Click to return

TOP of PAGE

Dover Grammar School for Boys

THE "FIRST THURSDAY" NEWSLETTER
APRIL 2001 No. 80

LENTEN APPEAL

Following a very successful week the total raised to date has now reached £2,100. This is an excellent achievement but is there any more money to come in? If so please hand it in via your form tutor as soon as possible. The final amount will be notified in next month's newsletter.

PRIZEWINNERS IN TWO MAJOR ART COMPETITIONS

During March 2001, in the impressive County Hall, Maidstone a major exhibition was held of the best work from Kent schools' senior pupils. The show was called 'The John Downton Awards for Young Artists', and is to be held every two years.
In total 85 pupils had their work displayed, eight from DGSB, the equal largest number from any school. Following a fierce competition we are delighted to announce that Neil Brinicombe (Year 13) has been awarded the prestigious Bronze Medal, a very significant achievement. Neil's large, dynamically coloured Provence landscape caught the judges' attention in a big way. The judges, (led by the Director of the National Portrait Gallery, London), made very appreciative comments at the Awards Ceremony held on 13th March at County Hall, Maidstone. Well done to all our exhibitors.
Recently our KS3 pupils took part in an anti-litter campaign poster design competition jointly organised by Dover District Council, Neptune Radio, Kent Messenger Group and McDonald's, Dover. The competition was for all primary and secondary schools in the area. We are delighted to announce that all three prizes have been awarded to our pupils. Kenneth Birmingham won his age category 11-13, Vahe Aliev took the 14-16 category and Sam Marriner won the Grand Prize. Sam will receive a bike, all accessories, a goodies bag and a party at McDonald's. His design is to be printed as a poster and displayed all over Dover in April we are told. Our winners gave a very good interview on Neptune Radio. Many congratulations to our brilliant winners and well done to all our participants who achieved such a high level of work that the organisers deemed it to have been in a class of its own.

Mr S M Almond - Subject Leader for Art & Design

CONGRATULATIONS

Our congratulations go to Jack Starling of 8 Castle who took part in the Thanet Music & Drama Festival held on Friday and Saturday 23rd/24th March. Jack's achievements were as follows:
Boys' Vocal Solo (12 years & under) 1st with distinction
Vocal Duet (14 years & under) 1st with distinction
Art Song (13 years & under) 2nd with distinction

WELL DONE

And Thanks go to Jamie Dyer of 12 Priory. The Club General Manager of St Margaret's Football Club wrote to us to say how pleased and grateful he was to Jamie for giving up his time during the last half term holiday. Jamie was involved in helping run a Children's Soccer Fun week along with several other youngsters. The aim of the week was to raise funds for the football club so that they can continue to provide football for the 300 children who are registered with the Club.
Luke Meredith of 9 Channel was one of twelve Kent rugby players selected to represent Kent Under 14s Development Squad at Twickenham. They did the 'curtain raiser' before the England -v- Italy match on 17th February. This involved the teams (also one from Surrey and one from Sussex) showing their rugby skills and then before the match began the boys carried the England flag behind the team and in front of a full stadium. All the boys' names and their schools were mentioned in the official programme and they were allowed to keep their sponsors, 'Lloyds TSB Live' rugby shirts. They were also given front row seats. After the match the boys met the England team and were treated like royalty.

MARK WATTS' VISIT TO THE SIXTH FORM

On the morning of the 26th March the Sixth Form was confronted by a curious creature - a politician, and a European politician at that. Mark Watts, MEP for the South East, flanked by the all important photographers (don't want to miss a photo opportunity) came to discuss his and the EU's role. He told us about the European Parliament - its structure, role, purpose and inner-workings as well as its importance and the influence that it has over us in Britain.
We then had the opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues with Mr Watts, from European defence and security to foot and mouth to the much-hyped issue of EMU which, as Mr Watts explained, is not, despite the press insistence, the most important debate for the EU.
We all found Mr Watts' visit informative, interesting and at times enlightening. We were particularly impressed that Mr Watts did not use the event as an opportunity for a party political broadcast and was balanced and non-partisan in his account and answers. In fact we left without knowing which party he belonged to - maybe testament to the consensus politics of the EU.
We would like to thank Mr Harrison for organising the event and Mark Watts for agreeing to come and talk to us (and the free pens!).

Report by Stuart Inglis of 12 Port

SCHOOL PREFECTS 2001-2002

The following members of Year 12 have been appointed School Prefects with effect from 2nd April.
Michael ABBOTT
Matthew AYERS
Julian BAILES
Nicholas BANNISTER
Christopher BELSOM
Anthony BODEN
David COLLINS
Jon De KEYSER
Paul DEVENISH
James EATON
James EBERLEIN
Peter ELMS
James GARLICK
Richard GLEESON
Scott GUY
Nick HAYWARD
Stephen HUGHES
Stuart INGLIS
Richard JONES
Ross LACEY
Jason LAIRD
Ben LANGLEY
Andrew LIGHTWING
Michael LONG
Christopher LUCKHURST
Joe MESSITER
Malcolm MONTGOMERY
Matthew NEILL
Dean SCOGGINS
Sam SMITH
William SWALLOW
Kirk WAITE
Michael WEATHERLEY
Roy YAU

Dr A S Jackson, Deputy Headteacher

YEAR 8 EXCHANGE WEEKEND TO CALAIS
11th / 12th FEBRUARY

We started in the Eastern Docks departure lounge where we met up with the girls from Dover Girls' Grammar School who were also on the exchange.
The ferry ride was spent in the arcades for most people including me.
When we arrived in France we met up with our exchange students. Most people had to go to their French penfriend's house but I went to a restaurant in Cité Europe and had some lunch. We then went to a fun fair. Afterwards, we went back to their houses and stayed for the night. The next morning we all met up again at their school and then went by coach to Boulogne where we visited the Aquarium Nausica. After our visit there it was back to the school for lunch. 
After lunch we had some time in the shops of Calais and then went back to the ferry. The final stop was the arrivals lounge where we met our parents to go home. It was an enjoyable experience and very worthwhile.

Report by Mark Stamp and Daniel Davies of 8 Castle

HISTORY AND ART TRIP TO BERLIN

On the rainy Tuesday night of 6th March we met at the bottom school gate at 11.30 pm to start our long journey to Stanstead airport. We arrived at the airport at 1.30 am for a flight at 6.55 am. At 5.20 am we were able to check in and then we were taking our Buzz Airline flight to Berlin.
On Wednesday 7th, 10.30 am German time, we arrived at Alt-Tegel airport ahead of schedule. From the airport we caught the bus to the U-Bahn and travelled on the U-Bahn to Hallesches Tor where the youth hostel was situated. It wasn't brilliant but it was okay for the week as we only stayed there during the nights. Once we had put our bags into the room we were off to Checkpoint Charlie. After Checkpoint Charlie we went to the topography of terror which was "the most dreaded address in Berlin". Then we went to Potsdamer Platz, the site of Hitler's bunker, and then we went around the Elliptical Dome on the Rèchstag.
On Day 2 we took a trip to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp where experiments were conducted on prisoners such as the effects of hand grenades and poison gas. Here in September and October 1941 18,000 Russian prisoners were shot.
In the afternoon we went to the Gemaldergalerie which holds one of the most important art collections in the world. 
Day 3 and we travelled to Potsdam to visit Schloss Cecilienhof where we had a guided tour in English around the meeting place for the Potsdam Conference of summer 1945. We then went to Park Sanssouci where we had a guided tour around the Palace in German!
Day 4 we had a breakfast of cornflakes or bread rolls and cheese, or both. We then went to Wannsee to the House of the Wannsee Conference where we had an English guide and watched a TV for the first time in five days. It was at this house where the final solution was drawn up - the building of the killing factories where thousands were mass-murdered.
On Day 5 we travelled to East Berlin to Treptower Park to look at the huge monument to the Red Army and we then walked along the East Side Gallery. This is a one mile long section of the Berlin wall with a massive display of art by 118 artists from 21 different countries. Mr Thompson added his own signature to the wall on behalf of DGSB.
We would have gone to the Jewish Museum and the Museum of Forbidden Arts but they were closed for restoration.
In the evening we went to the Fernsehturm (East Berlin Television tower) which is 203 metres high with a revolving restaurant and here we gave Mr Thompson his birthday card and sang him 'Happy Birthday'.
On Day 6 we went to the Olympic stadium where we were three years too early as it is being modernised. 
We went on to the Plotzensee Prison Memorial which commemorates the 2,500 people who were hanged or guillotined there between 1933 and 1945.
In the afternoon we took S-Bahn to Zoologischer-Garten and spent our free time along the huge street called Kurfurstendamm after we visited the Kaiser-Wilhelm Gedachtniskirche. We met back at the Kaiser Wilhelm at 6.00 and went back to Hallesches Tor. That evening we went to the Sony Centre.
On Tuesday we woke up early to go to Alt-Tegel Airport for a flight at 10.30 am. We landed at Stansted at 11.15 am English time. We drove the two hour journey back to Dover and arrived about 1.30 pm.
We would like to thank Mr Gaskell and Mr Thompson for putting up with us for a whole week and we would like to thank Mr Onions for driving the mini bus to and from the airport.

Report by James Sarjeant & Aaron Abbot of 10 Port

AS & A2 REVISION CONFERENCE ON NAZI GERMANY

On Monday 26th March Year 12 and 13 history students attended a prestigious conference at University College London on Hitler and the Third Reich. The lecture hall was packed to the rafters in anticipation of Professor Ian Kershaw's opening account. Professor Kershaw is the world's leading authority on Nazi Germany and has recently written a best-selling two-volume biography of Adolf Hitler. Thus, Kershaw was roundly and justly applauded by the students as he rose to begin the first of his two lectures. The students found his lecture on antisemitism and the Holocaust particularly interesting, the key historical issue being whether Hitler intended and planned the Holocaust from as early as 1933 or whether elimination and extermination of the European Jews came through a more opportunistic process. Kershaw persuasively presented the case for the latter.
Richard Overy, another acclaimed modern historian and writer, completed the set of four lectures by concentrating on the theme of Hitler's economic policy and war plans. Overy spoke of Hitler's ambitious plans of German aggrandisement and the defeat of Bolshevism while at the same time emphasising the circumstantial nature of the conflicts that actually rose.
I am sure the students present benefited from the revision conference and the topics discussed will undoubtedly continue to fascinate and provoke in equal measure.

Mr J Gaskell - History Department

7 PORT/CHANNEL TRIP TO CANTERBURY

7 Port and 7 Channel went to Canterbury on Tuesday 27th March. We had to meet at the bottom gate but everyone met at the entrance to the park. We were to meet at 8.35 although everyone got there at about 8.20 am and some talked to their friends from Astor School. The registers were taken by Mr Morrissey and then some people produced gameboys, magazines and walkmans for the trip. We got to Canterbury at about 9.20 am and the bus dropped us off next to Planet Laser. We were then given worksheets and we started to walk to Canterbury Castle which was a ten minute walk. When we got to Canterbury Castle we had to answer the questions and some people took photographs. The Castle had no roof and was full of stones inside. Carl Richards, Robbie James, Lloyd Stevenson, some from 7 Channel and I went up the steps leading to a gate. The spiral steps made some people dizzy. 
After the Castle we walked to Canterbury Cathedral and outside French visitors took pictures of Ashley Cooper, Ryan Porter and I. Inside the Cathedral we had to be especially quiet. It was really big. When we went to the place where Thomas Beckett was killed it showed three blunt swords and a dim light shining on them with a background shadow. The shadow was very creepy.
Before lunch we watched a video for twenty minutes. During lunch we were allowed to go to the gift shop. I bought a necklace, a mouse mat and a keyring.
After lunch we had a slow fifteen minute walk to St Augustine's Abbey. It started to rain but people did not let that spoil their fun. Some boys bought some bow and arrows, daggers, eagle and gargoyle necklaces.
Thank you to Mr Morrissey and Miss Pestel for organising the trip and thanks to Mr Morrissey, Senior, and Mr Thompson for helping out. It was a brilliant day out.

Report by Thomas Cakebread of 7 Port

Further History Visits

March has been a busy month for the History Department with a number of visits involving most years in the school.
* On 11th March the Year 11 History GCSE groups, accompanied by Mr Falconer, Mr Almond and Miss Pestell (History student teacher) travelled to Sevenoaks for a revision conference organised by 'History Scene' - this included an "exam busting" session led by Chris Culpin, a well known Chief Examiner and test book author followed by a "trial" with actors portraying the witnesses who might have been called had Hitler been put on trial for the crime of 'causing World War 2'. Along with several other schools, our students acted as the jury. The result? 'Hitler' was found guilty, but only by 200-171 votes before being 'assassinated' by an angry member of the public!
* On 27th / 28th March Miss Pestell, Mr Gaskell, Mr Morrissey, Mr Thompson and Miss Martin took the four Year 7 classes for a field trip to Canterbury, including visits to the Cathedral & St Augustine's Abbey, as part of their studies of 'Medieval Realms - Britain 1066-1500'.
* Our thanks to all those who have supported these trips - especially colleagues from other Departments who have helped by joining in these visits (Mr Almond, Mr Thompson & Miss Martin) or by ferrying them to the airport (Mr Onions) or by covering classes for those on the trips (too numerous to mention).

Mr G M D Falconer - Assistant Headteacher & Subject Leader for History

YEAR 9 FRENCH EXCHANGE
Sunday 11th - Tuesday 13th March

The Year 9 French exchange was very enjoyable for all involved. It started with everyone meeting at Dover Docks at 8.30 am to be taken to France by Dr Jackson. The crossing was calm and we arrived in France to be greeted with disinfectant for our shoes (for one person his crutches!) due to foot and mouth disease.
We then went to our pen-pals' homes for the rest of the day and night. All the people on the trip did lots of different things, including Cité Europe, arcades and sporting activities.
On the Monday morning our pen-pals took us to their school at 8.40 am. We then boarded the coach to go to Lille. It took 11/2 hours to go from Calais to Lille. On arrival we walked to the square. We then had a guided tour around Lille seeing its fabulous and fascinating architecture. The tour lasted for an hour and we then ate our lunch and looked around the shops. After lunch we walked through the old town to the new part and the latest shopping centre. Everyone spent their money on lots of different things after which we boarded the coach to return to the school and then be taken back to our pen-pals' houses. There were more activities arranged by them.
On the Tuesday morning we met up at the College. An interesting morning was planned for us. We walked to a section of the Upper School offering vocational courses in Catering, Hospitality and Beauty Treatments to A level and beyond. Having been welcomed with a glass of orange juice and an introduction by the Head of the School we visited the establishment including the kitchens where students were busy preparing our lunch. We then took our place in the Prachee Restaurant where we had to play the role of customers. We were treated to a three course meal which it has to be said was extremely nice. The catering students should certainly obtain top marks for their tasks of selecting a suitable menu, cooking the meal and serving us. We even had two glasses but were not served any wine though! After this very civilised lunch, when we were told our customer role play went very well, we walked back to the College to pick up our bags and say farewell to our French pen-pals. In town we did some last minute shopping before making our way back home.
A couple of weeks later we hosted the French party. They arrived in school on the Thursday, late morning, and were treated to our School canteen lunch. In the afternoon quizzes and computing activities were organised and led by Year 10 pupils. At 3.25 pm we took our pen-pals home. On the Friday the French party went to London to visit Covent Garden and the London Dungeons. They arrived back in Dover an hour late and some of the pen-pals claimed that a small banger had been thrown at their coach but no one knows whether to believe this or not. They remained our guests until the Saturday afternoon. The trip both ways was very enjoyable for all involved and an enriching experience. We all hope the trip will be repeated next year!!
Thanks go to Mrs Hargrave for organising the exchange and Dr Jackson and Miss Zaboumi for accompanying us.

Report by Richard Hayward of 9 Port

ARCHAEOLOGY CLUB REPORTS
TRIP TO THE NATIONAL HISTORY MUSEUM

On Wednesdy 31st January the Archaeology Club went to the National History Museum in London.
We arrived at Priory Station ready to catch the 8.15 am train to London Victoria. When we arrived in London we took the underground to Kensington. From there we walked the short distance to the Museum. 
At the entrance hall to the Museum we were greeted by a giant dinosaur section. Unfortunately the mechanical dinosaurs were not operating on that day.
We had an appointment in a laboratory which is out of bounds to the public. In the lab we saw ancient flint hand-axes. We also got the chance to rummage through owl pellets! In the owl pellets we found animal bones, such as shrew skulls. After this we had our lunch.
After lunch we split into two groups with one group completing worksheets on human evolution whilst the other group explored the museum. Then after a while the two groups swapped. It was now time to head back home.
All in all it was a very interesting trip.

Report by Nathan Cotter, Alastair Walker and Matthew Wright of 7 Priory

THE FLINT KNAPPER

On Friday 16th March a flint knapper, a Mr Halliwell from Deal, came into the school to meet the Archaeology Club. A flint knapper is a person that makes hand axes out of large lumps of flint. When he came in he showed us some hand axes that he'd made before he came using a piece of flint and a deer antler. 
First he took the lump of flint and began to knock off large flakes, he then used the deer antler to shape it. One mistake could split and ruin the hand axe. Altogether the visit from the flint knapper was very interesting.

Report by Alastair Walker and Nathan Cotter of 7 Priory

TRIP TO CAMBRIDGE

On Friday 30th March we set off at about 2.15 pm for our weekend in Cambridge. It was a long journey there so we decided to stop for ten minutes at the services arriving in Cambridge at around 6.30 pm. We were shown to our dormitories and then ate a three course dinner which was very filling. After we had finished we sat down and played games of Scrabble and Monopoly. We also played in the games room which had a pool table and two arcade machines. We eventually went to sleep at around 1.00 am!
We woke up to a 'fry up' with the pupils finishing before the teachers had started (well woken up!). We set off for King's College and King's Chapel which is part of Cambridge University. In groups of three we had a look around Cambridge town and market. We walked back to the minibus and went to Ely eating lunch on the bus.
We stopped at Ely and went to the Oliver Cromwell museum where we learnt about his life. We then walked around the corner to Ely Cathedral which we enjoyed. After dinner we played games on the PC, games of pool and watched Liverpool beat Manchester United on 'Match of the Day'. It was an early night and the same thing happening in the morning with the pupils finishing their breakfast before the teachers had woken up.
It was a Sunday morning and something had to go wrong. It did! A member of Year 8 lost his key. 
On leaving the youth hostel we went to Duxford RAF Museum. It was an enjoyable day and we arrived home at about 4.30 pm. The things that we all liked were the three games of football. Mr Morrissey's team won 2-1. Overall it was a good weekend.

Report by Jack Little of 7 Priory

SCHOOL LIBRARY NEWS

The School Bookshop that ran for one week during March was successful and around £200 was taken in sales.
Suggestions to improve its quality for another time have been relayed to Scholastic Books and sales, I am convinced, could be higher still. We gained eight new titles for the Library.
Thank you to all those pupils and staff who supported and took part in the Lenten Appeal quizzes. The winner of both were Matthew Ayers from Year 12 followed closely by Edward Smith also of Year 12 and Thomas Elliott in Year 7. Well done to you all.
Please keep sending in your vouchers and tokens. Three, Tesco Computers, Box Tops and Tree Software are drawing to a close but every token helps.

Mrs L George - Librarian

MUSIC

Spring Concert. On Wednesday 14th March the Spring Concert was presented by the school's musicians in the School Hall. Performances by the training Band, Brass Ensemble, Woodwind Group and Big Band were interspersed between a wide range of solo items featuring Miles Brett (Violin), Aaron Hobday (Flute), Thomas Munford (Flute), Toby Auld (Saxophone), Thomas R Smith (Piano), Giles Barrett (Piano), David Collins (Organ) and Louis Myers (Bass Voice). Chris Wash (Vocals) and Fabian Trevelyan (Guitar) performed their own composition "Crystal Cave". There was an appreciative audience and the whole evening had a very good atmosphere generated by the music and the wine and cheese refreshments served by the PFA during the interval.
Graded Examinations. Congratulations are due to all who have recently passed graded practical examinations:
Thomas Munford (Grade 5 Flute)
Aaron Hobday (Grade 4 Flute with Distinction)
Jonathan Green (Grade 1 Clarinet)
Gareth Hewer (Grade 1 Alto Saxophone)
Mark Ritson (Grade 1 Alto Saxophone)
Mark Farthing (Grade 3 Alto Saxophone with Merit)
Simon Bishop (Grade 4 Tenor Saxophone)
Nicholas Jones (Grade 3 Cello)

Mr R S Davies - Director of Music

ICT NEWS

The School is to be given government NGfL funds to buy more PCs for student use.
It is hoped to upgrade the PCs in Computer Room 1 and relocate the existing PCs to Computer Room 3.

Mr P A Woolger - ICT Co-ordinator

PARENTS' AND FRIENDS' ASSOCIATION

Thanks to all those who supported the Wine and Wisdom evening last month. It raised £145.95. The winning team was TWL Goodbye after a tie-break.
We are always pleased to receive second hand uniform which can be sold to other parents and raise funds for the PFA at the same time. Please leave it at the school office marked for the attention of the PFA.
The next committee meeting is on Tuesday 13th June at 7.00 pm.
200 Club
The results of the March draw are as follows:
1st £25 Mrs J Miell (153), 2nd £15 Mr I Thomas (174), 3rd £10 Mr P Bunn (137)

OLD PHAROSIANS

Former pupils have been paying tribute to Mr Bob Murphy who was Head of English at the school for many years. He died last month. Mr Murphy joined the school in the late 1940s and taught hundreds, probably thousands, of boys, many of whom still remember him. A full obituary will be included in the next edition of the Old Pharosians' newsletter.
The association's committee met last month and made arrangements for the annual meeting, football match and dinner which will take place in September. It was agreed to provide some financial support for the pupils taking part in a European work experience programme during the Easter holidays.
A small group of Old Pharosians are meeting at the school today (Thursday) to discuss a new web-site for the association.

Mr G Tutthill - Newsletter Editor

SUCCESS OF OLD PHAROSIAN

We have been informed that Daniel Porte, an Old Pharosian who left the school in July 1994, has recently played in a rugby final at Twickenham.
Daniel used to play for the 1st XV rugby team at DGSB and when he left he went on to play fixtures in this country and travelled abroad to France and New Zealand. He now plays for Exeter Chiefs and the University of Exeter as Prop. It is with the University team that he played in the finals of BUSA at Twickenham. His team won on tries after extra time (24-24).

CCF NEWS

On the morning of the 21st March several members from the CCF (a mixture of DGSB and Astor pupils) went to see the aircraft carrier, HMS Illustrious. The tour took us round the main, and important, parts of the ship.
Firstly the tour took us to the area where the helicopters were lifted onto the top deck. The tour guide allowed us to walk through one of the Westland Sea King helicopters. We were then taken to the flight deck where we climbed the ramp and viewed the goalkeeper defence systems.
Next our tour took us to the bridge where we looked at the radar and navigation systems. After climbing up and down lots of ladders we arrived at the crew quarters and looked at the very cramped living conditions. In the Mess there was very little space to eat.
I would like to thank everyone involved in arranging and allowing the visit.

Report by Nicholas Jones of 8 Port

SPORTS NEWS

Rugby: Year 7 -v- Sandwich Community School
This was the best team performance of the season. In spite of being without our regular hooker and having to revamp the front row, the set pieces were competently carried out. There was some strong running from the backs in particular Aiden Gregory and Rory Kirkham.
Danny Collard had a useful game at scrum half and showed a consistent and accurate service from the base of the scrum, linking well with Rory Kirkham playing at fly-half.
Areas that need further practice are our tackling, support play and the rucking at breakdowns of play.
Tries were scored by Aidan Gregory (4), Rory Kirkham (2), Adam Chivington and James Jolliffe who scored one apiece.
The overall score was 40-0.

Mr M Grant, Subject Leader for Physical Education

TABLE TENNIS

The Dover Open Table Tennis Competition will take place at Dover Leisure Centre on Sunday 29th April from 9.00 am to 6.00 pm. The entrance fee will be £4.50.
The events will include:
Singles (Band A), Singles (Band B), Open Doubles, Allocated Doubles, Junior Singles (U14) and Junior Singles (U17).

Forms available from Paul Skelton, Workshop Technician