This is an account of our trip to Winmarleigh Hall in Lancashire from
20th May to 24th May 2002. Our intention is to update the site every day,
to keep parents and friends informed of what is happening on our residential trip.
Arrived safe and sound!
The perspective of the bus journey all depended on whether you were on the year 5 bus or not!! So from my perspective (Miss Shields) it was pretty good, we also discovered some budding 'Bop it' champions!! However, the year 6 coach was not so fun filled, with George the cheerful driver setting the tone, moaning constantly about other road users, the weather, other road users and the lack of sign posts, hence we got lost!!!
The final sick bucket score: Year 6 - 1 Year 5 Ė 0
After arriving a little late the
children, Miss Fox and Mr Veall were guided round the grounds. Myself, Mr
Callaway and Mrs Bayley were given the important task of tracking down
refreshments. During this short time the two coach drivers were rather busy!!
One managed to block the entrance and the other reversed into a mud patch and
had to be towed out by the local farmer and his tractor. We have made our
presence felt!! Smile and the world smiles with you, be miserable and you get
lost and stuck in mud!!
20th May 2002
After a quick tour of the hall we were all ready for lunch. One child tried adding sugar to her jacket potato rather than salt to improve the taste. It didnít work.
Straight into our afternoon sessions. We all had a go at e-mailing (that is when we could remember our passwords and when the Internet connection wasnít down!). Not a lot of note happened. One group did canoeing. No-one fell in and most stayed completely dry. Very different to the canoeing at Boreatton Park, for those of you who remember. Another group did BMX. There wasnít a helmet for the teacher, who ended up running behind the children. Billy-No-Bikes, as she should be called, did very well, but had some difficulty doing wheelies.
After dinner of burger and chips (I wonít try to describe the risotto that was on offer) it was the highlight of the day. Unpacking and bed making. It was noticeable that there had been some practising going on back in Scunthorpe. Most of the boys knew the difference between a pillowcase and a duvet cover. However, fitting them was another matter and they needed a great deal of assistance. Particularly the boy who was found INSIDE his duvet cover. Without a duvet. No wonder he was having trouble. Then came the hardest part of the day. Introducing the boys to the concepts of washing or showering before the rooms got too smelly.
Fingers crossed for a quiet night. Well, you can always hope canít you.
No rest for the wicked!
So what is job satisfaction? At 5am this morning Mrs Bayley and myself agreed with
George the Coach Driver, why smile when you can moan about everything? It would
appear that Mr Callawayís finger crossing jinxed the possibility of a good nights sleep.
They saying Ďdonít count your chickens until theyíre hatchedí springs to mind. After
turning the lights out at 10pm we thought we had got it cracked. Unfortunately at
12pm the angels were still awake. Not to mention 1am, 2am, 3am and 4am. Finally at
5am they decided to get up! Once the children were washed (or so they say) and
dressed the fun really started! There is a real sense of togetherness within the dorms
and at 5.30am a group of year six girls, who shall remain nameless, were concerned
that some children were missing out on the early morning ĎBop-ití session so decided
to set off the fire escape alarm. This made sure that anyone still asleep was well and
truly awake. So, how well the children slept is again, all a matter of perspective.
Unfortunately this time Mr Callaway, Mr Veall and Miss Fox came out on top.
Total hours sleep 1st Floor 3 2nd Floor 0
Fingers crossed for tonight and woe betide anyone who wakes me up so early
tomorrow. Some children may find themselves having an early morning run! That
wasnít an invitation for Matthew Dyke who would probably set his alarm especially for
the opportunity to go for a run.
After jumping the breakfast queue because one school had slept in (hmmm, we were
not at all envious) we managed to eat our breakfast quite uneventfully. The highlights
being Lewis Walters wrestling a banana to the death and Chloe Short discovering the
culinary delights of hash browns. To say we were rather subdued is a bit of an
understatement. Unfortunately we can not say the same about the socks! During
computer sessions the children have to remove their shoes, not a pleasant experience if
you are unfortunate enough to be shut in a small room with 12 pairs of sweaty socks.
The effects of this chemical warfare is quite astounding, one casualty has already been
reported. The fumes seem to effect brain function, when creating a webpage the
children were supposed to create ĎHome Buttoní however, the afore mentioned
casualty could only manage a ĎHome Bottomí. Itís tragic! And in one so young!
Tuesday Afternoon Part 1
Earlier today our first group of Zip-wire adventurers climbed the 100 foot (or there
abouts) to the 100 mile long (I think) zip wire. Fear got the better of some of the
Kangaroos. However, a valiant few soldiered on and hopped their way up the ladder
and onto to the launch pad (platform). The climbing skills of Ryan Jackson would put
many a monkey to shame. Even Mrs Bayley managed to reach the top, not quite as
elegantly and Ryan though! After the tree hugging climb the children could then relax
and take the quick ride along the zip wire, some took in the beautiful surroundings,
others waved to their friends and Mrs Bayley hung on for dear life!
One of the Year 6 groups have begun their training for the high ropes. The first stage
focuses on balance and team building it is quite a tame start to the training but passing
the high ropes apparently put the wind up one year 6 pupil, Iíll leave that to your
imagination! As for the high ropes the tension is building. Mr Veall is considering
walking the plank, Mr Callaway is undecided and Iím sure Miss Fox will give it a go.
However, there is a nasty rumor going round that the high ropes may need some
repairs which would mean that Mrs Bayley will miss out on the opportunity to walk
the top rope, Iím sure she is devastated.
Tuesday Afternoon Part 2
This afternoon definitely had a very
eerie feel about it! The lack of sleep finally began
to take itís toll. A good nights sleep is desperately needed! The children need a
nap or too as well!
There was a variety of activities this afternoon a few of which involved mud! Some
children have already run out of clean clothes although, where they hide them during
room inspection is a mystery. The points competition is heating up and I believe that
one room managed to only drop half a point last night. This could have been avoided if
Tanya hadnít dropped one of her many elastic bands in her braided hair!
The wall was the big event this
afternoon, Miss Fox set herself a personal target and
met it with ease, it is rumored that she would like another go. Most of the children
reached the top and touched the rather worn looking carpet at the top. I wonder how they hoover it? Perhaps Mrs Hall would know the answer to that one! Itís at this
point in the holiday that you begin to notice how resliant the children are. They are
being asked to do some pretty scary stuff and they go for it. These children are
children to be very proud of!
The end of the day finally arrived
and there was no arguing about lights out. One
group of Year 6 girls were already in bed at 9.30pm when Mrs Bayley arrived to do
the room inspections, of course this earned them an extra point. Michael Bagley was
sent to bed a year older after demolishing a chocolate cake in record time. Much to
our delight the children went to sleep straight away. Perhaps the first night was just a
one-off and the rest of the week we will be well rested? Watch this space....
Death at Winmarleigh Hall
The Winmarleigh Winker strikes again!
Today at Winmarleigh Hall the life
of Deputy Headteacher Mr. Callaway was tragically
ended. Mr. Callaway, aged 78 and to be honest looked his age, had enjoyed a good
nights sleep (unlike some) and a healthy breakfast. During what appeared to be an
innocent childrenís game he was struck by the notorious Winmarleigh Winker! It is
believed that the murder weapon was a simple blink of the eye but the local
constabulary have been unable to find the item in question. During an interview late
this morning Chief Inspector Dwayne Pipe was reported to have described the incident
as rather annoying as he was planning on leaving work early this afternoon so he could go
and play golf. Mr Callaway will be sadly missed, unlike his constant moaning about
the noise in room106.
What a difference a day makes. Wednesday morning the staff awoke bright and cheerful after a decent nightís sleep, except one member of staff (nameless) who was suffering with sore lips after breaking her record of eating 18 Pringles in one go. Stuffing her mouth with Pringles was the only way to keep her quiet. The children were so tired that they went to sleep very quickly and some actually needed waking up. And Tanya realised it wasnít full moon!! In fact the only people who got told off last night were the staff for making too much noise in the teachersí lounge(?) whilst trying to master ĎBop Ití.
Kieran Repton has been introduced to the concept of getting wet. Unfortunately it was not in the shower, which his room has not yet fully mastered, but in the lake when he fell in whilst canoeing. Sam Fewster had obviously heard about the face packs the girls were using last night and wanted to go one better, so he gave himself an all over mud bath when falling over getting into his buoyancy aid for canoeing. Zak celebrated his birthday by getting wet and muddy in team challenge, where Samantha got her second facial in the space of 12 hours.
The children who have volunteered
for the talent show tonight are also getting excited/nervous about the prospect
of performing in front of all four schools here this week.
Finally, rumours are going round that romance is in the air. Has Skippy found his bush baby?? More to be revealed later.
Yesterday saw the first victims jump from the high ropes.
The Hippos set an
impressive target with all 12 members climbing either 14 or 30 feet to the horizontal
log designed to turn the strongest pair of legs to jelly. Henry Lawton whipped up 30ft
before we could blink then dismounted with a rather impressive crucifix. The children
put their arms out a lean back until they fall (they are attached to a harness!) The
variety of dismount entertained the whole group and before we knew it we were back
in the games room bragging about our bravery! The other groups have certainly got a lot
to live up to.
But the achievements didnít end their. One group braved the weather and
launched themselves down the zip line with a running jump. Again all children took
part in this activity, some children even added free-style moves, we are getting rather
confident! Winmarleigh watch out!
The talent show lived up to all expectations. Thomas Hill demonstrated why you
should not get on his wrong side, the piece of wood didnít stand a chance! The year 6
girls danced and sang to their usual high standard and Craig Bradshaw entertained us
with his magical mysteries. If there had to be one child who stood out from the rest it
had to be Ashley Sykes. In the four years he has been at Berkeley I have only heard him
talk a handful of times. However, give him a stage and a few jokes and you canít shut
him up! Well done Ashley.
You would have thought that fatigue would begin to take itís toll at this stage in the
week. But yet again the Berkeley bunch amaze us, last night we had our first 10 out of
10 in the room inspections. Well done room 106, although you were making too much
noise when Miss Fox entered the room! (Still haven't found out why!!!!)
This morning the children have left the building with a real sense of determination, I
think we could be in for some impressive achievements. And as for the innuendoes
written on yesterdays report, well...
You would think Mr Callaway would have better things to do with his time than write
such drivel that is only really worthy of a Mills & Boon book!
We have managed to find a second
wind this afternoon, on my part this could be due
to the nap I had at lunch time. I was also on a high after scoring 100 ĎBop-ití. The
children were unimpressed and thought it was pretty dull news, talk about raining on
my parade! This afternoon saw children facing their fear of staying clean, Sarah
Langthorne just couldnít keep away from the mud, nice shoes Sarah! (Sorry Liz, we
didnít make her do it - honest!) Sarah has taken quite a bit of stick this week in one
way or another all I can say is itís a good job she has had Craig to support her this
week, check out the romantic picture on the Ďand yet more picturesí page. (Sorry
Sarah, thatíll teach you to ignore me when you see me in WHSmiths!)
Sammy Clement displayed real skill
on the high ropes this afternoon, Miss Fox assures
me that it was a spectacular sight! Apparently Sammy climbed to the top bar with ease
and took the subtle approach when dismounting. She fell of the top bar landed on
the lower bar and did a backwards roll off the bar before landing both feet securely on the ground. What a
After the disco the children went to
their rooms to pack. Iíll rephrase that. The
children went to their rooms and the year 6 girls on the second floor did everything but
pack! How they managed to create such a mess in such a short time is a mystery.
Most rooms went to sleep early, much to our amazement. For the first time this week
room 205 stayed up later than all the other rooms. 205 is a special room with 4 beds a
little staircase and balcony that leads to the bathroom. This room has been filled with
Shakespearean style plays, clothes show parades and simple fairy tale performances.
Last nights finale was Cinderella with Martha Watkins taking the leading role and Jo
Jo, Indiya and Emily in supporting roles. It was a good last night.
The last Day has arrived!
Breakfast was early this morning and the children had to start their sessions at 8.30am.
Needless to say we did not arrive on time! Rosie still hadnít packed at 8.25am. We all
apologise now for the state of the packing, it may be a good idea to dump the bags at
the skip on the way home.
Most groups have one out door activity today. The Iguanas were canoeing first
session and managed to stay reasonably dry. Good job as most children have run out
of clothes and I donít think George the coach diver would be too impressed if we all
walked onto his coach dripping wet. That is presuming the bus finds it way here!
Failing that we will walk!
Hope youíve enjoyed reading about the week as much as we have enjoyed providing
the entertainment. And thank you to all the people who have spent the time to
Even more pictures!
"Nope. None in here."
"You want me to do what??? Do you think I'm blonde?"
Hippos admire their art sculpture
Giraffes rock the boat with their penguin dance
"Keep walking straight ahead, Stacey, you'll be fine!"
Perspiration Pit Parade
"I luv u loads!"
"I Luv U more hunny bun!"
"Are you calling me a drip?"
All's Well That Ends Well?
After returning from Winmarleigh Hall things at Berkeley are cooking with gas! Corgi Registered of course! Emotions are running high, summer events are underway and secrets are out. It is rumoured that a certain Deputy Head and Governor are preparing for the annual ABBA Tribute convention, unfortunately rehearsals have been delayed due to an entrant suffering a back injury after wearing three inch heels!