Alumni. Past, present and future ....

Matt Aldridge

Matt Aldridge and his path to hopefully Rio!

Matt’s pathway to Rio started in 2014 when he was chosen to represent the Great Britain Junior Rowing Team at the Munich International Regatta

Later that same year Matt was selected to represent Great Britain again in the World Rowing Junior Championships in Hamburg.

Whilst studying Sports and Exercise Science at Oxford Brookes University, Matt set an all-time Oxford Brookes record time in the Men’s 8, and at the end of his first year represented Great Britain at the European University Championships. With his success there behind him he was asked and to attend his first set of full GB Rowing Team trials, competing with and against several Olympians.

Due to Matt’s success at these trials he was invited to attend the Olympic selection trials for Team GB, with the ultimate prize being a place at the Olympics in Rio!

Kathy Rogers

Olympic futures for Ballard alumni

Congratulations to Kathy who has just received a Sports Aid award from the Girdlers Trust, with previous recipients including Sir Chris Hoy, Mo Farer, Jess Ennis and Sir Bradley Wiggins!

Congratulations, too, to Kathy as she has recently been selected in the GB U19s Water Polo squad for the 2016 Europeans in Gouda, Holland, and has been asked to travel with the full Team GB Water Polo squad to Prague this summer.

At her new school, Trinity, she won Sportswoman of the Year and is captaining the netball, swimming and water polo teams. She also led her school to the national water polo finals which take place tomorrow.

Kathy competed in the Senior European League in Portugal in February and came 2nd in the GB Senior Super 5s. Academically Kathy’s on target for 4As at AS and is hoping to study in California from September 2017 as a Sports Scholar.

William Goldie

Will has been through a rigorous assessment process applying for an officer training cadetship in the merchant navy which involved various exams and psychometric tests, team challenges as well as the commissioning board interview and he has been selected by the global shipping company Maersk

His engineering degree will be fully funded and he will receive a salary too. An amazing achievement as there were over 800 applicants for 39 positions

Gus Woolley

It was good seeing ex Head Boy Gus back at Ballard today, and to hear about how much he is enjoying his time studying Geography at Durham University. We wish him well, and look forward to seeing him back at Ballard soon.

Christmas Reunion

It was great to see past pupils relive their school days at our Christmas reunion, all held in what was an incredibly festive PAC! Pupils from the past five years attended, and enjoyed an evening of good company, delicious food and lively music. We’re hoping to make the reunion an annual event, something that our ex pupils can really look forward to

View the pictures from the Reunion

Daniel Ridgeon

Congratulations to Daniel Ridgeon on receiving so many accolades as Director and Producer of a short documentary film focusing on the working lives of 5 hospital porters at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital. His film has picked up a number of awards across the UK and Europe, and has now become part of the British Film Institute National Archives.

Daniel commented that he was ‘’ obviously delighted with the success of the film,’’ and that he was ‘’ more focused on ensuring that he portrayed the porters and their work in a good light as well as the NHS as a whole’’

Please see the attached article on Daniel and his documentary team

Congratulations to Tim Nurse on his selection to the England U 16 Hockey team

We were delighted to welcome Tim back to Ballard today, and felt honoured to receive from him one of his England shirts. Tim spoke to the whole school at Assembly, and thanked Ballard staff for their contribution to his success in all areas of his school life.

He particularly thanked Mr Ridley for his encouragement and guidance on the hockey field, and Mrs Dunn for her support while he was juggling both his hockey and sporting commitments. We all wish Tim well, and wish him every success.

Congratulations to Emma Eatough

Well done, Emma for gaining a place at Somerville College, Oxford!

Emma achieved A*AA at her A levels in Geography, Biology and Chemistry, and is now in her first year studying Biological Sciences at Oxford University.

This is a considerable achievement, and we’re very proud of Emma. We hope she has a wonderful few years at such a prestigious university, and goes on to achieve great things. .

Congratulations to Mikey Jones

Congratulations to Mikey on his considerable achievements as a swimmer. Mikey has now left Loughborough University, having been fast tracked to the National Performance Centre for elite swimmers in Manchester … all in preparation for the Rio Paralympics. Mikey is sponsored by Speedo, and has recently returned from high altitude training in Colorado. He is due to travel to Thailand for more specialist training.

Mikey is ranked second in the world at both 200 metres and 400 metres freestyle! We look forward to seeing Mikey at Ballard next term, when he will be talking to the school about life in swimming. We’re very proud of what you’ve accomplished so far, Mikey, and hope things go well for you in Rio.

Congratulations to Kathy Rogers

Ballard’s Swimming elite!!

We’re so proud of Kathy’s remarkable achievements in the swimming pool! Congratulations to Kathy on her 50+ caps for the Great Britain under 20s female Water Polo team…and we love your official GB Olympic photo above that was on display on the Wall of Fame in the Athletes Village in Baku. Kathy is well travelled, representing Team GB across Europe. Kathy even took one of her GCSE’s in Baku, getting her results whilst competing in Greece!

Kathy is enjoying life to the full at Whitgift Trinity School, Croydon where she is studying AS levels whilst doing her pool training at Crystal Palace with Olympian Sean King.

We wish Kathy well and look forward to seeing her representing her country at the Rio Olympics!

Kathy returned to Ballard this term to present the school with a framed water polo GB costume. She insisted she presented her costume personally to Mrs Ros Clark, and thanked her for being such a wonderful support throughout her time at Ballard

Congratulations to Jessica and Colm!

We’re delighted to see how well Jessica and Colm have done since leaving Ballard.

Jessica (Class of 2010) graduated from University of Greenwich with a 2:1 BA (Hons) Event Management and is now doing a 3 month internship in the Events Department of Marie Curie Cancer Support at their London HQ.

Colm (Class of 2013) gained excellent A level results at Highcliffe Sixth form (A, A, B) and secured a place at Manchester University to study Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE). Colm has decided to defer his place until September 2016 and is taking a gap year..

We wish them both well. No pressure on younger sister Aoife!

Boaz Van de Vegte

Congratulations to Boaz on landing the perfect job in finance! Boaz is now working at JLT Wealth Management in Bournemouth, and is on a career path that will I’m sure propel him into lucrative work in the City. It’s great seeing Boaz back in Ballard this summer. He was certainly impressed by how much Ballard has progressed since his day, certainly in the way of facilities.

Boaz loved his time at school, and felt well prepared as he moved on into the real world. He started at Bournemouth College, and was there for two years studying Business. Leaving there he took an apprenticeship with his present company, and this then led on to a full time contract.

Boaz is doing internal exams through the company and aims to be a wealth adviser by the age of 25.

Chris Blower(2007–2011)

Congratulations to Chris Blower on graduating from Bournemouth University with a 2.1 in Animation Studies. We wish him all success as he pursues his Masters

The Spall family news

Alastair (2004-06), piped in the guests, and piped in the Haggis for a Burns Supper Celebration, organised by the Kuwait Caledonian Society and the British Embassy, this January. Alastair is now in Australia, managing a restaurant business in Melbourne, and Amy (2004-06) is in Kansas City Missouri, USA.

Amy has been working in Kuwait for an American company called Excellis as an Environmental Officer, monitoring the effects of the Armed forces bases in Kuwait on the desert environment. She has recently moved to Missouri and is looking for a new challenge/appointment.

Father Chris (2004 – 10) is enjoying his time in Kuwait where he is working as a Deputy Headteacher

Swansea Success, too, for Hannah Gormley (2006-2011)

Hannah joined Ballard from Pennington Junior School in Year 7 and went on to take her A levels at Brockenhurst College. She is currently studying Law at Swansea University.


This summer Swansea University awarded Hannah a month’s internship with Aon in Botswana, working both with the local community, with major insurance brokers and law firms as well as the Parliament and High Court of Botswana.

Hannah said, “I really enjoyed what we did in Kenya with Mr Hall and wanted to do more of that kind of thing. This seemed to be the perfect opportunity – especially as the University is funding it! I am looking forward to gaining international experience in commercial and insurance law plus working with local village schools doing sport.” Not surprisingly, Hannah now feels that the Foreign Office may be a possible career path … We wish her every success in the future.

Sweet Swansea Success

First Class honours for Ollie Tarbard!

Congratulations to Ollie on achieving not only a First Class Honours degree from Swansea University in Material Science and Engineering, but also on securing a permanent graduate position with Exxon Mobil! Ollie’s ambition with Exxon is to be a Materials Specialist and travel the world.

Ollie has certainly made the most of his life so far, representing England Colleges Under19 at rugby, and whilst with us excelling on the stage with lead performances in both West Side Story and a Night on Broadway. It’s great that Ollie has agreed to be our first speaker at next year’s Lecture Series. It should be a really special night!

Greenacre family report


Bethany has had her first baby Ezekiel - born on the 12th March 2014 weighing 9lbs 1oz - baby and Bethany are doing fine! She has decided to start her family in the final year of her teaching degree at Plymouth University, while Joe her husband is studying accounting and finance at the same University. They are very happy and enjoying family life! They were married for "Time and all Eternity" in the London Temple in April 2013


is serving a 2 year full-time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He is serving in Provo, Utah, and has been out for 10 months, enjoying every day! He teaches about fifty 40 minute discussions per week and helps young people and families with drug abuse, family breakdown, and with the teachings of the Gospels. He does not get paid for this, rather he worked prior to his mission call to raise £ 6000 to self- finance his mission costs. He successfully completed his A levels in Economics, IT and DT at Brockenhurst College and is having two years out before deciding on his future studies/career. He is seriously considering a career in professional counselling.

Adam, Emily and Nathan

All are adjusting well to their new schools. Nathan just passed his driving test and is studying PE and graphics at Highcliffe 6th form.

Boaz Van de Vegte Doing well, and on a successful career path. Well done, Boaz!

‘Well I work for JLT Wealth Management who are a financial advisory company who pay their attention to peoples investments, like a stockbroking firm but less about stocks and shares and more about ISA's, bonds, pensions etc. So just finished the apprenticeship and now working full time before transferring to London hopefully in a year or two... well that's the plan anyway.’

Gianni Spacagna

Congratulations to Gianni Spacagna on his graduation recently from Winchester University. We wish him good luck as he starts along his career path!

Photo of Gianni and Annabelle (girlfriend) at their graduation which was held at Winchester Cathedral. Lovely day.

Jed Mansbridge (Murray)

Thanks, Jed for coming in to see me, and it was good you were able to look round the school, and see all the improvements made since your day!

It was good to hear your news, and good to know about your success with you’re a levels at Brockenhurst College. Good luck with your degree course in Plymouth, where you’ll be studying Chemistry. Come back and see us anytime

Update on Matthew Aldridge

We were pleased to hear about Matt’s progress up the national rankings with his rowing. This season Matt has been juggling A levels at Twynham with regular trips to Boston in Lincolnshire and Nottingham, where he has been a part of the Great Britain rowing programme. After exhausting trials in the summer, he was selected to row in the Great Britain 8 in the World Rowing Junior Championships in Hamburg

Congratulations, Matt! We’re proud of your achievements. Perhaps one day you can come back to school and talk to us about your achievements.

Congratulations to the Simpkins girls!

Well done to Jessica on her two As and a B at A level, and well done, too, for gaining a place to study History at Kings College, London. This is a wonderful achievement, and we are very proud of her. Jessica has deferred her entry for a year and intends to spend the time travelling. Hopefully Jessica will return to Ballard after her travels to talk to the school and share her experiences…

Flo has also done extremely well, and has started her English studies at Kent University in Canterbury. She’s had a great two years, having had a Gap year, and a year’s work experience in New Zealand.

It would be lovely to see both Jessica and Flo back here at Ballard to share their experiences.

Caz's Memorial Garden "Enjoy the Sunshine"

With all this beautiful weather we are pleased to report that Caz's memorial garden is looking absolutely beautiful. The sun is shining, and the Magnolia tree is flourishing

We've two absolutely gorgeous teak 'love' benches that go on either side of the plaque and these complement the surroundings perfectly. It is a beautiful reflective space, and a fitting tribute to Caz.

Nb the 'love' benches have been put away for the summer holidays as we don't want to lose them. They'll feature on this site in September.

Congratulations to Hattie Stiff on being made Head Girl of Highcliffe School!

I was chosen to be a prefect during year 10/11 at Ballard, and thoroughly enjoyed my time there. I ended up with 5A’s and 2B’s at GCSE, and I couldn’t have done it without the support from all the teachers. From there I moved to Highcliffe Sixth form where I was chosen to be Head Girl; I was the only candidate that hadn’t been at Highcliffe before! The process to becoming Head Girl was tough. We were put through multiple stages that included a speech in front of the whole year (about 150 people), to then being voted for by peers and teachers. It ended with an interview with the head teacher and two heads’ of the sixth form. To my excitement – and surprise – I was chosen out of the five candidates to become Head Girl! I am now studying photography, graphics, sociology and business at AS level and hope to go on and study photography at university.

I could not have done it without the support and encouragement from my teachers at Ballard, my time there taught me so much and I really appreciate everything that the teachers did for me.

Farewell to PC

This is the saga of PC Raven Known to us as Paul Craven !
He’s been here since the mists of time almost before the invention of scan and rhyme
Once he had quite a crop on top that’s according to the photo shop
Yet with the passing of the years and weeks it’s moved down in front of his cheeks !
To Paul we owe many, many extra features adding much sparkle to pupils and teachers
Oscar, Lucinda, a spider climbing the door listen carefully as there’s much, much more.
Eco-warriors, the water gardens, orienteering, a jump in that water without a-fearing
Refurbish the terrace with block paving, fake grass revamp the conservatory retaining its curved glass
Doughnuts at Tescos whilst out on field trips enlivening assemblies accepting those quips
Occasionally walking as one called John Cleese restricted unfortunately by elderly knees !
Acting as Fagan in a superb Oliver Twist producing plays with drama not to be missed
Then came that dead parrot if I recall supplying great humour in our Sports Hall
Your classroom window has said ‘Be Inspired !’ but how shall we manage once you have retired ?
It’s been my great honour to know you as ‘friend’ and with that comment I’ll come to an end.

Ballard welcomes back ex Head Boy, Jonathan Harding

Jonathan is currently pursuing a career in sports journalism out in Germany, working as a freelancer for Deutsche Welle during the World Cup. He has just returned from an 18-month spell in Munich where he worked with a media agency, an English newspaper and a podcast covering both the Bundesliga and sports in the city.

Jonathan, whilst speaking to the school in Assembly, said that the biggest aid in making his career possible was being able to speak a foreign language, in this case German. He pursued languages further at A-Level during two years of boarding at Clayesmore, before studying German at the University of Birmingham.

Congratulations, to James Rogers!

James celebrated his 21st birthday in Jan 2014 which marks the start of a flying year with successes in many different fields. Studying on a 5 year Masters programme in Mechanical Engineering at Loughborough University, he was offered a 15 month internship with Rolls Royce Nuclear Division in Derby. Working as a Design Engineer he has been assigned a project leading towards the development of nuclear submarines for the Royal Navy.

In April, James was awarded a scholarship by the Royal Academy of Engineering. This ‘Advanced Engineering Leadership Award’ is a 5 year package which includes £5000/annum for additional Leadership & Management training together with mentoring when he commences full-time employment in 2016.

James has also been very active on the sports field and followed his younger brother Ali in to triathlon. Having qualified for Team GB, he raced in the European Duathlon Championships in Spain in May 2014 finishing 15th. Moving upwards he has now qualified for the World Age-Group Triathlon Championships in Edmonton, Canada in August and has also been selected to represent Team GB in the Aquathlon event.

Racing alongside him in the World Championships is his brother, Ali and his mother, Jill!

Harriet and Charlotte Jenkins

Well done to Harriet on her 1st class honours degree in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University. What an excellent achievement! That’s now both the Jenkins girls with first class honours degrees, Charlotte graduating from Durham University two years previously having read Law.

On returning from the Far East, South America and Canada, Harriett starts work at OC and C in London, an established and well respected international management consultancy firm. We wish her well. Charlotte has just completed her post university Law qualification, her LLB, and starts work in September with Shoesmith law firm in Southampton. She has completed her world travel, and is now ready to make her mark in commercial law.

There’s absolutely no pressure on their brother Grant, who’s currently in his fourth year at Exeter University studying Maths and Economics …

Terrible News

I’m so immensely sorry to report that Caroline Gray, who’s worked with me on all alumni matters and who has been such a support and magnificent inspiration, tragically died over the weekend after suffering a massive brain haemorrhage whilst at her desk.

I can’t begin to express my thoughts, except to say as a Ballard family we are all devastated by this tragic loss and our thoughts and prayers are with her family at this most awful and cruel time. I will let you know what our plans are regarding a time of remembrance and thanksgiving that we will most certainly have here at Ballard.

Caroline (Caz) Gray 1967-2014

Mary de Castro’s commemoration bench

It’s wonderful to see Mary’s beautiful commemoration bench now installed and sitting proudly ready for varnishing in front of the Art Block where Mary spent so much time enriching the lives of her students.

The bench has been lovingly hand crafted by ex Ballard art student Richard Broomfield, using funds kindly donated by Mary’s students for this exact purpose.

Please come and have a look, spend time reminiscing and perhaps join us for lunch or coffee. Let me know if you’re coming and I’ll try to be there when you arrive by contacting me at

Pictured chatting on her bench are Richard and Matron.

Oxford or Durham?! Gus’s choice …

Congratulations to Gus Woolley on being offered a place at Worcester College, Oxford, for next academic year. This is a tremendous achievement!

Gus has done well, too, by also having secured a place at Durham University.

We’re proud of Gus’s achievements, and look forward to Gus returning to Ballard to tell us about life at one of the world’s finest universities.

Press Release: Ballard School unveils its new Heritage Room

It was great to see a good turnout at the Alumni Christmas Reunion last Saturday, with ex pupils from Edinburgh House, Fernhill Manor and Ballard School enjoying a few hours of nostalgia and good company.

Alumni met together in the school chapel, and enjoyed their mince pies and refreshments as the Prosecco was being poured in the newly named Heritage Room next door.

Exciting new archive material going back more than 100 years has been uncovered recently thanks to the hard work of Mr Ian Broadway, formerly an Edinburgh House pupil. The school has put together a wonderful exhibition that showcases really well on canvases the history of Ballard School, tracing it back to its Edinburgh House days in Lee on Solent beginning in 1895.

It was wonderful that we could use the Christmas reunion as an opportunity to toast the launch of this exhibition. To see the photos for yourself, either come to Ballard or view them on our web site

We were delighted to have Mrs June Cohen, formerly Kefford, with us at the launch of this exhibition, as her father was Headmaster of Edinburgh House both in Lee on Solent and when Edinburgh House moved to the Ballard site in New Milton after the Second World War.

Jonathan Cooper

During his time at Canford, Jonathan excelled musically, achieving Grade 8 Distinctions in Singing and Piano and Grade 6 Distinction on the Double Bass. He composed several pieces which were performed by the school’s orchestras. Jonathan’s other highlights included taking leading roles in the whole school musicals “Ebenezer” and “Calamity Jane” as well as representing Canford in the 2nd XV.

He was awarded the Michael James Prize for Singing at Speech Day. Jonathan gained A*s in English and Music and an A in History at A Level. He is currently on a gap year and is applying to read Music at Worcester College, Oxford in 2014.

Timothy Radvan

Tim developed his passion for Computing at Canford working independently on many computer coding projects. One of his most notable achievements saw his work used in a PhD project at UCSB.

Outside the classroom, Tim also excelled as part of Canford’s Community Service programme, working at a local school teaching young children. As a musician he is an accmplished jazz pianist and drummer, playing in his church band and offered his talents willingly in many school charity concerts.

At Speech Day, Tim was awarded the John Gilhooly Quaich for Computing prize. After obtaining A*s in Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Further Maths at A Level. Tim is now reading Computer Science at Cambridge University. He was one of fifteen pupils from Canford who gained an Oxbridge offer this year.

Louis Helsby

Our Head Boy from last year, Louis Helsby, had a remarkable week of work experience at the House of Lords, all spent under the careful eye of Lord Stoneham of Droxford. During this week Louis really got a feeling for how Parliament works, and was privileged to have behind the scenes access. Highlights for Louis included…

Monday : tour of both Houses of Parliament, sat in the Gallery of the House of Lords for Question Time, sat in on the Lords Select Committee as they debated the Olympic Legacy. Tuesday: met with Lib Dem parliamentary researchers, sat in on the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, witnessed William Hague providing a statement at Portcullis House on Foreign Policy, and reviewed the newspapers with Lord Stoneham . Wednesday: met Baroness Diana Maddock and discussed Christchurch’s declining living standards, sat in the gallery for House of Lords Questions and sat on the floor of the House to observe the debate on the Trident alternatives review. Thursday: observed at Business Questions, and had lunch with Lord Stoneham, followed by a tour of Whitehall. Friday: sat on the floor of the House of Lords, went to Liberal Democrat Party Headquarters and met backroom staff responsible for party donations. What a tremendous opportunity for Louis! We wish him every success.

Awaiting on Oxford!!

Gus Woolley, Jonathan Cooper and Lizzie Thomas have their interviews at Oxford University over the next few weeks. We’re proud of how well they’ve done so far, and keep our fingers crossed. Jonathan is going for a place at Hertford to read Music, Lizzie a place at Pembroke to read either French or English and Gus for a place at Worcester to read Geography.

Gus already has unconditional places at Exeter, King’s College, London and Bristol , and is still waiting to hear from Durham

Mary de Castro

We were all saddened to hear about the passing of Mary de Castro after her long battle with cancer. Mary taught Art at Edinburgh House (later to become Ballard School) for many years, and throughout that time she inspired and touched the lives of her pupils with her creativity, dedication and enthusiasm.

When Edinburgh House merged with Fernhill Manor in 1995 to become Ballard School Mary was appointed as Deputy Head. She combined her management role with her teaching really well, and in the words of one of her students truly ‘’put colour into everyone’s lives.’’

Mary would regularly take pupils on painting trips to one of her favourite places, Tresco in the Scilly Isles. On one trip she even gave painting tips to Prince Charles! It was said of Mary that ‘‘Thousands of children over the years would have been inspired by her and they would have followed her to the ends of the earth. They idolised her.’’ Mary was clearly a truly remarkable lady, and those who came into contact with her were very fortunate indeed.

Shrunk in the Wash

Many will remember the rock band which was formed at Ballard when its members were in Year 6 and continued until the boys all left the school three years ago.

Max Doohan, Huw Montague-Rendall and Tom Morgan were the original members and were joined, in Year 11, by Alex Hill-Knight on keyboard. They have had numerous bookings to play at weddings, private parties, charity balls and other functions.

Max is looking forward to beginning the popular music course at Goldsmith’s University in London in September. Huw started a B. Music degree (opera studies) with a scholarship at the Royal College of Music last September. Tom also successfully auditioned at a number of music conservatoires and is looking forward to taking up a place at Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London in September. Alex started a classical music degree course at Goldsmith’s in September 2012.


We consider ourselves extremely fortunate to have the services of Ian Broadway … a dedicated archivist, historian and ex Edinburgh House pupil (1951 to 1957). Ian has worked tremendously hard researching Ballard’s history, going back to the early 1900s when the Main House was first built by the Ubsell family from New York. (see photo taken on the ‘patio’ outside studio 1 ) Look at the Alumni section of the school website for more information.

Wine tasting

Another wonderful evening of wine tasting and good company was enjoyed by all

As last year, the wine expert Mr Will Gray (ex Edinburgh House, 1970s) was our host, and he treated us to a variety of superb wines, compering the evening with great humour and presence. Whilst speaking at length about all the wines, he laced his presentation with plenty of interesting anecdotes

Amy Kavanagh sky dives in memory of her grandmother

Well done, Amy Kavanagh, for raising so much money for the Stroke Foundation in such a courageous way!

Amy volunteers for the charity’s weekly workshops at Lymington Library, wanting to help others just as her grandmother helped her

She said, ‘After I finish college I want to become a speech and language therapist. Volunteering supports my learning ina practical way and allows me to give something back to the community’

Amy is currently studying Biology, Psychology and English at sixth form.

Thanks to Bethany Saunders

Bethany’s involvement with, and befriending of, a terminally ill patient at Oakhaven Hospice during her involvement in the Acorn Project really inspired her mother to enter the London Marathon so as to raise funds for the hospice. Mrs Saunders, who will be wearing a black tutu with sun flowers as she attempts to raise the much needed money said she found Oakhaven Hospice truly ‘beautiful and the wonderful staff amazingly inspirational.’

Well done, Bethany for inspiring your mother with your caring work during the Acorn Project, and good luck to your mother on the day!

The incredible sporting prowess of the Rogers family!

Congratulations to James, Ali and Kathy for their incredible achievements on the ski slopes recently. As a family they won the prestigious Salamon Enduro ski race this Easter, the biggest amateur race in the world. The race has 10 events, including slalom, downhill, border-cross, freestyle and air bag! Delighted that Kathy … still with Ballard … has been selected to represent Great Britain over half term in Hungary.

Olympic prospects for Matt Aldridge

Since leaving Ballard in June Matt has had a busy summer of rowing.

In July he was in Nottingham for the National Championships. Racing over two days against the top 16 years old scullers in the country Matt came away with the Gold medal and became National Champion. Then in the final regatta of the 2011/12 season he went down to Bideford, racing against scullers from across the south coast to become South Coast Champion.

The new 2012/13 season has started well with Matt being invited to attend a three day GB training camp, in October, with other junior rowers considered to have the potential to be in the GB team at the World Championships next summer. The real work has now started with the first of the sculling trials in mid-November.

Well done, Ali Rogers!

Ali is flying high at the moment - he's been offered a place at Leeds for Physiology & Sports Science plus their elite triathlon programme with the Brownlee brothers. He's in Team GB for triathlon & off to the European Championships in Turkey in June 2013 and then hoping to swim the Channel as part of a Brockenhurst College team in August.

He is now in the triathlon academy and was invited to compete in the Strathclyde triathlon earlier this month which was televised on Channel 4. He came a respectable 32nd out of 50 starters, many of whom were professional athletes on the World circuit which included some Olympians

We wish you every success, Ali!!

Yr 11 School leavers July 2012

Congratulations to all our ex Year 11s on their excellent exam results, and our best wishes to them as they move on into 6th Form education. We are sure they will maintain their links with Ballard in the years to come, and will keep in touch with many of their class mates and even teachers.


Lucy left Ballard about 3 years ago, having been with us for ten years.

She's done really well since she left Ballard, living in London and establishing herself in the world of media. Lucy is now working for a television production company, producing Alan Titchmarsh's 'Love Your Garden'.

Whilst writing this, Lucy is looking to find some of the nation's unsung heroes - deserving people with gardens that desperately need transforming - for a chance to have their garden made over with the help of Alan in his next ITV series of Love Your Garden.

She has asked whether we know anybody within your locality that fits the bill . The website to download the application form is

Applications need to be submitted before Christmas.

Congratulations to Helena Jennings

We are delighted to report that Helena Jennings recently won the Engineering Prize at Brockenhurst College's recent Gala Dinner.

Helena is hoping her engineering knowledge and expertise will gain her a place as an officer in the Royal Engineers Regiment.

This is all excellent news; well-done Helena!

Laura Williams

Laura Williams won the Lesley Errington Memorial prize, also at the Gala Dinner (one of five Brockenhurst Oscars). This was for her outstanding contribution to the local community. She acted as a Brownie Leader at Brockenhurst Brownies for 5 years, initially as part of her Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh Awards undertaken at Ballard. She now has her Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award, in addition to being the proud winner of this prestigious award.

Below are a couple of lovely photos of her receiving this award from Brockenhurst's Principal Di Roberts.

Well done, Laura!

Congratulations to Evie Bown (Ballard 2006 – 09)

Printed below are the words of Evie’s mother who is understandably delighted by her daughter’s recent achievement.

‘’I thought I would drop you a line to let you know that our daughter Evie has been appointed Head Girl at Taunton School this morning.

Evie was encouraged and inspired by many teachers while at Ballard

Along with her Sport and Mrs Marshall's excellent Netball coaching, her enjoyment of History with Mrs Norris and Mr Williams, Mr and Mrs Bellars were particularly inspirational and they may be interested to know she continues with her Language studies. Looking ahead, Evie has her sights set on a Multilingual studies with International relations course.

Without the achievements made at Ballard, it would have been harder for Evie to have successfully received a Scholarship to Taunton. So thank you.’’

Amazing Experience for Mikey Jones - (Ballard 1997 - 2010)

We had the pleasure of a visit from Mikey Jones today. He came into school to tell us about his amazing experience at the Paralympic Qualifier Swimming Trials at the brand new Olympic Aquatic Centre.

Not only did Mikey do exceptionally well in his trials he relished the experience of swimming at such a fantastic venue. He explained that the site can hold 17,500 spectators, has 2 x 50 metre pools, 1 competition pool and a diving pool. Mikey had to compete in 5 races (400m, 100m and 50m Freestyle, 100m Backstroke and 200m Individual Medley). He beat his Personal Best in 4 of those. Unfortunately, he has not made it into the Olympic Team but said it was an incredible experience. He was also able to watch some of the Olympic swimmers train and spoke to Rebecca Adlington

Mikey joined Kelly College last year and trains hard every day, starting at 4 am, as well as studying for A Levels. He is truly an inspiration to us all. It was great to see him and wish him every success for the future.

Congratulations to Hannah Snellgrove!

Clearly a rising star in the sailing world, Hannah has been awarded the coveted Marlow Ropes award at the 2012 London Boat show. Hannah is a current member of the Scandia Team Great Britain racing transitional squad, and has been in fine form in recent regattas, with her career highlight coming at the Perth 2011 World Championships where she finished in fourteenth position. Hannah has been balancing her Cambridge University work with her sailing and training. Her main aim is to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. She has every chance of fulfilling her dream. Hannah is clearly a name to watch out for!

Congratulations to Huw Montague Rendall

Fantastic news, Huw! We’re all delighted that you’ve been offered a place at the Royal Academy of Music for next year.

This is no small achievement, especially as the academy rarely offers places to musicians of your tender age!

Well done … We’re really proud of your achievements. How will we ever be able to afford your appearance money next time you’re performing at Ballard!

Ted Linsley

‘’From my first perfomance at Ballard aged 13 in Journey’s End, to my last in Joseph -I just loved being on stage.

At Brockenhurst College I studied Drama, English Literature and Perfomance Studies ,with Politics in the mix! The production I enjoyed the most was Amadeus where I played the lead role as the musical protégé himself.

To get a real feel for Drama prior to University I attended LAMDA’s Summer School and attended RSC Summer Tutoring classes. After many auditions I got a place at LAMDA on the Foundation Acting Course. The whole year was amazing, and I have particularly fond memories of learning how to fight but never to throw a real punch! Living inLondon was great and a lot of fun. My A level results were good, so I went on to Queen Mary’s University, London, to study Drama I just know I want to establish a career within the world of drama. I do love writing, though, thanks to Miss Rowbotham. Music is still a passion for me, too, and I enjoy nothing more than sitting at my piano playing and composing new tunes.’’

Mattias Horseman (left Ballard 2006)

It was good to see Mattias Horseman visiting Ballard recently. He left Ballard in 2006 at the end of Year 9, prior to moving to Switzerland to further his education. Whilst there, he won a prestigious drama scholarship sponsored by the Rothchild’s Foundation. Mattias is now studying Psychology at the University of Chester, and his intention on graduation is to move into acting. He was delighted to hear that we are starting an alumni association, and thoroughly enjoyed his tour of the school. Mattias will represent his generation of Ballard pupils on the alumni committee, and I’m sure will be a real asset.

Chris Vaughan (left Ballard 2005)

Since leaving Ballard School in 2005, I have worked hard on building up my teaching/coaching experiences and qualifications. Under Mr Duckitt and Mr Dunn I was temporarily employed by Ballard School, whilst I was studying at Brockenhurst College, as a Sports Assistant on Wednesday afternoons, where I supervised many groups for individual sports and after-school clubs. At Brockenhurst College I completed my A Levels and I also hold an ECB Level 1 Cricket Coaching Qualification and a two year Sports Leadership Qualification, attaining YMCA and HSLA certificates in personal training.

On my Gap Year I travelled to Ghana on a teaching programme, working in 4 different schools. I have now graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a Degree in Sports Science and am currently working and living in Perth, Western Australia, on a 3 month coaching internship with Western Australia Cricket Association, returning to the UK early next year.

David Bennett (left Edinburgh House 1973)

St Edward's, Oxford; University of London; 15 years BBC as reporter, producer, manager; 10 years Government comms, last five as Head of Communications Southampton City Council; 10 years RAF Reservist as Sqn Ldr (inc. Iraq and Afghanistan); now run Crown Media LLP with two others providing media training and exercising around the world. Live in Brockenhurst, wife, Marie, of 20 years, two children and a border collie.

Sarah Watson:

''I left Ballard in 2009 after completing my GCSE's and moved to Manchester to study a BTEC National Diploma Level 3 in Hospitality and Events Management. I finished this course and got 3 Distinctions as a result of my 2 year vocational course. I am now studying Hospitality at Leed Metropolitan University''

Lucy Cowell:

Currently studying Art at Bournemouth Art College

Matt Lawes:

Currently studying at Manchester Metropilitan University (It was good seeing you back at Ballard last week, Matt!)