News Archive

Autumn 2010

Old Millhillian Announced as a Life Peer

Sir Michael Bishop

Old Millhillian Sir Michael Bishop (School House 1955 - 1957) will be created a life peer and sit as a Conservative in the House of Lords, it was announced on 19th November. Sir Michael’s full title will be decided at a later date.

Sir Michael spent his working life in civil aviation. Born in Bowdon, Cheshire, he became interested in flying at a very early age, after being taken on a pleasure flight as a child. His aviation career started in 1963 at Mercury Airlines, which was taken over by British Midland in 1964. He became Managing Director in 1972 and led a management buyout in 1978. Sir Michael owned the controlling stake in British Midland until selling to Lufthansa a year ago, making the German airline second only to British Airways at Heathrow.

Chairman of Channel 4 Television between 1993 and 1997, Sir Michael has also been a generous sponsor and ultimately chairman of the board of trustees of D’Oyly Carte Opera. He recently ruled himself out of taking on the role of chairman of ITV.

Sir Michael Bishop was awarded the CBE in 1986, and was knighted in 1991. His charitable trust, the Michael Bishop Foundation, supports the Australian Flying Doctors service amongst many other charitable bodies including health, education and the arts.

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Inter Faith Week

21st-27th November was National Inter Faith week, and because of our dynamic and diverse community at Mill Hill, we took the opportunity to examine more fully the importance of inter faith dialogue. We were delighted that we were able to engage Augustine Booth-Clibborn from the government-supported UK Inter-Faith Network. He spoke in Chapel about the importance of young people getting involved in such dialogue in order to shape the future of our society for the better.

Running concurrently in the School, three other faith-based assemblies took place and students choose which one they attended, whether they were from that faith tradition or not. For our Jewish assembly we were very pleased to welcome into the school for the first time Rabbi David Lister, from Edgware United Synagogue who explained the Jewish festival of Hanukah. The Islamic assembly was delivered by students on the twin themes of the Pilgrimage to Mecca (The Hajj) and the festival of Eid al Adha which are celebrated at this time of year. The Sikh assembly, also presented by Mill Hill students, focused on the founder of the religion Guru Nanak, whose birthday is celebrated this week.

Our Chapel speaker described inter-faith dialogue as “engaging others with integrity to establish a common ground in which progress can then be made”. This spirit is very much alive at Mill Hill, and we seek to build on this strength in the future.

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Pupils meet Olympic Gold Medal Decathlete

On Friday 5th of November a group of sixth form PE students from Mill Hill had the pleasure of meeting Olympic Gold Decathlon athlete, Daley Thompson for a Channel 4 production. Mill Hill students took part in a fitness competition led by Daley Thompson against a group of 16-18 year olds from around the country. The competition included a series of circuits such as press ups, sit ups, throwing a medicine ball, cycling, standing broad jump, rowing, step ups and skipping. Each event had a boy and girl representative from both sides who fought for points. Overall Mill Hill won 9-7. It was an amazing experience meeting Daley Thompson, who is extremely friendly and a true inspiration, and was very encouraging throughout the day. It was a thoroughly enjoyable session for everyone and students went away with medals and autographs.

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Call to Remembrance

The Call to Remembrance is traditionally celebrated at Mill Hill School’s Memorial Gate at 11am on the 11th November. This year – for the first time in 90 years – the occasion had to be conducted indoors because of torrential rain, and took place in three separate services. The School Chaplain led the service in Chapel, with the Sixth Form and our Guest of Honour Brigadier Richard Dennis. The Brigadier was joined by representatives from ForceSelect (the Armed Forces recruitment organisation), Governors, Senior Staff and representatives from the Old Millhillians Club. The Fifith Form and Removes attended the service in The Large which was led by Peter McDonough, and included a cello solo by pupil Abraham Wallfisch-Jacobs. The third service was in the Patrick Troughton Theatre, for the Fourth Form, led by Joanna Duncan and Holly O’Connell.

CCF RAF Cadet Ryan Yasin, poppy wreaths at the war memorial, Abraham Wallfisch-Jacobs

Following the service in Chapel, the Battle of Britain Historical Society plaque was presented to CCF RAF Cadet Ryan Yasin. The plaque, which was donated by Old Millhillian Arthur Holmes Pickering, was installed next to the Stafford print in the Octagon.

The tradition of opening the Memorial Gate was established in 1920 by Lord Horne, with current pupils filing through in pairs to recognise the School’s war departed.

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House Music Competition

Weymouth – overall winners

In the last week of the first half term, the House Music competition was held over the course of three evenings. The standard of performance was fantastic, with the hard work put in by students to select and rehearse their music clearly evident in everything that was presented. The range of music also helped make the event all the more exciting – there were a capella choirs, a Chinese Guzheng and accompanying ensemble, rock bands, acoustic guitar-and-voice performances, a classical Piano Trio, and even a choir performing a full-on song and dance routine in the manner of popular TV show ‘Glee’ (complete with a hilarious microphone faux pas!).

Gardening Club with their Harvest Festival produce Mubin Shah (Ridgeway), Charlotte Nichol (Cedars), Dr Oliver Medlicott (Director of Music), Oliver Warren (Priestley), Abraham Wallfisch-Jacobs (Weymouth), Shahi Ghani (Atkinson)

Andrea Brown, Head of Music at Morley College, celebrated choral conductor and founder of the ‘Can’t Sing Choir’, had the unenviable task of adjudicating on the final night. After much agonising, particularly over the Junior Solo and Group Song categories, she selected what she considered to be the best performances. Congratulations to Abraham Wallfisch-Jacobs, Junior Solo winner; Charlotte Nichols, Senior Solo winner; Collinson House, Classical Ensemble winner; and Atkinson House, Group Song winner for a stunning rendition of ‘Oh Happy Day’. As an introduction to the musical potential that exists at Mill Hill, I could not have asked for a more inspiring beginning to my time at the school, and I offer my congratulations to everyone who took part. Congratulations also to Weymouth House, overall winners of the competition for the consistently high standard of their entries in each category.

Gardening Club with their Harvest Festival produce Atkinson – choral winners

Dr Medlicott, Director of Music

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House Cross Country

Jack Perry-Williams (Ridgeway)

Nearly 400 runners took to the School grounds or the public footpaths over the Totteridge Valley this week to represent their House in the House Cross Country, and there were some truly superb performances. The highlight was Naomi Kendal’s (Weymouth, Fifth Form) smashing of the Senior Girls course record with a time of 16mins 18secs. Other notable performances were from Gareth Kong in the Remove race, setting the record on this new course – wholly within the school grounds – of 7mins 55secs. Marcus Godfrey also ran a magnificent race to win the 4th Form event, and promises great potential.

Some of the runners

Gareth Kong (Priestley) and Sophia Humphrey (McClure)

The winners were:

4th Form

  • Individual Girl winner: Gabriela Grant (Priestley)
  • Individual Boy winner: Marcus Godfrey (School)
  • Winning House: Cedars

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  • Individual Girl winner: Sophia Humphrey (McClure)
  • Individual Boy winner: Gareth Kong (Priestley)
  • Winning House: School

Senior Girls

  • Individual winner: Naomi Kendal (Weymouth)
  • Winning House: Murray

Senior Boys

  • Individual winner: Jack Perry-Williams (Ridgeway)
  • Winning House: Atkinson

Overall House Shield Winners

  • Overall House Shield Winners: Murray

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Harvest Assemblies

Harvest Festival produce

The excellent recent faith assemblies took as their unifying theme Harvest and Thanksgiving for Nature, and pupils delivered various informative presentations at each. The Christian assembly included the decoration of chapel with produce grown in the Mill Hill garden by our own Gardening Club, as well as handing out seasonal food at the end. The Jewish assembly consisted of an innovative and creative film by Tommy Lennard on the Festival of Sukkot. It includes interviews with teaching staff, and also members of the public at a QPR v Millwall football match! The Muslim assembly included a song, composed and written by pupils, and the Hindu assembly focused on various Indian festivals of thanksgiving. These assemblies continue to inform and enrich our community life as we seek to understand and celebrate spiritual insights from different traditions.

Gardening Club with their Harvest Festival produce

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Mill Hill’s Got Talent

An extraordinary display of talent was enjoyed by all on Tuesday 5th October at our very own talent show, which raised more than £1200 for our Indian partner School, Sri Jayendra. The evening was hosted by Chening Duker in his amusing, slick and upbeat style, and began with a dramatic piano piece by Laurenz Boss who set an extremely high standard. Other outstanding performers followed: Max Ephson Clarke, Zara Prodromou, Katie Billingham, Amy Welch and Cassidy Hansen, Molly Duncan, Assume 59 (Alex Slade, Izzy List, Oliver Galgut, Alex Living, Tabby Mainstone, George DeSausmarez), Jack Clayton, Nathalie Kosky, Room 6 (Shahi Ghani, Chad Vigano & Daniel Stern), Rose Miller, and an energetic and entertaining dance by Chrissie Jaruchotiratanasakul & Pamela Penawou.

The School The headmaster with Nathalie Kosky

Our honourable and knowledgeable judges for the evening were Mr McDonough and Miss Ekwulugo, ably supported with sound vision and all things technical by Johnny Groman.

All the performers were good enough to win, being outstanding in talent and style, but following an almost impossible decision the judges voted and the Headmaster presented the following prizes:

  • 1st place: Molly Duncan with an emotional and perfect vocal solo performance of Over the Rainbow
  • 2nd place: Nathalie Kosky with a beautifully performed vocal solo
  • 3rd place: Rose Miller with a performance of her own composition

The audience vote winner was Room 6 with their casual and confident musical mash-up of Nothing on You.

Sri Jayendra group with cheque

After the performances Jo Batty gave a moving presentation about the serious reason behind the evening, raising money for our Indian Partner school Sri Jayendra, and many parents and friends were inspired to sponsor children at the school. Overall a great success - performers and audience enjoyed the show, and a substantial sum was raised for our Indian Partner School.

All enquiries about Indian child sponsorships to Miss Patricia Newsome.

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Professor Enthralls Audience at First Lecture

The School

Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys started our 2010-11 Lecture Series with a riveting account of the “eureka moment“ and subsequent development of DNA fingerprinting, and its vital importance in forensic science. Sir Alec is an excellent, entertaining speaker who not only explained to us how the science works, and underlined the serious implications for criminal cases – he also pointed out that it was this technique which proved beyond doubt that Bill Clinton was implicated in the Monica Lewinsky case! And it is not just proving guilt which is so important – many people have been able to prove their innocence through the use of genetic fingerprinting. Sir Alec’s lecture was given under the banner of the “Francis Crick Lecture”, and we had excellent feedback from the audience of pupils, parents, staff and guests who were thrilled to have this first-hand account of a discovery which has such global importance.

The next two lectures in the series promise to be equally engrossing. On 16th November journalist Linda Polman will present her controversial view that Western aid can actually prolong the conflicts instead of helping victims, based on her 20+ years reporting from war zones including Rwanda, Afghanistan, Sudan and Iraq. And in contrast, on 24th November we’re delighted to welcome Secret Millionaire star Nick Leslau – one of Britain’s wealthiest property tycoons – who will take a candid look at successes and failure with the aim of identifying what it is that characterises a successful business.

We have more fascinating Lectures lined up in the New Year. Click here for details of the whole series, and how to book your place.

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Foundation Day 2010

The SchoolGuest of Honour, Dame Carol Black, presented the prizes.

A full programme of events, prizegiving and tournaments was enjoyed by well over 1000 people who joined us at Mill Hill for Foundation Day 2010 on Saturday 25th September, and current pupils and parents, staff, Old Millhillians and invited guests mingled on Top Terrace, the Quad and the Sports Hall. Our traditional sporting events included netball and football tournaments, a swimming gala, a fives match against the Old Millhillians, and Rugby where a Mill Hill Colts side played The Leys. The Corps of Drums gave an excellent display on Top Field. Our new Chaplain, Rev Richard Warden delivered the Service of Commemoration of Benefactors in the Chapel.

For our annual Prizegiving ceremony the School was delighted to welcome Dame Carol Black as our Guest of Honour. Dame Carol is National Director for Health and Work – famously the originator of the ‘Fit Note’ – as well as Chair of both the Medical Royal Colleges and The Nuffield Trust. Dame Carol’s splendid Foundation Address to us appropriately dealt with the importance of breadth in education, and she surprised her audience by telling us that her first degree was awarded, not for one of the Sciences, but for History. The theme was expertly developed by Jo Batty and Chening Duker in their Senior Monitors’ Vote of Thanks. Prizegiving and Dr Dominic Luckett’s inspiring report on the academic year 2009-10 were celebrated by the packed audience in the Sports Hall.

Prizegiving

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School Magazine and Impressions Published Online

The latest Mill Hill School magazine, just published, gives an overview of the year’s events – we’ve also published it in turn-a-page format so it can be viewed instantly online from anywhere in the world. Click through to view Mill Hill School Magazine 2010.

Also in turn-a-page format is the latest edition of Impressions – a collection of pupils’ art and creative writing. This is the second edition to be presented online. Click through to view Impressions Magazine 2010.

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OM meets President Obama

Katie Ardrey meets President Obama

Hockey star Katie Ardrey (Collinson 2007-09) enjoyed the trip of a lifetime to the White House to meet President Obama, after she and her University of North Carolina team-mates won the NCAA championship. “We didn’t expect to be as close as we were, and the President shook just about everybody’s hand. It was a great honour to be there,” reports Katie in her regular column in the hockey magazine Push.

Katie won a hockey scholarship to the United States after completing her AS and A levels at Mill Hill. She made a major contribution to the School – not only in her sporting achievements (as well as excelling at hockey she also set a course record for the Five Mile Cup), and fundraising via sponsored runs for Cancer Research, but also as a keen member of her House. A great ambassador for hockey and Mill Hill, she represented her country playing for the England Under-18 squad during her time at School.

Read the article on Kate’s meeting in PUSH Hockey magazine.

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October 9th Open Morning

The School

A warm welcome awaits prospective pupils and their families at our Foundation Open Morning on Saturday October 9th. All three Foundation Schools – Grimsdell (pre-preparatory), Belmont (preparatory) and Mill Hill – will be open: Grimsdell from 10.30-12.30 and Belmont and Mill Hill between 9.30am and 12 noon. The Headmaster, Dr Dominic Luckett, will be giving talks at 10.15 and 11.15am. No appointments are necessary – please come and meet Senior Academic staff and tour the Schools. Parking will be signposted for each School from The Ridgeway.

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Lecture Series Begins

DNA spiral

Our 2010/11 Season starts with ‘Genetic Fingerprinting’ on September 22. Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys, who invented DNA fingerprinting, will tell us about the development of the science so far, and the work his team are undertaking for future applications.

The Lecture Series continues with a range of fascinating topics including the story of aid and war in modern times, ‘Secret Millionaire’ Nick Leslau examining the traits that create a successful business, aerodynamics through the eyes of Red Bull’s Chief Aerodynamicist, UCL’s Professor Steven Humphries on the effects of genetics on heart health and disease, and finally Dr Mark Glancy who will question whether we can trust the cinema’s portrayal of historical events. The first two of our new series of occasional ‘Heroes’ Lectures, presented by Mill Hill staff, focus on lead singer of the Kinks, Ray Davies, and Festival of Britain designer and Old Millhillian, Ralph Tubbs.

See the Lecture page for full details and to book tickets.

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Successful Summer of Cricket

Adam Rossington

One to watch, Adam Rossington, has again had an extremely successful summer. Having played for the Middlesex County Cricket Club 2nd XI before the end of the school term, he then had a further game for 2nd’s during the first week of July.

Adam was then involved in the Middlesex U17 games that got underway during the 2nd week of July playing matches against Sussex, Essex, Kent and Surrey. Each match was a one day game of 50 overs each and a two day game. In the one day games, Middlesex won all their games except against Kent. They won all their two days games putting them into a semi-final: a trip to Torquay to play Devon. It was a very tense and exciting game with Middlesex winning just 15 minutes before the rain washed the pitch out.

Adam played in the final against Nottinghamshire at Kent County Cricket ground at Canterbury on 1st and 2nd September. He said “It was a really good match with Middlesex winning by one run off the last ball of the day!”. On 16th and 7th July he played a two innings game for an England Elite Player Development XI against Sri Lanka U19s. He scored a creditable 40 runs in one innings and 51 in the other.

Adam was then picked to play in the England U19 T20 squad. Firstly, he played two games against a Durham 2nd XI at Chester-Le-Street, then went on to play Sri Lanka U19s at The Emirates Stadium at Chester-Le-Street (the Durham CCC ground).

He was due to play Sri Lanka again on 5th August for England U17 but unfortunately was unwell and couldn’t play. However, he did managed to shake off his illness in time to play in a triangular tournament against Scotland, where he reached his century, and Ireland for the England EPD XI in Loughborough in August.

Coming up for Adam now is a game at Lords, the Home of Cricket, in an MCC Schools match versus ESCA on Monday, 13th September, in a 50 over game. We wish him continued success.

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Millhillian Conducts at Charity Concert

Ben Glassberg

One of our rising music stars, Ben Glassberg, has been chosen to conduct a number of works at a forthcoming 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain concert. The RAF have commissioned this special concert with new pieces by students and professional composers. It takes place on Tuesday 14th September at 6pm and tickets are available at www.youngcomposersconcert.org.uk. We wish Ben every success.

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A Record Year For A Level Results

Girls hugging

This year’s A level results set a new record for the School. 75% of exams were graded A*-B, up from the 70% A and B grades obtained last year. Over 47% of exams were graded A* or A, with 13% being awarded A*, compared to 8% nationally.

With a 100% pass rate and over 92% exams graded between A* and C, these results are clearly a just reward for all the hard work put in by this year’s Upper Sixth candidates. The vast majority of our pupils have yet again secured places in their first or second choice universities. As with 2009, the most popular university destinations are Birmingham and Nottingham. 47 pupils opted for courses in our top seven universities, the two already mentioned and Leeds, Manchester, Imperial, Kent and UCL.

1 Birmingham
2 Nottingham
3= Leeds, Manchester
5= Imperial, Kent
7 UCL
8= Loughborough, Royal Holloway, Warwick, York
12= Oxford, Sussex, Essex, Regents Business School

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Old Millhillian Triumphs in National Design Competition

Winning design

We are both delighted and proud to announce that Michael Berwin, School House 2006, is the winner of the Crossrail competition to design station platform seating. Michael has just graduated from a four year course at University of Leeds, undertaking a degree in International Product Design. This course also involved spending a year in Brisbane, Australia, at the Queensland University of Technology. His winning design, pictured here, is a modular system that developed the idea of brand identity and adaptability.

Launched in March 2010 by Crossrail along with partners Atkins, Grimshaw and GIA equation, the competition challenges undergraduates to develop a concept design for a Crossrail station platform seat. The winning designer was selected by an expert panel of judges (Tom Wright (Atkins’ Design Director), Sir Nicholas Grimshaw (founding partner of Grimshaw), Julian Robinson (Crossrail Ltd Head of Stations) and Ailie MacAdam (Crossrail Central’s Commercial Director) with Ewan Mclean (Crossrail Central’s Chief Architect) as adjudicator) and offered a one year fixed term contract with Atkins.

Michael Berwin’s success follows an established Mill Hill tradition of producing world-class designers, including Ralph Tubbs OBE, FRIBA, the designer of the Dome of Discovery which was the centerpiece of the 1951 Festival of Britain.

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Inspectors ‘Greatly Impressed’ with Mill Hill Boarding

Ridgeway

We recently received a visit from a team of Ofsted inspectors who came to assess our boarding provision. The inspectors were hugely impressed by what they saw and awarded us top grades of either ‘outstanding’ or ‘good’ for all aspects of the inspection and an overall grade of ‘good with outstanding features’. This is a very positive outcome and one that reflects the excellence of that which the School offers to those who choose to board. Dr Luckett stated that he was “most grateful to all those parents and guardians who returned the Ofsted questionnaires to the inspectors and subsequently agreed to speak with them”. He also said that he was “very appreciative of the efforts of Miss Farrant, Mr Lawson, Mr Cuff and their boarding house teams and of all that they do to ensure that our boarders are so well looked after”.

A full copy of the report will be posted on this website in due course.

To see our boarding facilities, boarders’ news and house profiles, please click here.

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