19th March 2015 Dear Parents and Guardians
19th March 2015
Dear Parents and Guardians,
We enjoyed some wonderful, musical moments last week that included a beautiful Choral
Vespers with the Preparatory School Choir followed later by our Senior Musicians’ Recital on
Thursday evening, and a superb Chaplaincy Assembly on Friday, when a ‘flash mob’ of samba
players, made up of the Senior Orchestra, emerged from all corners of the Chapel to converge on
the Sanctuary in a pulsating, rhythmic bonanza! The musicians then replaced drums with
orchestral instruments to perform the themes from Pirates of the Caribbean, after which they
were joined by the Senior Choir in an extract from Haydn’s Nelson Mass. The whole performance
was an absolute joy, and we hope that you will come to support the full performance at the
Spring Concert on Thursday 26th March, at 7.00pm in the Chapel.
Friday also saw the annual Reconciliation Services take place during the course of the day, and
I would like to thank the Chaplaincy for giving our students the opportunity to reflect deeply, in
such busy lives, upon what truly matters.
We achieved regional success once again last week in the annual Go4Set competition, run by our
Physics Department for budding engineers, as well as many sporting successes during the week
and again on the weekend. Further reports on these appear later in this E-Newsletter.
Thank you to the Parents’ Association, supported by a plethora of parent helpers, for such a
splendid Spring Fair on Saturday. As usual, the Sports Hall and Theatre were decorated
stunningly and proved to be veritable hives of activity as we raised the magnificent sum of
£5,500 in aid of our chosen charities this year, The Falcon Centre and The Carpenter’s Arms, both
in Loughborough. Also over the weekend, our Duke of Edinburgh’s Bronze and Silver Award
students gainfully occupied in preparation for their expeditions, while Boarders enjoyed a GoKarting trip after an especially pleasant Mothers’ Day Mass.
We have enjoyed an exciting week, with House Netball for Years 7 and 8; the Preparatory House
Speech Competition Final; the Charnwood Design Award Presentation by the Mayor of
Charnwood to the Chairman of Governors in recognition of the splendour of our new
Preparatory School, when our Years 3 – 6 Choir sang beautifully; a successful Parents’ Evening
for Years 3, 4 and 5; a Nursery Trip to Stonehurst Farm; and a delightful assembly this morning
led by Mrs Walker’s Year 5 Class.
The highlight of the week was undoubtedly last night, when our Annual Sports Presentation
Evening took place, celebrating the excellent achievements of all our boys and girls involved in
Senior School sport. Director of Sport, Mr Gilchrist, ably supported by this year’s Sports
Captains, Angharad Lloyd and Rory Thorne, were all on top form. Their superb presentation was
complemented by our Guest of Honour – Old Ratcliffian, former Tigers, England and Lions player,
and now Ratcliffe College parent – Louis Deacon, who inspired us all as he shared with us some
of his own sporting memories and the life lessons that he learnt through his extraordinary
career. My sincere thanks to all those involved, and particular congratulations to the fortunate
recipients of awards.
Amongst the many fixtures that lie ahead of us this weekend, we shall be hosting the Annual
Netball Festival in the Preparatory School, on Saturday 21st March. Alongside this, the Ratcliffe
College Parents’ Association has organised a fun ‘Boot Camp’ for all parents and other
spectators, incorporating a combination of exercises and team games to give you a full body
workout. The session will cater for all fitness levels and is run by local Personal Trainer,
Elaine Crewe. Boot Camp will run between 1.30 – 2.30pm on the fields behind the Netball
Courts. If interested, please register your place by contacting Mrs Sharon de Caestecker on
07842 775880 or e-mail [email protected]
May I finally and very politely remind all parents that under the Acceptable Use Policy regarding
use of technology, parents must not post films or photographs that they might have taken of
their children in school-related activities on any website, if it shows other children, without the
expression, written permission of the parents of those other children. Thank you for your
understanding and co-operation.
Wishing you and your family a very happy, healthy and blessed week ahead,
Gareth P. Lloyd,
The Mayor of Charnwood presenting the 2015 Design Award to Mr Richard Gamble,
Chairman of Governors, for our splendid new Preparatory School.
From left to right: Mr Lloyd, Mr Gamble, The Mayor and Mayoress of Charnwood.
End of Term Arrangements
In order to enhance the safety of students at the end of term and to facilitate a safer and more effective
flow of traffic through the school campus, there will be a slightly earlier finish to the School day. In recent
years, we have operated a staggered end to the school day for the various sections of the School,
which has worked well.
The following arrangements will therefore operate on Friday 27th March:
Nursery and Years 1 and Year 2
School will end at 3.15pm. There will be no after school
care, so all Nursery, Years 1 and Year 2 children must be
collected at 3.15pm.
Preparatory School (Years 3-6)
School will end at 3.30pm. There will be supervision in
the Newman Hall for any children who cannot be picked
up at 3.30pm until 5.30pm.
School will end at 4.20pm; buses leave at 4.30pm.
There will be supervised prep in the Emery Library until
We appreciate that there are parents who have children in different parts of the school. Arrangements
will be made to look after any children who need to wait for older siblings who are in the
Senior School. These children will be supervised until 5.30pm in the Preparatory School Newman Hall,
from where they should be collected.
The parking area outside the front of the main school building will continue to be reserved for
parents of boarders only. This area is the nearest to the boarding houses and this arrangement helps
those parents who have to pack their cars with their child’s belongings, which can often be substantial!
Thank you in advance for your co-operation.
Senior Deputy Head
Dear Parents and Guardians,
A partial eclipse of the sun is scheduled to take place tomorrow morning, with about 85% of the
sun obscured by the moon at 9.32 a.m. As you will see from the following hyperlink, it should
prove to be quite spectacular, weather permitting!
We hope to enable as many children as possible to witness this rare natural phenomenon, whilst
avoiding the attendant risk of eye damage. We therefore plan to show the event on a live video
feed in various locations throughout the School, rather than taking groups outside.
We will also strongly advise children not to look directly at the sun – whether through a window
or by going outside – unless they have at least 2 pairs of sunglasses.
Due to impending public examinations, lessons for Years 11, 12 & 13 will proceed as usual.
Mr G Sharpe, Assistant Head & Head of Sixth Form
St Bartholomew’s United Church, Quorn, Present
Singing Stainer's Crucifixion
Sunday 22nd March, 6.30pm
Admission Free; Retiring Collection in aid of Macmillan Nurses
PARENTS’ ASSOCIATION NEWS
PA UNIFORM SHOP
The Second Hand Uniform Sale went well in February with most of the items put in being sold,
and monies owing to parents will be sent at the end of term.
The next sale will be on Wednesday 25th March in the Prep School lobby, so please put that in
your diaries. We, of course, now need more items! We had lots of requests especially for girls’
summer dresses, so if you have a few items that your children have grown out of, please forward
them via Senior or Prep School Reception to us. The forms to fill in are at both Receptions or
e-mail me and I will e-mail a form to you. Many thanks.
SENIOR SCHOOL STUDENT NEWS
16th March 2015
On 13th March, seven cadets from the RAF section of the CCF visited RAF Cranwell in
anticipation of a great day flying. The cadets were certainly not disappointed as the weather
was perfect, and many of them had over 30 minutes of flying time, with some aerobatics thrown
in for good measure. Well done to: Brian Leung, Harry Ainscough, Oliver Foulds, Kieran Bonas,
Jamie Lanyon, Harry Goward and Tom Cusack.
Congratulations to Eric Chan, Year 13, who performed a superb recital at Mountsorrel
Methodist Church last Sunday evening to a very appreciative audience.
Emily Cheetham’s team, Icicles, represented Great Britain last weekend at the Junior
World Synchronized Skating Championships in Zagreb, Croatia, and skated superbly.
Twenty four teams from 19 countries competed, with the top 5 countries from the previous
World Championships (Finland, Sweden, Russia, USA & Canada); each were allowed to bring
their two best teams. Teams skated their Short programme (approximately 2 minutes, 40
seconds) on the Friday.
Icicles were placed 15th with the highest short programme score ever achieved
by a GB team in international competition. On the Saturday, the Free programmes
(approximately 4 minutes) were skated. Icicles skated their best ever performance, achieving
the 13th highest long programme score which put them in 14th place overall (9th in the country
listings). Icicles’ total score of 100.33 was the first time any GB team (Junior or Senior) has ever
broken through the 100 point barrier. Afterwards, the team was commended by the judges for
their significant improvement since the last World Championships two years ago. Their world
standing has been improved by one place, overtaking arch rivals, France. Emily was personally
commended for her leadership by the coaches and team managers for her handling of the team,
which saw them jell together as a happy, confident and determined to do well group.
Go4SET Introduction Event, 12tt March 2015, NEC Birmingham
A group of six Year 9 students began their Go4SET experience in excellent fashion at the
Introduction Event, held at the NEC, Birmingham, on Thursday 12th March 2015. The 6 Science
enthusiasts: Poom Hirunwiwatkul, Luke Hodds, Emily Dunne, Anthony Elumelu, Sarah Curnick
and Isobel Hose, were tasked with building a tower out of a limited amount of paper and tape
that could support a bag of nuts and bolts, in an attempt to strengthen their team working skills
ahead of the 10 week Go4SET project. By providing a real and live Science, Technology,
Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) project, Go4SET will raise the pupils’ awareness and
highlight the exciting future career opportunities in STEM.
The students managed to beat all the competition, with a tower that reached a massive 107cm
in height. Well done to them, and I hope a sign of the good things to come. It was a close battle;
the 2nd placed team’s tower was just 2cm shorter.
Not wanting to boast or revel in their success, the students took the accolades coming their way
with cool, calm heads, and even Anthony gave away his prize of a Cadbury Creme Egg to a
member of the runner-up team; what a gesture! The Ratcliffe College way is clearly already
rubbing off on him!
The Ratcliffe College Go4SET team with their winning tower
Model United Nations trip to Bath
Eleven students, accompanied by Mr Cantrill and Mr Lambert, attended the prestigious
twenty-fifth Bath International Schools Model United Nations conference at Kingswood School.
Our two delegations were representing North Korea and Swaziland, two interesting but
politically challenging nations.
Friday evening presented an opportunity for delegates to network with colleagues from around
the world as lobbying commenced. This intense period of political jostling saw our delegates
forge alliances and seek support for resolutions covering a wide sphere of issues including
education, disarmament and African development.
Saturday and Sunday saw the conference in full swing with delegates sitting in their committees
debating resolutions. Olivia Armon, Human Rights delegate for Swaziland, opened up her
committee proceedings with a lively resolution declaring support for Russia’s stance on the
treatment of homosexuals. One of the key skills developed for the students participating was an
ability to argue for points of view they might not personally agree with. Anastasia BenfieldDexter and India Mitchell-Jarvis later presented an equally controversial resolution to the
Human Rights committee on behalf on North Korea, calling for the abolition of the International
Labour Organisation and two clauses of the Declaration of Human Rights, to allow for greater
productivity among their workforce! Both resolutions were ultimately rejected (passing them
would have been a worrying indictment of world politics today) but the students presented them
excellently and fought their point of view strongly.
Across the conference, students contributed pleasingly to their different committees, arguing for
and against resolutions and submitting amendments. Special mention must go to Luke
Gyesi-Appiah, who was a commended delegate for Swaziland on a second Human Rights
committee. We hope the experience served all the students well and that they will benefit from
their gained political insight.
Mr Cantrill and Mr Lambert
World Book Day Shelfie Selfie Competition
Joint winner of the Purple Challenge: Alex Purcell, 9MIJ
Joint winner of the Purple Challenge: James Berns, 9SB
Winner of the Green Challenge: Zoe Duffin, 10AS
Visit by Jeff ‘Dicky’ Bird DFC
WWII Spitfire Pilot
March 11th 2015
On Wednesday, 11th March 2015, we welcomed a number of guests from the Royal Air Forces
Association, including WWII Spitfire pilot, Jeff ‘Dicky’ Bird on a visit to see our replica Spitfire
project. Dicky had heard about the project some time ago, and had been keen to visit, but it
wasn’t until 11th March that mutual times could be arranged. Dicky signed up for the RAF
in 1939 following the outbreak of the war, and was sent to South Africa for his advanced
training. Whilst on the five week journey south aboard the troopship, he passed the time being
taught how to play Bridge by a professional Australian player. As a pair, they cleaned the ship of
their competition, disembarking in the southern hemisphere with their pockets bulging with £10
notes! In many ways, Dicky was fortunate to do his training in South Africa, where he accrued
some 300 hours on Spitfires before being sent to fight. Following his training, the troopship
prior to his was torpedoed on its journey north, with the loss of many trained pilots, so Jeff
elected to head to the front across land, a whole story in itself.
Dicky and the other visitors were very impressed with the Spitfire as she stands currently,
and was also very interested in the original parts from Mk1a P9503 that we had been given
last December. He has already expressed an interest in returning for one of our Sunday
workshops so that he can meet the boys, and watch them at work on it.
Mr Berry, Head of Art
Art is …
Continuous line mapping the journey of an eye, by William Oswell, Year 7.
PREPARATORY SCHOOL NEWS
CERTIFICATES OF MERIT, 19th
Ella McNeeney, Year 6, has received 1st and 3rd rosettes for Arena UK Indoor Cross Country.
Harry Cregeen, Year 4, has received a medal for Leicester & District Mutual Football League
Tatiana Lock, Year 4, has a certificate and orange/white stripe belt in freestyle Tae Kwondo.
Harriett Ashford Clark, Year 3, has received a certificate and medal from Stagecoach Theatre Arts
Zara Etty, Year 2, has received her learn to swim grade 1 certificate and level 4 gymnastics
proficiency award certificate.
Lily Grieff-Mulvey, Year 2, has received her learn to swim stage 1, 2 and 4 certificates.
On Tuesday 24th February, the U11 girls played a strong netball match against Fairfield.
Mrs Gilchrist said that all of the girls played professionally. During the first quarter, the girls
scored one goal but Fairfield scored two, which put them just in the lead. Unfortunately,
Fairfield scored more goals as the game progressed, but although Ratcliffe didn’t win the match,
their performance was much improved. All of the girls played extremely well and Maddi Bryant
was the player of the match. Well done to all the girls that played.
By Amy Mason
The U10 girls also played a netball match against Fairfield. On the way to the match,
Miss Stafford said that this would be a tough match against strong opponents. She was right!
In the first quarter, they scored four goals. After a quick chat from Miss Stafford, we were back
out on the court, but before we knew it, we had conceded another four goals. During half-time,
Miss Stafford gave us another team talk and we came out for the second half determined to score
at least one goal. We scored two! The first one was scored by Ella Clark after an amazing catch
in mid-air by Amelia Wells which had everyone jumping up and down. Unfortunately, Fairfield
also kept on scoring, making the final score 11 – 2 to Fairfield. Despite the result, Miss Stafford
was proud of our performance and our great team spirit. Player of the match was Amelia Wells
for her fab feet. Well done to all the girls who played.
On the afternoon of Monday 9th March, our intrepid U9 and U10 cross country runners travelled
to the other side of Stamford to compete in the annual Copthill Cross Country event. This was
the first time that Ratcliffe had entered a team, and the children were quite surprised when they
walked the course beforehand. The course is part traditional farm land and woodland sections
interspersed with natural assault course style obstacles. Needless to say, our children were
extremely keen to get started and test themselves on the adventure course that lay ahead.
The U9 girls were first to race and they set an outstanding standard for everyone else to follow.
Daisy Reddin ran superbly well, finishing 3rd overall. The other girls in the team: Zoe Howling,
Avani Gupta and Sophie Shield also ran fantastically well, resulting in the U9 girls’ Team finishing
2nd overall. The U9 boys also had a great race with highest finisher, Finlay Spencer, crossing the
line in 8th place just outside the medals. The U11 girls enjoyed their race although it was slightly
longer than the U9’s. Highest finisher was Annie Rose Reddin in 12th. Finally, the U11 boys took
to the course, and Ethan Chapman simply flew around finishing in a brilliant 5th place. The stand
out performance of the day, however, in this race was from Jamie Hollis who had been a late
replacement on the morning of the event. He ran better than I have ever seen him run before but
what was most humbling was his great attitude and pride in representing Ratcliffe. His spirit
and eagerness to do his very best for Ratcliffe epitomises everything that is great about sport at
our school. A huge well done to all the runners who raced, and I am sure they are all looking
forward to returning again next year even if it is only for the yummy flapjacks we all got at the
Saturday 14th March: Grace Dieu U9 and U10 6 aside football tournaments
In less than idyllic footballing conditions, our U9 and U10 football squads travelled to Grace Dieu
to compete in their annual 6 aside football tournament. The temperature was bitingly cold and
the wind was chilling us all to the bone; I was reliably informed by one of our travelling faithful
supporters that it was in fact warmer in Russia!
Both teams started well with wins over St Mary’s; the U10’s victory was only by a single goal but
it was good enough to settle them into the tournament. The U9’s in contrast put away a hatful of
chances to start in confident mood. Their second games saw them play the hosts, Grace Dieu.
Two solid wins later, both teams new they had qualified for the semi-finals, all that was left to
decide was whether they would qualify as winners or runners up.
The U10s won their remaining group game and the U9s drew which meant that both teams
would qualify for the semi-finals as winners of their respective groups. As anyone who has ever
been to a tournament knows, however, winning your group is nothing more than establishing
base camp at the foot of the mountain in preparation for the serious assault at the summit in the
knockout stages. The U9s had a tough match, and although they had been the dominant force
throughout the tournament thus far, fate was to play a cruel trick in the dying moments of
normal time. Ranai “The Cat” Popat who had played brilliantly in goal got injured saving a
powerful shot. This injury resulted in Ranai taking no further part. It was this pivotal moment
that led to the narrowest of defeats in extra time. The boys were disappointed but should not be
downhearted as their play throughout the morning had indicated what a talented bunch of
footballers they are, and that one stumble never knocks true champions off their stride for long.
There will be other days, boys, when your talents will pay dividends and you will reach the
summit and fly the Ratcliffe flag.
Such a day had arrived for our U10 boys. They dominated their semi-final, running out 4 – 0
winners and playing with a confidence and control which was amazing to witness in such hostile
conditions. As they took to the field for the final, there was a sense of destiny in the air,
the metaphorical clouds had lifted form the pinnacle they were aiming to conquer and their
assent to the top seemed assured. The match was their toughest by far, but by this time, the boys
had a unity and belief in one another that was not going to be broken on this day. Every player
contributed a vital touch, pass, tackle or shot which epitomised the belief that the whole is far
more powerful than the individual. From Tom Leighton in goal, through Tyler “The Ice Man”
Black, onto the three musketeers: Sam Gray, Cameron Mulvihill and Harry Gamble to our
triumvirate of centre forwards: Alex Hollinshead, Cameron Gordon and Tilak Pabari. Everyone
played their part and everyone deserves the plaudits they received after their 2 – 0 final win.
They finished with a played 5 won 5 conceded 1 goal record which confirmed just how far they
had all come both individually and collectively over the past few months of hard work on the
training ground. Summit conquered, enjoy the moment, there are many more summits awaiting
us in the future.
Well done to all who played whether the unlucky U9s or the unbeatable U10s.
Ratcliffe College Prep U11A Hockey v Foremarke Hall
On Wednesday 11th March, the Ratcliffe U11A boys’ hockey team played against a strong team
from Foremarke Hall. We defended brilliantly for long periods of the game against some fast
attacking hockey from Foremarke.
Ratcliffe managed to cope well in the first half and the score was 0 – 0 at half-time. In the second
half, we became more of an attacking threat and we scored a great goal on the counter attack
through Guy Heywood. The remainder of the half saw us under increasing pressure and though
we defended valiantly in the last two minutes, we succumbed and conceded three late goals.
Despite a losing final score of 3 – 1 to Foremarke Hall, this was a fantastic performance from all
the boys. The whole team was voted as players of the match for their individual and collective
efforts throughout the match. The team was Daniel Keating, William Wright, Roman Carpenter,
Guy Heywood, Sam Gray, Cameron Mulvihill and Alex Dring. Well done boys.
By Roman Carpenter
Ratcliffe College U11A and B Netball at the Leicester Grammar Junior School Tournament
Our U11 Netballers travelled to Leicester Grammar Junior School on Wednesday 11th March for
their annual Tournaments and found the standard of play to be very high. Undaunted by this
however, the girls played superbly well demonstrating a huge increase in their level of
performance since the beginning of term. Both Mrs Gilchrist and Miss Prentice were extremely
proud of the girls. Although results did not go the girls’ way, this increase in both individual skill
level and collective team work is a just reward for all the hard work the girls have put in this
term. Well done to all the girls who played.
Ratcliffe College U11C and D v Foremarke Hall
Likewise, on the same day, we sent two more netball teams to Foremarke Hall. This was a great
achievement in itself to have four Prep Netball Teams playing in fixtures on the same day.
As with the girls who had travelled to Leicester Grammar, the girls demonstrated a massive
improvement in their individual and collective abilities on a netball court. Yet again, the results
did not go our way but we must focus on the performance levels and not the results at this age.
All of the girls enjoyed their experience which is the most important thing as this will motivate
them further to work even harder still as they move through the School to continue to improve
themselves on the netball court. Well done to all the girls who played.
Ratcliffe College U11 Rugby sevens at the Elms Tournament
Our U11A Rugby squad travelled to The Elms on Wednesday 11th March to compete in the
annual Elms Sevens Tournament. The boys had had a fabulous regular season remaining
unbeaten and they were highly motivated to crown this excellent achievement off with a trophy.
The boys did themselves proud but were a bit rusty to begin with. Their first match was against
Birkdale (who were outstanding and were the eventual winners). We lost 4 tries to 0. Feeling a
little downhearted after that first loss, the boys couldn’t bounce back against Yarlet in their
second game and lost narrowly in a game we should have won. The boys really turned it on
against Barlborough and Derby GS, and won both those games convincingly. We finished 3rd in
the group and qualified for the cup quarter finals as best 3rd place team. We played St Anselm in
the quarter finals (they were eventual finalists v Birkdale) and lost a cracking game 4 tries to 2.
We went into the trophy tournament for teams knocked out in the quarters, and replayed Yarlet
in the semi-final and beat them convincingly; we then went on to beat Fairfield convincingly in
the final. The boys all deserved their medals and we have a nice shield that the boys are
rightfully proud of as it marks the completion of their stated aim at the beginning of the season,
to be unbeaten in regular season matches and to win a trophy. Well done to all the boys.
The players of the tournament were Sam Linnett and Louie Fletcher.
On a bright spring Wednesday afternoon, our U11 Boys and Girls’ Hockey squads travelled to
Leicester Grammar to compete in the U11 County Mini Hockey Tournaments.
Both teams were highly motivated to do well and had ambitions of becoming County Champions.
The girls played really well in their three matches, losing narrowly to Leicester Grammar and
Fairfield before registering a fantastic win against Dixie Grammar. The girls all played
exceptionally well and they should be proud of their efforts and the way that they represented
Ratcliffe with such pride and passion.
The Boys only had two games to play, and after a convincing 3 – 0 win against Dixie Grammar,
they faced up against Fairfield to decide who would be crowned County Champions. This was to
be a titanic struggle that ebbed and flowed throughout the twenty minutes of normal time.
Our boys had most of the possession and field position, and poured constant pressure onto the
Fairfield goal but to no avail. As is often the way when you have lots of pressure, you are
susceptible to the counter attack, and on three occasions, Fairfield broke free creating one on
one opportunities to take the lead. On three occasions, however their centre forward was faced
with Ben “the wall” Jackson in the Ratcliffe goal. Three times he stood firm and not only saved a
certain goal but set us back out on the attack with his precision kicking. It was from one of these
kicks in the dying seconds of the match that the ball found its way to Louie Fletcher, who drove
up field before slipping the ball wide to Sam Linnett, who in turn, took one touch to control the
ball, steadied himself and struck a cross of such pace and precision that it only needed a guiding
stick to help it into the corner of the goal; that guiding stick was in the hands of captain and goal
poacher, supreme Guy Heywood. As the ball hit the backboard, the visiting support erupted in
euphoric elation, shortly afterwards the final hooter sounded and the County Championship was
secured. The boys can now look forward to the regional Tournament on 24th April in Cannock.
Well done to all the boys and girls who played in the tournament. It was yet another memorable
sporting afternoon for Ratcliffe College Preparatory School.
Mr Faulconbridge, Head of Preparatory School Sport
Report as presented at Headmaster’s Assembly on Monday 16th March
After not having a game last week, the 1st team made the mid-week journey to Oakham to play
the first of the two games they have had over the next couple of days. Ratcliffe took the initiative
early on and were rewarded for their hard work by taking a deserved two-goal lead, with goals
from joint Players of the Match, Carrick Anderson and James Robinson. Oakham, however,
fought back and at half-time Ratcliffe held a slender 2 - 1 lead, thanks to some gritty defending
and an excellent goal line clearance from joint Player of the Match, Harry Stokes. The secondhalf became a very hard fought affair with both teams going in for some strong tackles.
Eventually, Ratcliffe did manage to battle their way through, winning the game 4 - 3,
with James Robinson and Richard Ward scoring the goals.
On Saturday, the 1st team followed on from their hard fought victory against Oakham, to draw
1 - 1 with Princethorpe in another very tough fixture. Both teams started well and Ratcliffe took
the lead midway through the first-half with a calm finish from Captain, Joey Higham.
Both midfields were evenly matched with Player of the Match; Ben Pole, having an excellent
game on the right-hand side. In the second-half, Ratcliffe had to hold firm as Princethorpe
attacked looking for an equaliser. Unfortunately, the hosts did get the equaliser through a fine
finish. Both teams had chances to win the game, and a fine, finger-tip save from Goal Keeper,
Toby Smith, in the last minute, meant Ratcliffe got the draw they deserved.
The 2nds took on a very forceful Oakham side mid-week and responded in the right way,
winning 4 – 3. After taking the lead early in the first-half through Man of the Match,
Seb Dewhirst, Oakham went in at the break 2 – 1 ahead. The score line, however, did not stay
this way for long as the boys really found their stride in the second-half. Further goals were
scored by Louis Hurst and Seb Dewhirst who completed his hat-trick. Oakham did respond with
another goal to make it a nervy last few minutes, but the 2nds got the win they deserved. Special
mention must go to Paul Newton and Tom Lowe who made some very important contributions
in some of the goals.
On Saturday, the 2nds had a resounding 6 - 0 win against Princethorpe. A score of 3 - 0 at
half-time was just reward for some excellent attacking play, using the width of the pitch well.
The second-half was much the same, which is to their credit as it could have been easy to ease
off. The boys’ effort was outstanding and they deserved to score 3 more goals. There were
excellent performances from Seb Dewhirst, Matt Lewis and Jack Matthews, but Player of the
Match goes to Captain, Niall McWhir, for his desire to drive the team on. Goal scorers were
Joe Jarvis, Matt Lewis, Louis Hurst, Josh Macqueen and two from Seb Dewhirst.
The 3rd team hosted Uppingham on Saturday in an enthralling game which ended up 4 - 3 to the
visitors. In what was an improved performance, Ratcliffe were unlucky not to get an equaliser in
the closing minutes. Man of the Match went to Ed Purcell for his all-round play.
The U15s were unfortunate to lose 2 - 1 in what was an excellent game of hockey. Both sides had
their opportunities to win the match, and both coaches agreed after the game that a draw would
have been a fair result. Princethorpe had some dangerous runners which allowed them to exert
a lot of pressure in the first-half, but the Ratcliffe defence held firm and always looked dangerous
on the break. Sam Bird converted excellently from the top of the D after one of those
counter-attacks. Princethorpe scored early in the second-half and, despite Ratcliffe taking more
control, won the game with a well-taken penalty corner with 2 minutes to go. This cannot take
away from what was an excellent performance by the U15s. Matthew Ward, Sam Bird and
Jack Nightingale played strongly in the middle of the pitch and, despite other good performances,
were equal Players of the Match.
The U15B team lost 2 – 1 in a very even game on Saturday against Princethorpe. After conceding
an early goal, Charlie Hancock responded with an excellent finish to go in level at the break.
Although Ratcliffe had most of the possession in the second-half, Princethorpe scored from a late
short corner to win the game. Man of the Match goes to Brad Smith for his work-rate out on the
The U14 hockey team travelled to the Regional Tournament this week and, although they
struggled for results, they were never outclassed. On Saturday, they came up against a talented
Princethorpe side and, despite playing their best hockey of the year, lost 2 - 0.
In our most exciting match to date, the U13s were edged out 1 - 0 by a strong Princethorpe side.
In what was a very competitive game of hockey, our defence performed admirably when we
found ourselves under pressure but unfortunately we lacked composure in front of goal after
creating 4 or 5 really good chances! The boys should be very proud of their efforts, matching
Princethorpe in every department and on a different day, a reversal of the score line would be
just as likely. Man of the Match was Harry Culpin who pulled off a string of exquisite saves which
kept us in the game.
The U13B team played out a thoroughly enjoyable 0 - 0 draw away at Princethorpe, in a game
where both sides could easily have won. Ratcliffe thought they had snatched it towards the end
when Ellis Gee had a great opportunity in the last minute which was beautifully saved by the
Princethorpe Goal Keeper. Although they have not had many matches this year, at times it did
not show. Player of the Match goes to Alex Bown, who was outstanding in midfield while the
work rate of all the players was second to none.
The U12s continued their unbeaten season with a dominant performance against Princethorpe.
They played outstandingly well in the first-half with Tom Page, Archie Heaney and Finley Back
all scoring. Princethorpe played better in the second-half but another goal by Finley led to a final
score of 4 – 0 to Ratcliffe. Krishnan Jivanji and Harry Cusack showed good composure at the
back, and Alex Tyszka and Owen Lloyd dominated the midfield. Finley Back and Tom Page were
excellent in attack and Finley was Man of the Match for his excellent all-round game.
Well done to Owen Lloyd who represented Leicestershire in a 3 Counties Tournament on
Sunday, helping Leicestershire to win all three games.
The U15 rugby team finally lost their unbeaten record in the County Cup semi-final. For once the
forwards were outplayed and, with the set piece faltering, tries were hard to come by. The backs
had probably their best game of the season with Matthew Ward and Man of the Match,
Harry Heaney, standing out. Sadly it was not enough to carry them through.
Rory Thorne, Boys’ Sports Captain.
The 1st team have been hit by several injuries over the past few weeks but the players have risen
to the challenges of positional changes. Against Princethorpe, they came back after a loss against
Wellingborough mid-week, to put in an inspirational whole team performance to win 24 - 15.
Player of the Match, shooter Charley Flowers, teamed up well with Holly Blount and they missed
very few shots. The defenders were up against strong tactical Princethorpe shooters but
Adelaide Muskwe showed her true colours, intercepting many passes. Congratulations to
Olivia Back and Kate Tyszka who had 1st team debuts, fitting in well.
The 2nds faced Princethorpe at home in cold conditions. Ratcliffe had a slow start missing a
couple of early shots, but Princethorpe lost their Goal Keeper late in the first-quarter,
which allowed Ratcliffe to get back into the game, ending the quarter 4 - 2 down. Unfortunately,
Princethorpe had no substitutes so continued with only 6 players for the second and
third-quarters. Ratcliffe were able to capitalise on Princethorpe’s misfortune, utilising their
spare player effectively. Both Yasmin Gill and Angharad Lloyd supported throughout the court
and pressurised the opposition to make hurried passes, which were intercepted by
Chloe Flowers at Centre and Mimi Lallo at Goal Attack. Ratcliffe finished the third-quarter 18 - 9
ahead. In the final-quarter, Ratcliffe loaned Princethorpe a spare player to even out the sides.
Ratcliffe took their foot off the gas throughout the court, allowing Princethorpe back into
the game. Ratcliffe finished the final-quarter 20 - 13 winners. Players of the Match go to
Mimi Lallo for her consistent shooting and defensive play, and Chloe Flowers for her calmness
through court and confident ball handling skills.
Mid-week, the 2nd team faced a number of challenges throughout their match on Thursday
owing to a number of injuries resulting in players having to play out of position. Despite this,
the girls pulled together as a team to perform the best they could. Chloe Flowers received
Player of the Match for her exceptional work rate and movement around court. Her dynamic
movement allowed her to put pressure on the opposition and intercept a number of passes.
Mid-week, the 3rds had a tough game against an experienced and very athletic Wellingborough
side. The girls had to start with six players and were always chasing the game after that.
However, they battled hard and played some great netball. Charlotte Hull, who stepped in to
play at shooter, made some great shots. Player of the Match goes to Laura Hayes.
On Saturday, the 3rd team ended their season with an emphatic 49 - 6 win after taking control of
the game in the first-quarter. Excellent shooting and interplay from Olivia Thompson and
Charlotte Hull, coupled with full team cohesion, despite several substitutions, meant that
Princethorpe struggled to get possession. Laura Hayes fully deserved being Player of the Match
for her well-timed interceptions.
The U15s lost 27 - 21 against tough opposition, but worked really hard to raise their game.
After both the first and second-quarters the score was tied, with both teams playing excellent
attacking netball. In the second-half, Ratcliffe struggled with fitness and so a few mistakes crept
in and Princethorpe were able to turn over and convert possession to take the lead.
Despite some excellent interceptions from Player of the Match, Georgia Holt, we were not able to
turn over enough centre passes to steal a win.
The U14A team faced a tough Princethorpe side this weekend, losing 29 - 10. Player of the Match
was Izzy Hose for her fantastic pressure in the defensive circle along with some incredible
interceptions. All the girls played their hearts out and, as a squad, couldn’t have played
any better. When put under pressure, it was great to see that the girls remained focused and
executed their game plan.
U13A & B
The U13A team lost 27 – 7 to a very well organised and athletic Stoneygate team. It was hard
going for much of the game, with the girls being put through their paces. However, the girls
didn’t give up and battled hard, moving and defending well. The girls learnt a few key things
from this game and need to continue to build on their fitness and retention of the ball. Player of
the Match goes to Ellie Hollinshead and Players’ Player goes to Sofia Henderson.
Another tough weekend for the U13 teams, with both losing (A team 17 - 7 and B team 12 - 7).
Both teams were slow to start; however, they soon stepped up their game and put in some
impressive performances, but couldn’t quite claw themselves back. Player of the Match for the
A team goes to Kate Woodhouse, who worked tirelessly, and Players’ Player goes to
Lucy Grinham. U13B Coach’s Player goes to Elle Hall and Players’ Player to Bo Henderson.
The U12s lost 10 - 2 but played some great netball, working the ball around the court well
in attack and winning some important interceptions. The score was level after the
second-quarter at 2 - 2, but unfortunately Princethorpe managed to up the tempo and were
eventual winners in a closely fought game. Coach’s Player goes to Annabel Mills and Players’
Player to Emily McBallantine.
County Netball Tournament
The U12 girls had their County Tournament this Saturday. Having a tough group, the girls came
second losing only to Loughborough High School. They played well against Welland Park and De
Lisle, putting in place tactics worked on all week, in particular stages of defending.
Coming second in the group meant we played winners of Group B, Oakham. A strong side meant
the girls had to excel to compete with this team. The girls did more than excel and played the
best match of their season to win a very close game. The girls, who were ecstatic to be in the
final, remained composed as they faced Loughborough once more. They started well,
leading 2 – 0; however, Loughborough’s attacking play and accurate shooting brought them back
into the game. After all the girls’ effort, they couldn’t quite see off Loughborough. All 9 girls
were a credit to the School, with perfect attitudes and superb effort in every match, earning
every girl Player of the Match.
Well done to Mia Atkinson who finished 82nd, Alice Daniel who finished 32nd and Emily Hollis
who finished 120th in the English Schools’ Cross Country Championships at the weekend.
Angharad Lloyd, Girls’ Sports Captain.
1st, 2nds, 3rds,