Latest school news...
Thursday 16th June 2016
Last Saturday 11th June we hosted our first school reunion ball with the class of 2006 returning af...Read full news story...
Wednesday 25th February 2015
Simon Clarke visited Yarm School to speak to pupils about his political career and standing for Mid...Read full news story...
Former Pupils' Page
Welcome to the Yarm School Former Pupils' Society web page.
The Society would love to re-establish links with Former Pupils, starting with a newsletter dedicated to FPs in the New Year, with a view to organising events and networking opportunities.
Over the years many Former Pupils have moved and changed email address therefore we would like to update our database by asking if you could take a few minutes to complete the registration form.
If you wish to join the Former Pupils' Society Facebook page or the LinkedIn group click the link.
Latest news from the Yarm School Former Pupils' Society
Back to School
It is always a pleasure and a privilege to welcome back former pupils and over the past few weeks we have had a flurry of visitors returning to the school. Last week members of the Politics Society and an assembled crowd of pupils and staff delighted in the company of Andrew Clarke and Danny-Coleman Clarke who came in to discuss their careers and offer advice to our current students. Andrew Clarke (pictured on the left) has recently secured a position working for the Cabinet Office. His class mate Danny (pictured right), who has featured on our ‘Spotlight on a former pupil page’ now operates as a ‘writer for hire’, with a vast array of commissions behind him; scripting the Olivier Awards for theatre, including writing speeches for Kevin Spacey, Lenny Henry and Judi Dench and speeches for various corporate CEOs and current politicians.
Earlier in the week we received an impromptu visit from former pupil Dr Vijay Shyam-Sundar who was spending some time locally with his family and keen to take a look at the new redevelopment on our school site. Vijay has just started his first year as a junior doctor at a hospital in Oxford having finished his studies in Cambridge. Vijay was delighted to catch up with his old teachers and was impressed with the new facilities, in particular the new Music School as he is also a keen and talented violinist. It was an added bonus for Vijay to also discover his peer Adam Bridges who we were delighted to welcome on to our teaching staff at the start of this school year. Adam works in our Modern Languages Department and has joined a growing number of former pupils who have returned to school to teach.
Vijay is the second doctor to have returned to school this month. We were grateful to Dr Mobolaji Ajekigbe (known to all as Bola) who came back to talk to our current Sixth Form students about a career in medicine. Leaving in 2009, Bola is currently working as an FY1 doctor at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle. He studied medicine at Imperial College London for 6 years, including a 1 year BSc in Management at Imperial College Business School.
Whilst all of our former pupils were excited to see the physical changes on the school campus, it was reassuring to hear that the warm atmosphere that they had remembered so fondly from their school days remained the same.
If you are a former pupil and would like to visit the school please contact us at email@example.com to arrange an appointment. If you find yourself passing, impromptu visits are also most welcome, but if we know you are coming we can try to ensure that you can meet any staff members that you would like to see. Please do also get in touch if you would like to offer to talk to our current students about your chosen career. Support and contacts of this nature are invaluable to them as they make decisions about their future.
Former pupil Isobel Irwin is chosen to take part in London design exhibition for new talent
Congratulations to former pupil Isobel Irwin who recently secured a first class degree from Kingston University where she has been studying Illustration and Animation in their design department. Previously, she had been awarded a distinction in her foundation course at Leeds College of Art. Her creative skills were originally nurtured here at Yarm and we are delighted to see her continue to blossom in this area.
Isobel has already begun the exciting journey of pursuing a creative career in design, completing a hotly sort after work experience at London’s V&A museum. More recently she has been one of only a few chosen to represent Kingston University at the prestigious D&AD new blood exhibition currently showing in Shoreditch in London. D&AD is a design organisation which prides itself in identifying, nurturing and showcasing exciting young talent. Id
Congratulations on these achievements Isobel – we are very proud of you. We look forward to tracking your progress over the next few years.
Former pupil Justin Ramsden featured in recent Channel 4 programme – 'The Secret World of Lego’
We were delighted to see former pupil Justin Ramsden (Oswald House) featuring in the recent Channel 4 documentary ‘The Secret World of Lego’ which goes behind the doors of Lego’s headquarters in Denmark. Justin, shown left putting the finishing touches to Lego models that he made of Prince William and Kate Middleton, now works as a designer of Lego models.
Justin, who excelled at Design and Technology whilst he was at Yarm School, went on to graduate with a BA honours in Design from London’s Goldsmith’s College renowned as one of the world's most prestigious institutions for producing creative talent.
If you missed the documentary it is still currently available on the Channel 4 ‘On demand’.
Congratulations to former pupil Ben Gibson on his U21 England team selection
We were delighted to hear that Ben Gibson will be part of the 23 man squad, confirmed by England Manager Gareth Southgate, for this month's Football U21 European Championships in the Czech Republic. The first match is on Thursday 18th June against Portugal and we look forward to following their progress!
Running for Grandad
Former pupil Hannah Crosbie (Aidan House 2003-13) is planning to run the Great North Run, her first-ever half-marathon, – in memory of her grandfather.
Now a business student at the University of York, she hopes to complete the course in under two hours while raising cash for the charity Marie Curie.
“Though I go to the gym and swim regularly, I’m certainly not an accomplished runner so this is going to be a huge challenge for me,” said Hannah.
“Taking part in this charity run has been at the top of my wish list for a little while and it seemed fitting to sign up so that I could help support Marie Curie. It’s going to be a hard slog but I’m really looking forward to it.”
Her grandfather Ronnie Sigsworth died at the beginning of this year after a tough battle with cancer. He was cared for by Marie Curie nurses in the final weeks of his life.
“My grandfather’s dying wish during this difficult time was to spend his final weeks at home, surrounded by family and this wouldn’t have been possible without the support of Marie Curie and the fantastic team of nurses who helped make this happen and enabled us to spend invaluable time with him,” said Hannah.
“The Great North Run provides me with the opportunity to say thank you to the charity and help raise more funds to support its work so that it can continue to support other families in the area.”
To sponsor Hannah visit justgiving.com/HannahCrosbie-in-memory-of-Grandad-Ronny/
Congratulations to former pupil Kat Copeland on her recent rowing success in the European Championships.
Congratulations to former pupil Kat Copeland and her partner Charlotte Taylor who won gold medals in the lightweight double sculls at the European championships recently. We look forward to watching Kat’s progress as she prepares for the Olympics in Rio next year.
Former pupil re-opens café after 15 years
Former pupil Ginny Skilbeck, (Cuthbert House 2001-05), has been leafing through her Grandmother’s recipe book to find her family’s secret scone recipe so that she can bake them to sell at her newly resurrected tearoom business at their remote farm near Thirsk.
Her Grandparents had run a bed and breakfast and tearoom from High Paradise Farm in Bolton, where Ginny was born and raised, for 6 years, but it had not been running since they retired. Ginny was inspired to re-open the café last summer whilst she was at home and it has since gone from strength to strength. We were delighted to hear of Ginny’s new venture and wish her continue success with the project.
If you would like to visit, High Paradise Farm Tea Room is open six days a week, closed on Wednesdays, from 9am until 5pm, and can seat around 40 inside, with outdoor seating also available.
Yarm celebrates musicians past and present!
The music in this year's Leavers' Service was conducted by Connor Robinson, accompanied by Chris Baczkowski on the organ – a final contribution from two students who have given so much to the Music Department at the school over the years. At the same time, we have recently learned of the musical successes of two former pupils who have continued with their passion for music as they embarked on their next chapter at university. Congratulations go to former pupils and star musicians Matt Bonavia and Victor Sampson. In addition to their academic studies at Nottingham University, Matt has been elected Musical Director for the University's very own professional big band (Moonlighters Big Band), whilst Victor was successful in his audition to become Nottingham University Choir's Assistant Conductor. This is an impressive achievement for students in the first year of their university careers.
Director of Music, Mrs Katie Staggs, who has also been invited to become a national choral conducting trainer hopes that, in years to come, many more Yarm students will be inspired to take the baton and lead ensembles both in and out of school. Katie adds “with the opening of the new Music School, we hope to be able to offer courses and workshops for people of all ages interested in directing ensembles. We would like to act as a "conducting hub" for the Teesside area.” If any parents or friends are interested in conducting or indeed singing or playing in an ensemble, please do not hesitate to get in touch! (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Congratulations to Former Pupil Zach Kibirige (Bede House 2000-2013) who has signed a new contract with local Aviva Premiership rugby side Newcastle Falcons. Zach has been sidelined for the last year following a serious ankle injury which he sustained on his debut against Gloucester. However, happily he is set to return within a month or so, and has been boosted by the award this contract extension, which reflects the huge potential that was beginning to be realised prior to his injury setback. We continue to be very proud of Zach and follow his career with excitement.
Former Pupil Josh Miers talks openly in assembly about life in the army
We were delighted to welcome former pupil Josh Miers (Bede House, 2006-08), back to school this week.
He was invited to talk to the school assembly about his experiences since leaving Yarm. Josh has chosen an army life and commissioned from Sandhurst into the Rifles in December 2013. The pupils were very interested to hear all about the roles and responsibilities of an Officer and Josh’s extensive travels over the last twenty two months. Since 2013 he has been on overseas exercises in Germany, Kenya, Canada and New Zealand! Yarm School has a very active CCF, the members of which were delighted to meet such an excellent role model. Following the assembly Josh enjoyed a tour of the school’s facilities which have changed significantly since his time here. Thank you to Josh for taking the time to speak to us and inspire our current pupils, particularly those who are considering possible career paths. Yarm School is always keen to hear from former pupils. Please do get in touch if you would like to share news or if you would like to support the school by talking to current pupils or offering career’s guidance. Email email@example.com
First Girls' Former Pupil v Current Yarm School XI New Year Hockey Match
Match report by by Livi Desmond (Bede House 2004-11) and Titch Metcalfe (Aidan House 2004-13)
In early January the old girls of Yarm School reunited to play a hockey match against the current Yarm School XI. The FP’s had travelled from all over to make this match happen, special mention goes to Susie Knight who travelled 328 miles to be there – that is what you call dedication to sport (even if she was wearing a Teesside High t-shirt!). Many of us were a bit rusty and out of practice, not having played hockey since we had been at school, but despite that we were as enthusiastic as ever and determined to give it our all. It was very clear that no one’s competitive spirit had dropped, which was great to see.
The old girls started strongly and, surprisingly, we weren’t as bad as we thought, although our fitness levels had depleted dramatically! The current Yarm first team played well and got a good goal halfway through the first half. Nao Hogg made some great saves in goal but sadly the current girls’ skills were just too good. The score at half- time was 1-0 to the current XI. After a good old team talk at the break, and with tactics aplenty, us old girls were fired up and ready to get back on the pitch. The second half started well, with even play from both teams. Our defence was strong and Emily Longstaff made some great clearances as well as taking her time with free hits, giving us oldies a breather. This obviously worked, as soon enough Sophie Wilson showed her skills to score a fantastic goal, built up by Vicky McGarley. Overall, we had a lot more possession in the second half, but sadly in the final hit of the game the current first team got a short corner. We managed to clear the first one but subsequently they got another – this was also cleared but then they got a third penalty and with Laura Hill’s superb hitting, managed to get a final goal. So unfortunately the old girls lost the match 2-1. It was a fantastic game and all the former pupils thoroughly enjoyed it – a massive well done to all. Congratulations to the current first team and next year just you wait, we are coming back fighting!
Yarm School Former Pupils (Old Boys) taste victory over Barnard Castle in this year's Christmas match
The match between the Yarm School Former Pupils and their peers from Barnard Castle is becoming a Christmas tradition. It is always hotly contested and this year was no exception with both teams determined not to lose against old rivals. The crowd who turned out at Darlington FC on Saturday 27th December were in for a real treat. Barnard Castle had the better of the first half but Yarm managed to turn it around and were victorious 20-10!
Many thanks to all the players involved especially Rory Duff and Robert Bellerby for whom it was their second game of the day, also to the many supporting former pupils, parents and staff who thoroughly enjoyed the occasion. For many of the players it was their first taste of victory against Barnard Castle. However, skipper Mason was extremely pleased as it maintained his record of never having lost against them. Roll on next Christmas and the re-match!
Recent Leavers’ Christmas Drinks 2014
Saturday December 13th 2014 saw our first Christmas Drinks event for recent leavers. The event was very well attended with over 100 former pupils gathering to reunite as the festive season got into full swing. Leavers from 2012, 2013 and 2014 were invited this time. Many had just returned home for the Christmas holidays but some, for who term had yet to finish, made lengthy journeys from university just so to see their old friends and come back to school!
It was a very enjoyable evening with former pupils sharing tales of new adventures and reminiscing over fond memories at school, all washed down with some festive bubbles and Chef Martin’s celebrated canapés. As always, the teachers who came along were delighted to share in the successes of those who have left. It also proved to be a good opportunity to develop contacts with students, now nearing the end of their studies or in placement years, offering to give careers advice to our current pupils. Amidst the laughter of cherished old friendships, we were also able to generate lots of ideas for future social former pupil events. Watch this space! (For more photographs from this event please see the photo gallery.)
Fascinating stories of Yarm School's Early Days
Mr Neville Tate recounts his memories of 21 years as Yarm School's founding Headmaster in his book 'A Story to be Told' (£9.95 + £1.51 postage),. His charm, wit and spirit of adventure are evident throughout, and this illuminating insight into Yarm School makes a fascinating read. To get a copy please call the School Office on 01642 786023 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
"a great story..."
"....this well-crafted tale"
Darlington & Stockton Times