Reception: 01235 520173

Admissions: 01235 530593

Executive Assistant to the Headmistress: 01235 546502

Bursary: 01235 520657

Joint Bus Service Co-ordinator: 01235 546565

St Helen and St Katharine, Faringdon Road, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, OX14 1BE

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'Peter Pan' - 1-2 July

On two sweltering July evenings the school was treated to a swashbuckling childhood favourite: Peter Pan. YPH was transformed into Captain Hook’s infamous pirate ship for the epic production, directed by Ms. Watt, involving 118 girls  and a cast of 63 from Years 7,8 and 9.
Audiences chuckled at the mischievous deeds of Peter Pan (Alba Eisner, Year 9) and his lost boys as they fought the evil Captain Hook (Emma Richardson, Year 9), his red-nosed side-kick Smee (Dulcie Good, Year 9) and his band of pirates (whilst also fanning themselves with programmes!). These comical fight scenes were accompanied by the sweeter ones between Wendy (Caroline Conder, Year 9) and Peter as she struggled to understand the concept of Peter never wishing to grow up. The outstanding plotline was also complimented by a variety of brilliant songs that the audience thoroughly enjoyed, in no small part thanks to the amazing band led by Ms. Rakowski, and some fabulous lighting created by Mr. Verjee and his team of follow spotters (of which I was one!). Backstage crew also helped make the production run smoothly and some even helped Peter and the Darlings fly!
It was no wonder that all of the tickets for the production were sold in only four days, and those that bought them certainly weren’t disappointed – the show was magnificent.

Jessie Lester, Y11 Work Experience Student and Follow-Spotter

See more photos in the gallery...


Rowing Update

After the National Schools Regatta in late May where Clare Pearson, Year 11, Georgie Robinson-Ranger, Year 10 and myself (Florence Wiggins, Year 11) won double gold medals for Henley Rowing Club (in j16 and j15 quads and eights) we’ve had an exciting few weeks.
Clare and I both made it to the final of Henley Women’s Regatta, but unfortunately a crab just off of the start left us 7 lengths behind the opposition so we lost, despite catching up three lengths over the course of the race. in June, Clare and I qualified for Henley Royal Regatta in the Junior 18 Women’s quads event- the Diamond Jubilee Challenge cup. We also both secured a place in this years J16 GB vs France match as the women’s quad. Georgie Robinson Ranger came fourth in her initial time trial and raced again in a repechage where her four came through in a dead heat to Lady Eleanor Holles School - they raced again this evening and beat LEH securing four seats in an eight with Marlow, so we are all off to London Docklands on the 10th July!

Florence Wiggins, Year 11


Junior Mathematical Olympiad Results

Congratulations to Sabine Allen, Year 7, who has obtained a Certificate of Merit in the UK Junior Mathematical Olympiad, the harder of the two follow on rounds to the UK Junior Mathematical Challenge.


Royal Society Summer Exhibition - 1 July

A group of 26 girls from Year 8 and Year 9, accompanied by Miss Bourne, Dr Chater and Dr Wait, visited The Summer Science exhibition in London.
This exhibition is an annual display of the most exciting cutting-edge science and technology in the UK.  Lydia Holt, from Year 9, writes: 'It was an amazing event with over 20 different exhibits ranging from studies on lung cancer to new projects in the engineering of plasma rockets. There were various talks though out the day and, despite the blistering heat, everyone had a great time.'


Lower Sixth Chemists, Spectroscopy Workshop - 30 June

On Tuesday 30th June, Dr Saba accompanied a group of 13 girls to Reading University Chemistry Department, where we began the day by attending a lecture on mass spectrometry, infra-red spectroscopy and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), which will link in with our A2 study next year.
Our problem solving skills were put to the test in the next lecture on the application of all the analytical techniques, and the questions we were given to work on, mainly collectively, to find the structures of organic compounds based on the information provided to us really tried our logic and reasoning skills. We were then lucky enough to be shown the analytical instruments and given brief descriptions of their function and importance, which was fascinating. Having enjoyed our lunch in the sunshine, we returned to one of the lecture theatres for a talk from the admissions tutor at Reading, followed by a wonderfully explosion-filled seminar from a member of the chemistry department, who clearly illustrated and explained to us the integral part that chemistry plays in everyday life.

Annie Hargrove - Lower Sixth


SHSK Playwriting Competition 2015

This year has been the most successful year for the SHSK Playwriting Competition so far – we had a record ten entries, with fifteen participants in total!
Entrants gathered to hear feedback and the announcement of a winner by Mrs Mason, adjudicator and founder of the competition. Mrs Mason commented on how impressed she was with the quality of all the entries, in particular the naturalistic dialogue and the wonderfully imaginative, three-dimensional characters that were created within the plays.
The results:
In first place was Ellie Thornton (9M) with her play 'The Playground Theory', a gripping revenge story set in a dystopian future. As the winner, Ellie now has the chance to cast, direct, and stage her production for a special lunchtime performance next academic year!
In second place was Sophie Amlot (7M) and Tilly Morley (7M) with their play 'Cindy-Lou’s Circus', and in third place was Jess Ferguson (9J) with her play 'Where to Next?'. Both plays were highly commended by Mrs Mason and showed great promise.
Congratulations girls!


British Dressage Team Success

we are delighted to report that Rebecca Bell, Year 11, has been selected to represent Great Britain in the Pony European Championships taking place in Malmo, Sweden in August.

Good Luck!


Equestrian National Championships Qualifier

Many congratulations to Anouk Mauree, Year 7, who was runner up and qualified for the  Equestrian Schools National Championships in the Open class on Sunday 28 June.  Also very well done to club captain Estelle Stables, Year 9, who also contested the class but had an unlucky fence down.


Junior Mathematics Kangaroo Results

Congratulations to Louise Blackman and Catriona Graham, both Year 8,  who have obtained Certificates of Merit in the new Junior Kangaroo competition. This is a 1 hour multiple choice follow on round to the UK Junior Mathematics Challenge.

Well done girls!


The Women’s Engineering Society (WES) is a network of women, engineers, scientists and technologists who campaign to encourage women to participate and to achieve as engineers, scientists and as leaders.  Their vision is a nation in which women are as likely as men to choose to study and work in engineering and one in which there are enough engineers to meet a growing demand.  On Tuesday 23rd June WES focused their attention on the great opportunities for women in engineering, at a time when it has never been more important to address the engineering skills shortage.  By encouraging girls into engineering careers we will not only be increasing diversity and inclusion – a business imperative – but also enabling the next generation to fill the substantial future job opportunities that have been predicted in this sector.

At St Helen’s girls in Year 10 had the opportunity to hear from inspirational engineers Judith Hackitt, Chair of UK HSE and Clare Simpson, aeronautical engineer (and old girl of St Helen's) who works for Mercedes F1.
Year 9 developed their skills in problem solving and manual dexterity as they designed, constructed and tested a robotic arm and girls in Year 8 applied their understanding of structures as they designed and built spaghetti and marshmallow towers – aiming for both height and strength!
Girls in Year 7 have worked in their DT lessons to build a steady hand game and their recent research into the roles of engineers and engineering is on display for all to see.

We were also delighted to welcome back two recent leavers of St Helen's who are currently studying Engineering at Durham, they were admirable ambassadors!




Recent Equestrian Team Results

There have been a few competitions recently so just an update on some of the results:
Big congratulations to Sophie Hardman, Year 5, who won her class at the Manor Prep Combined Training in May and, at Cherwell Show Jumping yesterday, won class 1 and came 5th in class 2. Sophie has had an excellent year competing for St Helen's and has been placed at every one of the 6 or more competitions at which she has represented the school and has  also qualified for the Grass Roots Finals.
The Cherwell competition was well supported by St Helen's with Alex Brown, Year 9, and Lottie Hay, Year 8, also taking part.  Alex had a fabulous result coming 3rd in class 4 (70cm). Massive well done to Lottie Hay who has taken a big step up from where she was last year as she entered and completed her first 90cm.
Congratulations also go to Anouk Mauree, Year 7, who was placed in 3rd in the pony section (5th overall) of the Open Advanced (1.10m-1.20m) at Felbridge – a show at which they had giant cuddly toy pyramids as fence dressing much to the alarm of many of the horses!
We look forward to a busy year next year with a few of the new starters also being keen equestrians to add to our growing band of enthusiastic riders.


Art Department Summer Show - 19 June

We were delighted to welcome visitors to our annual Summer Show, it was exciting to see such a wide range of work on display; as well as GCSE, AS and A level work, every year group from Y5 upwards was represented.
The three subject areas represented, Art, Ceramics and Design and Technology together with examples of what had been made in workshops and by pupils on visits to galleries and museums.
To make the event even more special, members of the music department played at different exhibition venues giving another dimension to a successful evening.


History Dinner - 18 June

Lower Sixth historians and members of the history department were treated to a wonderful talk on Josephine, the first Empress of France delivered by famous TV historian Professor Kate Williams. We then all sat down to a fantastic French themed dinner prepared by our very own Parisian chef Olivier Humbert.
It seemed a fitting way to spend the evening of June 18th 2015 - the bicentenary of Napoleon's final defeat at the hands of the British at the Battle of Waterloo!


Summer Concert - 17 June

On a glorious summer's evening, it was the turn of our younger musicians to entertain parents and friends in YPH. From Wind Band's spirited opening number, it was clear that an exciting programme lay ahead and the audience was certainly not disappointed. Music ranged from the James Bond theme, to themes from Holst's Jupiter and Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake and the ensembles varied in size from a quartet to a full symphony orchestra.
The girls performed with great musicality and lots of energy and it is good to know that the future of music at St Helen's is in such safe hands.
Particular thanks to Miss McAdam who was conducting Lower School Choir and Sinfonietta for the last time - she will certainly be missed by them and by all in the music department.

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