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Carol Concert 2018

Mrs E. Jackson, Subject Leader: Music, writes;

Monday 17th December saw our annual Christmas Concert at St. Francis Church. The concert was jam packed with Christmas cheer, from the opening solo of Once in Royal David City sung by Annabel Dunstan 10A, to the closing carol of Hark The Herald Angels Sing, with descant sung at full volume. In between, we heard from our new Year 9 GCSE students performing together in their first concert, some great ensemble playing from our flute group and string groups, and a Christmas Bonanza from the Concert Orchestra. Our large choir entertained the audience with a special version of the Twelve Days of Christmas, as well as with Three Kings by Cornellius, with Solos by Karl Puranik 13B and Jay Puranik 11S. The highlight of the concert for me, however, was the fabulous performance by our Senior Choir of the very demanding Hodie Christus Natus Est by Sweelink; the choir coped with the tricky polyphony of this piece admirably and made me one very proud teacher. Our evening finished with a blessing from the Revd Jenny Fennell, followed by mince pies and drinks supplied by students and FOSS. The concert raised over £200 for our charities of the year.

Thank you to Mr Craig, Mr Maudrell, Mr Yeun and Mr Collinson for their support and for also performing in the concert.

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Christmas Market 2018

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

Thursday 13th December not only saw our annual Christmas Jumper day and also our Christmas Lunch but it was also the day of our annual Christmas Market extravaganza.

This, as ever, was organised  and run by the students with very minimal input from staff. As usual they came up trumps with stalls ranging from cakes, hot chocolate, brownies and biscuits to henna tattoos, bracelets and a present stacking competition. Students also had the chance to decorate their face with glitter decorations, this proved very popular.

With the backdrop of Christmas music (with requests costing 50p!) a good time was had by all!

Along with non-uniform day, we raised a total of £1109.15 on the day which brings our total this year up to £5539.31 for our two chosen charities of The Ollie Foundation and the Welwyn Garden City Centenary Foundation. This is a great start to our year’s fundraising and I look forward to keeping you up to date with events as they happen in 2019!

Thank you to everyone – staff, parents and students, who have supported our fundraising efforts during 2018.


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Run for Stanborough 2018

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

The sun shone, over a thousand students and staff walked around the lakes dressed in a variety of guises and the afternoon ended with four poor souls being covered in gunge. It could only be ‘Run for Stanborough’ day again!

After the hiatus of last year being disrupted by the rain, all eyes were on the weather forecast. Luckily, the gods were smiling upon us and after a foggy start to the day, the clouds broke and the sun shone!
The event started with House Cross Country (I’ll leave it to the PE Department to give you the results). The runners were soon followed by the walkers. Many students took the opportunity for some fancy dress fun with ‘onesies’ being brought out along with a dinosaur outfit, army camouflage and a giant snake or was it a dragon? from Miss Hawker’s tutor group. Staff also got into the mood with the Maths department taking the lead, closely followed by Science who curiously all dressed up as Mr Christodoulou! The Senior Leadership Team did some reverse fancy dress by donning school uniform. As many students pointed out however (it was good that they noticed) there were a number of technical infringements, luckily Mrs Vlijter had a medical pass to excuse her trainers!

Upon their return, the walkers and runners were greeted with the usual array of stalls and sideshows; well done to all the students who took a lead in organising these activities. The cake selection was fantastic and it was good to see that the Year 11 trial of Pot Noodles was a storming success (raising over £100 alone!).

And so onto the climax of the day – the gunging spectacular. Our very own master of ceremonies, Mr Mason, took to the megaphone as usual to whip the assembled masses into a wild frenzy. The first two victims (sorry, volunteers!) were Miss Hawker and Mr Bishop who both took their drenching with usual grace and dignity. Then came a surprise to all, Mr Mason himself, not content with organising the gunging, became its third victim (sorry volunteer). If this wasn’t enough however the crowd went wild as the fourth member of staff came out. It was our very own new Headteacher, Mrs John! After a rapturous countdown from the crowd she too was covered by a strange coloured concoction of gloop. Thank you to all four staff for their bravery and willingness to join in, it was undoubtedly the highlight of the day.

We must remember what the event is all about. We are raising money for two charities this year, the Ollie Foundation and the Welwyn Garden City Centenary Foundation. I’ll update you in future issues about how much we have raised, but can I please ask that any sponsor money raised is either brought into school and taken to the Bursars office or is paid directly into the Justgiving page which can be found at

Thanks to all the students and staff who took part in the event, and thank you to all those parents who have contributed thus far. All in all, a fantastic start to our year of fundraising!

See our Gallery for more photos of the day.

Ollie Foundation

Charity Fundraising 2018-19

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes: 

The start of a new school year means that the annual round of fundraising for all of us at Stanborough starts again…

We have an amazing history at Stanborough at supporting a range of charities and in the past 10 years we have raised over £100,000 for charities including The British Red Cross, Guide Dogs for the Blind, Herts Young Homeless, Rays of Sunshine and Build Africa.

This year, we are supporting two local charities. The first is the Ollie Foundation based in St Albans. The Ollie Foundation (One Life Lost is Enough) is a charity funding suicide prevention skills for a range of partners.

Our second charity is the Welwyn Garden City Centenary Foundation who are planning a range of events, activities and celebrations to mark the 100 years of Welwyn Garden City.

As ever, we look forward to working closely with both of these local charities. This week, all the students have had a talk in assemblies from Verity Bramwell from the Ollie Foundation. We look forward to hearing from the Foundation at some point over the year.

Students will also receive today a sponsor form for first event of the year, our annual ’Run for Stanborough’ extravaganza which is on Thursday October 4th. More details to follow, watch this space!

Ollie Foundation WGC Centenary Foundation


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School Charity Round-up 2018 for Young Minds

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YM Cheque 2018w

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

Another busy year raising money and another great fundraising effort from all the students involved. This year we were raising money for Young Minds, a charity who run a variety of programmes and schemes to support a number of mental health issues in young people.

We started the year with a Smoothies Stall that raised £94. This was soon followed by our annual ‘Run for Stanborough’ event. Unfortunately, this year the weather got the better of us and we were unable to do the sponsored walk. However, in true Stanborough Spirit, the show continued on in the hall and the stalls raised over £500. With kind donations (even without the walk taking place!) we still raised just under £4000 in total.

Christmas brought the delights of our annual ‘Christmas jumper day’ and we also had a Christmas fair which was very well received and raised together just under £1000. The premiere of the staff Christmas video raised just over £100 and the fantastic Carol Concert organised by the Music department added another £200.

After the Easter non-uniform day, we have had a number of smaller events such as the Year 9 ‘Mad Head’ day and the Year 7 school disco.

I haven’t even mentioned the odd sock day, Funky ties day and the Year 11 cake sale! The list goes on and on.

So, along with the money raised from the recent Festival on the Field, we have raised £7263.35 a fantastic amount. Well done to all those concerned. Julia Garden from Young Minds came to collect the cheque on behalf of the charity on Friday 20th July.

Next year, we are going more local again and we are going to support two local charities – the Welwyn Garden City Centenary Foundation and the OLLIE Foundation. I will write to you in September with more details.

Finally, a big thanks not only to the students for all their hard work, but also to parents for their support in terms of cash, baking cakes and any other help you have provided to help us raise so much money.

Sports Logo

Staff vs Student Charity Match

CSLA Group: Carlo Fucchi, Liam Cripps, Dylan Price, Becci Harrison, Erica Bridgewater, Emma Horsley, Louise Stokes, write:

On Thursday 24th May, the CSLA group organised a charity Staff vs Students football match to raise money for Breast Cancer Care. There were 14 teachers taking part and 11 Year 12s in the team. In true professional style, all players entered the pitch to the music of the Champions League Final. The crowds were cheering and the fans were screaming. There was also an amazing pick ‘n mix stall, an inflatable dinosaur mascot (thanks to Miss Smith), a great DJ and commentator.

After the captains had exchanged competitive looks, the match started tentatively with both teams trying to get the edge over the other. After a number of forceful exchanges and tackles, including Nathan Curtis sending Mr Marston flying, and some fine defensive headers from Matthew Harrington, the first half ended 0-0.

A brutal team talk at half time meant that both teams came out fighting. The second half started with the young prodigy, Captain Carlo Fucchi, pulling out a drag-back nutmeg on Mr Benzid as the fans went wild. The students won a free kick on the half-way line and Fucchi crossed into the box for a superb headed finish by the lethal striker Liam Cripps. Deadlock was broken.

Eventually, after a long ball from Miss Bowen into the box, a shot was blocked but a controversial handball was given. PENALTY FOR THE STAFF! Mr Marston, turned penalty superstar, scored the equaliser with perfection and panache.

The staff were tiring and the students were pushing for the vital goal, however they could not find it. The game ended 1-1, which called for penalties to be the decider in a best of three format. Mr Maidment stepped up for the first staff penalty and clicked his way to victory. Dylan Price, known as the penalty king, scored the students’ first penalty. Mr Benzid was called upon for the next penalty but was denied when his lacklustre penalty was denied by the flying Scotsman, Matthew McNamara. Ethan Greenaway for the students stepped up and finished with aplomb.

After finishing the sensational penalty to level the scores in the match, it was only right that the teachers’ hero, Mr Marston, was next to take their vital penalty. If he scored, they would level the scores. If he missed, the students would reign supreme. In an attempt to recreate the success he found during the game, he ran up and fired, only to be denied by the heroic keeper McNamara, securing victory for the students.

Celebrations continued into the changing rooms as the students prevailed victors on this historic day in which over £150 was raised for a good cause.

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Lighthouse Relief House Charity Event

Mr C. Minion, House System Leader, writes: 

What is Lighthouse Relief?

Lighthouse Relief was founded in 2015, at a time when thousands of refugees were arriving on the Greek island of Lesvos every day. These refugees were forced to leave their home countries because of war and devastating conflict.

Three years later, the team of skilled volunteers continue to provide immediate humanitarian relief for those landing on the north shore of the island, as well as longer-term programming for young people and children in Ritsona refugee camp in mainland Greece.

The team first met in September 2015 as a small group of independent volunteers in a tiny fishing village on the North Eastern shore of Lesvos, where thousands of refugees were arriving every day in rubber dinghies.

They quickly became one of the first organisations to offer coordination and structured emergency response to the area, and to support the most vulnerable cases, particularly helping women and children.

What can we do to help?

We can help by offering supplies for things that the refugees have left behind and really need.

  • Empty suitcases
  • Any Clothing mainly summer clothing (no underwear) but anything else in good wearable condition
  • Colouring books and pens
  • Card games for kids
  • Year 11 boys’ trainers and shorts are particularly needed 

House Competition

Lighthouse Relief House Charity Event 2018wAny student or tutor group who donates anything towards this fantastic and vital charity will receive 10 reward points per item.

If a tutor group organises a collection together points will be doubled.

All donations to be brought down to Mr Minion in the sports hall where I will arrange the items being taken over to the refugee camp in Ritsona. Many thanks for any support you can give.


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Fundraising Update

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

Thursday 14th December saw Christmas come to Stanborough with a vengeance! Not only was it our non -uniform/Christmas jumper day (which raised just under £800), but also it saw the inaugural ‘Stanborough Christmas Market’ in the hall for staff and students to enjoy after their Christmas Dinner. Stalls included candy cane delivery for those lucky recipients on the last day of term, hot chocolate, seasonal tattoos (temporary I think), cakes galore and seasonal fancy dress items from the very popular Nest stall and also the ever popular chocolate tombola. All great fun and expertly organised by Macy and her festive helpers in Year 13 and Mrs Venneear and her band of merry Nest elves. The total raised from the event was just under £200.

The festive merriment didn’t end there however, and on Friday 15th we were invited to the premiere of the annual Staff Christmas Video directed by James Atkins and Lily O’Keeffe. You may have seen the new Star Wars film premier earlier in the week causing a bit of a stir, but those film bugs amongst you will know where the true creative genius lies, right here at Stanborough! A select crowd of staff and students, each paying 50p for the privilege, witnessed a cinematic masterpiece with the beautifully shot romantic tale based at Stanborough. For those interested, you can see this at The event raised just over £100 for our charity of the year, Young Minds.

To donate to Young Minds, head to this link: Any donation is greatly appreciated!

On Monday 18th we also had the superb annual Stanborough Carol Concert which also raised £200.46.

So, as we end the year, our grand total currently stands at £5279.58, a magnificent effort and it means we are well on target of reaching our £10,000 grand total for the year. Well done to all those involved in any way this year with the fundraising effort.



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Run for Stanborough 2017 – It didn’t quite happen as planned!

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

Well, the weather finally beat us! After 14 years of praying and dodging the rain, the unpredictable (and often stormy) October weather finally got the better of us and forced us to cancel the annual Run for Stanborough event. I know the PE department are planning to run the House cross country at another time but I’m afraid it will not be possible to complete the sponsored walk at a later time due to the disruption already caused and also the loss of curricular time it will incur. We are however looking to organise new events later this year so students will have plenty of opportunities to get involved and raise money for Young Minds, our charity of the year.

The afternoon was not a total washout though! We still found a way for students to run their stalls and all students in the school had a chance to visit these during the afternoon. From target practice to sumo-wrestling, from a chocolate raffle to Starbucks coffee, the variety was fantastic as ever. The stalls themselves raised £528.41 and along with the non-uniform money of £868.56, we still raised £1396.97 on the day. As I write this, our Just Giving page is showing £680 raised in sponsorship money. I know we didn’t do the run/walk, but the stalls went ahead and Years 7-9 had the chance to see Mrs Venneear, Miss Hawker and Miss Bowen be gunged, so that alone should be enough incentive for students to bring in their sponsorship money. You can pay this directly into the Just Giving page at or it can be brought into school and taken to the finance office (with the child’s name and tutor group on the envelope please).

As ever, I’ll keep you up to date with the amount raised. Thank you to everyone in advance for their fundraising efforts.


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Stanborough School Charity 2017-18

Young Minds 1 Charity 2017 18

Mr T. Braybrook, Deputy Headteacher, writes:

I wrote in Stanborough Times at the end of last academic year and at the start of this new school year to update you on a successful year of fundraising. I was pleased to receive an email from Alison Wildley at Herts Young Homeless a few days ago, she said:

Thank you Stanborough School for your outstanding support last year! You raised an incredible amount of money for HYH which will go towards supporting vulnerable young people in the local community.

We were all really impressed with the enthusiasm you brought to your fundraising and the variety of events you put on and I particularly enjoyed having the opportunity to come into school to meet some of you and see it all in action.”

A new school year means a new school charity and I am pleased to tell you that this will be an organisation called Young Minds.

Young minds is the UK’s leading charity connected to improving the wellbeing and mental health of children and young people. Young Minds works across the UK and their goal is to create change so that children and young people can cope with life’s adversities, find help when needed and succeed in life.

Young Minds run a range of initiatives such as a parent line for information regarding mental health issues, speaking at schools and colleges to young people about mental health issues and an ambassador programme where young people are trained to help others with problems. Finally, they work alongside a number of other organisations to help promote and lead change in improving the mental wellbeing of young people across the country.

We were very pleased to welcome Julia Garden from the charity on Monday 18th September. Over the course of the day she spoke to all the students in the school about what the charity does and what they want to achieve. This also acted as the launch of this year’s Run for Stanborough which will take place on Wednesday 18th October, look out in future editions of Stanborough Times for further information.