Dates for the Diary
Thursday 17th October 3.00pm
Launch of Great Ideals Reaffirmed, the new book about Leighton Park and World War II by John Allinson, OL Charlotte Smith and Penny Wallington book a place
Tuesday 19th November: 6.00pm
JBH Speech competition: Drinks Reception for former winners and participants
Wednesday 13th November 6.00pm
London OL Drinks with Mark Simmons: at The Antelope, Eaton Terrace. For more information and to book a place, click here.
Friday 24th January 3.00pm
“Bullets & Bylines: From the Frontline of Kabul, Delhi, Damascus and Beyond”: OL Award winning war journalist will be speaking about his book and fascinating experiences. RSVP.
Saturday 30th March
OLs v LP Community Sport Morning: Football and Hockey
"We had sunshine and twenty years to cram into a few hours. It was worth every minute. To see so many people from the class of '95 together, first in a period of silence, then back to our old noisy ways - with a few partners and children now - was magical. To be with the people who made it so special once more - I would not have missed for the world.”
Each year group is invited back every 10 years to spend a day at the Park, reconnecting with old friends, meeting past and present staff, and seeing how the school has changed.
This year the 8s reunion was held on Saturday 12th May for the classes that left in 2008, 1998, 1988, 1978, 1968 and 1958 (including early leavers who would have left in these years if you’d stayed on until A-levels).
Do make sure we have your up to date contact details so that you don’t miss out on your reunion.
"Leighton Park felt like home, rather than a boarding school."
Although we love welcoming OLs and Friends back to Leighton Park, we know many of you are too far away to come to events and reunions at the school. To help keep our wider community in touch, we have arranged several regional meet ups, enabling OLs to get together with others in their local area.
Regional events have been held in Cambridge, Oxford, London, Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds, as well as Hong Kong and Brunei.
If you would like to start up a regional network or help organise an event in your area, please get in touch with the Development Office.
As part of the school community, you are welcome to come back to Leighton Park for various current school events and activities, including Careers Events, the JBH Speech Competition, Music Concerts and Productions.
This year, we welcomed back four members of the community to judge the annual JBH competition. Find out more about the event and the experience of being a judge below.
JBH 2017 Judges: John Chapman (Head 1986 to 1996), Robert Harvey (F 1967), Naomi Alderson (G 2011), Rauf Bayraktaroglu (G 1991)
It is wonderful to welcome back members of our community each year to join the panel of the annual JBH competition
The eagerly anticipated annual JBH competition was again a wonderful evening.
We were thrilled that John Chapman (Former Head 1986-1996), Robert Harvey (F 1967), Rauf Bayraktaroglu (G 1991) and Naomi Alderson (G 2011) all returned to Leighton Park to judge the competition. The three OLs were all JBH competitors in their time.
Jonathan Porter-Hughes (English teacher and Deputy Housemaster of School House) who organises the competition said “It was a privilege to have the panellists this year. The feedback for our finalists was encouraging and insightful”.
John Chapman commented “The standard of speeches was very high and in the course of the evening I met three or four OLs from my era”.
Robert Harvey said “It was a real privilege to have been invited to be one of the Judges at this year’s competition. Returning to this event for the first time for half a century was both a nostalgic and emotional experience. It bought back memories and I could relate entirely to the contestants’ state of mind. The work, preparation, anxieties and sheer drama of having to address an audience for 15 minutes.
They did themselves, the school and the tradition proud. As I said, during my few remarks, the standard of their public speaking was far higher than in my time.
I was particularly impressed by the passion they showed towards their particular subject. That is so important from this generation. It matters not a jot whether one agrees with the viewpoint expressed, but to be grateful that the contestants are concerned and will defend vigorously their opinions.
One can only hope that all the contestants carry forward this commitment in the years ahead. If so a promising future awaits.
It was a wonderful evening and thank you again for inviting me to be part of it. I shall not forget it”.
Congratulations to Chunya, who won the competition with his speech titled ‘Those who earn more should be taxed more than they are now’.
Judging the JBH competition is one way that our community can support the school. At this year’s competition, OLs Duncan Crossley (G 1982), David Harker (S 2005), Helen Cadbury (S 1983) and parent Kate Beauchamp were judges. We were particularly thrilled as Duncan came over from Italy especially and Helen gave a keynote speech to celebrate the 100th JBH event. The panel were selected because they could draw on their experiences of participating in the JBH in the past, they had a critical eye and could give constructive feedback.
The JBH finalists were given additional advice and instruction on how to deliver their speeches from OL Tim Spratt (G 1976). Tim gave individual and group sessions for the five students, providing practical strategies.
Before the main event, the judges gathered for pre-drinks with members of staff, parents and others coming to watch the competition.
From left to right: Duncan Crossley, John Allinson, David Harker, Helen Cadbury and Kate Beauchamp
“It was a pleasure to participate in the JBH this year. I hope that I played my part well. I did my best to be a good judge. I had a most enjoyable encounter with John Allinson who was my Russian teacher whilst at Leighton Park. I stayed on the university campus and thus was able to have a nice look round the school the morning after the competition. It was a glorious day and as I wandered through the school grounds many formative memories flooded back.”