A significant donation – US scholarships at Gresham’s

Earlier in the year the Gresham’s Foundation received a remarkable donation from a most generous Old Greshamian (OG). £1 million was donated to endow a scholarship programme that will give US pupils the chance to come and study at Gresham’s.

The donation will ensure the scholarship programme will be in place in perpetuity. It will restart the influential English-Speaking Union programme (ESU) at Gresham’s – a programme that a great number of OGs were a part of when they came to the School from the US between 1960 and 1998. The donor wishes to remain anonymous.

Douglas Robb, the Headmaster, said: “We are thrilled to be in receipt of such a generous donation, and most grateful to the OG for having revived and endowed a scholarship programme that was in place at Gresham’s for many years and which had a lasting impact on the School community. Their support will ensure there will always be a US scholar at the School, giving them the chance to expand their horizons and benefit from a Gresham’s education before they embark on the next stages of their educational and professional journey. The scholars will enrich our community, and the programme will also enable us to strengthen our ties with leading US institutions. We look forward to welcoming our first scholar next year.”

The programme will see one student per year from one of the ESU’s US partner schools come to Gresham’s upon completion of their studies at high school. Each scholar will stay at Gresham’s for one academic year, with the first scholar joining the School in September 2023.

Separate to the endowed scholarship, there will also be an opportunity every year for current Gresham’s pupils to apply to study at a US high school for a year. Although the ESU offers a smaller number of fully funded scholarships for UK students to go to the US, the School’s hope is that a number of pupils over the coming years will be successful in applying for a scholarship and thereby get to experience the final year of high school in a prestigious US institution.

OG Cricket – The Ramblers vs Norfolk Invitational XI

The Ramblers won the toss and elected to Bat with ‘Matthew Bromham’ & ‘Tom Beckett’ facing up to the first over of this fixture bowled by ‘Robert Wilson’ from the Invitationals. The two openers had a job to do and saw off the new ball with fantastic grace in an opening stand of 40. ‘James Buxton’ was in at 3 for the Ramblers and top-scored with great elegance and panache. The Ramblers were teetering at 85-6 when ‘Tom Lomax’ was dismissed by a stunning one handed ‘Fred Combe’ catch, the spectators and opposition brought to their feet, erupting in amazement and applause. Some last-minute maximums from ‘O.J Flux’ though knocked the wind out of the invitationals, but former Uppinghamian, ‘Cameron Mcfadyen’ had other ideas, striking regularly, finishing with figures of 5-14 from his two overs. The Ramblers bowled out for a respectable score of 127.

A fantastic lunch, watered down with plenty of Rosé nearly saw the Ramblers to a famous victory. ‘O.J Flux’ thunderbolts restricted the invitationals to 124-9 with 4 to win. Man of the match Mcfadyen finishing things off for the Invitationals to secure a famous win. A seriously fun day made possible by Gresham’s and the OG club – one hopes this can be made an annual fixture.

Edmund Parker (T 2013 -15)

OG Christopher Tracey spoke to pupils about his passion for hang gliding

OG Christopher Tracey who is Aerospace Engineer, engineering Project Lead for Collins Aerospace returned to school to talk about his passion for free flight. During the week he works on interior monuments for Airbus A350’s, but at the weekend he flies hang gliders, enjoying real aviation!

He and interested pupils gathered outside Chapel with a glider set up so that he could talk about the basics behind flying hang gliders, how they are constructed and the distances that can be covered. This was followed by a discussion in the CLT about some of the physics behind flying gliders.

Christo is happy to talk to pupils more specifically about aeronautical engineering careers.

The Gresham’s Foundation ran a successful telephone campaign

Over the Easter break, the School and Gresham’s Foundation ran its first telephone campaign in almost eight years. Nine recent leavers rang up former Old Greshamians to speak about Gresham’s, hear about their time here and since leaving, as well as provide an update on the School’s plans and charitable objectives. It had a fantastic response: more than 300 Old Greshamians afforded their time, and many individuals very kindly decided to give back to the School by offering both careers and financial support.

An important part of the campaign was to promote the impact that donations to the Gresham’s Foundation have on the School and current pupils. £50,000 was raised over the two week campaign, the majority of which is in support of the Bursary Fund and newly established Bruce-Lockhart (endowment) Fund, which will support means tested provision at Gresham’s in perpetuity. And this fantastic show of support from so many OGs has been matched by a generous donor, 1:1, meaning £100,000 has been pledged in total.

The School and Foundation are extremely grateful to all OGs who took part in the campaign and to those who very generously donated towards the School’s widening access and development aims.

One hundred years since lecture from pioneering ornithologist and bird photographer

On 27th February 1922 Miss E.L. Turner gave a lecture on ‘Birds of the County’ featuring lantern slides taken by herself of birds of Breckland, the Broads and the coast. No doubt Emma included the iconic image she took of a nesting bittern in 1911 which was the first evidence of its return to the UK, and of other rarities in decline thanks to the fashion for ladies’ hats adorned with their feathers.  Emma had become a member of the Royal Photographic Society as early as 1901 and soon began exhibiting regularly and attracting public attention for her photographs of birds in their natural surroundings. She developed a career giving illustrated lectures, writing 8 books and numerous articles, becoming one of the leading natural history writers of her day.

From 1905 Emma lived on a houseboat, The Water-Rail, on Hickling Broad in order to photograph birds, a venture which resulted in the publication of her ‘Broadland Birds’ in 1924.  Later she became warden or ‘watcher’ on the isolated Scolt Head for the Norfolk Wild Birds Protection Committee, her tenure leading to a huge increase in numbers of nesting colonies. In the largely male world of bird photography, Emma Turner was one of the first women to be elected Fellow of the Linnean Society and was the first female honorary member of the British Ornithologists’Union. In an article on ‘Bird Photography for Women’ in 1915 she claimed that “Patience and a thick skin are the two essential qualifications for successful bird photography” and would spend many hours in cold and wet conditions in pursuit of her prey.

The report on Miss Turner’s lecture at school questioned whether it was possible to prevent more bird species from being lost and expressed support for the bird protection movement.  Bird watching, and even collecting birds’ eggs, was a popular hobby at school, much encouraged by Headmaster George Howson and his successor James Eccles, and the recently established Natural History Society was one of the largest hobbies groups. Emma Turner was just one of many distinguished lecturers who visited in the early C20th, including the enigmatic Captain Knight with his golden eagle Mr Ramshaw who was welcomed back on several occasions. The lecture programme was part of a raft of cultural provision in the school at this time including Shakespeare plays, concerts, and societies such as debating, which gave pupils an important eye into the wider world and its current affairs.

Pupils are benefitting from this term’s OG Career Bite talks

Through the Lent Term there will be weekly talks open to all year groups from OGs working in a variety of sectors, giving the pupils to engage and hear about former pupils’ education journeys, their job roles, the opportunities of future work and contacts for work experience.

The talks will be from OGs working in Business, Law, Environment, Photography, Civil Service, Architecture, Infrastructure Engineering and Marketing/Branding.

The first talk was with OG James Rodgers (F 1993 – 98) who talked to pupils about his background and role with Page Executive; what other OGs in his year are doing; the difference sectors and career paths in Business; the recruitment process, trends and policies and the importance of work experience.

Careers events

Year 13 & Parents Applying for Uni Finance presentation – 5th March

Business Breakfast for all Sixth Formers – 10th March

Year 12 Pupils & Parents Post Sixth Form Information Evening – 12th April

Year 12 Pupils & Parents Conference with visiting speakers – 10th June

Year 12 visit to UCAS Fair (Universities & Degree Apprenticeships) – 16th June

Work Experience

The Careers Department and the OG Club are working together to collate a directory of OGs offering work experience to current pupils. Further information to follow.

INVESTIn – InvestIN empowers pupils with the knowledge and experience they need to make the right choices about their future careers. They offer pupils aged 12-18 the opportunity to learn from top industry professionals through hands-on activities, interactive demonstrations, networking opportunities, site visits, career coaching sessions and much more.

Visit their website to register. To receive 10% discount insert the Gresham’s Partner code – GRESHAMS10

Please contact Mrs Osborne, Head of Careers for further information [email protected]

OG Victoria Vanhoutte spoke to pupils about her career in Biological Sciences

Victoria Vanhoutte (E 1995 – 98) hosted an online talk to pupils about her career from undergraduate, post grad, working in research and industry during the last twenty years.

She spoke about the many careers open to those who study Biological Sciences and advised pupils to study what interested them rather than possibly what they felt they should do to move forward in their careers, hers has been varied.

Her particular interest is cell therapy and she was extremely informative about this field (using cells from another human being to treat another) and the progress that has been made in science in general (sequencing of the human genome, genetic editing using CRISPR-Cas9 technology, development of human induced pluripotent stem cells were among her chosen examples).

This was a fantastic opportunity for pupils to ask questions about where science could take us!

Special Service marking the Centenary of Gresham’s Very Own ‘Saint’

A special service was held in Chapel to celebrate the life of OG John Bradburne (F 1934 – 39) who was born one hundred years ago on the 14th June. The service was attended by Bradburne’s niece Teresa and the boys from Tallis and Woodlands.

John Bradburne was known to many as ‘God’s vagabond’. He not only looked like Jesus – with his long hair and beard – but he also acted like him too giving his life for others.

John became Warden of Mutemwa Leper Colony in what was then Rhodesia in 1969. He found the colony in a terrible state. It was home to eighty cruelly maimed people who had been rejected by their families and communities. Even within the colony they were treated poorly – forced to bags over their heads when an able-bodied visitor arrived. Bradburne quickly changed all of this however. Where others had rejected them Bradbourne embraced them with dignity, respect and love. He lived, prayed, ate and drank with them. He educated them, cared for them medically, and even built them a small church.

Sadly in 1979 however, Bradburne was caught up in the country’s Civil War. Guerrilla fighters mistook him for an informer. His friends told him to flee but Bradburne refused to abandon those he cared for. After being subjected to torture, and a rigged trial, Bradburne was eventually killed.

Bradburne is now remembered for his kindness and bravery all over the world. There is currently a campaign to see him beatified in the Roman Catholic Church.

Bradburne was also a wonderful poet. Our very own Headmaster recorded a reading of one of his poems to mark the centenary alongside many other notable individuals such as: Sir James McMillian; Archbishop Rowan Williams; Cardinal Vincent Nichols; Gyles Brandreth; Richard E Grant and many more. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcGjYYMDHb4vQStf63_PKDg

(Photo © John Bradburne Memorial Society)

Pupils and OG represent the GBU19 Rifle Team

Many congratulations to current pupils, Toby, Tristan and Alex, and OG Ben who have had a brilliant time representing the Great Britain Under 19 Rifle Team on their tour of Scotland. Toby had incredible success, winning the Grand Aggregate and the NRA Silver Medal. On the final day of competition, all competitors had to shoot 2 sighters and 15 shots to count at 900yds, followed by 2 sighters and 15 shots to count at 1000yds. At 900yds, Toby shot at 75 / 75, to maintain his 3 point advantage and then he shot a 74 / 75 at 1000yds to win the Grand Aggregate by at least 2 clear points. Out of a total of 525 points in the Grand Aggregate, over the course of the weekend, Toby dropped just two points. He achieved the highest under 25 score and came 3rd in the Scottish Championship.

Overall, Toby, Tristan, Alex and Ben came a very respectable third place, with the GBU19 team, behind the English and Scottish Senior Teams.


OGs have been inspiring pupils with their careers talks

In what has been a year of online events and Teams talks, there has been a real positive for our Careers department in building up superb working relations with the OG Development Team and embracing the OG network. This is a superb resource for offering advice, information, talks, work experience, mentoring, and future work. It is fantastic to build up great working relationships with OGs to inspire and help our current pupils with their future.

This summer term, OGs have been fantastic and have given their time in support and advice to current pupils on their pathways and how to enter their industry sector:

Veterinary – OG Dr. James Carmalt graduated from the University of Cambridge in 1998 and then completed an internship in large animal medicine at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) -.https://wcvm.usask.ca/departments/lacs/lacs-people/james-carmalt

Music – OG Pete Blyth https://peteblyth.com and OG James Farnell http://www.fretlessaudio.com/

Media – OG Pascal Dalton, SVP Licensing, ITV Studios Global Entertainment – organised talks with colleagues who manage the ITV social media channels.

Gap Year travel – OG Isy Erixon gave a fascinating insight into her gap year travels which she did after graduating from her History of Art Degree.

Studying at University in South Africa – OG Ben Dugdale talked about his journey to studying at University in Cape Town.

AAT Accountancy Apprenticeship – OG Jack Small talked about his higher level apprenticeship with Accountants, Larking Gowen.

Architecture work experience – OG Robert Dale linked Careers with Purcell UK https://www.purcelluk.com/ the architects working with the Gresham’s Pre-Prep School. A number of current Year 12 pupils interested in architecture will be doing work experience with Purcell during the summer.

In the next academic year, the Careers department will be working with our STEAM coordinator, Robert Hazelwood, to organise careers events and speakers to embrace future roles in Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Maths

For further Careers information or guidance, please contact Careers Coordinator, Sue Osborne at [email protected]