My name is Amy White, and this is how I started working to help save our oceans during my gap year.
I was a Year 13 student at QEHS last year and due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the exam marking situation I ended up taking an enforced gap year to get my dream place at Oxford University.
With travel completely out of the picture, and wanting to make the most of my time, I contacted a handful of ocean conservation charities in search of an opportunity to help out in an area I am passionate about.
An organisation called Just One Ocean responded and we began working together on a TikTok social media campaign. The campaign is called #Justoneswap and aims to promote small but effective changes we can make to reduce the amount of plastic we use. The driving force behind the idea was knowing that the oceans are essential for our existence on this planet, and if they are full of plastic, and not functioning as they should, we are not only hindering our survival but the survival of all marine organisms.
The process of shifting to a greener, more plastic-free lifestyle is an overwhelming adjustment and therefore my goal was to promote simple swaps, such as swapping from shampoo bottles to shampoo bars (which work just as well), to make the change progressive and gradual. I hope to encourage a ‘#justoneswap at a time approach’, as every change we make significantly reduces how much plastic enters our oceans as plastic pollution. If you would like to have a look at the campaign, and maybe implement some of these ideas into your daily life, head over to the Just One Ocean TikTok account or click the link below:
Gainsborough High School is 100 Years Old Today (1920-2020)
“On 5th October 1920 North Sandsfield House (College House), Morton Terrace opened as a school for girls, formally establishing secondary education for girls in the town. Every year on the school’s birthday the girls left lessons 15 minutes early for a drink, and some rare relaxed conversation with the staff, (everyone brought their mug to the (Lower School) hall and the teachers walked along the line pouring tea). As a mark of the annual celebration there was no prep on that evening, and the girls went home early in high spirits! “
Reference: A History of the Gainsborough Girls High School, (1920-1983)
Gainsborough High School motto: ‘Courage, Gaiety and the Quiet Mind’
Traditionally the girls brought in a flower bulb from home annually on this date, to plant on the school grounds, which are still seen along the drive to College House. Ask your relatives if they can remember the planting!
This year to commemorate 100 years of education for girls, on this site, we will invite members of the school community, past and present to join us in planting bulbs representing our 1218 students, which have been generously donated by Pot Belly Garden Centre and Nursery; (whose family have attended the school over 3 generations).
On the birthday of the school, some of the staff were able to plant bulbs to mark the occasion. Mrs Celia Lord, (Cover Staff, Alumnus and previous Chair of the Old Girls' Association) joined Mrs Faye Clarke, (Head of English, who runs the QEHS Gardening Club). Head Girl Erin later joined Alumnus Mrs Rachel Haldenby (Assistant Headteacher and Head of Sixth Form) to add to the future flower display.
When the bulbs flower in the spring, they will show the school colours (red, blue and yellow) next to the Never Ending Bench - where every QEHS student's name appears during their time at the school.
It is with great sadness that the staff heard recently that 3 ex-colleagues had passed away.
Our thoughts are with the families of Mr Sergent, (Geography), Mr Moxon (Chemistry) and Mrs Wilson (Geography, Biology).
Fond memories are shared on the following Facebook groups:
It should also be acknowledged that from the OGA Facebook page, it was shared that Mr Greenaway (English) also passed away earlier in 2020.
The Facebook pages are a great way of keeping in touch with the QEHS community and will often share great photos that jog our nostalgic memories. If you would like to report a momentous occasion, achievement or write an article for the Alumni Newsletter, please submit content at the top of this webpage or join the Facebook groups.
Please keep sharing!
Former North Notts Mini-Basketball England Star Emma Allen is Awarded Member of the Order of The British Empire (MBE)
The staff and governors at QEHS are incredibly proud of the achievements of Alumnus Major Emma Allen, rewarded for her actions in the Queen's Honours.
Basketball Development Officer Jimmy "Jumpshot" Smith has announced that a former Mini-Basketball England and Nottinghamshire County Basketball player, who was developed while a student at both Misterton Primary School (Bassetlaw area of Nottinghamshire) and Queen Elizabeth High School (Gainsborough, Lincolnshire) has been awarded an MBE (Member of The Order of the British Empire) in the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2020.
Major Emma Allen MBE, an Army Officer serving with the Royal Corps Signals in the South West of England has been made a Member of The Order of The British Empire (MBE) for her work during the COVID pandemic. She has been recognised for her initiative and exemplary contribution as a volunteer during these unprecedented times, supporting the community in a time of national crisis.
Coach Jimmy "Jumpshot" Smith who is in his 40th season as a development coach, (31 with Nottinghamshire County Council), identified Emma's talent and leadership in her early years. Smith stated, "Emma's school, Misterton Primary, was part an initiative by the County Council, to pioneer mini-basketball in rural areas around the county, especially Bassetlaw which was the most northerly borough of the council. I worked with Emma during all four of her years as a student at Misterton (1991-95) and I can tell you by School Year 6 she was playing, refereeing and when her teacher/coach, Mr. Barry Holgate needed her to, she was coaching the younger students which included younger brother, Russell - who also represented Mini-Basketball England. She was a young person that you just knew had the potential to be an outstanding leader. Her outstanding service and leadership during the Covid-19 pandemic is proof that we were absolutely right. She's the type of person that you want on your team at any level."
Emma was one of 5 girls to represent Mini-Basketball England at the 1994 European Mini-Basketball Jamboree in Helsinki, Finland. Major Allen represented Bassetlaw Dukes based in Worksop and coached by a parent from Haggonfields Primary School, Mr. Brett Roberts. She also represented the highly successful Nottinghamshire Nova Basketball squads which were supported by Nottinghamshire County Council under the direction of Coach Jimmy "Jumpshot" Smith. A native of Misterton village in Bassetlaw, she attended Queen Elizabeth High School (Gainsborough, Lincolnshire founded in 1589), from 1995-2001. Emma's husband, Major James Allen, is also a member of the Royal Artillery and part of the co-responder team (see photos).
Emma said, "I was fortunate to have fantastic role models at school and through basketball in Mr. Barry Holgate, Mr. Brett Roberts and Coach Jimmy Smith. They motivated me to get the best out of my ability and to make a positive impact by serving the nation and my local community."
Her citation reads:
When the Government announced the COVID-19 lockdown Major Allen was in command of a Signal Squadron. Within five days, and on her own initiative, she led and cohered eighty tri-service military co-responders to deliver critical medical reinforcement to the South Central Ambulance Service (SCAS). As the enormity of the COVID-19 crisis began to emerge, she identified that - with minimal upskilling, military co-responders would be able to provide an invaluable enhancement to SCAS; which was facing an unprecedented increase in the number of 999 calls and heightened sickness (circa fifteen percent) across its staff. Having established her team, she assumed the role of Commander and Military Liaison Officer in the SCAS Headquarters.
Major Allen has been working as a Volunteer Military Co-responder for the South Central Ambulance Service for just over 2 years providing critical emergency response care.
She deployed to the Emergency Operations Centre in Otterbourne, co-located with the SACS Silver and Gold cells providing advice, support and resources to reinforce their departments.
Emma commands 228 (Armoured) Signal Squadron in Wiltshire which supports the UK's warfighting Division. She recently returned from a tour in Afghanistan where she provided vital tactical and strategic communications for the UK.
She said of the award:
“This has been one of the most challenging years in my military career and I am proud to have been part of the South Central Ambulance Service Military Co- responder team. I am delighted and humbled to have been awarded this amazing honour but it would not have been possible without the support of my husband Major James Allen.
I would like to say a huge thank you to every single member of the Co-responder team and South Central Ambulance Service who have tirelessly worked together through some extremely challenging times. I would like to accept this honour on behalf of the whole team who have and will continue to work supporting the public in a time of need.”
It gives QEHS great pleasure to launch the first articles of the long awaited Alumni News.
This Live Newsletter will regularly update with all the Alumni News received by the school. It will also link to other pages/sites of interest for Alumni to explore.
If you are an ex-member of the school community, it may interest you to register on the Future First portal https://futurefirst.org.uk/ to connect with QEHS and other alumni, or look up the Facebook page:Queen Elizabeth’s High School, Gainsborough: Alumni.
Alternatively, contact the school office for further information on how to support QEHS or email email@example.com
Annual Senior Presentation Evening
On Thursday 9 January the Chair of Governors welcomed back last year's Year 13 students and guest speaker Alumni Dr Shambhu MD MSc(Dist.) MRCGO Diplomate Emeritus of the American Board of Internal Medicine, to present the awards.
This fantastic evening of celebration was very well attended by families and friends, as students returned from far and wide to receive their accolades. Current students were also in receipt of Year 11 and Year 12 awards for last year.
Congratulations to all!
It is always with great fascination that we receive news of scholars gone by. The Archive Group delves with intrigue into new information that come to light, searching for previously unheard of details of life at the schools that thrived here in the past, and leading us to the present day QEHS.
When the Archive Group recently received a package, they found photos, a school cap and a letter from the granddaughter of Alumnus Edmund George Aldam (1906-1997). The cap is a rare 100 year old relic, to add to our collection of memorabilia, and hope to display on our return to normal school life. Inside it clearly bears Edmund's name, 'FORM V, GGS'. The school badge shows the viking longboat, but is very different to the QEHS badge we have today. I would hope to share the cap with the new Year 7 students as they research the origins of the school badge as part of their induction into the history of this fantastic school.
We hope that with this article, we will find further memorabilia - particularly from the girls' Gainsborough High School, as we celebrate it's 100th year; but with a much smaller archive at QEHS than that of the boys' Gainsborough Grammar School.
Edmund is pictured as a 16 year old boy near the centre of the photo, (middle photo) on the second row, behind the master wearing glasses.
This photograph of Edmund shows him at age 18, and later with his wife Viola, in a newspaper clipping about his life. After studying at Gainsborough Grammar School, Edmund worked locally for his father, before his varied career, led him to become a prominent figure in local government, still in the local area, until his retirement at the age of 78. Maybe some of you, or your families remember Edmund George Aldam (1906-1997).
Our thanks go to Mrs Angela Drane for sharing this information about her grandpa, wrote: "I know my grandpa would be delighted for the school to have these items".
Schoolmaster at Gainsborough Grammar School before the First World War,
who died of wounds in German captivity in 1916.
Earlier this year the QEHS archive team received a request for further information from a family member of Alfred Hallam Petty.
Alfred Hallam Petty was born in Hull in 1889 and gained a BSc in Maths and Physics at Sheffield University in 1912. He served as a Schoolmaster at Gainsborough Grammar School sometime between 1912 and 1915.
In September 1915 he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 5th Battalion of the Sherwood Foresters and joined his unit in France in May 1916. On 1 July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme, he was severely wounded and captured by the Germans. He was taken to the German Military Hospital at St Quentin but sadly died of his wounds on 17 July 1916.
Alfred Hallam Petty is mentioned on our Roll of Honour, also on the new (2017) memorial plaque to the Old Boys who died in the two World Wars.
In response to the request, I was able to find his entry in our archive staff register, from his time here as a Mathematics Master. His appointment started on 17 September 1913, lasting until July 1915. He was paid the princely sum of £150 per annum!
With help from records at the Gainsborough Heritage Centre and Gainsborough News reports for the year 1916, I located a full page of Gainsborough News articles in Peter Bradshaw’s 3rd book which (covers 1916 and) records “Gainsborough’s War Story”, and also from “Through the pages of the Gainsborough News”.
Mr Riches, the family member of Alfred Hallam Petty was extremely grateful for all of the information provided (see the list below). He has used to complete a family history, which includes the story of 2nd Lieutenant Alfred Hallam Petty.
My archive research discovered:
“Gainsborough’s War Story” Peter Bradshaw, 1916
“Through the pages of the Gainsborough News” Gainsborough News, 1916
As two of our Year 13 members now leave the archive team, we hope to find more archive investigators to join us when we return to school. Please contact me or Mrs McGrath if you are interested.
During the writing of this article we were sad to learn that Peter Bradshaw, well known Gainsborough Historian and supporter of the Heritage Centre, had passed away recently.
Mrs J Thorpe
Inspiring the QEHS Female Lead Society
Staff are always delighted to hear news of the successes of past students. Here is the amazing story of Alumni Sandie Webster, as she goes from strength to strength. Sandie is an inspiration to us all, especially her own children (at QEHS) as well as the newly formed Female Lead Society, who she hopes to meet later in the year.
Sandie first hit the headlines in October 2013, when she won the National Dulux “Pitch 2 Win Business Award” for decorating. On reaching the final 5 she delivered a 20-minute Dragons Den style winning pitch to the judges.
A month later she was the first ever female winner within the construction awards, at the final of the “National CITB Skillbuild Decorating Competition”, as well as becoming the Lincoln College “Student of the Year”.
Four years after starting her own successful Painting and Decorating business in Gainsborough (http://sandie-webster.co.uk/), 2017 saw Sandie recognised as an inspirational female in construction, becoming a member of the Painting and Decorating Association. This facilitated Sandie becoming the first female Regional and National Judge for the Painting and Decorating Awards, with CITB Skillbuild (Worldskills), for the construction industry - now in her third year.
So, what’s new for 2020?
Sandie recently featured in the Painting and Decorating News:
To celebrate International Women’s Day, a painter and decorator from Lincolnshire has shared the secrets of her success in the latest podcast from a national trade body. “I have recently done a podcast about my life, also working with them and CITB on promoting women in the trade etc.”
Sandie’s most recent accolade came earlier in 2020, as the runner up of the “Women in Construction Award” in Design and Build Magazine. As she expands her business, having enlisted her first female apprentice due to start in September, I’m sure you would join QEHS in wishing Sandie every future success. Thank you for sharing your inspiring story and accepting our invitation to attend the QEHS Junior Presentation Evening 2020.
"Many thanks for this, it is so nice to be recognised at Queen Elizabeth's as I have so many fond memories", commented Sandie.
To connect with Sandie:
Congratulations to Alumnus Richard Bilton (pictured centre), who was selected to play for England in the World Croquet Team Championships in New Zealand, during January 2020.
In recent years, England has consecutively gained third place. Richard also came 5th in the individual World Championship in summer 2019.
Perhaps you have a sporting success that you would like to share with fellow Alumni?
Alumni Dylan Simms left QEHS in 2017 to follow his chosen career path. It is fantastic to hear of his success at @JohnLeggottColl and beyond. Congratulations on your achievements so far Dylan and good luck for the future! Keep in touch https://futurefirst.org.uk
Law Undergraduate Charlotte Burgess has received a scholar’s gown and scholarship prize money to go with a trio of awards at the end of the first year of her Law course at Durham University.
Charlotte told us: “I achieved the Best Overall Performance Prize supported by Herbert Smith Freehills in my first year, for coming first in the year-end exams. In addition I was awarded the UK Constitutional Law Prize for having the highest score in the UK Constitutional Law Module, as well as receiving the Vice-Chancellors Scholarship for academic excellence for 2018/19 - only one of which is awarded per subject, per year."
Charlotte, her family and QEHS are extremely proud of her achievement since leaving QEHS in 2018. Congratulations Charlotte!
Mrs J McGrath