Ullswater Residential Year 8 2017

Year 8 enjoyed a challenging and diverse experience last week during their residential in Ullswater. 

Ullswater Residential 2017

Year 8 enjoyed a challenging and diverse experience last week during their residential in Ullswater. The themes of the week were building resilience, working collaboratively and facing new challenges.

The students faced down Storm Doris and took part in activities including canoeing; rafting; gorge walking; tunnelling; ‘Jacob’s Ladder’ and a ‘cook out’.

Our Outward Bound instructors were fantastic across the week and the students benefitted from discovering, conserving, sharing and exploring as part of their John Muir Award.

I hope the students use their experience to support and enhance their learning in school and their awareness of self, others and the environment.
— Mr T Hamill, Year 8 Student Progress Leader

Student Testimonials

8 More

“When we went on the expedition, we thought it was going to be easy, but it wasn’t! We got to the top of a mountain and there were 60mph winds – we had to crawl back down the mountain for safety; when we got to the bottom I was surprised at how proud I was of myself and the people in my group.” – Ciaran Preece

“It was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will never forget.” – Jess Shaw

“For me, the highlight of the week was the gorge walking because we were walking up waterfalls and they were so big. It made me realise how powerless we are compared to nature.” – Josh Desmier

“In my time at Ullswater, I stretched myself and did things that I was afraid to do. My highlight of the week was overcoming my fear of caving. I also enjoyed when our group had our expedition food on the beach while the sun was going down near the lake.” – Mille Beck

“Activities like tunnelling took me out of my comfort zone, but I gave it a go and I was the first one to complete it. This week helped me accomplish a lot of things that I thought I would never do; so I am grateful that I went to Ullswater.” – Connor Brehany

“I realised how resourceful and helpful my teammates are. When we were setting up tents, others helped me and it filled me with pride. The Ghyll scrambling a huge amount of teamwork as we pulled and guided each other over the rocks. I realised my body’s capabilities and restraints: it showed me my strengths.” – Joseph Abraham Thekkedum

“I learnt this week to always try my best, even if I was fazed by a task; to always give my best shot and never give up, even if you find something difficult.” – Billy Carroll

“I saw that other people can be our greatest resource when we went gorge walking, as we had to help each other up the gorge through physical and emotional support. We had to ‘spot’ and help pull people up and we had to motivate each other when we were lacking confidence.” Rachael Buxton

“What I got out of the week was new skills and the confidence to try more outdoor challenges. Overall, I thought the experience was good, however I didn’t enjoy the expedition. I did enjoy the week and I’m glad I went.” – Isabella De Jesus

“For most of the activities I was in my stretch zone, because I was trying something new and found them challenging. But, when I completed them, I felt proud. At the end of the week I felt proud and realised to never give up even if you’re in your panic zone.” – Niamh Harris-Hall

Poem by Margot Smith – Ullswater Reflection

The week at Howtown

Was quite good.

I made new friends

And jumped in mud.


I learnt new skills;

Courage and leadership.

It pushed my limits

When I did the jog and dip.


I had great friends

To help me through.

The expedition food

Was tough to chew.


I was in the ‘panic zone’

Quite a lot,

But the staff helped me;

I used all I had got.


I got a lot out of the week,

Especially the tunnels;

It was cold

I could barely speak.


Overall, I thought it was good,

But it was scary when Ellie

Went down with a ‘thud’.


I would go again,

But take more clothes,

Because I was very cold

And it hurt my toes!

 Awards for the week to follow soon!

Photo: St. Mary's pupils help the Environmental Agency to plant trees on a windy day last week

Photo: St. Mary's pupils help the Environmental Agency to plant trees on a windy day last week