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Issue No. 70 [Back Issues]
15th November 2005

This Week - [Remembrance Sunday - Recognition for Soldier]
[Sir Peter de la Billiere at JKHS - Report from Kampala - Breast Cancer Charity Day - Fish out of Water]
[High Water in Ross - Life, The Universe - Potters Bar Invitiation]
[Eva's 100th Birthday - Lea and Goodrich Schools]
[Classified Advertisements] [What's On?] [A to Z Site Map]

New JKHS Sixth Form Centre Opened By Sir Peter de la Billiere

On Monday 14th November, Sir Peter de la Billiere opened the new £750,000 Sixth Form/Adult & Community Learning Centre at John Kyrle High School.

Headteacher, Nigel Griffiths, welcomed invited guests, staff, students and Governors and gave them a tour of the new Centre. This included visits to the new ICT suites, classroom and large Common Room with a dining/kitchen area for John Kyrle's two hundred Sixth Formers. Mr Griffiths also explained how the Centre would be used to offer training facilities and courses for adults in Ross and the surrounding area. A new Centre Manger would soon be appointed to develop this aspect of the school's provision.


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Sir Peter said: 'I am sure that everybody here today who has seen this wonderful new addition to John Kyrle High School will have been hugely impressed by it. It offers facilities for Sixth Form and adult learners that have been much needed at the school and in Ross for some considerable time.

Those of us familiar with the school will know that it is one of a number of major building projects that have been undertaken over the past few years. These include the tennis courts, the Art block, the new Science labs and Technology area plus a large number of computer suites. Nigel has told me that the building and furnishing of this magnificent new centre has involved the greatest amount of partnership work and has asked me to thank all the many stakeholders who have played a part in this.

Obtaining funding for the actual building itself was the result of much work by Herefordshire Council and the Local Education Authority ably led by Cllr Don Rule, George Salmon and Colin Birks. Additional required funding came from the Learning Skills Council and our thanks go to Alan Curless and Sharon Gray, especially, who liaised with the school.

We would also like to thank the architect, Jed Bailey and C J Bayliss the building contractors for their outstanding work on the project.

In addition to the Council, LEA and Learning Skills council a number of other partners worked with the school in obtaining funding in order to provide the fantastic facilities you see this afternoon. The school was able to obtain European money through its work with the ARCH Project (Action for Regenerating Communities in Herefordshire) and the input of Jonathan Riches and Dave Tristram was absolutely paramount here. Advantage West Midlands were also key players in allowing the school to access funding via Market Towns Initiative and The Ross Area Partnership. John Passmore and Toni Fagan were particularly helpful in this regard.

A number of staff at school have worked particularly hard in both obtaining the funding and ensuring that the build went ahead smoothly and safely, not least of which were John Docherty, Business Manager and Bryan Jones, Site Manager.

Nigel has asked me to point out that this does not mean he doesn't want any more money and as one project ends, another most surely begins!

On a serious note, we hear talk from the Government and Education Department about the importance of collaboration and networking and as mentioned earlier this project is a superb example of this.'

A vote of thanks to Sir Peter was offered by Head Boy, Duncan Alston. He noted how supportive Sir Peter had been of the school. He helped launch the school's bid for Specialist status in 2001 and had opened the new Art Block, Garden Area and now the Sixth Form Centre. Duncan said how much the students were enjoying the new facilities.

The school will be hosting its Sixth Form Open Evening on Thursday, 24th November. Students from John Kyrle and other schools are very welcome to attend. Details available from the school on: 01989 764358.

Pictured below at the opening are, Harriet Smith - Head Girl, Councillor Don Rule - Cabinet Member for Children's Services, Gordon Lucas, Sir Peter de la Billiere, Nigel Griffiths - Head Teacher at JKHS and Duncan Alston - Head Boy.

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Visit to New Rock Foundation School - A Report from Kampala

Our party of fourteen, which included six children and eight adults left England on Sunday August 21st and arrived in Entebbe at 6 am the next day. We were greeted at the airport by our official tour bus as well as the family of Pastor Deo Musoke - the director of the school.

What a welcome!! We spent the first day getting acclimatized to the local temperatures, smell, food and drink. Tuesday morning we were collected promptly before 9 am and taken to the school (in the suburbs of Kampala) contending with the traffic which mainly consists of matatus - 14 seater minibuses, (nose to tail, push- shove, honk honk). Quite an experience. For most of the team this was their first sight of the actual school and surrounding village life. After introductions and a tour of inspection we were ready to start work. Cleaning, painting both inside and outside buildings, reconstruction of the tin sheet perimeter fence followed by yet more painting.


The original school in August 2002.

For three days we all worked from about 9.30 am to 5 pm to transform the look of the school ready for the official opening on the Saturday. The local Africans were amazed at how we worked - they thought white people did not like to get their hands dirty but working together, we achieved much in understanding each other better.

The Opening Day started about 10 am with a parade led by a local brass band, all round the village of Kabowa ending up in a field where we played games with an ever-increasing number of children. We returned to the school for lunch and the official ceremony that began with traditional dances and sketches by the pupils of New Rock Foundation School. These were followed by speeches and presentations made to all of us from Herefordshire. The Government Minister for Sport and Education, who was supposed to cut the ribbon was unable to make the ceremony so our very own John & Sue Gasston had the honour. An exhausting day which finished about 5.30 pm.

In the second week we had more of a rest and visited the Queen Elizabeth Safari Park where we saw elephants, hippos, crocodiles, Ugandan cob, water buffalo and many types of birds.

Our final day was spent relaxing at a swimming pool by Lake Victoria in the glorious sunshine under a clear blue African sky - bliss!

For more information come and join us on Saturday November 19th at the Ryefield Centre, 7 pm, where you can enjoy African style food, meet the team, see the pictures and hear our first hand reports. Special guests include Pastor Margaret Musungu from the Miracle Centre Church, Kampala and Ms Liz Humphries from the Ssesse Islands in Lake Victoria.

The new school - hall and new block. August 2005. The playground is where the old school was sited.

Breast Cancer Charity Day

A charity day in aid of the Charles Renton Breast Care Unit, Hereford was held at Ross Baptist Church on Saturday, November 12th and was a magnificent success, raising a huge amount of money - around £900.

Volunteers manning the fascinating and varied stalls enjoyed brisk trade. Mrs Joyce Thomas M.B.E., organizer said, 'I am overwhelmed by the generosity and goodwill of everyone who supported so generously our very successful day when we raised around 900 for the Charles Renton Oncology Unit. My sincere gratitude goes to everyone who supported us in any way. We have raised thousands of pounds through the generosity of the people of Ross-on-Wye and District. We have been able to purchase much needed equipment which has benefited local people. Very special thanks go to the wonderful, hardworking team I work with and to Ross Baptist Church for allowing us to use the facilities there.'

Pictured below, on Saturday before the doors were opened are organizers, Rose Dean, Wendy Humphries, Roma Watson, Derek Wolf, Ann Eichhorn, Bettie Gwatkin, Shirley Wolf, Joyce Thomas Gordon Lucas and Doreen Wolf.

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Fish out of Water

Goodrich Art Society present, 'Fish out of Water' at Godric Hall, Goodrich on Wednesday, 23rd to Saturday, 26th November. Fish out of Water is a comedy by Derek Benfield and the action takes place in a sun-drenched hotel on the Italian Riviera, at the height of the summer season.

Tea will be served in the hall during the interval and on Thursday, Friday and Saturday there will also be a licensed bar.

Goodrich Arts Society would like to welcome their newest member, Tim Morris. Fish out of Water will be his first production and the Society hope that it is the first of many.

Pictured below are the cast of the show, Anne Stirrup as Audrey Hubback, Jackie Doubtfire as Marisa, Ron Tubb as Brigadier Hubback, Diana Tubb as Agatha Hepworth, Barbara Isle as Fiona Francis, Tim Morris as Julian Whittle and Glen Cawdeary as Mario Marcello.

Tickets to the performance cost £5.00, with concessions (£4.50) available on Wednesday and are available from Goodrich Post Office or by calling Tony Lee on 01600 890425.

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