April 2017: Icelandic trip brings geography to life

GEOGRAPHY came to life for students of Haslingden High School when they witnessed the spectacular sites of Iceland.

They saw for real the tectonic plates, as well as basalt rock columns and spectacular waterfalls.

A party of 44 GCSE students and five members of staff made the five-day trip.

Oliver Gardner, 14, said: “It was very good and interesting, When you got outside of Reykjavik there was just nothing for miles and it was like you were driving into the middle of nowhere.”

Students described how on one side the landscape was flat reclaimed land while on the other the huge snow-capped mountains could be seen.

Jessica Feeney, 15, said: “I can now put the geography I learn into reality. I will no longer just be reading about it but I will see it and I will be able to remember what I saw in Iceland.

“I think it will help me to understand what I am learning even better.”

The party went to the beach, but found it a complete contrast to their summer holiday destinations as the sand was black and in the ocean were icebergs.

Ellie-Rose Ormerod, 14, said: “We got to walk behind a waterfall and it was very cold and we all got very wet.”

They all agreed that their favourite part was getting to swim in the Blue Lagoon, a massive natural geothermal open air pool where they also enjoyed mud face treatments. They would all like to return to the country in the future.



April 2017: Cambridge trip for student Loren

A LEVEL student Loren Wilkins spent a week at Cambridge University on a neuro science course.

Loren, 17, from Rawtenstall is on the Villiers Park mentoring programme at Haslingden High School

Students who have been identified as potential Oxbridge candidates are put forward for the programme.

Loren said: “I began on the Villiers Park scheme at the start of Year 12 and it gives me the chance to be with other students who are very focused.

“I was on a very intense course at Cambridge and some of the things we did have not yet been experienced by second and third year students. I really enjoyed it.

“We met Dr Guy Sutton, who is based at Nottingham University and does research around the world and also a PhD student Sophie Betka and they ran the course between them.

“We studied the basics, learnt about neurones and all the chemicals in the brain and mental disporders.

“At the end of the week we did a presentation on Alzheimers,  did research into the causes and dissected a sheep’s brain.

“We also had a day in Cambridge in the town and went to The Whipple Museum.

“I definitely want to do further science related study and I want to take bio medicine at university and then a post-graduate course in dentistry.”

Loren said she had so far been looking at studying in Liverpool, Sheffield or Manchester.

Mentors from Villiers Park work with students from Years 10 to 13 at Haslingden High School. The scholars get to go to Lancaster University for a residential, to other participating schools for workshops and to Cambridge University.

April 2017: Caring Mia uses wages to buy Easter eggs for others

CARING teenager Mia Halstead worked her usual Saturday shift then turned her wages into Easter Eggs and donated them to her school appeal.

Mia, 14, from Haslingden High School has worked in Cissy Green’s shop in Haslingden town centre since the beginning of Year 8.

She said: “I work on a Saturday and also a couple of days after school. I am not saving money for anything at the moment so I decided to buy Easter eggs.

“At first I brought in 13 eggs and now I have added a further six. I just thought I didn’t need the money and when you are down, chocolate always cheers you up.”

The Year 9 student wants to be a University Professor of Philosophy.

Teacher Lisa Southee, who organises the collection, said: “Once again Haslingden High’s students have taken the opportunity to help others and have given generously.

“This charity event has seen our students donate around 200 Easter eggs that will be given to the Women’s Refuge in Manchester, a local food bank and Coffee 4 Craig.

“Mia spent her Saturday job wages on eggs for the Women’s Refuge – to ensure children who are facing a difficult situation have a small treat over Easter – what an inspiration she is to others.”


April 2017: Band in final of two music competitions

A STUDENT band is a finalist in two prestigious competitions and has already lined up a gig.

Thursday’s Child is made up of 15-year-old Year 10 students from Haslingden High School Lewis Fielding, India Flavell, Kayleigh Mableson and Joe Charles.

Head of Expressive Arts at the Broadway school Kevin Gibbs suggested they become a quartet after hearing India and Kayleigh singing harmonies at Christmas.

Joe has been a drummer for a long time and plays the cajon in the group; a box shaped percussion instrument, while Lewis plays guitar. Kayleigh is a vocalist while India provides the harmonies and also plays percussion.
A recording of the group singing and playing an acoustic cover of Amy Winehouse’s Valerie has already had nearly 900 views on YouTube. When the group entered Sing Bolton Sing, a competition in partnership with Bolton FM and the Bolton News, and in the Student Union Bar heat they sailed through to the final in May.

At Rochdale Festival of Performing Arts the group entered the rock and pop category and their performance earned them a mark of 91 per cent, way ahead of the nearest group and again a place in the final in May. Joe said: “Mr Gibbs came up with the idea of putting us together and it seems to have worked.”
Other songs on their play list include Sweet Child of Mine, Jolene and Oops I Did it Again.

They have already been booked to play at The Woolpack in Haslingden on Friday April 7 and at Edenfield Fete in June.

Thursday’s Child will also be playing at the Blackburn and Bolton Teenage Markets.

India said: “My older sister Lydia came up with the name because Thursday’s Child has far to go. She is studying broadcast journalism at Nottingham Trent University.”

Kayleigh said: “I wouldn’t go on a TV talent show like Britain’s Got Talent because it is fixed.”

India added: “We don’t want to be judged, we want to have fun so going on a show like that would not be any good.”

To watch the group follow the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-VIHykfDCQ

March 2017: Trampolinists clinch second spot in national comp

A TRAMPOLINING team from Haslingden High School repeated last year’s performance and bounced to second place in the National Schools’ Trampoline Finals.

The team of Max Constant, Ben Wilson, Jack Waters and James Peacock completed individual routines and until the last minute were in first place in the U14s competition.

Max, 12, who has been trampolining since he was four, said: “We were separated into two groups to compete and I was on my own in one group while Ben, James and Jack went together.”

Jack, 12, said: “Max is always so confident and bouncy but I could see that he was feeling nervous.”

The individual results put Max 7th, Jack 8th, James 9th and Ben 10th which landed the team second place.

Max said: “The team that beat us were all from Year 9 and they had one really good person on their team, but they will have to move up a group next year so hopefully we will be able to win.”

Jack said: “I felt the atmosphere was very relaxed and the venue was familiar to us because we had been there last year so we felt quite at home.”

The team practise for two hours on a Wednesday and around 90 minutes on a Friday. Jack also practises weekly at Bury and Max will be joining him.

They both also visit Liverpool Trampoline Centre a couple of times a month for 5 hour intensive training sessions.

At the inter-school Rossendale Trampoline Competition held at Fearns Community Sports College, Stacksteads, Haslingden High School’s girls and boys team both won with individual successes for Jack and Milly Bolton.

March 2017: Cricketers narrowly miss out on regional final

CRICKETERS from Haslingden High School missed out on a place in the regional finals by just one run.

The U13 girls’ cricket team finished runners’ up in the Lancashire final with Ormskirk School scooping the place in the next round.

Eight teams won through to the Lancashire final at Bolton Arena and when Haslingden High School played Burnley’s Blessed Trinity it ended up another one run nail biter.

Chloe Leftly, 13, was batting facing the last ball, when the Blessed Trinity coach paused the game while he reconfigured all the fielders.

Being left-handed the opposition was unsure where Chloe would hit the ball.

She said: “I was waiting at the wicket while he reorganised. I like to bat and get runs, but I was feeling really nervous.

“I didn’t want to miss it, but then when I hit it over the net and managed to get the run to win the game.”

Beth MacDonald, 12, said: “We came second out of 115 schools and only lost by one run.”

The team is not downhearted at narrowly missing going through to the regional finals and will be back in training for an outdoor competition in June.

Beth said: “I just love the sport and love it when we achieve something like catching someone out or hitting a six.”

Neve Harris, 12, who also plays for Edenfield, said: “Bowling is my favourite because I feel like I am in control.”

Team members Libby Humphreys, 13, also plays cricket for Norden and Abby Clarke, 12, plays for Baxenden and five of the eight-strong team also play for the school football team.

March 2017: New basketball team runners up in Rossendale tournament

A SCHOOL’s new basketball team competed in the Rossendale Tournament and finished in second place.

The Haslingden High School Year 9 team was competing in only its second major competition against two teams from BRGS, All Saints and hosts Alder Grange.

The Haslingden team won against All Saints, BRGS 2 and Alder Grange but lost to BRGS 1 – the eventual winners.

Freddie Corless, 14, and Max Harrison, 13, both play for the school team and also Lancashire Spinners, whose home is at Alder Grange.

Max said: “The competition was pretty well organised and was not played over a full court.

“There were four games played at a time over 10 minutes. It was really useful for us to get to know each other’s strengths and what positions we were best playing in.”

March 2017: Engineers win title for third year in succession

TEENAGE engineers outclassed the opposition to win the Rotary Club Technology Tournament becoming the first students to win for the third year running.

The team of Year 11s from Haslingden High School solved a tricky task at Nelson and Colne College to win their age group.

Just as 16-year olds Leon Barker-Williams and Lewis Simpson along with Lauren Sumner and Jacob Cowan, both 15, did in Year 10 and in Year 9.

They had to build a vehicle to run along the inside of a cut drainpipe. It had to shunt blocks out of the pipe and then reverse back to the start.

Leon said: “We had a motor and had to create a switch and also a chassis for the vehicle and then it had to move the 10 blocks of wood.”

Lewis said: “It was one of the easier tasks that we had been set compared to the previous competitions. It was only once we had made it and we carried our trials that we encountered a few problems.

“The inside of the pipe was slippery and the wheels would not grip so we solved it by putting elastic bands on them.”

Some of the other teams found their vehicles were unreliable while others didn’t manage to finish the task.

Lauren, who enjoys the design side, said: “The tricky bit was making the switch and connections and making sure the vehicle was able to reverse.”

Head of Design Technology Craig Greenwood said: “They have been a winning team for the last three years so I wasn’t going to change the members. It is fantastic achievement to win the trophy three times.”

The school’s Sixth Form team were runners up in the advanced section.

Lewis, Leon and Jacob want to be mechanical engineers and Lauren is hoping for a career in design.

March 2017: Students get to see heroes play on Spanish football trip

FOOTBALLING students from Haslingden High School got tips from the top on an amazing five-day trip to Valencia in Spain.

Forty Year 9 and 10 students enjoyed a tour of Valencia’s stadium, sitting in the chairs normally used for press conferences and admiring the trophy cabinet as well as the pitch.

Training sessions with top Spanish coaches were held twice a day where the students learned new skills that they will now take to their teams back in Lancashire.

Joe Rodwell, 14, who plays for Preston North End as well as the school team, said: “We got to see Villarreal play Real Madrid. The noise inside the stadium when either side scored was the biggest uproar I have ever heard at a match.

“There was a really good atmosphere and we got to see Ronaldo, one of the leading footballers.

“In the training sessions we learnt so much, it is a different style of play in Spain.

“It is all about passing and they tell you off if you kick a long ball and unlike in the English game you are encouraged to get the ball as near to goal before taking a shot.”

Jacob Holland-Wilkinson, 14, said: “It was a great experience and the facilities at Valencia were quality and the weather was fantastic.”

Joe and Josh Marsden, 14, are both in Year 10 and so got to play a match against the Valencia academy team for 80 minutes with the final score 2-1 to the home side.

Josh said: “We got to see players of the future in the Valencia side and one Chinese player was just amazing.”

March 2017: Cakes a plenty to raise funds for Facial Palsy Charity

WELL over 100 cakes and buns have been made and sold at Haslingden High School to raise money for Facial Palsy Awareness Week.

The charity’s national initiative was the brainchild of Headteacher Mark Jackson’s Personal Assistant Kay Turner who has had Bell’s Palsy twice, first in 2003, which affected her left side, and then in 2012 it affected her right side.

She said: “It is a fairly new charity, having only started in 2012 and Facial Palsy is something that not a lot of people know about.

“Eighty per cent of people who get it recover fully within the first three months, 20 per cent don’t and five per cent never recover and don’t even get partial recovery.

“Quite often they don’t get treatment or it is considered cosmetic.”

Mrs Turner has now written her own story on the Facial Palsy UK website.

She began fundraising for the charity at school three years ago and now the charity’s deputy chief executive officer Karen Johnson has taken her initiative and made it a national event.

Mrs Turner made nine Victoria Sponges, six chocolate cakes, 80 buns and a lemon drizzle cake.

She also received donations from her daughter Gemma, teaching assistant Hazel Ingrouille and her mother Linda Ogden and student services receptionist Jo Shepherd.

Four Prefects also helped with the fundraising: 16-year-olds Seth Deal, Beth MacDonald and James Turner and Xander Davidson, 15.

Mrs Turner added: “The week is called #sharemyhappy because when you have Facial Palsy your face does not always show that you are happy, it is about the support that you get from friends and family and without it this is a difficult thing to get through.”

In 2015, Mrs Turner was given a trophy by the charity in recognition of her raising £13,400 by organising a music festival which also increased awareness of Facial Palsy.