From the Headmaster’s Study

In Monday’s Assembly, we reflected on the purposeful and successful start to term from all in our community. I also took the opportunity to mention our Big Walk that took place on Sunday – the full details of which are below. The Big Walk was set up in memory of an Old Welleslian, Silas Pullen who died at a tragically early age.

We also reflected on the London marathon, with a particular focus on the vast majority of the 42,000+ runners who were not striving to win but running for very different reasons. I spoke of these individuals’ commitment, determination and courage to run in support of a cause or initiative that is close to their hearts, highlighting that with these attributes (commitment, determination and courage) remarkable things – such as running 26.2 miles – are possible. They are an inspiration to us all.

We wish you all a happy Bank holiday weekend when it arrives.

Gavin Franklin


JDRM Gavin Portraits-2


Fixture Change

The I.A.P.S. Cricket Tournament match against St. Ronan’s for the 1st XI has been brought forward from Thursday this week to Tuesday, with a 2.30 p.m. start.

School Last Week


We held our first weekend chapel service of the term, for the school only, on Saturday.  The choir sang superbly, especially given that they had only had one rehearsal beforehand, and Mr. Franklin spoke to the school about hope and determination, referencing the Easter story and the huge rebuilding project that will follow the recent fire at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.  Our next service will be on Saturday 11th May; parents and families will be very welcome to attend.

Thanet Schools Art Festival

Well done to Georgie Carter and April Ma, who attended the presentation event at Sainsbury’s at Westwood Cross on Saturday to receive their runners-up prizes for their entries into the Thanet Schools Art Festival.  Congratulations as well to those whose works were also on display: Joshua Andrews, Harriet Brooks, Margot Grand, Teresa Imaz, Matthew McBride, Henry Obee, William Obee, Jimena Pena and Mencia Sanchez.

UK Chess Challenge

Five children took part in the Area Megafinal of the UK Schools’ Chess Challenge in Sandwich on Sunday.  1st place in their section, or a score of 3.5 points out of 6, would secure qualification for the Southern Gigafinal in July.  Our Under 8 and Under 9s played together in the same competition and performed well, although a lesson to be learned from the day would be to take more time over their moves, as rushing leads to mistakes and missed opportunities.  Freddie Southorn earned enough points to qualify for the Gigafinal, with 3.5. Also taking part were Henry Obee and Felix Butterfill. In the Under 11 section, a match between Simon Ji and Robin Hu proved very important, and Simon’s victory helped him towards finishing joint winner of the competition with 5 points out of 6 and being crowned ‘Supremo’. Robin was not far behind, and also qualified with 4 points, earning him the silver medal. Well done to all those who qualified – they have now made it through two stages of a competition that started with around 40,000 entrants.

Sunday Outing

The weekend’s Sunday outing for the boarders was the annual ‘Big Walk’, which this year took place along the north Thanet coast. Following a picnic lunch, our large group walked from Minnis Bay to Reculver Country Park and back. Although the weather proved rather windy, and at times wet, the walkers had an enjoyable time, coupled with the sense of achievement on reaching the finish.  It was great to see so many parents and families joining us for this now traditional and popular event.

School This Week



The Summer Term academic assessments get underway this week with the Tonbridge School Scholarship.   Common Entrance oral and listening examinations follow in the week beginning 13th May, before the written papers in June.

The Living Land

On Thursday Junior House will be visiting the ‘Living Land’ event at the Kent County Showground. This annual event is aimed at educating young children in the areas of farming, agriculture, countryside and healthy eating.  The timetable of activities includes the opportunity to see and touch farm animals, taste local produce, see dancing sheep at the ‘Sheep Show’, Birds of Prey and many other displays and demonstrations. We wish them an enjoyable and educational day.

Maths Competitions

A succession of Maths competitions are taking place during the early part of the term, and they began last Thursday with two pairs in Block 4 travelling to Junior King’s to take part in a Maths Challenge organised by a former teacher who arranges such events around the country.  We await detailed overall results, but well done to Archie Brown, Margot Grand, Lilia Hunter and Alexander Long for their efforts.

This week a number of children in Blocks 1, 2 and 3 will be taking the Junior Mathematical Challenge, a nationwide competition, on Tuesday.  Then on Thursday, mathematicians from Block 1 and Block 2 will be going to Sutton Valence School for their annual Prep Schools’ Maths Competition, in which we have performed very well in recent years, winning the Under 13 competition in 2016 and 2017, and finishing runners-up last year.  Finally, on Tuesday 7th May, a team of four children will be going to Ashford School for their annual Year 5 Maths Competition.  Good luck to everyone taking part in these competitions.

Rugby Colours

Congratulations to Barnaby Gibson, who was awarded his rugby colours from last term in Monday’s assembly, for his passion, skill and determination throughout the season.


Well done to Poppy Brooke Turner, who made her solo debut as Soprano Chorister in Mendelsohn’s ‘Elijah’ with the Deal and Walmer Handelian Choral Society at St. Mary’s Church in Walmer on Saturday.


Congratulations to Mia Otley, who, with her partner, won the Kent Junior Team competition at the Kent Under 12 tournament during the Easter holiday.

Friends of Wellesley

The Friends of Wellesley will be meeting in the Library on Friday morning at midday.


The Bank Holiday Exeat begins at 1.30 pm on Friday and boarders return to school at 8.00 pm on Monday evening or by 8.20 am on Tuesday morning. Please would parents ensure they have informed the school secretary of their child’s travel/collection arrangements. The office will be closed over the weekend and e-mails will not be seen, so please telephone the school with any important messages. The answerphone will be monitored.


This week the kitchen will be serving Menu 2.

Matches Last Week

Saturday 27th April

Rounders v Junior King’s: U13 A – lost 13 – 14

Cricket v Junior King’s: 1st XI – won by 5 wickets

Cricket v Junior King’s: Under 11 Girls – lost 210 – 294

Matches This Week

Please always refer to the website calendar as it is the most up-to-date place to check for fixture changes and locations.

Tuesday 30th April

Cricket v St Ronan’s: 1st XI (h) (Note: I.A.P.S. Tournament, 2.30 p.m. start)

Wednesday 1st May

Cricket v St Lawrence College: 1st XI (h)

Cricket v St Lawrence College: 2nd XI & 3rd XI (a)

Cricket v Spring Grove: U11 Girls (a)

Boarding Event – Tonbridge and Benenden Schools

On Monday 13th May, Tonbridge and Benenden will be holding a combined event in London which may be of interest to you. The occasion, entitled “Boarding: Meeting the Challenges of the Teenage Years” will be led by James Priory, the Headmaster at Tonbridge, and Mrs Samantha Price, the Headmistress at Benenden, with contributions from housemasters, housemistresses, parents and pupils from their two schools. Their hope is that the evening will help parents to understand better the ethos which allows pupils to flourish as boarders in their schools during their teenage years.

They would be very pleased to see you on Monday 13th May.  If you are able to go please reply to Tonbrdge by signing up at:  or call Mrs Veryan Larmour on 01732 304297.   Alternatively reply to Benenden with your child’s name, year and prep school: email Dawn Bradford:

Girls’ Schools Association

Benenden will also be represented at the GSA ‘Open Your Eyes to Boarding’ event on Thursday 2nd May at St Matthew’s Church, Bayswater, London W2 4LA.

This is an event which provides ‘an opportunity to discover what modern boarding has to offer your daughter.’  You will also be able to meet top girls’ school Heads and staff and to take part in a Q & A session with a panel of experts.

Further details and registration for the event can be seen on the Girls’ Schools Association website.

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