increased community and will likely allow for greater participation in all of the events going on. The competition for this year’s House Cup has never been greater, and this year’s House Music, paired with other houses, will be a flashy and pompous introduction to all the changes that have taken place over the last year. By Cameron Davies, Head of School new house system 7

400 years ago, in July 1622, John Donne, the Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral, established our School Statutes and in this document we find these words Over the course of the last 400 years, these three words have become the foundation of the Brentwood School that you see today. Taken together, these three words help us to direct our shared life here in school and guide us in the decision-making that all of us take on a daily basis. Whilst it would be true to say that none of us live up to these three core values on every occasion, they do help to light our path and hold us all to account. Virtue, perhaps the most difficult word to easily encapsulate, invites us to look within ourselves. To recognise that any positive change within a society must begin with the individual. Virtue could, perhaps, be most easily explained as ‘doing the right thing, even when others are not looking.’ Learning is, understandably, the most recognisable word and one that has an obvious home within an educational environment. For us, though, learning challenges us to go beyond the classroom and celebrate the many opportunities that we all have to learn, most often from others. Learning is the business of us all and is not confined to our student body. Manners, for “The said schoolmaster shall receive...and him shall teach and instruct in vertue, learning and manners after the orders and constitutions of the said school… 8

me, is a reminder of the importance of hospitality and of welcome. We are a richly diverse community and we place great emphasis, not only on our conduct towards one another, but on the manner in which we welcome and include those who pass through our gates. Two years ago, the School established a Values Implementation Committee and I have the privilege of being the Chair. The membership of the committee is drawn from across the staff body with teaching and operational staff members. Our key role is to work alongside the School’s existing structures to explore how we currently espouse, promote and ‘live out’ the School’s values of Virtue, Learning, Manners through scrutiny of school policy and practice. Most of our work to date has been focused on examining where our Values are most deeply embedded and where we might increase focus and visitors (as well as pupils and staff) will begin to see how our values are being increasingly communicated. The committee has also started to work alongside the staff body to explore how they might interpret these values and how they might give greater shape to our working life. This work is beginning to bear fruit and we hope to be able to open this discussion with the pupils and the wider parent body in due course. If you would like to know more about our Values and about this work in particular, then please do not hesitate to be in touch directly. By Revd Dr Adrian McConnaughie VIRTUE, LEARNING, MANNERS. 9













A day in the life of... I woke up well before dawn, relishing those final moments in bed until I saw the first glimmers of light. Last week we had to be in the schoolroom at six o’clock to escape Master Plumtree’s birch. Today, thankfully, it’s a seven o’clock start. I grab a few sheets of paper and leave home, eating some dry bread on the way. As the chapel clock comes into view, I see that it is almost seven - it is time to run! I don’t want to be birched on a Monday morning. I just make it in time, taking off my cap and bowing as I enter. The fire is lit, but it is only flickering and the room is cold. We chant Latin prayers on our knees. Then up to sit on the benches. From now on, no English is allowed to be spoken. Firstly, there is a test on the sermon from yesterday, and then one on what we did last week. We are careful to not look hesitant, otherwise we will get picked on by Master Plumtree, and that can lead to a birching. At last we get to nine o’clock and have a short break, and I munch on some bread and raisins I remembered to bring. We stop working when Master Plumtree consults the hour glass and thinks it is eleven o’clock. At eleven I go home for dinner, then back by one o’clock for another four hours in the afternoon. We learn some Latin verse, and all get a subject for a composition to write on Friday. For the moment, we are learning a Latin piece by Cato. We recite it, translate it into English and then translate back into original Latin. It helps so much when you can remember what the original piece was! Eventually Master Plumtree reckons it is five o’clock - we are all looking longingly at his hourglass. It is time for prayers when we kneel again and repeat what the master tells us, and this is the pattern six days a week. Brentwood schoolboy in 1622, aged 11 22

We go down the High Street to Brentwood Chapel on Wednesday and Friday mornings for a service, and on Thursdays we practise handwriting. Occasionally, if the whole school has worked well, we go out to the archery butts next to the schoolhouse and have a little target practice. On Fridays we have to repeat what we have learned earlier in the week. Punishments from the week are generally saved up for Friday afternoons. This Friday, Edward Coltherst and William Harleston are birched. We are told to learn from their mistakes. On Saturday we learn the answers to the catechism which we may have to repeat in church the next day. And then it is Sunday again. Just occasionally there is a holiday for a Saint’s day, or possibly two boys have a real fight and one gets a bloody face. Now at least that is exciting! EthanNorris, 2022, aged 18 Once ready for school, I grab some breakfast. When the weather’s nice, I walk, but generally it’s quite unpleasant so I drive! I tend to get to school at 8am and head to the Sixth Form common room to catch up with some friends. We then go to our forms to be registered at 8.25am. In the mornings we have two lessons, then assembly and break, followed by another two lessons before lunch. In lessons I will usually make notes and complete questions. My teacher will post work on Google Classroom, which allows us to work at our own pace. I take Physics, Maths and Economics, which I find difficult but rewarding. In form, depending on the day, we either have form, or some sort of assembly, which is held virtually now, due to the COVID pandemic. After period 4 we have lunch. As senior prae I have duty twice a week - the lunch queue can get quite chaotic! My 23

friends and I either have school lunch or go to the High Street to eat - Brentwood Beigels is a personal favourite of mine! After lunch we have two more lessons, which are Games on Wednesdays. I do football, and am a member of the School’s XI - we usually train for upcoming matches by working on finishing, passing and tactical shape to put us in the best position to win on the weekend. Once I have finished at 3.50pm I usually head home, unless I have football training or meetings. Fridays are different - we finish at 3.30pm, to allow time for CCF. I am a CQMS in the army, so my Fridays consist of me walking around the Year 11 cadets and making sure their lessons are going smoothly. I enjoy being a part of CCF as it gives me a break from school work and I enjoy being with my friends outdoors. Once home, I crack on with my homework, usually aiming to finish around 8.30pm. I then relax by playing Xbox or watching Netflix. IB student As an Upper Sixth IB student with more limited time for extracurricular commitments, I am glad to still be able to maintain doing things that I love in school, even if I’m doing them less frequently than I would have been able to do last year. I like to arrive around 30 minutes or so before school begins. I find that this helps me get into a good mindset for my first lesson. I often chat with my friends in the study centre or revise for upcoming tests. I then go to my form room to register at 8:25 am. I study seven subjects in total, with three Higher Level subjects and three Standard Level subjects. The Highers 24

are in more depth than the Standards, which allows for a broader scope of education, which is furthered by the Theory of Knowledge classes we take to think more deeply and critically about our studies. The general nature of my lessons are very discussion and debate orientated, as the majority of my subjects are in the Humanities, and many argue that this enhances our learning. I have the luxury of debate inside and outside the classroom, as I participate in many societies. My favourites are MUN and SABS. MUN is every Thursday after school and we all represent a country in a discussion about a different topic or issue every week, mirroring the discussions of the real UN. In SABS, we debate various topics, and present our findings to each other in a lecture-based format followed by discussion. I very much enjoy the IB - even though it is difficult, I feel like the challenges it presents will make me better prepared for adult life. 25

A Happy Poem Why art thou a fish named custard? Fishy fishy fish water, wind, rain fishy fishy fish Where is the food? Where is the sun? fishy fishy fish I swim, I swim, I- float. I see the sun. Apple crumble more crumble than apple crumbly crumbly apple sun called crumble I see my fish crumbly crumbly apple talk to me fish How have you been fishy fishy fish Join me, and let us stay here forever. By Taaliyah Foster 26

At a time of economic and political uncertainty, the debate around growth is more relevant than ever. Though the Russo-Ukrainian war plays a role, most economists argue monetary policy in the wake and aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the main contributor towards the inflation rate. This is why the government’s monetary stance is a crucial factor in the livelihood of the UK. The argument for growth usually follows that increased business creates more jobs, which grow the economy and ensure a higher living standard. Therefore, to promote business, there should be corporate tax cuts, deregulation, and sometimes borrowing, which all grow the economy. Simply implementing public schemes only stagnates the economy, like the 1950s and 60s issue of juggling a stopgo economy, so the best approach for the UK’s future is to prioritise growth. If the UK wants to keep up with other countries the government needs to be growth-focused. There is no point attempting to make global change if the UK isn’t an economy that other nations respect. India overtook the UK’s GDP late last year, pushing this country out of the global top five. Additionally, based on IMF forecasts, Poland is on track to overtake the UK’s economy in 12 years. The state of the UK is in decline, and the best way to tackle Should the UK Government’s Main Prioritybe Growth? 27

this is a government focused on growth. The situation at the moment may be unfruitful, but to simply preserve an economy without creating the grounds for growth is unproductive. A rethinking of the UK economy would bring growth, not simply tax cuts. Compared to other economies, the UK’s service-dominated economy (around 80%) doesn’t consistently drive its GDP. The USA’s GDP, for example, is composed of finance management, service, and manufacturing sectors to fall back on. Cuts to tax and public spending can also help growth, but they aren’t always necessary, like Norway’s mixed strategy of a free market with pockets of government regulation. Growth doesn’t always entail free market exploitative deregulation, and can take the form of a strategic rethinking of the economy. The argument against growth is based on the sacrifices and by-products of it, such as inflation, inequality and exploitation, as well as climate change, lobbying, and international hostility. Public spending and government regulation is a better alternative, which ensures a stable economy. The UK’s current unemployment rate is on par with the 1970s, its GDP to debt ratio is over 100%, and inflation is up by 8.8% - old-school monetary policies simply wouldn’t work in the present day UK. There are also the long-term downsides of a growth-focused economy. Global warming isn’t helped by countries with a focus on growth, for example, China and 28

the USA have the largest carbon footprints on Earth; by comparison the UK’s carbon footprint is 28 times smaller than China’s. Other by-products of growth are: the disparity of wealth between large companies and small businesses, greater political power going to said companies, and national hostility towards ‘competition’ nations. All of these negative attributes have been seen in growth-based economies. Growth simply isn’t worth the sacrifice it requires. Though the UK has the sixth biggest GDP, the current environment is not one that inspires growth. Tax cuts for large companies are abused, and cuts to public spending would only lead to civil unrest. The 1980s were a different time, where growth was achievable (though still at a high interpersonal cost) due to simpler limitations to it. The concept of growth is only practical in a situation with a simple diagnosis. However, as the UK stands today, so many factors beyond control dictate growth or decline, so the government’s main priority today should be to support the people through this time, not grow the economy. The UK faces crippling economic problems due to modern circumstances and previous economic handling. However, the situation is worse than 2008 internationally and the extremity of the economic impact. Growth is definitely the way forward for the UK, but a strong argument can be made that now is not the time, and that the easing of decline should be the main government priority until the situation passes. By Aaron Mee 29

The passing of a monarch is always a deeply sad event, although it is clear to see from a queue that spanned five tube stations, with people waiting for up to 24 hours, that the death of Queen Elizabeth II was significant in a way never seen before, bringing the whole country to halt as we mourned her passing. She herself was a symbol of integrity and peace through the turmoil of the last 70 years; meeting 13 presidents and 15 Prime Ministers, she has been the singular constant of the modern ruling world, even described as ‘The rock that modern Britain was built around.’ At the time of her birth in 1926, she was third in line to the Throne. With the possibility of her becoming Head of State at the far back of her mind, she lived a traditional aristocratic childhood away from the public eye. However, following an extraordinary turn of events, Elizabeth was proclaimed Queen of England in 1952. Thereafter, she served the people of The Queen that was never meant to be 30

the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth, just as she promised she would, for 70 years. Throughout her reign, she became one of the most wellknown figures in the entire world (53% of the global population tuned in to watch her funeral.) With the passing of the Queen came one of the most monumental events of recent history: The Queue. By the day of the funeral, 250,000 people had come together to pay their respects in a deeply moving display of reverence for Elizabeth. London itself was transformed by the sheer abundance of flowers left in dedicated parks, and the masses of people travelling in to pay their respects. To me, this is a truly spectacular physical manifestation of the love she held in the hearts of her subjects. Not only that, it was such a wonderfully British way of paying tribute - an installation of art, if you will - growing and morphing through London. Although not having governing power as such, Queen Elizabeth II was a global icon, loved and respected by all. She was the glue binding the Commonwealth together, and was a truly remarkable woman in every aspect. It is quite moving to come to the realisation that there has never been any monarch quite like her, and there quite possibly will never be one again, at least not in our living memory. With her death comes the end of an iconic era: one of change, progressiveness and prosperity. R.I.P. Queen Elizabeth II By Sam Pryor & Sophia Assitzoglou 31

Studying Chinese these past two years has reminded me of why I love the language. During the first lockdown, it was easy to neglect my Chinese studies. I could understand TV shows and conversations; what more could I want to learn? As it turns out, I was cutting myself off frommany fascinating parts of Chinese culture. This course has encouraged me to study all aspects of China, from culture to technology to history. I have explored the intricacies of Chinese culture and language, its beauty, and its mosaic of perspectives that would have otherwise been unavailable to me. In particular, I have cultivated a deep appreciation of Eileen Chang, whose works I am sure I will continue to enjoy long after I leave Brentwood. In studying Chinese as a language, I feel I have been able to connect with Chinese culture. I believe there is greater clarity of ideas in their original form, unfiltered by translation. Reading a literary work in the original language enriches the text with additional subtext. This is not to say that I dislike translation. On the contrary, I have come to understand that translation can be just as creative and taxing a process as writing something new. Through my participation in the Stephen Spender Prize, a poetry translation competition, and the Anthea Bell Prize, a prose translation competition, I was able to experience first-hand the struggles of converting a text from one language to another without losing the essence of the original work. As Chinese as a language is so different from English, my entries took many hours to complete. However, as someone who loves language, I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. In the end, sitting back and reading over my finished work was very rewarding. Besides the translation competition, my teacher encouraged me to participate in the British Council Mandarin Speaking Competition. Before studying Studying IB Chinese 32

Chinese at Brentwood, I completely lacked confidence when speaking. The speaking competition was a huge step outside of my comfort zone: not only was I going to have to speak at a high level, but my ability to do so was being explicitly judged. My teacher’s support made it much easier for me to performmy speech and allowed me to face my fears. This gave me new confidence in public speaking that has been of significant value to me in exams and daily life. Although my studies at Brentwood have come to an end, this is certainly not the end of my Chinese study. I have so much more to learn, and I am looking forward to returning to China and making full use of what I have learned so far. I know I will take the tools and knowledge I have acquired over the course of my Chinese study at Brentwood with me for life. By Chloe O’Connor 33

FLOWERS Flowers have this unashamed innocence That frees them from true levels of scrutiny, We glance to admire, not to observe, We touch for pleasure, not for assistance, We pick for desire, not for them, We don’t care about them. They’re in our vases now, but is that where they belong? Our dining table is fruitful with the deadly red of freshly dying roses, but what about the mother’s grasps you ripped it from? You separated the bond between a blossoming flower and its natural habitat. Perhaps the ground is fine and it’s no big deal that you’ve ripped them apart, but what if it’s not fine? They have no voice to share how they really feel, so is it fair to speak for them? The mother may not have wanted the flower, but to force them to produce one for your own pleasure for it to only sit on your dining room table, is that fair? It’s not fair. And it’s not fair to control women’s bodies by banning abortions and banning their choice. You can ignore the flower on your dining room table, but you can not ignore an unwanted baby. Its cry is audible. By Taaliyah Foster 34

The event of 24th February, 2022 will not be forgotten by any Ukrainian; it was engraved in their hearts forever. All Ukrainian cities shuddered from the explosions carried out by the neighbouring country Russia. The whole nation prayed for their lives and their loved ones, and parents were confused about how to explain to their children what was happening in their country. There was a feeling that people’s homes would be taken away in a minute and no one knew where to run or where to hide. This tragic day will be remembered by all nationalities and countries, but no one will feel the pain Ukrainians went through. Kyiv, 5am: The woman wakes up with fear in her eyes after hearing a powerful explosion in the distance. She goes to watch the news completely confused, unable to believe that this day has come and that it could ever happen. The mother rushes to her daughter, but she has already woken up. After a few seconds of silence, the most terrifying phrase sounds - “The war began”. Until this day, no one could think that a completely peaceful country located in the heart of Europe could come under attack, especially in the 21st century. In complete fear, the mother and her daughter begin to collect the essential things: documents and warm clothes. At this time, as the child finishes grabbing her clothes and other equally important things, the mother goes to talk to the father to make the most difficult decision in their life. Dad says that today it is very dangerous to go anywhere and the family decides to stay at home. The airraid alert sounds. The teenage girl hears it for the first time, and the family descends into the shelter. In the parking lot they see almost all of their neighbours. Most of their nextdoor friends were focused on their phones; they kept their eyes on the screens and followed every last news update. Some talked among themselves and discussed their ESCAPING THE WAR 35

further plans and actions. Adults understood that sooner or later there would be a full scale war with Russia, but when this day really came, these events did not lend themselves to the logical thinking of a conscious person. Little children looked at their parents with hope in their eyes and asked who was doing this to them? The main question was “Why, what have we done wrong”? Mothers and fathers answered, “Nothing, we just live”. No one knew what was in the mind of the merciless dictator Putin, only he himself. In 1939 Winston Churchill once said that the USSR was “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma”. Especially these days, we can clearly see that history repeats itself and Putin is the same mystery. People spend the whole night in the parking lot, all of them are worried from head to toe, calling their relatives and friends. Some families decided to go abroad, and others went out of town. Meanwhile, the daughter’s mother puts her things in the car. They resolved to go to the countryside of Kyiv to stay with her godmother. A woman says goodbye to her husband, and her daughter hugs him tightly. The mother and daughter get into the car with hopes that in a few days they will return home. They are leaving their native and most beloved city of Kyiv, the picturesque capital of Ukraine. They drive through the deserted Khreshchatyk Street, which is always full of people, entertainment and fun. The mother carefully follows the road, and her daughter does not take her eyes off the window. You can already see the park where they liked to walk with friends, people walked their dogs and played with them, children rode scooters and ran, but the joy that was there before was no longer present. A sign with the crossed out inscription “Kyiv” is already visible and they are headed to the house of close friends. 28th February, on the way to Poland: The mum and her girl leave with friends to peaceful Poland, which has experienced no less pain than Ukraine from the constant attacks of warring countries. Kyiv was surrounded by Russian troops in the western direction, the road to the ancient city of Lviv was completely blocked, and right 36

behind it was the Polish border. People had to go around almost the whole of Ukraine to get to the border with Moldova. They drove through such Ukrainian landscapes for the first time. Tiny ponds with ducks, wide fields and incredible plains enchanted, even in such a difficult time of the year. Sevenhours on the road and they finally arrive in Chisinau to make a stop for two days. Chisinau is not a big city compared to Kyiv and other capitals. Walking through this city, you have the feeling that you have fallen into the abyss of the past. The majority of the buildings were built during the times of the USSR; new houses can be counted on the fingers, however people are very kind and generous. After a short rest and gaining a little energy, the mother and daughter set off again in the direction of Poland. First, they overcome the mountain ranges of Romania. The road turns out to be very steep, there are sharp turns one after another on a narrow way. The only thing that gave satisfaction at that moment was the incredible landscape, the beauty of the mountains and recollection of wellknown Carpathians. The two girls still had a tricky journey through the mountains of Hungary and Slovakia. The terrain of these two countries turned out to be easier, but the distance and duration of the trip was exhausting. After two days of tracks, long lines of cars and border crossings, they finally arrive in Krakow. 37

3rd March, in Krakow: The mother and daughter are already walking around the royal city of Krakow. The city full of legends, priceless monuments of architecture and art fascinates everyone at first glance. Walking around the city, one feels a sense of happiness that was absent during the German occupation. It was able to survive and it looks ancient and very cosy. The girls loved walking around the old town, along the ancient castle of the Polish kings, Wawel and the Vistula embankment. The girls had the opportunity to stay in Krakow with friends and live with them for a while. The daughter is finally starting online education, which does not take much time, so she is actively looking for other things to do. The first thing that comes to her mind is to help Ukraine and its people in all possible ways in such an onerous period. She goes to the central station of the city of Krakow. It is full of people, already at that time there was a huge number of volunteer positions that were engaged in helping Ukrainians. There are many points with various help available, both at the station and outside it. You could see tents in which food, basic necessities, and clothes were distributed. There was even a section that was completely ready to help pets, there was a lot of food, toys, bowls and other things. The girl decides to help an organisation that is engaged in finding 38

free housing for Ukrainians who have just arrived in Poland. She goes there immediately after finishing her lessons and guides newly arrived people from Ukraine, and advises on where to get dwelling for a short period of time. Every day, she actively helps refugees and meets benevolent people. Words cannot convey how grateful the Ukrainian nation and all of the country are for all the help and support from Poland. Many rallies were held in the largest cities of the world; they were mesmerising and the hearts of all Ukrainians grew warmer from the goodness they received. Despite the disputes that have arisen between Poland and Ukraine for many years regarding the division of their territories, and even these two countries had war between each other, at the necessary moment Poland opened its arms to the neighbouring country and helped with everything it could. Two months later: The girl and her mother return to their homeland, however this time not to Kyiv, but to a small town in the Lviv region. The town is located at the pedestal of the Ukrainian Carpathians. The girl’s grandmother lives there. This region is very rich in natural and medicinal resources. People from all over Ukraine and Europe come here on vacations and have medical therapy. In winter, the Carpathians are a very popular mountain resort, people enjoy skiing and many other entertaining activities here. The girl’s summer vacation is already starting and she decides to teach foreign language lessons to young children. She studied English, German and French as a child, so she decided to help Ukrainian children who now need to learn these languages in other countries. Many people have moved to different parts of the world and are trying to continue their normal life there. But it is very difficult to be in the environment of a foreign country when there is no knowledge of languages. The teenage girl chooses to transfer 39

part of the money she earns from teaching, to support the Ukrainian army, which fights so heroically for its independence and freedom. Meanwhile, the war continues and is not over yet, so the two women decide to find a way out of such a difficult situation. It is not known what the future of education will be. Ukraine is turning into a ruin, a country without prospects in the coming years. After long discussions and a great deal of thought, the girls decide to apply for visas to Great Britain. The country has incredible culture, traditions and people. They always dreamed of getting there, but they never imagined that it could happen under such circumstances. The process of obtaining a visa turned out to be very difficult and long; the girls waited for four months for their permits to enter the territory of Great Britain. Finally, this day has come and they are already on their way to the incredibly kind people who were helping them. 18th October, in the United Kingdom: Mother and her daughter arrived to their host family. This is their first time in England. The small town in Essex in which they settled is very beautiful, the classic English architecture is charming and comforting. The girls are not yet familiar with many people, but everywhere there are people who are open to communication; they will be happy to help, suggest anything and give a big smile. They have just begun to get to know this new country and there is still so much more waiting for them; many adventures, unforgettable moments and meetings with interesting people. Absolutely anyone can get into such a situation, leave their home, not knowing when they will return to it. Some Ukrainians have nowhere to return at all. It is very difficult to realise that the destinies of millions of people depend on one person. Many may think that only heroes can find a way out of such a difficult period, but these two women turn out to be Ukrainians named Ruslana and her daughter Uliana. By Uliana Zinchenko 40


ART TRIP TO LONDON It was supposed to be a lovely, warm day when we met at Liverpool Street for a day walking across London to encourage map use and navigation. We were meant to see the sites, experience the streets and have time to reflect upon all of the great art we were booked to see. But as we waited for our dedicated mix of years 11, 12 and 13 students the wind blew, the rain fell and the sun was nowhere to be seen. Still, we soldiered on, travelling instead by tube to Tate Britain to experience ‘The Procession’ by Hew Locke and the permanent collection before, alas tubing again, to Tate Modern. The Lubaina Himid exhibition was fabulous, a commentary on colonialism and historical/contemporary black British representation. Braving the improving elements we marched (quite literally as we were now behind schedule, the race was on!) to the National Gallery for our third and final stop of the day. Kehinde Wiley stole the show with his portraits of people of colour, set in traditional Old Master backgrounds. 42

Without any true sense of purpose, the day had knitted together perfectly, full of contemporary explorations of race and culture in the context of British history and empire. This is what art does, it pulls on a thread and makes connections between exhibitions, helping form a meta narrative, a singularity. Day two gave us sunshine and a new-found optimism to tramp across London, from the Royal Academy, to the commercial Cork Street galleries, The Photographers’ Gallery and the Wellcome Collection. Francis Bacon was moody and dark, Cork Street was full of wonder and amusement (it is always such a mixed bag and it is not every day you get to see a giant David Hepher painting get carried across a busy London street) and The Photographers’ Gallery had the excellent annual Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize. A lovely and more leisurely paced walk across Bloomsbury saw us reach the final destination - the curious and always bizarre Wellcome Collection. It was definitely time to stop, have a drink and take stock of what had been a full two days. Plenty of contexts, notes and drawings for sketchbooks. With Covid receding we can hopefully get back to the regular trips to London and further afield as there is nothing that feeds the soul quite like a day of art. By Mr Lonsdale 43

In July 2022 I travelled to the Northern German city of Hamburg for two weeks to take part in the finals of the “IDO” or Internationale Deutscholympiade, a German language competition run by the Goethe Institut. The idea of the IDO competition is to bring together young learners of German from all over the world to immerse themselves in German culture whilst also finding out about each other’s cultures, taking part in German language activities, and exploring the sights of Hamburg. On arriving in Hamburg for the final in July, I didn’t quite know what to expect. We stayed in a large DJH (youth hostel) and were put into rooms of six. I shared my room with Nominzul from Mongolia, Matilde from Portugal, Mehrona from Tajikistan, and Laura and Isabela from Brazil. Our common language was German, but obviously none of us were native speakers so it was difficult at first but it didn’t take long before chatting in German felt quite natural. In the first week we had a variety of workshops as well as some “getting to know you” activities, including the Länderabend (literally “Evening of Countries”), where the two representatives from each country went on stage to tell the rest of the competitors about where they were from. Learning about all of the other countries was fascinating, with presentations involving singing, dancing, poetry, props and costumes. Dabei sein! Internationale Deutscholympiade Finals 44

Hamburg sits on the River Elbe and famously has more canals than Amsterdam, London and Venice combined, so wherever you go in Hamburg you feel connected to the river. We started the week at the launch of a sightseeing boat and enjoyed its maiden excursion around the port. We also had a number of outings to get to know each other better, all of which were really enjoyable - a street festival where we learned skateboarding, basketball and had a go at graffiti; a disco at the “Kultur Palast”; and best of all, an amazing concert by a local Hamburg band, Tonbandgerät (literally “cassette recorder”!). During the second week, we had the opportunity to visit one of the four main universities in Hamburg. Having an interest in science, I chose to visit HAW (Hochschule für angewandte Wissenschaften), a university specialising in applied sciences. We were shown different departments such as robotics, automotive engineering and aeronautical engineering, and given information about studying in Germany. Another highlight was visiting the Elbphilharmonie (known locally as the “Elphi”), a new concert hall on the banks of the Elbe. The lower half of the building is designed to look like one of the many red brick “Speicherhäuser”, or warehouses, that Hamburg is famous for. The upper half of the building is made of glass and at the top is shaped to look like waves. A space-age escalator takes visitors up to a viewing platform half-way up the Elphi, which offers impressive 360° views of the city and the river. 45

Overall I loved the entire two week experience and I believe I have made some friends for life - we still chat daily on an IDO chat group and have arranged to meet up when we are in each other’s countries. My German definitely improved and I was pleased to be bumped up from the A2 category to the B1 category. I enjoyed every aspect of living in Hamburg and am looking into studying in Germany at university. By Martha Machray My trip to visit the opening premiere of the tenth revival of Tosca at the Royal Opera House is an experience that I will never forget. The night started with our group heading to London and getting a bite to eat at a pizzeria, before taking a short walk to the Royal Opera House. You could feel the buzz of excitement in the air as people stood outside the Opera House, waiting for the doors to open. The feeling only grew as we made our way inside to find our seats. The white and gold patterns of the theatre were absolutely stunning and exuded an aura of culture and opulence that can only truly be understood in person. The same can also be said TOSCA 46

of the performance itself, as the cast members delivered a beautiful performance over the course of the show’s three acts, with the song Vissi d’arte being a true show stopper in my opinion. Tosca itself is a political thriller, set in Rome in June 1800 (during the Napoleonic wars and a time of great political unrest). The action takes place over less than twenty-four hours, making it an intense experience! The plot centres around three main characters: Rome’s diva, Floria Tosca, her lover Mario Cavaradossi (a painter and republican) and the corrupt Chief of Police, Baron Scarpia. Scarpia has long lusted after Tosca, and when he suspects Cavaradossi of assisting an escaped political prisoner, seizes the opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. He will manipulate Tosca into revealing the prisoner’s hiding place and Cavaradossi’s involvement, and have her for himself. When Cavaradossi is captured, Scarpia offers Tosca a horrific bargain – she must give herself to Scarpia, or her lover is killed. Overall, my trip to Tosca was an amazing experience, and I would highly recommend anyone interested in Italy or the opera in general, to go and watch it. By Patrick Hepper 47

The Music Tour is a highlight of the music calendar that allows our prominent musicians the opportunity to play multiple concerts to enthusiastic audiences abroad. On the 18th July, a whopping 63 students and nine teachers made their way through Gatwick’s South terminal, boarding their flight bound for Italy. This year, with international travel in full swing once more, the stunningly beautiful Lake Garda was chosen as the location for the tour, which features both captivating views of endless vineyards and breathtaking lake-side locations. Tuesday gave the tour-goers an opportunity to visit Sirmione, a historic lake-side town in the south of Lake Garda. A period of sightseeing was enjoyed and everyone had the opportunity to try their first authentic Italian lunch of the trip; this was excitingly followed by a spectacular 30-minute boat ride on the lake, and naturally, a refreshing dip! In the evening the musicians headed to Pastrengo, where their first Big Band concert was to take place. Upon arrival at the picturesque Piazza Carlo Alberto, they were greeted by the (nearly) Mayor, who was being sworn into service that very night! After a short ceremony, the Band kicked off in style with Let the Good Times Roll and the ensuing concert was a huge success. LAKEGARDA 48

After an early breakfast on Wednesday, the musicians travelled to Verona to perform a choral evensong in the Church of San Giorgio. The Chamber Choir sang with maturity, poise and incredible musicality which was very well received by a deeply moved audience. The musical programme featured a plethora of stunning music with a heavy focus on Vivaldi, which was also picked up by the Chamber Music group who performed Baroque masterpieces with style. Lunchtime was then spent discovering the beautiful city of Verona, featuring visits to Juliet’s balcony and the spectacular Verona Arena. The day ended satisfyingly with another concert in a quaint square outside of the Theatro DIM, which featured the Big Band, Chamber Choir, Girls’ Choir and Boys’ Barbershop. Particular highlights of the night included performances of student-written arrangements and Big Band classics such as New York New York and The Nearness of You. Of course, no tour would be complete without a trip to a waterpark, so Thursday was spent at Canevaworld Water Park in true Music Department fashion. The tour-goers then enjoyed a pizza dinner together before heading to Lazise. The final concert did not disappoint: set against the stunning backdrop of a lakeside sunset opposite a bustling piazza, the Big Band was treated to a huge audience of eager listeners and rapturous applause throughout. It was truly one of the most spectacular performances in BSBB history and will no doubt live on in the minds of students and teachers alike for many years to come. Once again, we were all reminded of the power music has to bring communities together and to spread happiness. By Sophia Assitzoglou 49


Both Simeon and I received the Jim Inglis Travel Bursary. This Bursary entitled the awardee, or awardees, to funding for an educational trip to benefit our studies of modern foreign languages. The fund was created in honour of the man Jim Inglis, an adventurer who sadly passed away on an expedition (probably). Initially, we visited the city of Bordeaux. On the taxi ride to our apartment we saw the diversity of the city, the varying cultures and styles of architecture that Bordeaux supports. We arrived at our apartment, and after checking in we surveyed our local area. We were situated on Victor Hugo street, an area rich in Muslim culture, a three-minute walk away from the river Garonne. On our first day we went to the Musée des Beaux-Arts. This museum focuses on the classical and romantic period of Art in France. It is separated into two separate buildings, one focusing on the classical and the other focusing on the romantic period of art. The day following, we visited the Musée d’Art Contemporain, housed in a disused, early 20th century factory. The art was mainly formed by local, up-and-coming artists. It focuses on expansive art, utilising the space provided in order to maximise the emphatic nature of the pieces. The different issues that French art tackles was very interesting. It highlights the difference in cultural and lived experience of the French populus compared to that of the English. Issues such as race are less prominent, while issues such Notre Vacances à Bordeaux et Paris 51

as immigration take the forefront more. We also visited the Darwinian Centre, a cultural centre, which seeks to show the lives of the inhabitants of Bordeaux, and how both imported and domestic culture have come together to weave their social fabric. Following our visit to Bordeaux we made our way up to Paris to partake in a five-day-long Philosophy course at the Sorbonne University in French entitled ‘Modernité et Postmodernité’. We were taught several themes of key philosophers of both the modernist and postmodernist movements. In regards to Modernity, we learnt of the secularisation of society, the increasingly strong idea of individualism and the development of technology (e.g. transportation) in society. Postmodernity was a large step away from Modernity and is characterised by the rejection of modernist convention and theory - our final lecture was based around Postmodernity in literature, talking of such authors as Virginia Woolf and William Faulkner using techniques like stream of consciousness. The lectures lasted from 9am to 12pm each day, after which we would get lunch at an authentic French boulangerie and then immerse ourselves in the rich culture and history of France through our touristic meandering. Such destinations included Le Louvre, Le Musée d’Orsay, La Tour Eiffel, Le Jardin du Luxembourg, Notre-Dame and Galeries Lafayette. Le Musée d’Orsay was exhibiting a particularly interesting, extensive series of paintings of the Impressionist 52