Weekend Activities

Boarding Weekend News 2018-2019

Friday 17th - Sunday 19th May 2019

The weekend started with a game of rounders on Friday evening.

On Saturday, after weekend prep – including exam revision! - and lunch, we headed off to the Bramley Village Fete armed with money to spend at various stalls, including some run by our seniors as part of their D of E volunteering. We also heard an amazing performance from a very talented rock band of four L5’s. There were also a few games of tug of war that our fellow St Cats students took part in. We were really pleased to see them win against a team of very strong men from the Wheatsheaf pub! 

Back at school, many girls chose to continue with their revision in preparation for the summer exams but after dinner, Mrs. Hobourn stopped us revising in Bronte (11/12s) and we got a chance to relax with the movie Goodnight Mister Tom which some said they had never seen.  Over in Symes (13s) girls watched the Eurovision Song Contest and are still struggling to comprehend why Germany did so badly.  They really rated the song! But they did learn where all the countries are on the massive wall map in Symes Common Room.

On Sunday, we started our day off with our weekly trip to Holy Trinity Church. We then had a lovely brunch, with some lovely pastries. In the afternoon, we went down to room 17 for a fascinating talk about comets! We then got the chance to make our own comets – lots of liquid nitrogen! -  even though most were initially a failure. We had a quick break, and then came back for another interesting talk on the sun. Unfortunately, we could not use the telescopes to study the sun as there was so much cloud.  After a short cleaning up period, we then went down to the auditorium, and got to enter a mobile planetarium and learn various facts about the solar system and its constellations.  We really enjoyed relaxing on the cushioned floor and gazing at the stars and planets above.

We are now counting down the days until the half term  and making our ways home.

 

Friday 10th - Sunday 12th May 2019

The weekend began with Mrs Cook’s Cook-in for Keller House, and Zumba which was great fun for everyone, but the Gaps especially enjoyed it!

On Saturday after breakfast we walked over to the Prep School for their May Fair. We enjoyed the various stalls and activities and the opportunity to buy a range of items.

In the afternoon we visited Birdworld in Farnham and luckily the weather held off. Some of the birds were incredible and full of colours and size. Even those of us who felt a little anxious about birds actually found ourselves full of admiration about seeing the birds so close up.

On Sunday whilst the rest of the boarding community went to church as normal, the U6th went for an early brunch followed by their own special Leaver’s communion in the Holy Trinity Church in Bramley. The U6th went back to the dining room to enjoy a beautiful lunch with staff and parents, whilst the rest of us continued with this weekend’s activity theme and enjoyed a falconry session on the field. We were able to hold a variety of birds including a hawk, owl and eagle. We were also shown tricks that the birds could do including chasing a rabbit (well a battery-operated pretend rabbit!). At one point we had to stand in two lines opposite each other and watch the hawk fly through the small gap. It was incredible to see and have the hawk flying past us so closely.

Next weekend we are looking forward to attending the Bramley village Fete and enjoying the Mobile Planetarium

 

Friday 22th - Sunday 24th March 2019

This weekend we had fun orienteering - aka trying to find our way back to school having been dropped off somewhere in the Surrey countryside.  Mrs Alexander and Mrs Cook had been out in the early hours of Saturday morning, devising a trail for us.  In the afternoon, they drove us a long way (although it was basically in a circle to make us think we had travelled far!) and dropped us off in a car park.  From here we had to follow the trail back to school.  We were split into two groups and I am delighted to announce that Bronte were the winners.  That meant we won chocolate Easter eggs!

Sunday was church as usual and then spent packing and having chill time with friends in the house.  We can’t wait for the holidays now, but before then we have House Gym and Dance, and the House Singing Competition and concert.  For some boarders in U6 there is the Leavers’ Recitals this Monday, too.  As with all our concerts, it will be live streamed to any parents who can’t get there for the event in person. 

Happy Easter to all our readers/followers. 

 

Friday 15th - Sunday 17th March 2019

Hot chocolate in a Central Asian nomads’ yurt and Carribean steel pan drumming!  What else would you expect from a boarders’ weekend?

The weekend started with an evening of netball for some and music practice for others.  We were pleased to have a game of netball with and against our fellow boarders and it got us in the mood for our Saturday evening trip to watch the Surrey Storm team play the Stratchclyde Sirens. Ayo volunteered to represent St Cats in the quarter time 3 point challenge. She scored from line 1 but was knocked out on line 2.  We were really proud of her.  As for the Surrey Storm team.. they were amazing!  We were all in awe of Mrs. K.    Up until the third quarter, it was a bit touch and go, but we were delighted when Surrey Storm won 53 to 44!  Their first home win this season!   Our loud cheering must really have spurred them on!

Before the evening outing, we broke up the afternoon by taking a walk through the woods.  Although we were a little reluctant to walk without having our ear phones in and our devices on, we soon realised that there was plenty to talk about.   We soon found ourselves at the Snooty Fox in Shalford. That’s where we had the hot chocolate in a yurt!  It was really cosy and we are giving serious thought to asking Mrs. Phillips to consider yurts as future boarding accommodation!

Yesterday was the usual trip to church in the village and then we headed West for an afternoon of steel pan drumming!  Actually, we didn’t quite make it to Trinidad and Tobago…just to the auditorium for a workshop with the Sussex Steel Band.  Instead of telling you all about it, why don’t you just watch this short video?  We think you will agree that we really are lucky to be boarders and share so many experiences!

        

 

Friday 8th - Sunday 10 March 2019

Wow! What a crazy, fun and busy weekend we had.

For the Bronte girls the weekend began on Friday morning when they packed up their belongings and headed over to Symes where they would be staying for the weekend due to  the arrival of the Guildford Girl Choristers for their annual visit. They stayed with us in Bronte all weekend to use our facilities and make the most of their time together to rehearse. It is always good to offer this hospitality because of our close links with Guildford Cathedral.  

Friday night started with a bang as we were able to watch the annual Sixth Form Charities Board Fashion Show – which was fantastic, and we LOVED it! In particular, we were extremely proud of our boarders who performed and competed but especially to Mani and Natalie who won the St Cats’s got talent part of the show. 

Saturday was the rehearsal for the St. Catherine’s Association Concert which included many boarders. Whilst Mrs Alexander spent time driving the girls to and from Holy Trinity Church Guildford for rehearsals and then the concert, Mrs Cook kept other girls happy and amused by baking Mars Bar Rice Krispy cakes which were delicious!

On Saturday evening the boarders all headed into Guildford to watch the Association Concert which was incredible. The standard of music and the ability of all the performers was quite literally ‘jaw dropping’ and we thoroughly enjoyed it – thank you to everyone!

On Sunday we either headed to church or the Stoner House communion followed by brunch. The U5 D of E girls headed off for Silver D of E training whilst the rest of us tried out our skill at Archery and had a laugh trying to find the target sometimes!

On Sunday afternoon several of the St Cats community were confirmed in our chapel. We were very pleased to welcome the Bishop of Dorking (Steph Wells’s mum) who confirmed them.

We finally collapsed into relaxation mode after a very busy weekend, memorable in a good way. 

 

Friday 1st - Sundy 3rd March 2019

This weekend started off with a wonderful pamper evening for Bronte and Symes, it included face masks, manicures and pedicures and Hannah’s makeup station which went amazingly well.

On Saturday, some of us helped with the technical side of the ISGA competition, while the rest of us had the splendid opportunity to watch. We were all amazed by what we saw. There were excellent solos and group routines from the many schools involved.

Yesterday Bronte, Symes and some Keller girls went to watch our teams compete in the Nationals Lacrosse Competition, our aim was to cheer on our fellow schoolmates. Mrs. Harkness also demonstrated her amazing parking skills by squeezing into a space crowded by other cars around.

It was a sporting inspirational weekend, next weekend we are looking forward to the Association Concert!

 

Friday 8th - Sunday 10th January 2019

Bronte and Symes began their weekend with the Friday evening Sports Activities.  

Keller enjoyed Chinese Chicken which Mrs Cook had prepared after having skinned 54 chicken thighs!  Sixth Form Boarders who are in at the weekend are allowed to cook for themselves if they wish, by arrangement with Mrs Alexander. 

On Saturday, many of the matches were cancelled (some water-logged pitches here and at the away destination, too) but we were still able to take part in our match 

which we enjoyed.  Bronte and Symes then went to the local National Trust location, the Devil’s Punch Bowl, for a long walk,

 and fortunately they managed to avoid the rain.  Mrs Alexander and Mrs Cook enjoyed jumping in the muddy puddles, while the girls found routes which avoided mud so that they didn’t spoil their trainers!

Back by popular demand, Sunday’s activity was to Air Hop and which helped the girls bounce off those winter blues.

Many boarders were also involved in the Sister Act rehearsals, either on the stage, in the pit band or the tech side.  We hear that the costumes are amazing, and we are really looking forward to seeing the Boarders’ Preview on Monday evening.

I think we will all be pleased to have a rest soon.  5 days to half term!  

 

Friday 18th – Sunday 20th January 2019

On Friday evening the boarders played lots of fun sports including bench ball, volleyball and basketball. Later on the Symes Girls decided to have a movie night.

The next day some of the girls had to wake up early to leave for fixtures at Berkhamsted, and the rest us went to Chichester for a treasure hunt – sadly in the drizzle. The Symes team won after exploring the many streets of the town and finding the treasure in Crown Hill.

On Sunday we had an arts & crafts afternoon. We designed some home accessories for the boarding houses around a selected theme. Next week is bowling and a trip to the cinema.

         

 

Friday 11th – Sunday 13th January 2019

While the first weekend of the term was packed with activities, there was also time to relax, and, for those of us doing mocks, to do some work.  We also welcomed the new GAP students to their first weekend at St. Catherine’s. They are here for all of 2019 and we are getting to know them as they work around school and in boarding in the evenings.

On Friday evening, the Bronte and Symes girls took part in fun sports activities.  For Keller, now that Mrs Cook’s arm is healing [a very boring collar bone break before Xmas], it was back to having a meal cooked for them in their common room with the girls helping out with the chopping and cooking. Many of us tasted fresh guacamole which accompanied the chilli, and it was a great success.

On Saturday, some of us were involved in the fixtures against Lady Eleanor Holles School in lacrosse and Netball.  Then we hit the sales in Guildford.  A number of us bought items of clothing or jewellery, and it was fun to be together again and to be able to catch up with our friends.

On Sunday the school was really busy due to the National Girls Chess Semi-Finals Competition, hosted by St. Catherine’s.

The boarders went to church and after a delicious brunch, we went to Winkworth Arboretum, a local National Trust beauty spot.  According to the girls who went, it was quite cold and wet – the weather was a bit against us - but it was a chance to run around and have fun too.  Some girls also had a cake in the tea room.

Next weekend, while those of us in Upper 5 are not looking forward to the last weekend of revising, the rest of the community is looking forward to a trip to Chichester on Saturday and some craft activities on Sunday.

 

Friday 7th - Sunday 9th December

Report by Grace and Vanessa – Year 8

On Friday evening, all of the boarders went by coach to Guildford Cathedral to attend the annual Service of 9 lessons and Carols. It was very nice as most of the boarders were performing in the service.

On Saturday, the Boarders had a relaxing day of packing for the end of term. We got everything done so we’re ready to go home and have a fun rest of the term with House Drama on Wednesday, final candlelit Compline and then Christmas High Table.  The rest of the day we spent time with the Gappies [Gap students] as it is their last week at school. We would like to thank them from all of the boarding community for everything they’ve done for all of us this year. We will miss them very much as they go and start university in Australia and New Zealand.

On Sunday the boarders attended the Christingle service in church.  Then, after brunch, we set off to see Cinderella at the Yvonne Arnaud theatre and there was plenty of traditional audience involvement:  “it’s behind you”; “hello, Buttons” etc.  Everyone really enjoyed seeing it especially when everyone started singing “Baby shark, dodo dodo”. 

We wish all our readers a good Christmas and new year.    Merry Christmas

       

 

Friday 23rd – Sunday 25th November | Friday 30th November – Sunday 2nd December 

Hannah and Hannah report – Year 9 (two weekends in one report!)

We have packed in a great deal over the last two weekends, and we are beginning to feel that Christmas is in the air!
Last weekend started in style with the St. Catherine’s Day Gala Concert on Friday. Many boarders were involved and those who weren't watched the concert instead.

On Saturday we visited the Christmas Craft Fair at the RHS Gardens Wisley. We all enjoyed visiting the various stalls, which included ceramics, Christmas decorations, greeting cards and textiles. The Symes girls bought some Christmas ornaments for the Symes Christmas display and set them out in the entrance hall on their return.

After church on Sunday we went to watch films at the cinema in Guildford. Options included The Grinch, Bohemian Rhapsody and the Crimes of Grindelwald. Everyone had a great time, although some girls who watched the Crimes of Grindelwald felt it did not live up to their expectations.

This weekend we went shopping at Bluewater on Saturday which meant that we were able to get ahead on some of our Christmas shopping!   On Sunday, we visited the Ceramics Café in Farnham, where we were able to decorate a variety of items: some for ourselves, and others as gifts for people at Christmas, too.  We are looking forward to seeing how the final products look when Mrs Cook collects them next weekend.

 

Friday 9th – Sunday 11th November

Ayo reports – Year 8 

Last Wednesday, the boarders had a lovely meal after chapel, which celebrated Diwali. It was fun and interesting to taste food from a different country. 

On Saturday, we started off with prep and after that, we went ice-skating at the Spectrum and I think that we all enjoyed it. After dinner, we had free time. The routine for Sunday was different. Instead of brunch, we had breakfast because of the Remembrance Day Service. It was a very emotional and nice ceremony and was very thoughtful.  After the service, we had a nice afternoon session of crafts. We could make anything as long as it related to autumn, Remembrance Day or Light. It was a very relaxing activity and we could bring out our creative mindsets. 

We then had a relaxing Sunday evening in the houses ahead of school on Monday. 

 

Friday 2nd – Sunday 4th November 

Ella and Angel report – Year 9

Symes girls carved Pumpkins on All Hallows Eve to begin this traditional celebration of All Saints Day (1st November) and All Souls Day (2nd November).  The candles remained alight for the duration of the festival to honour all the Saints and Souls of the dead.  They also enjoyed some more commercial elements of Halloween with Trick or Treat sweets and a scary movie! 

On Friday evening the L4 and U4 boarders kindly helped the PTA set up for the U3 Parents’ Curry supper and were rewarded with some sweet treats! Then they dashed off to join the other boarders for Zumba and Badminton before returning to the house to watch a movie

On Saturday lots of girls went off to Wycombe Abbey for the Lacrosse and Netball fixture which was an exciting start to the weekend. The rest of the boarders had an opportunity to try out their golf skills at Bramley Golf club. There was a mixture of putting and driving and the competitions were great fun.

In the evening there was the annual Bramley Village Fireworks display which was incredible as always. But there was a lovely touch at the end when 2 St cats Girls (Mimi and Ginny) played the last post followed by a minutes silence to commemorate the end of WW1 100 years ago. 

On Sunday after church we enjoyed baking with Mrs Cook and made Toffee apples which we decorated. It was great and was the perfect end to a week of Halloween, fireworks and cold crisp November weather!

          

 

Friday 19th – Sunday 28th October – Half Term – Time for all boarders to head home!

 

Friday 12th – Sunday 14th October 2018

Our weekend began with some of us viewing the House Arts Competition. Whilst others helped set up the dining room for the Boarders Parents’ dinner.

The Keller girls did an excellent job of serving our guests whilst the Upper Sixth boarders joined this special event for the first time. In between courses the guests were entertained with a variety of music, dance and drama.

On Saturday, we had a relaxed morning before our sporty boarders played their home Lax and Netball fixture against Queen Anne’s. Those not involved in fixtures visited the Charities Board Jumble sale to raise money for the Afghan Connection Charity. We then jumped in the mini buses to head for AirHop in Guildford and built up an appetite before Supper.

Symes girls had a special Saturday night, as two of our girls cooked a 3-course meal based on traditional Albanian and Maltese recipes. Their food was great.

After Church on Sunday and a quick brunch we travelled to London to visit Tower Bridge. We enjoyed taking selfies on the glass walkway high above the traffic and River Thames.

We then walked to the Tower of London to see the Crown Jewels.

We are all excited about next weekend as we will be heading home for half term.

      

 

Friday 5th - Sunday 7 October 2018

The weekend started early with a big crowd of 11+ and 13+ taster boarders arriving at midday.  They had lots of fun in school for the afternoon, including House Lunch and House Activities, and then enjoyed different activities in the boarding house, getting to know their way around as well as making friendship bracelets.

In the meantime, the Keller girls tucked i to another meal prepared by Mrs Cook, and enjoyed watching a film.  A great start to the weekend for all the boarders!

On Saturday, we said farewell to those girls who had stayed over, and hope to see them next year.  The weather was not on our side for the activity which was to be a walk up nearby Chinthurst Hill in the Autumn colours.  However, we still got wet as the alternative activity was…swimming.  But we had great fun splashing around, using the floats and the diving boards.

On Sunday we all went to Church where we donated our gifts for the harvest festival.  The non-perishable goods will go to the Guildford Food Bank.  We were also very proud of our St Cats girls who gave the reading and read the intercession prayers they had written themselves.

In the afternoon, we went to the cinema and saw a range of films including the Incredibles 2, Johnny English Strikes Again, Night School and A Star is Born, where I am reliably informed that some girls shed a tear or two.

Next week we look forward to the Boarders’ Parents’ Dinner Party and House Art on Friday, the Sixth Form Charities Board Jumble Sale in aid of one of our major school charities, Afghan Connection, bouncing around at Air Hop on Saturday afternoon and visiting London on Friday to walk over the top of Tower Bridge and see the Crown Jewels at the Tower of London.

 

Friday 28th - Sunday 30th September 2018

It was a very ‘constructive’ weekend in the boarding community.  Friday night found us swimming and playing games outside under the spotlights, whilst the older girls learned about the different courses on offer to them in the Sixth form. 

Saturday brought a beautiful day with matches and a trip to Legoland, Windsor, where we were inspired by a world of plastic bricks!  Some of us spent a very long time in Miniland, and whilst our resident Francophiles got lost in the Lego version of France, others voted the top model to be the Taj Mahal or the Houses of Parliament! 

Beyond the amazing Lego models of the world’s monuments, we headed off to the resort’s rides.  Getting wet on the Treasure Quest did not matter as the Autumn sunshine was still warm enough to dry us off, and we were thrilled when The Dragon ride reopened.

It was a great day, and we were especially pleased to share it with some of the Keller and Sixth form girls.  Thank you for coming with us!  We hope you join us for another activity again soon!

On Sunday, after Church in the village and brunch, we spent the afternoon getting creative and constructing our own Lego models.  We were certainly very inspired!  Two hours flew past and we produced frogs, dogs, houses, unicorns, a London bus and a Christmas countdown - the Symes house special! 

    

 

Friday 21st – Sunday 23rd September 2018

On Friday evening there was the Award Holders concert in the auditorium whilst others enjoyed recreational activities in the sports hall and swimming pool. Meanwhile, Mrs Cook cooked Japanese style salmon in the new Keller kitchen/common room and we would like to thank all the day and resident members of staff who came to join us as our guests.

On Saturday, some girls had already set off to Condover on Friday for the annual GSA netball tournament. But for others it was an early start for the sports fixtures v Claremont and Caterham and the rest enjoyed a leisurely morning before we set off to Guildford ski centre to enjoy some donutting. In the evening we relaxed in the boarding house.

On Saturday some girls had an early start for the sports fixtures and the rest enjoyed a leisurely morning before we set off to Guildford Ski centre to enjoy some donutting. In the evening we relaxed in the boarding house.

On Sunday, after church, we were grateful to Mrs Cook for taking a ‘cookie making’ session. Not only did we enjoy yummy cookies immediately afterwards and for the rest of the day but we also have the cookie dough left over to make extra cookies later on this week! Thank you to the home economics department for allowing us to use their room and equipment.

Some girls then dashed off to sing in the Foundation Service as part of chapel choir and then we all enjoyed an opportunity to listen to Mr Friend’s talk on his own cooking experiences on ‘Best British Home Cook’. This was rounded off with a delicious high tea. 

    

 

Friday 14th September –  Sunday 16th September 2018

The boarders’ weekend began with a very competitive game of netball and a recreation swim session.

On Saturday Bronte Boarders enjoyed a lovely walk to Godalming, for some of our boarders it was their first experience of the British Country side, so a chance to look at different leaf shapes, including sweet chestnuts and acorns. They also ate some blackberries! The older boarder travelled by mini bus and explored the various shops.

After church on Sunday we had some relaxation time before focusing our minds on cross stitch patterns. Learning that it takes time and patience to follow simple patterns.

Next weekend we are looking forward to doughnuting and following in Mr Friends footsteps by developing our cooking skills.

       

 

Friday 7th September - Sunday 9th September 2018

Report by Rachel, Head Boarder:

The first weekend of the year began with the annual Boarders’ Party on Friday evening where Mrs Harkness organised a range of fun activities for teams made up of a mixed of year groups, including all the resident staff. It was a great evening.

On Saturday, there was a percussion workshop, led by Kris who is a percussionist from Ghana. He introduced the girls to the importance of drumming, dancing and singing in Ghanaian culture and encouraged everyone to take part in the activities.  During the morning there was a chance for everyone to try out for sports teams, too.

On Sunday, we went to Holy Trinity Church to celebrate Education Sunday where Mrs Phillips and 2 other headteachers from Bramley schools gave interesting and varied opinions on education. We thank Kayla and Silvia for representing St Catherine’s there by reading and speaking.  After that, it was off for the weekly meal highlight that is Sunday Brunch! 

The U3s then rushed off to the U3 Fun Day whilst the rest of the boarding community enjoyed the Guildford orientation trip where the girls were able to explore Guildford and shop. Older boarders were shown the transport networks etc. and how to get in and out by bus and to London by train. Younger boarders enjoyed the trip to Guildford by minibuses.

We had a great first weekend.

      

Boarding Weekend News 2017-2018

    

Friday 22nd June - Sunday 24th June 2018

Friday some of us enjoyed the spectacular middle school concert and thoroughly enjoyed supporting all the girls performing.

On Saturday, the sun was shining and we were off to the beach! West Wittering was where we were heading and it didnt let us down. A vast beach with the tide out and we got to enjoy a spontaneous football match, bat and ball and building a sand…..den?! Although it was windy we could enjoy the warmth and most of use took a dip in the sea. However, for some of us – it didn’t quite hit the temperatures we might be used to!! We all had an ice cream as a treat and came home sandy and exhausted!

On Sunday after church it was all go again. We walked over the Surrey Hills to Godalming and then enjoyed a quick shop and more ice cream before we were collected and retuned back to school (thank goodness we didn’t have to walk back again!). In the evening we relaxed and caught up with prep after a busy and active weekend.

This week, we are looking forward to national Boarding week and can’t wait to share some evenings ion boarding with our day girls friends. We also are walking 1km on Wednesday evening after chapel and supper and creating hash tags to remind everyone why ‘we love boarding’!

 

      

Friday 15th June - Sunday 17th June 2018

This weekend we welcomed new U3 and L4 girls who will be joining us as boarders in September.  The new girls arrived at midday on Friday to firstly experience afternoon lessons.

Immediately after school the current U3 boarders helped the girls find their dorms and made them feel at home.  We then headed to the Bronte common room to decorated boarding mugs with our own unique stylish designs.

After Supper we played in the swimming pool, Mrs Harkness introduced us to some fun pool team games.  The Symes boarders opted to watch the World Cup Football Match as Spain were playing Portugal.  Our Spanish boarders were rooting for Spain with their flags wrapped around them but they were disappointed with the end result, a 3-3 draw!

On Saturday we headed to the magical world of Harry Potter Studios.   It was amazing! We saw many of the movie sets, with our particular favourites being the forest set and the complete model of Hogwarts. Many of us bought butter beer or butter beer ice cream before trying our hand at broom flying using the green screen technique.  It was a fabulous day and rekindled our love for the movies.  We spent the evening in our common rooms watching Harry Potter movies whilst snacking on our chocolate frogs and popcorn.

At church on Sunday we had the pleasure of listening to Queen’s College Choir from Oxford, who attended the service and sang beautifully.  Once brunch was eaten it was time to say goodbye to our new boarders, who are now feeling more confident about boarding and are all looking forward to starting with us in September. 

On Sunday afternoon we had some time to relax and catch up on prep, prior to a walk along the cannel and in to Shalford.  We stopped at the Snooty Fox Café where we enjoyed cakes and hot chocolates before returning to school.

Next week we are hoping for good weather as our plan is to head to the seaside! 

 

Friday 8th June - Sunday 10th June 2018

The weekend was always going to be excellent, as we had finished our exams and therefore had a work-free weekend.  Well – except for our L5 Keller boarders whom we waved off on their Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Expedition….oh and except for our U5 and Sixth Form boarders who are still taking GCSEs or A’levels.

Anyway.  Onto the highlights.  Well Mario’s arrival in his ice cream van was a wonderful sight.  Especially as we were able to choose any ice-cream we wanted.  Suffice to say -they were delicious!  A big thank you to Mrs Alexander for organising this for us.  We think Mario should visit St Cats more regularly!  Are you taking notes BHMs?

On Saturday, the sun shone and we watched our friends playing rounders against the England rounders teams.  It was great fun and we enjoyed being outside.  This was followed by a trip to Secretts Farm to pick Strawberries.  Another great British tradition. 

Which brings me on to my next great British Tradition.  Mr Friend…well he is currently the star of Britain’s Best Home Cook.  No – sorry Mr Friend, the British tradition I was referring to was the making of Eton Mess!  But thank you very much for coming to help us make this on Sunday, together with Mrs Cook - whose talents (despite her name), pale into insignificance before such mastery and TV Celebrity.  We also tried our hand at making roulades, and while they were very successful, I still think Mary Berry would have chosen Mr Friend’s as the best.  The mixture of our freshly picked strawberries, together with cream and meringue really was a match made in Heaven.

Next week we are really looking forward to welcoming new boarders for their bonding weekend, and on Saturday, going on the Harry Potter Studio tour.

 

Friday 18th May - Sunday 20th May 2018 – The Royal Wedding

It was a really glorious weekend, with radiant sunshine and the chance to see English life at its best!  

On Saturday morning, royal wedding fever hit and we gathered together in Symes Common Room to watch the wedding of Prince Harry and Megan Markle.  We enjoyed the pageantry, but loved the dress, the carriage ride and the gospel choir.  We were in silent awe of the cello playing by Sheku Kanneh Mason but had a few giggles over the length and vitality of the American Archbishop’s address!  We marked this historical event with a special lunch and we know that it is a moment that we shall never forget!  

Later in the afternoon, we made the most of the sunshine and of one of the benefits of living on school site: having the school grounds to ourselves!  

Sunday brought more sunshine and another very English event: the village fete, where we took part in the games, bought snacks and much needed ice-cream, and we even supported Sister Green on the bric a brac stand!  The pre-prep girls sang beautifully and provided some much appreciated entertainment and there was maypole dancing to watch and races too.   A real English experience!  

    
 
 

Friday 12th May - Sunday 13th May 2018 

This weekend the boarders enjoyed a whole mix of activities and for once this year the weather was on our side! On Friday evening Bronte and Symes enjoyed Zumba and swimming, whilst Keller made a delicious Chicken dish with Mrs Cook. On Saturday morning some 6th formers performed in the Jazz Band at the Prep. School May Fair whilst Bronte and Symes visited the Plant and Cake sale at the Summerpool house in Bramley – a real ‘Peter Rabbit’ Garden, complete with chickens and swings. We purchased 2 cakes for each house which we all enjoyed after our prep! 

After lunch we visited the cinema and watched a range of movies including Sherlock Gnomes, I feel pretty, Life of a party and the latest Avengers movie, Infinity War. Saturday evening was a chance to relax and chill out. 

On Sunday we attended church as usual. After brunch Mr Friend (Maths and Food and Nutrition teacher and of BBC Best British Home Cook fame) kindly came in to the help Stefanie, Anbie, Hannah, Amparo, Eno, and Camilla to prepare for the Boarding Schools Bake-off Competition round tomorrow at Westonbirt School.  We wish them the best of luck! 

In the afternoon we had a taster session of scuba diving in the swimming pool. This was so much fun and we learnt about the equipment, communication under water and buoyancy. We also got an extra opportunity for a swim after the session. Sunday evening, after supper, we finished off our last bits of prep before another chance to relax before bed. Thank you to all the staff who worked this weekend. 

 

Friday 27th April - Sunday 29th April 2018

For the first weekend of the Summer Term we had to put on our winter coats (!) to enjoy the planned activities. On Saturday we visited the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum, where we were able to look inside various buildings from different periods in English history.

On Sunday we did Duck Herding!  Working in pairs, with a sheep dog and a cane, our challenge was to control the ducks through a number of different obstacles.  We found the slide quite easy. We found the final team challenge hard. The aim was to get all the ducks to travel through a white tunnel. Using us as their guides!  We were glad that even the sheep dog struggled to get them all through!

We look forward to more exciting events this term, we just hope it gets a bit warmer.

     

 

Friday 23rd March - Sunday 25th March 2018

This weekend, we had an active time taking part in Zumba on Friday evening.  On Saturday, we travelled through time and visited the Houses of Parliament.  We discovered lots of fascinating information including the fact that Dumbledore’s throne in Harry Potter was modelled on the throne carved for Queen Victoria.

Sunday was spent packing.  We are now, all getting very excited about the holiday approaching.

 

Friday 16th March - Sunday 18th March 2018

The weekend began with the Symes girls welcoming the Guildford Cathedral Choristers to use their boarding house for their annual weekend workshop visit.  It was therefore a very busy weekend in Main School and very early morning starts for the girls involved in the planned sports matches!

On Saturday, the weather had changed and with the snowflakes falling and the freezing temperature, it seemed appropriate that we should head to Spectrum for ice skating.  It appeared that most of Guildford had come up with the same idea, as the car park was full and the ice rink was heaving, but we got on the ice and practised our moves.  We had certainly made progress since our Christmas trip to Winchester when we last took to the ice!

On Sunday, we once again woke up to a snow-covered school.  The sports matches had been cancelled and the Stoner House Communion postponed, so we all headed to Holy Trinity Church for the weekly communion service.  

In the afternoon, the girls in Bronte and Symes met in the Food and Nutrition Rooms for the St. Catherine’s heat of the Boarding Schools Association Bake Off….Yes!  The British Boarding Bake Off!  Unfortunately, Mary Berry was held back by the snow so could not make it, but we were joined by our own resident star baker, Mr. Friend, who guided the girls through the basic recipe for cupcakes and then, in true bake-off style, left them to it…with a table covered in ingredients.  There were chocolate cupcakes, butter cream topped cupcakes, cupcakes topped with home-made meringues and cupcakes with raspberry topping.  

The judges (Mr. Friend, Mrs. Hobourn and the Keller girls studying GCSE Food and Nut) took their role very seriously and allocated points for appearance and taste, with the Bakers’ Bonus points for organisation and tidiness.  I am therefore very pleased to announce the results and the names of the six girls who will go on to represent the St. Catherine’s boarders at Westonbirt School in May.  They are…………Stefanie, Hannah, Amparo, Camilla and Eno ….. and the overall St. Catherine’s winner is ….Anbie!  Well done and good luck with the next round next term!  Do us proud….and keeeeeep baking!

   

 

Friday 9th March - Sunday 11th March 2018

We started this action-packed weekend with the delights of the Sixth Form Charities Board’s annual Fashion and Talent Show. As ever, it was a wonderful evening. Thoroughly entertaining and clearly demonstrating that St Cats really does have a lot of talent!

On Saturday, some boarders had an active day, playing in the Lax Nationals. In addition to this, there were several bus runs to and from Holy Trinity Church in Guildford taking those boarders

who were either members of the different choirs or members of Camerata, to their respective rehearsals for the Association Concert. In the evening, armed with Haribos, Wispa bars and a drink, we returned to Guildford to watch the most incredible performance by the Association Choir and Camerata. We were very proud to see so many of the boarding community playing their part in lifting the roof off the Church with the most beautiful and powerful sounds of Bach’s Magnificat and Charpentier’s Te Deum.

On Sunday we enjoyed the Mothering Sunday Service and it was lovely that the girls handed out bunches of daffodils and there were Brownies! After brunch we had an Archery session in the Sports Hall – which was great fun and we definitely improved – especially when Haribos were used as target practice! Finally, on Sunday evening we got a chance to chill out after another busy weekend

 

Friday 2nd March - Sunday 4th March 2018 

The snow had really started to fall all week and though not much in Bramley, out and about in Surrey roads were impassible so, on Friday, we had a snow day – yeay! - with a later breakfast that gave us all a lie in before we logged onto google classroom for a little bit of schoolwork. 

The fun activities started in the afternoon with a winter walk in the snow and sledging on Chinthurst Hill, followed by warming hot chocolate and galaxy bars. The evening activity changed to a movie night in our boarding houses.

On Saturday morning we awoke to snow covering the field and buildings. This quickly melted as the temperature increased. Our planned activity had to be changed as the National Lacrosse competition was cancelled for this weekend which we’d hoped to attend to support the 1st team. Mrs Harkness organised an indoor quiz and games afternoon, where L4 competed against U3 with L4 winning in the end. Symes girls were taken into Guildford and Anbie bought Birthday Cookies for her birthday on Monday. 

On Sunday, we visited The Globe Theatre in London. Our tour guide, Tony, told us many interesting facts about the building and rebuilding of the theatre. We then explored the theatre exhibition where actors were practising their choreographed sword and dagger fighting. 

Thank you to all the staff who helped with this weekend especially the resident staff who looked after us on Friday.

 

Friday 23rd February - Sunday 26th February 2018

 

Friday 2nd Feburary - Sunday 4th February 2018

After a busy school week, those of us in the boarding community were more than happy to start our weekend with a bit of pampering!  Showered and in pyjamas, it was a really relaxing Friday evening, with most of us rising to the challenge of ignoring our electronic devices and just coming together to chat as we soothed our skin with face masks and painted our nails.  Some of us even ventured into the world of hairdressing, but we would all agree that it was very pleasant to have an evening when we could stop and think about very little else.

In contrast, after morning prep, Saturday found us in full creative mode, with constant changes of costume, and making the most of the school site.  We had been challenged to work in groups and put together a film that promoted boarding to other girls.  There were interviews, re-enactments of ‘a day in the life of a boarder’, presentations and guided tours for new girls and even a very realistic imitation of Mrs. Hobourn!  All good fun and with some very interesting results!  We have certainly provided the schools’ marketing department with something to think about!

Yesterday, the weather seemed to be on our side, although it was cold.  After morning church and the blessing of the refurbished church bells, we went to Bockett’s Farm, near Leatherhead.  Although we have two rabbits within Main boarding, there were plenty more rabbits to pet and guinea pigs too, along with the usual selection of cows, sheep, goats and pigs.  There were even some llamas!  Some of us opted for tractor rides and the Symes girls entertained themselves on the go-karts and in the soft play area, whilst those of us in Bronte headed for the café and its Wifi zone.   We are still trying to work out whether the highlight of the trip was witnessing the birth of twin lambs or cheering on Be-Oink-Ce in the pig race!  Sadly, she was beaten by U-swine-bolt…but that shouldn’t be a surprise!  

 

Friday 26th January - Sunday 28th January 2018

The weekend started with our usual Friday physical activities. We enjoyed the popular Zumba as always!

Saturday there was time for Prep and Sports fixtures before we took a short walk up to Bramley Golf club and enjoyed a lesson on the driving range. On Saturday evening some of the 6th form attended the Father, Daughter dinner and they had a wonderful time. The rest of the boarding community enjoyed a relaxing evening. 

On Sunday morning our church service was led by the Bishop of Guildford which was an interesting change. After an enjoyable brunch we went off to the cinema to enjoy various films such as The Greatest Showman, Jumanji, Coco and Darkest Hour. 

 

Friday 19th January - Sunday 21st January 2018

The boarders weekend began on Friday evening with the girls in Bronte getting dressed up for their Disco.  The other boarders had a variety of sporting activities on offer and could either take a swim, play badminton, choreograph a dance or compete in a small sided team game. 

On Saturday, we really enjoyed the trip to Portsmouth, and we learnt lots of different things about the ship HMS Victory. 
The ship was launched in 1765, she has been the flagship of the First Sea Lord since October 2012 and is the world's oldest naval ship still in commission.   She carried 821 boys and men aboard and all the supplies to feed and water them.

Admiral Lord Nelson was killed on this ship during the Battle of Trafalgar.

The place where Nelson fell is marked with a brass plaque on the deck and the place where he died is marked by a lantern and wreath engraved into the wall below deck.

The ship is stored in the world’s oldest war dock and it has 104 cannons on it.
After seeing the ship we had the opportunity to undertake a harbour tour.  Portsmouth harbour is a fully operational Navy base so we could see the many modern navy ships and HMS Elizabeth which is the newest commissioned Air craft carrier to join the Royal Fleet.  

Next we took the short walk to Gun Wharf Quays and were given some time to explore the shops, cafes and restaurants.
On Sunday we undertook a craft activity lead by Mrs Greeno, Leah’s Grandmother.  She is a very experienced textiles artist and we thank her for giving up her Sunday afternoon to guide us through this activity.  We were all very proud of our creations by the end of the session.   

 

Friday 12th January - Sunday 14th January 2018 

The Boarders enjoyed a busy first weekend back this weekend

On Friday night the U6th attended the AS/A2 presentation evening in the auditorium. It was lovely for them to be able to applaud and congratulate each other and the leavers of 2017 on the amazing results from last summer. We also heard some words of wisdom from Peter Martin, our chair of governors, as well as the leavers of 2017 telling us all about their gap years or first year at uni – it was really interesting to hear so many various possibilities that might be available to any of us in the future. 

The rest of the boarders enjoyed Zumba which was an active and fun way to start the weekend.

On Saturday we took a coach to visit the Woking Mosque.; It was absolutely fascinating and we thoroughly enjoyed getting to know more about the history of the mosque but also to be able to observe their prayers and ask questions afterwards gave us more insight into the religion but also the culture that is integral to their faith. On the way back we stopped off in Guildford for some shopping to catch the last of the January sales and then returned back for a relaxing evening.

On Sunday we enjoyed the re-established family service at church and as always Reverend Burrows involved us in an interactive service and we enjoyed some upbeat hymns. 

In the afternoon we visited Winkworth Arboretum. The walk around the arboretum was about an hour and we enjoyed the stunning views as well as a cheeky time out on the adventure equipment – proving we are all still ‘kids at heart’! The afternoon was rounded off with an opportunity to enjoy a snack at the tea shop. We returned to school on Sunday evening for another relaxing evening and the chance to get ourselves ready for another busy week. 
Thanks to all the staff for their help this weekend, especially the new Gaps students who are finding their way around! Also thanks to Jeff for helping to drive the minibus on Sunday afternoon and to Mrs Hobourn for being available to support the weekend staff and the gaps.