The Steephurst Summer Fête was threatened by the looming rain clouds on Monday, but after a reshuffle, a wet weather plan was formed and the Steephurst helpers set up as planned. Luckily, the rain stopped just as the first few people arrived, and it stayed dry for the remainder of the fête.
Summer was in the air as queues of students from all year groups lined up for a hotdog at the barbecue stand, went to the face painting stall or attempted to guess how many sweets were in the jar in the courtyard. The waffle and pancake stand was also a great success, and within the hour, the large quantities Kamaya had dedicated her afternoon to preparing had been wolfed down! Many students and teachers had spent the weekend baking for the fête, so the cake stand’s delicious array of baked goods were also popular.
Behind the scenes, Aria had been busy planning the Summer Fête and was undoubtedly the backbone holding it all together. The event raised £700, which will give Grace – a young girl we sponsor through Action Aid – her education this year, and go towards some other charities that will be chosen in due course.
By Georgie Nugent, Girls’ Houseparent and Teacher of Drama
Spring is here and we are back! Flat is full once more of music, laughter and lots of chatter. We are making up for lost time, but it is a lot to take on board and the students are working hard to take it step-by-step. To go from living within our own little bubbles at home in an established routine that works for each one of us, to being back within the heart of this vibrant community, is a huge gear change for everyone.
We have worked hard to ensure the houses feel calm and welcoming, a place where there is space to breathe and relax amid busy days and to remember to focus on friendships and inclusion. The message to hand in devices to encourage better bedtime routines seems to have worked very well, with a collective understanding that it is in everyone’s best interests.
This first week back, we have had fun roasting marshmallows over the firepit (thanks to Head of Outdoor Work Andrew Martin for wheeling in barrow loads of logs) and hot chocolates in the flat courtyards, with the idea that reconnecting with our friends is at the core of getting back to normal. We have also been thinking about those members of our community that perhaps have had a difficult lockdown or who are still in lockdown all around the world.
Acting on the School Council’s feedback, the cooked breakfasts have been reinstated and received with glee by many of the students. The flat Charity Committees and Eco Committees are enjoying sharing ideas with each other to make our community and the world a better place. We are also delighted that the barriers within the year groups enforced by COVID restrictions last term have been relaxed and we can work and play in our year groups, united as a community. There is a sense of relief in the air and a feeling that we can dare to look forward and plan for a wonderful summer term.
On Sunday, we had a belated Halloween party on Steephurst. With lots of volunteers from different year groups, we started setting up at 2pm. Block 4 and 6.1 made a delicious pumpkin soup, while volunteers from all year groups decorated the courtyard with balloons, garlands and stickers. COVID related restrictions meant there were staggered times for students to come and enjoy the festivities. We made a photo booth and poster and there was popcorn, hot dogs, soup, hot chocolate, make-up and temporary tattoos to keep everyone entertained. Despite the restrictions, it was really nice to dress up collectively and share a carefree evening together.