Stoke Damerel Honours Exceptional Achievements at Annual Awards Ceremony
The prestigious annual awards ceremony at Stoke Damerel was held tonight, marking an evening dedicated to celebrating the remarkable accomplishments of its students.
The event brought together the school community to reflect on the past year, recognise students’ achievements, and reward them for their contributions to both the college and the wider community. It was a night of pride, inspiration, and joy as the student’s academic successes, personal achievements, and dedication were applauded.
The ceremony welcomed a special guest, Ben Heason, a professional climber, adventurer, and coach. Ben, one of the UK's leading climbers, has spent over 15 years pursuing his passion full-time. His bold expeditions around the world have earned him global recognition. Ben not only shared his exhilarating experiences but also emphasised the importance of planning, preparation, teamwork, and determination required to succeed in such challenging endeavours. His presence added an extra layer of motivation and excitement to the event.
Iris, a Year 7 student, shared her positive experience of joining Stoke Damerel. Moving back from Budapest during Christmas, she found the school community welcoming and supportive. Iris said, “I quickly made friends, particularly in drama lessons, and through the amazing character curriculum opportunities available to me.” She mentioned attending Drama and Musical Theatre Clubs, receiving certificates and badges for her achievements, and recently received an Excellence Award.
Archie, also a Year 7 student, highlighted the numerous avenues provided by Stoke Damerel to develop character and confidence. He proudly mentioned being part of the Student Council and serving as a History Ambassador. Archie and his peers organized and delivered an assembly on the Holocaust for the entire school. Archie went on to say, “At the start of the year - Aspire, Achieve and Thrive were just three words but now we know exactly what they mean and how they underpin everything we do in order to have bright and successful futures.”
Isabelle, a Year 8 student, expressed gratitude for the supportive friends she has found at Stoke Damerel. Being part of the Student Council has allowed her to influence school policies, empowering her to make a positive impact within the community.
Ebonnie, in Year 9, reflected on a productive year filled with memorable experiences, “We’ve had exciting trips off to Lisbon, Paris, and skiing in Italy, to name a few. We have had external visitors come in and talk about future opportunities and to top it all off Year 9 began our Bronze award in The Duke of Edinburgh, we've had some amazing walks and overnight stays which have been really fun.”
Oscar, a Year 11 student, acknowledged the transition from fun and exciting moments to the more demanding and stressful challenges of Year 11. Alongside the regular curriculum, the students dedicated an extra hour each evening to revision, availing themselves of opportunities to take on additional GCSEs. Stoke Damerel has provided them with the best chances to succeed in their education. Oscar and his peers are planning to continue their educational journey at Stoke Damerel, studying subjects like Maths, Geography, and Biology for their A Levels.
Gracie and Dan, representatives of the Sixth Form, shared their perspective as part of the class of 2024. Their journey from GCSEs to A Levels was made smoother by the support and preparation provided by the Year 11 pastoral team and the Sixth Form staff. “Mr Tinkler and Mrs Bray are always looking out for opportunities for us regarding what we will do post-18 - whether it’s open days, or school visits or online opportunities like the Exeter scholars programme, we are very fortunate to have their expertise available. Moving forward, if the support we have is anything like what we have benefitted from and experienced so far, I think we are all in very secure hands.””
A heartfelt thank you was extended to all the staff for their hard work and dedication in organising the event. Above all, congratulations to all our runners-up and winners, who embody hard work, commitment, and dedication. Stoke Damerel wishes you all the best of luck in all your future endeavours. The annual awards ceremony stands as a testament to their achievements and the supportive environment that has nurtured their growth.
Poem by our Poet Laureate, Sophie:
Your Adventure Awaits
Your adventure awaits you, on the long labyrinth of fate.
It will waltz you through life with a feigned sense of kindness and ease,
Just for you to turn the corner and be back at the beginning
All the way at the bottom of the collosal mountain.
Does it vex you with fury? Does it make you want to give up?
You may wallow in self pity, fraught with doubt and melancholy.
You may be consumed by self-loathing and wrath.
Or, you can use your failure as inspiration to achieve greatness and to thrive.
To climb the mountain higher than you ever dreamed possible,
And to embrace both victories and losses with pride and perseverance.
Carry your determination, resilience and perseverance with you.
Preserve them and shape them into your core values,
Let them mould you to the pinnacle of relentless power
Only then will you be the master of your mind and adhere to persistence.
The peak of the mountain is infinite; you can scale beyond the top.
Ambition is limitless once you gain the mind for it,
It is not bound by expectations, nor arrested by the skies and the vibrant stars.
Life is failing and then learning to prosper despite the feeling of futility,
Life is about your individual journey of development.
Your adventure awaits you; make it count.