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Boarding Orchard

The Boarding Orchard 

 

The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014. It aims to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  Since launch, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined The Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA. This section tells the story of every tree planting as the orchard has grown. When you read each story you will also see a link through to each school so you can find out more about them.

  • Belhaven Hill School

    Belhaven Hill School produces around 300kg of apples per year in their orchard.

     

    The children (7 - 13) collect the apples and they are pressed into apple juice for the pupils and cider for the staff at Thistly Cross cider press.

     

     

     

    Visit the Belhaven Hill School Website

  • Beechwood Park School

    As a golden anniversary project, the BSA plan to create a ‘boarding orchard’. They are encouraging as many boarding schools as possible to plant a fruit tree of their choice to form a collective orchard, worldwide in as far flung locations as Austin, Texas and John O’Groats.

     

     

    Beechwood Park School chose a conference pear Pyrus communis, propagated Thomas Francis Rivers at his family nursery at Sawbridgeworth in Hertfordshire in 1885. As well as this local connection we were delighted that another local celebrity, garden designer and Gardeners’ Question Time panelist, Matthew Biggs agreed to join us for the official tree planting alongside Robin Fletcher, National Director of the BSA.

     

     

    Fittingly the boarding team was on hand to help with the planting of what became the 76th tree to join the ‘Orchard’. The tree should be fruitful for many years to come and for future Beechwood Park generations to enjoy as this variety of tree is renowned for its longevity. 

     

    Visit the BEECHWOOD PARK SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Prior's Field School

    Bearing Fruit

    Prior’s Field’s boarding community was very grateful to alumna, and former Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Education at Kent County Council, Mrs Sarah Hohler – our guest of honour at the planting of cherry, apple and plum trees in the school gardens on Friday 22 April 2016.

    The initiative was part of the BSA (Boarding Schools’ Association) ‘Boarding Orchard’ project, which aims to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK, demonstrating schools’ commitment to growth and the environment.

    Girls at the GSA boarding and day school, for 11-18 year olds, board on a full, weekly and flexible basis, with the youngest boarders aged 11, through to those in the Sixth Form who enjoy ensuite facilities in a separate Sixth Form House. Head of Boarding, Mrs Emma Picken, commented,

    “We are delighted to be involved in this nationwide scheme and to welcome back Mrs Hohler for the occasion. For our boarders, from the youngest to the oldest, Prior’s Field is their home - it’s important to have areas of the school and its grounds that are intrinsically linked to them.”

     

    From Prior’s Field’s foundation in 1902, boarding has been at its heart. In a March 2016 ISI inspection, its quality of boarding care was described as “excellent”. Inspectors found boarders to be “articulate, engaging and courteous” and highlighted the “atmosphere of trust, tolerance and friendship in the boarding houses”. The school was awarded the top rating, ‘excellent’, in all nine areas of inspection, including quality of teaching, of curriculum and extra curricular activities, and of pastoral care.

    Alumna Sarah Hohler, an Oxford graduate, has enjoyed a career spanning teaching French in Ghana, publishing in Hong Kong, fundraising for young artists in New York and working for the British Council in Belgium as an English Language Assistant, before joining Kent County Council as an elected member in 1989. She lists her interests as cooking, bird-watching and gardening.

  • Clayesmore School

    Clayesmore recently welcomed the national director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), Robin Fletcher, to the school and marked the occasion by joining the “Boarding Orchard” scheme.

    This was launched in 2014 with the aim of planting fruit trees in the grounds of boarding schools across the UK, therefore creating, in terms of distance, its largest orchard.

     

     

    Echoing the symbolism of the “tree of knowledge” and aligned to the environment and the concept of growth, the scheme isn’t restricted to the UK. Mr Fletcher told us that trees had also been planted at schools in Switzerland and the USA.

    As for Clayesmore, he said he was “delighted” at being invited to the school and that the scheme has another tree to its name. 

    Visit the CLAYESMORE SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • Wells Cathedral School

    Head boy Harry Connock, head girl Isabel Slattery, as well as sixth form pupils Orlando Fraser and Sorrel Wilson accompanied by head, Elizabeth Cairncross, deputy head Andy Kemp, assistant head pastoral care, Arthur Mayhew, head of grounds Craig Keast, head gardener Paul Barnett, gardener James Lewis and Mark Robinson from the Boarding Schools Association, planted two apple trees in the spring sunshine in the beautiful school grounds of Wells Cathedral School on Wednesday, part of the Boarding Orchard initiative run by the BSA.

     

    The two trees, Winter Gem, an eating apple tree planted for harvest by the pre-prep pupils; and Bountiful, a cooking apple tree planted for use by the award-winning school catering team, were chosen by head gardener Paul, for cross pollination and their high yield. Their produce will be much enjoyed by pupils here in the heart of Somerset’s apple-growing countryside!

     

     

    The Boarding Orchard initiative was introduced by the BSA to symbolise member schools’ commitment to growth and caring for the environment. The aim is to create the largest orchard across the UK. 

    Visit the WELLS CATHEDRAL SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

     

  • Giggleswick School

    We have planted three fruit trees in our grounds as part of the Boarding Orchard programme, launched by the Boarding Schools Association in 2014. The Boarding Orchard aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK with boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds.

    The School chose an apple, a damson and a Victoria plum tree to reflect the site where they are planted next to the Dining Hall. The planting was led by Junior School pupils and supported by the School’s Head of Grounds, Craig Eccleston and local horticulturalist, Felicity Bowring.

     

     

    “Giggleswick has a proud tradition of caring for its wonderful grounds in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales which extend over 200 acres”, says Mrs Bowring. “Trees symbolise so much, particularly growth and knowledge, which makes Giggleswick the perfect home for them.”

    This is just the latest in several tree planting initiatives that School has undertaken. In 2014, five willow trees were planted near the School’s cricket pitch with the aim of harvesting them in 10-15 years’ time to make cricket bats from Giggleswick wood.

    In 2012, the diseased chestnut trees on Chestnut Walk, a footpath running through the school’s grounds, were replaced with Indian Horse Chestnut trees, thought to be resistant to disease.

     

     

    In 2011, the School was chosen as one of the first 250 schools to take part in the Conservation Foundation’s Great British Elm Experiment. Successive generations of pupils will be monitoring and caring for an elm tree over the years in an experiment to unlock the mystery of why some trees survived Dutch elm disease which killed 25 million trees from the 1960s onwards.

    Other projects have included the regeneration of local woodland, for which the School was awarded a Millennium Marque, the planting of 5,500 native broadleaf trees in Kelcow Wood with grant aid from the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust and the Forestry Commission, and a planting scheme of native trees around the School Chapel.

    Visit the GIGGLESWICK SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • Dulwich Prep School, Cranbrook

    Boarders, staff and governors at Dulwich Prep School, Cranbrook  planted apple trees to commemorate 50 years of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA). They joined boarding schools across the country to celebrate the occasion.    The aim is to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining together by planting fruit trees in their grounds.

     

     

    The two apple trees were donated by former pupil Karim Habibi from Keepers Nursery in East Farleigh, Maidstone, and he presented the trees to the school at the ceremony.

     

     

    Dulwich Prep School has a proud history of boarding, which started when the first evacuees from Dulwich Prep School in London came to Kent at the outbreak of World War Two. Today the school has dedicated facilities for both boys and girls, and many pupils enjoy part or weekly boarding. Evening activities include quiz nights, sport, comedy evenings and trips out, and the boarding community engenders lasting friendships.

       

    Visit the DULWICH PREP SCHOOL, CRANBROOK WEBSITE. 

  • Wycliffe College

    On Monday 11th January, as part of ‘The Boarding Orchard’ initiative set up by the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), Mr Nick Gregory, Head of Wycliffe College, Mr Adrian Palmer, Head of Wycliffe Preparatory School, Deputy Head Pastoral, Mrs Liz Buckley and Head of School, Tom O’Driscoll were delighted to welcome Mr Robin Fletcher, National Director of the BSA for the official planting of a purple plum tree in the School grounds.

    This was the 70th tree planted by the BSA since the launch of the Boarding Orchard in 2014 by way of celebrating the BSA’s jubilee. Wycliffe aims to expand its orchard annually with Heads of School planting fruit trees on behalf of each departing Year 13.

    “Boarding and pastoral care lie very much at the heart of Wycliffe and since we are also committed to encouraging healthy eating, we are delighted to be able to reinforce this message through the BSA Boarding Orchard project.” Said Mrs Buckley.

    Despite the miserable weather, Mr Fletcher received a warm and enthusiastic welcome and with the help of students from both the Prep and Senior School planted the tree.

     

     

    Mr Fletcher then enjoyed a delicious lunch with staff and students after which he was taken on a tour of the campus and boarding Houses by a group of Sixth Form Students.

    Mr Fletcher said: “It is great to be back in Stonehouse and to be visiting a School I have personally had a long association with, I am delighted Wycliffe is the latest edition to ‘The Boarding Orchard’ project, which now includes schools across the UK as well as Switzerland and the USA.  The trees symbolise the 'tree of knowledge' and demonstrate each school's commitment to growth and caring for the environment.”

    The purple plum tree was planted outside Wycliffe Hall and will enhance the existing apple and pear trees that have been planted within the school grounds in recent years. The purple plum tree is also renowned for its beautiful purple blossom, Wycliffe’s colours and will be a rich food source for the Wycliffe bees, whose hives are situated nearby in the Science School. 

    Visit the WYCLIFFE COLLEGE WEBSITE. 

  • CATS College Cambridge

    CATS College Cambridge celebrated the end of its first term in a brand new purpose built campus with an official opening ceremony on the day its students broke up for Christmas.  Taking on the twin themes of learning and living, the guests for the day were Professor Ian White, Master of Jesus College Cambridge, and Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools Association. Ian White marked the opening in a traditional way by cutting a ribbon in front of the assembled students and staff, whilst Robin Fletcher planted an apple tree – making CATS the latest proud member of the Boarding Schools Orchard.  The apple tree – a Flower of Kent – is, so it is said, the very same kind of tree under which famous Cantabrigian Sir Isaac Newton sat, signifying the proud academic tradition for which Cambridge is famous.  

     

    Visit the CATS COLLEGE CAMBRIDGE WEBSITE.  

  • King’s College Saint Michaels

    On a very mild November day, Saint Michael’s received a visit from Robin Fletcher, the National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association.  One of the reasons for his visit was to plant a fruit tree at the turning circle near the entrance to the college grounds where students gather on excursion days.  A selection of our prefects joined Mr Fletcher to assist with the planting and help to create a little piece of history.  The tree will see students come and go for decades to come.

    Mr Fletcher’s visit was the highlight of an eventful day at Saint Michael’s, which followed a visit from our local friends at Tenbury High school and preceded a prefects’ afternoon tea with the principal.

     

    Prefect Abdelrhman S. summed up the whole experience: “Tuesday was a packed day for us”
    “From meeting director of the boarding school association, to planting a tree and showing Tenbury High prefects around our school, we rounded it off with tea with the Principal.”

    This tree would then form part of ‘The Boarding Orchard’, an enterprise which aims to be the largest orchard by distance in the UK.  It involves 50 boarding schools planting fruit trees in their grounds.  The trees symbolises ‘the tree of knowledge’ and demonstrates each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  Present at the planting ceremony besides Robin Fletcher were Mr. Higgins, Mr. Glare (head of Boarding at Saint Michael’s) and our Bursar Mr. Lindup, along with the school prefects.

    Visit the KING'S COLLEGE SAINT MICHAELS WEBSITE.

  • Caldicott School

     

    Thomas Bracken

    My friend Jack and I, as well as 4 senior teachers, a governor and Mark Robinson from the BSA, (Boarding Schools' Association) gathered down on (the rather cold) Spens Field to plant a tree. This tree represented the unity of, not just my school, Caldicott’s community, but boarding communities across the country. I felt very privileged to a part of the event.

    For me the Caldicott community is a place where you are encouraged to do the very best of your ability and if you fail you are not criticized but shown to learn from your mistakes and try again. The great thing about our community, is that, if you have a problem there is always someone to talk to about it.  That’s why I feel proud to be a part of such a great, nurturing community. 

    Jack Muller

    On the 10th December 2015 my friend Thomas, 1 of the governors, Mark Robinson from the BSA (Boarding Schools’ Association) and 4 teachers and I gathered on Spens Field at Caldicott to plant a tree. This tree was planted to represent that Caldicott is part of the BSA, an organisation that unites boarding schools across Europe into one community. This tree represents the brilliant community we are now part of. I’m very proud to have made a contribution.

    The Caldicott community means a lot to me. It is a place where boys thrive to the best of their ability, we are all happy together as a community and have great times with our friends. I feel proud to be part of it and I’m sure all boys at this school do. 

    Visit the CALDICOTT SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Millfield School

    On Wednesday 25 November 2015, Millfield joined the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) initiative ‘Boarding Orchard’ by planting an Apple Katy tree amongst our tree orchard in front of two girls’ boarding houses, Abbey and Kernick.

    Headmaster Craig Considine, Head Girl, Juliet Rustom and Head Boy, Josh Bayliss along with Millfield houseparents joined Robin Fletcher, the BSA’s National Director, to mark the occasion and put the final touches to the planting.

    BSA National Director Robin Fletcher (second from left) with Head Boy Josh Bayliss, Millfield headmaster Craig Considine and Head Girl Juliet Rustom

    The area is marked by a plaque, recognising the importance of making a positive contribution to the environment and our continued engagement with fellow boarding schools across the country. The Apple Katy joins mulberry, pear and medlar trees in the orchard of nine trees.

     

    Shapwick, a boarding house on the other side of the Millfield campus, is also home to an orchard. The Shapwick boys annually collect the apples from their orchard and take them to be made into ‘Shapple Juice’, which they sell to raise money for charity. We look forward to seeing more fruit blooming on the campus over the coming years.

    Mr Fletcher took the opportunity to spend time with pupils and staff at Millfield including lunch at the Wilson Cricket Pavilion with houseparents and a pupil tour of the boarding house.

    Visit the MILLFIELD SCHOOL WEBSITE.

     

  • Marlborough College

    The Master of Marlborough College, Wiltshire, Mr Jonathan Leigh, planted a quince tree (Cydonia oblonga) - a beautiful old-fashioned fruit tree - in the College grounds, as part of the BSA Boarding Orchard to celebrate the Golden Jubilee Year of the Boarding Schools Association. The College is delighted to be a member of the BSA family and staff and pupils are looking forward to the rich variety of events taking place during Jubilee year.

     

    Mr Jonathan Leigh Master of Marlborough College plants an Old Fashioned Quince tree in the College grounds

    Visit the MARLBOROUGH COLLEGE WEBSITE. 

  • Kent College

    On the 23rd November 2015 we planted a cedar tree as part of the 'plantation of trees' that forms the Boarding Schools' Association Boarding Orchard. Despite the very cold weather, the sky was beautiful and the tea and cake which followed soon warmed us up!  

     

     

    Boarding lies very much at the heart of Kent College and the tree planted today represents the school’s commitment to providing outstanding boarding within a supportive and inspiring community.  We chose a cedar tree to celebrate the memories of some of our Old Girls who remember when the school grounds used to be adorned by a glorious cedar tree at the front of the school (as can be seen in the picture that former pupil, Jane More, is holding below.) Much to the dismay of the girls, the tree came down during the Great Storm of 1985. 

     

     

     

    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014 and aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK.  Boarding schools across the UK  join the orchard by planting trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.   We were delighted to welcome Mark Robinson, Assistant Director of Training at the Boarding Schools' Association. The Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) is the United Kingdom Association serving and representing member boarding schools, training staff and promoting boarding education in both independent and state boarding schools.   

    Visit the KENT COLLEGE WEBSITE.

  • Brockhurst & Marlston House Schools

    On Thursday 19 November, Brockhurst and Marlston House planted a pear tree for the ‘Boarding Orchard’ campaign, which aims to be the largest orchard by distance.  The trees symbolise ‘the tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    Our tree has been named in remembrance of Ronald Poulton Palmer who would have inherited Marlston House, which is now our school.  Sadly, he died whilst serving his country in the First World War. 

     

     

    Before going to war he captained the grand slam winning England rugby team and, by a remarkable coincidence, playing in the same team was an Old Brock, called Arthur Leyland Harrison (who was awarded the Victoria Cross posthumously for outstanding gallantry). 

    A branch from a tree in the original orchard, planted by Palmer’s father, has been carefully grafted onto our Palmer Pear tree.  We welcomed Mark Robinson from the Boarding Schools Association to the School who joined our head prefects and heads of boarding at the tree planting ceremony. 

    Visit the BROCKHURST AND MARLSTON HOUSE SCHOOLS WEBSITE. 

     

  • UWC Atlantic College

    UWC Atlantic College was delighted to become the latest school to participate in the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) ‘Boarding Orchard’ scheme, when it welcomed National Director Robin Fletcher on Thursday 12 November 2015 on campus.

    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014. It aims to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  Since launch, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined The Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA.

    Robin was joined by Caretaker Principal Gerry Holden and a number of students to plant an apple tree in the college’s orchard. Also present was teacher Adrian Disney, who teaches in the Environmental Faculty. The Environmental Faculty takes a challenging and interactive approach to learning that inspires and equips students to work towards a more sustainable future. Students help cultivate a large kitchen garden on the campus and maintain the college farm and the heritage coastline.

    Robin Fletcher said, ‘It was a pleasure to come to UWC Atlantic College to meet the students and help plant the tree.’

    The orchard will not be the end; a cookbook is set to follow, once the trees have had a chance to flourish and bloom. The BSA will be visiting participating schools to collect different recipes that have been trialled using the fruits of the trees planted.

    Visit the UWC ATLANTIC COLLEGE WEBSITE.

  • Bredon School

     

    Bredon School held a moving Remembrance Service today in front of Pull Court. Our CCF students were joined by Lieutenant Colonel Jason Kinghorn and Mr Aatif Hassan, along with the Headmaster who led the readings and prayer. Members of the Junior school planted crosses in front of the fountain, each cross representing those employees at Pull Court that died in service in war.
    Mr Hassan, with help from pupils, planted a young Oak tree in the terraced garden in commemoration as part of the Boarding Orchard.

     

    Visit the BREDON SCHOOL WEBSITE.

     

  • Sibford School

    Pupils at Sibford School near Banbury are creating a new heritage apple orchard.

    Fifteen trees …. of different varieties that have originated in Oxfordshire and the neighbouring counties … have been planted in a field that lies at the edge of the school’s 50-acre campus.

     

     

    The seed of the idea came from local villager Bill Crabtree who uses the field, known as Holly Tree Field, to graze his sheep.

    Explains Andy Newbold, Director of Studies at Sibford and a keen horticulturalist: “Bill noticed that two apple trees that grew in the field had come to the end of their natural life. We talked about replacing them but the idea quickly took root so that in the end, rather than having a couple of new trees, we have instead created a whole new orchard.”

     

     

    The apple trees have been supplied by Marcus Roberts, founder of the Mid Shires Orchard Group, whose daughter Abigail has recently joined the school. They have been sponsored by parents, staff together with Bill and his wife, Barbara. Each tree has been individually fenced to protect it from the grazing sheep, with the cost for this being covered by money raised from Sibford’s Clothing Bank (part of the school’s commitment to recycling).

     

     

    “Children really enjoy growing and harvesting fruit, it gives them a real sense of connection and can be a very calming experience,” said Marcus, who supplies trees to the National Trust and other historic properties and who has also helped chef Raymond Blanc create his own heritage orchard. “I was delighted to be able to select and supply the trees and trust that the children will enjoy finding out more about the different varieties.”

    The trees were planted by members of Sibford’s Year 10 and 11 horticultural class with the help of teacher Angy Bovill, Andy Newbold and members of the school’s grounds staff.

    Bill Crabtree also came along to ensure that everything went to plan. He is pictured with some of the members of the planting team.

    Visit the SIBFORD SCHOOLS WEBSITE.

     

  • Sidcot School

    Sidcot was delighted to become the latest school to participate in Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) ‘Boarding Orchard’ scheme, when it welcomed National Director Robin Fletcher on Monday 12th October.

    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014. It aims to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  Since launch, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined The Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA.

     

     

    Robin was joined by Headmaster Iain Kilpatrick and a number of the school’s boarding students to plant a ‘red devil’ apple tree in the school’s Yurt Village. Also present were members of SAGE – Sidcot Action for a Greener Environment as the scheme speaks to the heart of environmental stewardship which is a key value at the school.

    Deputy Head Matt Williams said, ‘It was a pleasure to show Robin around the school and in particular our boarding facilities. He felt that the homely and nurturing environment of the boarding houses was a great indication of the school’s commitment to excellent pastoral care. We hope to see the tree thrive and bear fruit; in the same way we hope our students will grow and blossom during their time at Sidcot.’

     

     

    And the orchard will not be the end; a cookbook is set to follow, once the trees have had a chance to flourish and bloom. The BSA will be visiting participating schools to collect different recipes that have been trialled using the fruits of the trees planted. Robin was also interested to hear that Sidcot now has its own apple press and promised to return to sample some of our produce.

    Visit the SIDCOT SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Cranbrook School

    Cranbrook was delighted to welcome the National Director of the State Boarding Schools Association, Robin Fletcher, on Tuesday 29 September. Robin has visited many boarding schools throughout the last year as part of a scheme to plant a “Boarding Orchard” in as many member schools (SBSA and BSA) as possible.

     

     

    As well as planting a fabulous new cherry tree, Robin visited a number of boarding houses, met some of our senior boarding students, staff and a Governor and enjoyed lunch with the whole school at lunchtime. He has told us he was “very impressed with what he saw, in particular the smart and well-kept nature of each boarding house… presentation of boarding is hugely important and clearly a lot of effort goes into this at your school so well done to all concerned.” 

     

    Visit the CRANBROOK SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

     

  • More House School

    Headmaster of More House School, Jonathan Hetherington, along with his wife, Elizabeth, warmly welcomed the Boarding Schools’ Association’s National Director, Robin Fletcher, on a crisp September day to plant a cherry tree outside the school’s new boarding house, St Jerome’s.  Robin Fletcher remarked that he was “delighted” as the school became the latest member to join the record-breaking BSA orchard, forming another link in the ever-expanding chain of schools already part of the orchard.

     

     

    More House School, is a day and boarding school for boys aged eight to 18 who are bright, but struggle with mainstream education because of a specific learning difficulty.   The school’s ethos is the belief that every child has strengths and that these must be celebrated as a means of fuelling each boy’s desire to learn and develop.   A broad curriculum educates the whole person, enabling each student to excel in their field.  The school’s pupils achieve outstanding results at GCSE and A’ Level.

     

     

    Fred Pennell, School Deputy Head and Head of Boarding, together with a group of boarders representing all ages within the school, helped Robin plant the tree, which will be a welcome addition to this newly opened house, giving a further 14 beds and increasing the school’s boarding capacity to 117.  Robin Fletcher also toured the school’s boarding facilities and met with members of the boarding staff and with boarders.

     

     

    Mr Hetherington commented “More House is delighted to support this BSA initiative, drawing member schools together in support of one another and the pursuit of outstanding boarding education for pupils”.

    Visit the MORE HOUSE SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • King's Rochester

    Principal of King’s Rochester, Jeremy Walker, welcomed BSA Director, Robin Fletcher to Kent on a glorious September day to plant a tree in each of the Boarding House gardens at King’s and thereby to become the latest member of the Boarding Orchard project which links schools across the UK and beyond.

     

    Robin with St Margaret’s Housemistress, Hannah Catlett and Principal of King’s, Jeremy Walker

    King’s Rochester occupies a beautiful and extensive historical site around the centre of historic Rochester and between its Norman castle and the Cathedral. It is the second oldest school in the UK and the oldest Choir School in the world and has two boarding houses where the emphasis is on creating a warm, friendly family atmosphere for both boys and girls.

    Robin with School House Housemistress, Lisa Rogers and Principal, Jeremy Walker 

    Boarding mistresses, Hannah Catlett (St Margaret’s House) and Lisa Rogers (School House) chose a cherry tree and a mulberry tree respectively and we look forward to watching them grow and bear fruit in the years to come. 

    Visit the KING'S ROCHESTER WEBSITE. 

  • Cheam School

    On 25th  September, Cheam planted a Damson Merryweather Tree as part of ‘The Boarding Orchard’ campaign, which the BSA launched in 2014. The campaign aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, and involves schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    The Headmaster’s wife, Mrs Jane Johnson (Mrs J) planted the damson tree, with help from the Senior Boarding Boy and Girl (Ned Potts and Aoife Reid), under the watchful eye of Head Groundsman Andrew Godwin. It was planted in the middle of a line of trees, which separates two sections of the sports fields, within the 80 acres of grounds.

     

     

    Visit the CHEAM SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • Christ's Hospital

    Christ's Hospital were delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, National Director of the BSA, on Monday 21 September 2015 to plant a fruit maple tree in their grounds, the 51st tree to be planted in the Boarding Orchard scheme.

     

     

    Robin was joined by the Head Master, John Franklin and his wife, Kim, together with Marlene Fleming, the Assistant Head, Pastoral, Jo Thomson and Tom Lawson, Deputy Heads,  Isobel Pelling, Senior Grecian and Elliot Riley, Second Monitor and Guy Clough, the Head Groundsman.

    After the planting, which took place in heavy rain, Robin visited three boarding houses and took Afternoon Tea with some House Parents and Assistant House Parents.

    Visit the CHRIST'S HOSPITAL WEBSITE.

  • St John's College

    Boarding students of St John’s College in Southsea planted an apple tree this week and joined many other schools across the country in a bid to plant the largest orchard in the UK.   

    On Monday 14 September, the Boarding Community of St John’s College welcomed Mark Robinson, the Deputy Director of Training at the Boarding Schools’ Association, to the school.  During his visit, students and staff joined a network of boarding schools across the UK and planted a fruit tree to demonstrate the College’s commitment to growth.

     

     

    The ‘Boarding Orchard’ initiative was launched in 2014 by the Boarding Schools’ Association, and aims to be the largest orchard in the UK by distance.   Mr Andrew Towse, who joined St John’s College as Head of Boarding in the summer, arranged for students and staff to plant the tree to symbolise the school’s commitment to growth and care of the environment.

    The apple tree was planted in the gardens of ‘Woodlands’ – one of the School’s two houses for girls.  Mr Towse said. “I hope that by becoming part of the BSA Boarding Orchard it will allow our boarders to have stronger links with a much wider boarding community across the country.  I am looking forward to seeing this partnership, and our new apple tree, grow!”

    Visit the ST JOHN'S COLLEGE WEBSITE.

  • Shiplake College

    The Boarding Schools’ Association was created to champion boarding and promote boarding excellence, representing schools both nationally and internationally. As part of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) golden jubilee, the Boarding Orchard was launched in 2014. Aiming to be the largest orchard by distance in the UK, the scheme involves schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. Since its launch, schools across Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and England have joined the Boarding Orchard, with the scheme even going international, stretching as far afield as Switzerland and the USA!

    Mr Robin Fletcher, National Director of the BSA, visited Shiplake College on 8 September 2015, in order to plant a tree in the grounds of the College and thus initiate the school into the Boarding Orchard. The chosen tree was a Mulberry tree, representing a ‘tree of knowledge’, and displaying Shiplake’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment. Shiplake became the 48th school to join the scheme, but took the proud accolade of the first school involved planting a Mulberry tree, breaking away from the tradition of apple!

     

     

    Headmaster Gregg Davies, Deputy  Head of Pastoral Mr Nick Brown and Head Groundsman Mr Richard Evans joined Mr Fletcher, along with Head of College Greg Cooke, Head Chapel Warden Dom Allen, Year 13 prefect Anna Davies, Monty Garner, James Smith and James Dallas, to join in with planting the tree and commemorating the special occasion. Mr Fletcher was incredibly impressed with the College grounds and the conduct of the pupils involved in planting the tree. Indeed, he commented that he was ‘delighted’ with Shiplake becoming a part of the scheme and ‘thrilled to have incorporated the College into the increasingly-popular initiative.’

     

     

    And the orchard will not be the end; a cookbook is set to follow, once the trees have had a chance to flourish and bloom. The BSA will be visiting participating schools to collect different recipes that have been trialled using the fruits of the trees planted. This promises to be a delicious way to continue the scheme! 

    Visit the SHIPLAKE COLLEGE WEBSITE.

  • Durham School

    A leading Independent Boarding School in the North East is helping to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK after planting a “tree of knowledge” in its grounds. Durham School’s new Head of School, Kirstie Kirkley (Year 13) performed her first official duty in helping to plant an apple tree in the small growing orchard of English Discovery apple trees in the beautiful grounds of the School.

    The tree was planted at Durham School on Monday 7 September 2015, with help from Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), Mr Kieran McLaughlin, Headmaster of Durham School, Kirsty Kirkley, Head of School and Nick Millen, Director of Operations at the School.

     

    We are all keen to be involved and look forward to the fruits of our labour come harvest time!’ said Kirstie Kirkley.

    The tree symbolises the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrates our commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  We are also committed to encouraging healthy eating so we are delighted to be able to reinforce this message through the Boarding Orchard project. It is also an opportunity to introduce our pupils to the many wonderful varieties of apples we have in this country”, said Kieran McLaughlin.

    Since the launch in 2014 by the BSA, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined The Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA. It is hoped that 500 schools from all over the nation will participate. 

    Visit the DURHAM SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • King Edward's Witley

    King Edward’s Witley added to its beautiful 100-acre site in rural Surrey on 1st July 2015, when the School participated in the BSA (Boarding Schools’ Association) innovative Boarding Orchard scheme.

    The Headmaster, John Attwater, was joined by Robin Fletcher, National Director of the BSA, to plant a young apple tree beside the School’s recently installed polytunnel.

    The trees that are being planted in schools across the country are designed to form part of the largest orchard in the UK (by distance), symbolising the tree of knowledge and reaffirming each individual school’s dedication to growth and caring for the environment, as well as raising awareness of the advantages of boarding education.

    Commenting on The Boarding Orchard concept, the Headmaster said, “As one of the oldest boarding and day schools in the country we are delighted to be part of The BSA’s initiative.  It emphasises the importance of environment in education and how important it is for our children to link with nature and have proper outdoor space to live and play in.”

     

    Visit the KING EDWARD'S WITLEY WEBSITE. 

  • New Hall School

    Staff and students were delighted to welcome National Director of the Boarding School Association, Robin Fletcher, to New Hall School, on 23 June. Robin was treated to a tour of the school in Boreham, Essex, and told staff how impressed he was with the provision New Hall offers their students. 

    At the time of the visit, New Hall School joined the country wide Boarding Orchard programme, where member schools combine forces to produce the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK. Mr Fletcher, along Liam (boarder of the year), and Hannah and Max (senior boarding prefects) planted a young apple tree. The trees in the orchard symbolise the 'tree of knowledge' demonstrating growth and showing a care for our environment. New Hall sees the expansion of the orchard as another benefit to their ‘outstanding’ rated boarding provision.

    Elizabeth Searle, Director of Boarding at New Hall School, said, "We so enjoyed having Robin visit us. Having the opportunity to share good practice, discuss ideas and show off our boarding provision, to someone with so much knowledge of our sector was a real treat. We would like to thank Robin for his time and look forward to welcoming him again.”

     

     

    Visit the NEW HALL SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Rugby School

     

    A pear tree planted at Rugby School has become the latest addition to The Boarding Orchard, an initiative in which schools are planting fruit trees to create the largest orchard in the UK by distance.

    Launched by the Boarding School Association, the scheme has already attracted almost 40 member schools and Rugby’s tree was planted by the association’s National Director and Old Rugbeian (OR), Robin Fletcher.

    To make the planting even more significant, Mr Fletcher, who is also editor of the OR newsletter ‘Floreat’, planted the pear tree in the garden of his old boarding house, Kilbracken.

    “The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrates each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment,” said Mr Fletcher.

    “It is a particularly significant occasion for me to plant Rugby School’s tree in the garden I enjoyed when I was a pupil here.”

     

    Visit the RUGBY SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • The Wellington Academy

    Monday 6th July 2015 saw the planting of our 'Tickled Pink' tree at the front of the Boarding House.  It was fantastic to have David Cowley - Chair of Governors with us, along with Dr. Milner and Mr Thomas, the new Master of Wellington College, Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding School's Association, as well as the newly appointed Prefects and heads of house, all gathered for the tree planting. The tree planting went to plan, after a little bit of support, the apple tree stood upright, even in slightly windy conditions.  We enjoyed pre-planting drinks and nibbles, followed by post-planting lunch.  It is fantastic to be part of the worlds largest orchard, by distance and we look forward to making apple pie in a couple of years!  

     

    Visit THE WELLINGTON ACADEMY WEBSITE. 

  • Merchiston Castle School

     

    We are always planting saplings at Merchiston. The beauty of this campus really, really matters to us and we must ensure that we look after the campus for the boys, the staff and the parents and future generations!  So, earlier this week, I took the opportunity to visit the Pringle Centre, which is where our 7, 8, 9 and 10 year olds have one of their homes within Merchiston!  No finer a young man than the Head of Pringle, Alan, could have planted the silver birch, and as ever, his words of advice to the youngsters were extremely apt 'May this tree enjoy its life on the Merchiston campus and belonging to the orchard!'.

     

     

    In my few words, I commented that the natural playgrounds these young boys have around the Pringle Centre are phenomenal, and I have no doubt that this silver birch in time will become a goal post or some cricket stumps or part of a football goal!  However, I did urge the boys to let the tree settle down!  It was also a great pleasure to welcome one of our Taster boys, Matthew, to the tree planting ceremony; and boys will be boys, so they enjoyed a treat afterwards in the Pringle Centre!

    Andrew Hunter

    Headmaster

    Visit the MERCHISTON CASTLE SCHOOL WEBSITE.  

     

  • Sherborne Girls

    Sherborne Girls were delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), for a tour of the school this week and to plant a tree, as part of the BSA's ‘The Boarding Orchard’ initiative, launched in 2014.

    Deputy Head for Pastoral at Sherborne Girls, Violaine Ludwick, said, "We chose to plant a Greengage tree in the garden of Aldhelmsted West, our boarding house for girls aged 11 to 13. Lucy F and Lottie M helped Robin plant the tree and we hope that as all the girls move up through the school, the tree will blossom and flourish, just like they will."

    Headmistress Jenny Dwyer said, "We were delighted to join this venture, which aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment." 

     

    Left to right: Robin Fletcher from the BSA, with Lottie and Lucy

     

    Visit the SHERBORNE GIRLS WEBSITE.

  • Sherborne Preparatory School

    Sherborne Prep took part in the British Boarding School Association’s drive to create the biggest orchard in Britain this week, when we welcomed their National Director, Robin Fletcher, to help us plant a cherry tree in the grounds outside the girls’ boarding house, Netherton.

    Head Boarders Barwaqo, whose family live in London, and Luca, whose family live in Somerset, assisted with the planting and were delighted to be part of the initiative to plant fruit trees at boarding schools across the British Isles and create the largest geographical orchard in Britain.

    The boarders and day children at The Prep are all looking forward to enjoying the fruits of their labours in years to come!

     

    Visit the SHERBORNE PREPARATORY SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • West Buckland School

    Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) visited West Buckland School on Tuesday 9th June and as part of his visit took part in a special tree-planting ceremony.  Robin planted an apple tree to welcome West Buckland into the BSA’s ‘Boarding Orchard’.  Launched in 2014, the ‘Boarding Orchard’ aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools around the country joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. 

     

    Left to right: Mrs Vic Ford, Sunny Hung, Hallum Chapman, Constanze Schneider, Mr John Vick, Mr Dominic Ford and Mr Robin Fletcher

    The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  Robin was joined for the tree-planting by Headmaster John Vick, Head of Boarding Dominic Ford, Houseparent Mrs Vic Ford and pupils Hallum Chapman, Constanze Schneider and Sunny Hung. 

    As part of his visit, Robin was given a tour of the school and was impressed by the school’s new sixth form boarding house and study centre, both of which will open this September.  Head of Boarding, Dominic Ford said: “We were pleased to welcome Robin to West Buckland and to join the BSA ‘Boarding Orchard’.  The initiative is a good way to engage students in the wider environmental debate and of course is symbolic of the nurturing, growth, knowledge and development we aim to provide our pupils.”

    Visit the WEST BUCKLAND SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • St Lawrence College

    St Lawrence College is delighted to have joined the BSA’s ‘Boarding Orchard’ project.

    On 3 June, an apple tree was planted in the grounds of St Lawrence College.  Chairman of Governors, David Taylor, and Principal, Antony Spencer, were joined by boarders: Head of School, Andrew Watson, Head Girl, Moshope Laniyan and Head Boy, Douglas Ng, representing each of the senior boarding houses.  Nine year old boarder, Rosie Daniels, represented the Junior School.

    A further apple tree, pear tree and traditional Victoria plum tree have been planted alongside, on land next to the modern Kirby House, situated between the Victorian Junior and Senior School buildings.  With Kent being known as ‘the garden of England’ due to its abundance of fruit-growing, the trees are a very appropriate addition to the school grounds.

     

    Left to Right- Andrew Watson, Antony Spencer, David Taylor, Rosie Daniels, Moshope Laniyan, Douglas Ng

    Visit the ST LAWRENCE COLLEGE WEBSITE.

     

  • Badminton School

    On Thursday 4th June 2015, Badminton School were delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), to join the Senior Management Team for a warm welcome coffee, a tour of the school and of course, the planting of a Cherry tree in order to participate in the BSA ‘The Boarding Orchard’ initiative launched in 2014.

    We were delighted to join this venture, which aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

     

     

    Badminton’s Cherry tree was planted in the gardens in front of Northcote House, the oldest building in the School, and is set amongst flower beds with the ‘Badminton Girl’ rose; a rose named to celebrate the School’s 150th foundation anniversary in 2008.

    We look forward to seeing it grow and blossom for years to come.

     

    Visit the BADMINTON SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • St Mary's School, Cambridge

    A magnolia was planted at a Cambridge school to symbolise a "tree of knowledge".

    ADVERTISING
     
     
     

    St Mary's School in Bateman Street is taking part in the Boarding School Association scheme to create the largest orchard by distance in the UK.

    Robin Fletcher, the national director of the BSA, was there for the planting, when he met staff and students from St Mary's.

    A spokeswoman for the school said: "The trees symbolise the 'tree of knowledge' and demonstrate each school's commitment to growth and caring for the environment. The tree planted at St Mary's School, Cambridge was a magnolia tree, as it is the symbol of our school magazine.

    "More than 25 British boarding schools have now joined the scheme plus boarding schools in Switzerland and the United States."

    The Boarding Orchard scheme was launched last year.

     

    This article was first published on Cambridge News

    Visit the ST MARY'S SCHOOL, CAMBRIDGE WEBSITE.

  • Bedales

    Bedales has planted a ‘tree of knowledge’ to become the 32nd school to join an international boarding orchard created by state and independent boarding schools jn the UK, US and Switzerland. The idea was conceived by the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) to symbolise member schools’ commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    The planting of a Birch Bark Cherry tree (Prunus Serrula) at Bedales on 20 May 2015 also kicked off the school’s Conference on Boarding: Thriving in a changing world, which was supported by the BSA, with the keynote address delivered by its National Director Robin Fletcher on the challenges and opportunities facing the boarding school sector.

     

     

    Teacher and student delegates from state and independent sectors also discussed student resilience, prompted by presentations from Nicola Morgan, author of Blame My Brain, and pastoral care expert Jackie Cox. The conference was part of the school’s Leading Independent Thinking series of conferences  and events; other wide-ranging topics in this year’s series have included philosophy, educational innovation and the poetry of Edward Thomas. 

    Robin Fletcher, Headmaster Keith Budge, and Housemistress Jenni Brittain joined Block 3 (Year 9) students to plant the tree adjacent to Bedales’ award-winning timber framed theatre.

     

     

    Visit the BEDALES WEBSITE.

  • Bedford School

    Bedford School officially became the newest member of the Boarding Orchard when they planted Cox’s Orange Pippin by the school’s new performing arts facility: The Quarry Theatre at St Luke’s on Tuesday 12th May 2015. 

    Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools Association (BSA), joined the Vice Master, Colin Baker and Senior Boarding Housemaster, Chris Bury, as well as young boarders from the school’s six senior boarding houses at the tree planting whilst on a tour of the school’s boarding facilities.

    Robin Fletcher commented, “I am thrilled and delighted that Bedford School has joined our ever growing orchard.  It is a wonderful commitment to growth and the environment, and one, I hope, today’s boarders as well as many future generations at the school will enjoy.”  

     

     

    Visit the BEDFORD SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • St Catherine's Bramley

    St Catherine’s Bramley were delighted to join the BSA Boarding Orchard to coincide with Robin Fletcher’s visit to the school at the end of April. We took the opportunity to replace a pear tree, lost a few years ago in our apple and pear avenue that flanks the tennis courts. A small team of boarders, Emily, Alyssa and Kayla from U3, Kate from L4, Jenny from U4 and Suzie, Head Boarder from U6 joined Robin and Lorinda Munro-Faure, Head of Boarding for the tree planting.

    We were very pleased to be part of this initiative linking schools from all over the UK.

     

     

     

    Visit the ST CATHERINE'S, BRAMLEY WEBSITE

  • Queen Margaret’s School, York

    During the week of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2015, the girls from Queen Margaret’s School, York planted six fruit trees as part of the BSA’s boarding orchard.

    The colours of the trees were specially chosen to represent each of the Houses at Queen Margaret’s. The yellow of St. Aidan’s House was represented with a Prunus Oullins ‘Golden Gage’ plum tree. A Malus ‘Blue Moon’ apple tree was chosen to represent the blue of QM Hall. Garry House’s red was represented with a Malus ‘Red Sentinel’ apple tree. The green of School House was symbolised by a Prunus ‘Green Gage’ plum tree. Duncan House’s pink was represented by Malus ‘Pink Glow’ apple tree and a Prunus ‘Purple Victoria’ plum tree was chosen for the purple of Pitlochry.    

    House Captains, House Monitors and Heads of House took on the demanding task of planting the trees ensuring they were all planted at the correct height with the right amount of drainage and support. The trees will now establish themselves within the grounds at Queen Margaret’s School and will form a beautiful, inspirational space for girls to work and relax. 

    Visit the QUEEN MARGARET'S SCHOOL, YORK WEBSITE.

  • The King's School, Canterbury

    On 29th April 2015 The King’s School, Canterbury welcomed Robin Fletcher to the oldest school in England.

    After visiting some of our boarding houses, Robin joined the Headmaster Peter Roberts and his wife Marie Roberts for lunch with 5th form pupils from across the fifteen (sixteen in September) houses.

    After lunch, despite the inclement weather, Robin joined Peter and Marie, Seiya Grant (Captain of School), Liz Worthington (Senior Deputy Head), Tanya Lee (Deputy Head, Pastoral) and Mark Collins (Head of Gardens and Grounds) in the Cellarer’s Garden at St Augustine’s Abbey, part of the King’s School campus, to plant a red Windsor self-pollinating apple tree as part of the BSA’s boarding orchard.

     

     

    Visit THE KING'S SCHOOL, CANTERBURY WEBSITE


  • Keswick School

    Keswick School boarders recently enjoyed their annual Easter Egg hunt and games and at the same time were delighted to plant a plum tree joining other schools in becoming a member of the BSA Boarding Orchard.  The planting was undertaken by Lauren & Jason in Year 13 who have been at Keswick School since Year 7 and also helped by Matthew who had earned the most house points in the Spring term.  We very much look forward to planting a fruit tree annually to help protect the environment, being a ‘branch’ of the boarding family and of course enjoying the fruit they will bear and making plum jam!

     

     

    Visit the KESWICK SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Sexey's School

    The Boarding School Association’s (BSA) National Director, Mr. Robin Fletcher, visited Sexey’s School to plant a flowering cherry tree as part of the national Boarding Orchard initiative, launched by the BSA in 2014.

    The BSA aims for the orchard to be the largest, by distance, in the UK and involves a number of boarding schools joining the initiative by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

     

     

    Left to right:  Mayor of Bruton, Mr Steve Hall, Mr Robin Fletcher and Head Master, Mr Irfan Latif 

    While visiting Sexey’s – one of the few state boarding schools to be involved in the project to date – Mr Fletcher joined the school’s Speech Day, at which Mariella Frostrup addressed the students on the subject of appropriately negotiating the online world of social media.

    Commenting, Sexey’s School’s Head Master, Mr. Irfan Latif said, “It was a great pleasure to welcome Robin at Sexey’s on such an auspicious day for the School, and we’re delighted to form part of the BSA’s fantastic Boarding Orchard initiative. We’re looking forward to watching our tree grow in the years to come – a steadfast reminder of our commitment to nurturing the growth of knowledge for future generations.”

     

     

     Visit the SEXEY'S SCHOOL WEBSITE

  • Chinquapin Preparatory School

    Chinquapin Preparatory School is Texas-proud to become the first member of the Boarding Orchard in the United States.  Located in Highlands, Texas,  Chinquapin's mission is to serve bright and able children from poverty with an emphasis on leadership and service.  

    The tree, a Mandarin orange variety, was planted on Friday, March 27 by the garden chore crew and Director, Dr. Laura Henry.  It is part of a larger orchard and vegetable garden that the student crew maintains and nurtures as part of its commitment to sustainability and environmental awareness.  While Mr. Fletcher was unable to attend the occasion, he supports the students of Chinquapin in their efforts.

     


     

     Visit the CHINQUAPIN PREPARATORY SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • Wymondham College

    Wymondham College was delighted to welcome Mr Robin Fletcher, the National Director of the Boarding Schools Association on Wednesday 25th March 2015.

    Mr Fletcher visited the College as part of the new ‘Boarding Orchard’ initiative. The idea of the initiative is to create the UK’s largest orchard by distance through member schools each planting one (or more) fruit trees. The tree represents knowledge, growth, nurturing and shows the care and support for the environment and sustainability at the College.

    On Wednesday afternoon Mr Fletcher (National Director BSA), Mr Taylor (Principal), Sequoia Mallett (Head Girl, Year 13) and Henry Cawley (Year 13 student) planted two fruit trees at the front of the College by the main reception. We are looking forward to watching these grow and mature in the coming years and are delighted to be part of the ‘Boarding Orchard family’.

     

     

     

    Visit the WYMONDHAM COLLEGE WEBSITE.  

  • Rockport School

    On the 9th of March, Rockport School welcomed Mr Robin Fletcher to Northern Ireland, not just to become part of the Boarding Orchard initiative and meet with Rockport Headmaster, Mr George Vance, but also for Mr Fletcher to meet with the Heads of the other Northern Irish Boarding schools.

    The tree-planting (an apple variety) took place with Mr Fletcher (BSA Director), Mr Vance (Headmaster), Mrs Palmer (Deputy Head), Mr McKerrow (Governor), Sarah Burke (Head Girl), Sarah Cox (Deputy Head Girl) and Ryan Hollinger (Head Boy) in attendance. Although the weather was blustery, it did give ample opportunity for our House colours standard to fly proudly in the wind!

    Afterwards, Mr Fletcher had the chance to meet over lunch with the other Heads of the Northern Irish Boarding Schools and discuss the work of Boarding NI, the school grouping that supports and promotes NI Boarding within the UK and abroad. This discussion will hopefully lead to more opportunities for NI Boarding schools to collaborate and share practice and training with the BSA.

    The apple tree is emblematic of fruitfulness and immortality in Celtic mythology and we hope the planting of such a tree reminds all who come to the school of the benefits of Boarding and the long-lasting friendships and memories that it can create.

    Visit the BOARDING NI WEBSITE.

    Visit the ROCKPORT SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Gresham's Prep School

    Our School Council have used this term to raise money to buy a tree to join the Boarding Orchard scheme. They did so well; by selling copies of the school cookbook and water bottles that we were able to plant four fruit trees, 3 apples - a Cox’s Orange Pippin, an Egremont Russet, a James Grieve and a Conference pear tree. The School gathered during assembly on 23rd March 2015 to watch the Headmaster, James Quick and School Council members struggle to dig a hole through layers of Norfolk flint and plant the first tree. Luckily Gary the gardener was able to plant the other three for us in the corner of the field.  We all look forward to seeing these grow and produce fruit in the years to come. 

     

     

     Visit the GRESHAM'S PREP WEBSITE. 

  • Gordonstoun

    On Monday 16th March, at 5pm, Gordonstoun took part in the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), ‘Boarding Orchard’. The idea is to create the UK’s largest orchard by distance through member schools each planting one (or more) fruit trees. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment and sustainability.    

    The BSA’s national director, Robin Fletcher, Gordonstoun Principal, Simon Reid and pupil’s from Gordonstoun’s conservation service together planted the tree. A grafted apple tree (which will produce James Grieve and Cox’s Orange Pippin apples) was planted in the school orchard in front of the main school building on the South Lawn.

    Principal, Simon Reid said, ‘The BSA’s nationwide orchard initiative has been a fantastic way to engage students from across the country in the wider environmental debate.  It is therefore an honour to be taking part in it especially as Gordonstoun’s own conservation service takes part in improving the local environment by creating areas that are sustainable, attractive and of use to the population, both on and off campus.’

     

     

     

    Visit the GORDONSTOUN WEBSITE. 

     

  • Northbourne Park School

    Northbourne Park School’s boy and girl boarders had a very special guest to bless the planting of their cherry tree to mark their part in the Boarding School Association’s (BSA) Boarding Orchard. 

    Following a wonderful Confirmation Service on the 16th March, The Rt Revd Trevor Willmott, Bishop of Dover (Bishop in Canterbury) agreed to bless our boarders’ sapling, exhorting all 60 boarders to play their part in ensuring that it flourished as a symbol of a worldwide boarding community in the school’s new Environmental Garden.

     

     

     

     

     

    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014 and claims to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK. Boarding schools across the UK have joined the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds.

    The trees represents the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment. 

     

     

     

     Visit the NORTHBOURNE PARK SCHOOL WEBSITE 

  • Lancaster Royal Grammar School

    Lancaster Royal Grammar School is one of the latest schools to join the Boarding Orchard, a nationwide project run by the Boarding Schools’ Association.  LRGS welcomed BSA National Director Robin Fletcher to the School recently to plant the first tree in the orchard in the grounds of our newest senior boarding house, School House.

     

     

     Mr Fletcher (centre) is pictured outside School House with LRGS Headmaster Dr Chris Pyle, housemasters and pupils from the four boarding houses, and Tricia Heaton, Boarding Marketing Officer

     

    Headmaster Dr Chris Pyle said: ‘We are delighted to be part of the Boarding Orchard, along with other schools across the UK.  The trees will benefit our school in both practical and aesthetic ways.  More than that, these new fruit trees are also a symbol of our nurturing intentions as a school.’

    LRGS is one of only 38 state boarding schools in England, where education is free to all pupils and only boarding fees are payable.  Around a fifth of the 11 to 18-year old pupils at the all-boys grammar school are boarders, most of them weekly.   LRGS prides itself on the warm, family atmosphere that characterises boarding at the School. 

     

     

     Year 8 LRGS pupils outside Storey House with the newly-planted Conference Pear tree.

     

    The School successfully applied for a £250 grant from the Green Partnership Awards, which supports environmental projects in Lancashire.  This funding has enabled the School to extend the orchard across all four boarding houses.  Having sought advice from the South Lakes Orchard Group on what varieties would grow best in the different locations, boarding staff have chosen traditional, local orchard varieties.  Storey House, home to the junior boarders, has planted a Conference Pear, Victoria Plum and Discovery Apple; the older boys in School and Ashton House have planted the same varieties, with the addition of Duke of Devonshire Apple.

    Visit the LRGS website. 

  • Haberdashers' Monmouth School for Girls

    A girls’ boarding school is helping to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK after planting a “tree of knowledge” in its grounds.

    An apple tree was planted at Haberdashers’ Monmouth School for Girls on Monday (March 2), with help from Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA).

    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA last year, and HMSG became the second school in Wales to join it, and the 20th in the UK.

    It is hoped that 500 schools from all over the nation will become part of it.

    “We are aiming for it to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK,” Mr Fletcher said.

    “The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.”

    HMSG held a special lunch to celebrate the occasion.

     

     

     

    Visit the HABERDASHERS MONMOUTH SCHOOL FOR GIRLS WEBSITE. 

  • Reading School

    On Tuesday 3rd March, Reading School planted three fruit trees as part of the ‘Boarding Orchard’ which was launched by the Boarding Schools Association in 2014.  It aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planning fruit trees in their grounds.

     Ashley Robson, Headteacher of Reading School was joined by Bob Kenwrick, Chair of Governors, Maggie Berney, Parents Association Membership Secretary, Chris Nicholas, Boarding Housemaster East Wing and Sue Sentflechner, East Wing Boarding Tutor.  Barney Darrington and Tony Xu, boarders in South House and Sebastian Watanabe, boarder in East Wing were on hand to plant the trees.

     

     

     

    Reading School chose to plant two apple trees (‘James Grieve’and ‘Laxtons’) and a pear tree (‘Concorde’).  The trees were chosen for their size, compatibility with our soil type and for their fruit which ripens during the late season so that our boarders could enjoy the harvest once they had returned to school for the start of each new academic year.

     

     

    The trees have been planted in our East Wing garden which is tended by the Boarder’s Gardening Club.  The re-design of the East Wing garden was funded by the Parents Association and is a lovely space which the boarders are encouraged to enjoy for relaxation alongside learning gardening skills and having an overall appreciation of nature.

    The new trees are a welcome addition to the existing mature trees in the grounds of Reading School and we look forward to many years of fruit harvest for our current and future boarders to enjoy. 

    Visit the READING SCHOOL WEBSITE. 

  • Abbots Bromley School

    We were delighted to welcome Mr Robin Fletcher, the Boarding School Association's recently appointed Director of Boarding Schools into school. He met the Executive Head, Mrs Musgrave, the Deputy Head, Mrs Johnson and the Head of Boarding, Miss Francis, before being taken on a comprehensive tour of the school by two of our boarders, Emily and Elizabeth. Mr Fletcher was very impressed with our school and, like most visitors, commented on the lovely atmosphere that we create. 

    Mr Fletcher is urging boarding schools to plant a fruit tree to become part of a 'Boarding Orchard' so we took the opportunity to gain his assistance in planting a Victoria Plum tree in our own, established, orchard of apples and pear trees. Representatives from our boarding community came to help too and we had some Prep School helpers who were also enjoying our languages day, dressed in outfits from many countries. We are proud to be members of the BSA and honoured to have planted the second tree as part of the Boarding Orchard. Mr Fletcher is hoping that boarding schools from around the globe will take part in this initiative and that it will become symbolic of the growth and positive impact that boarding can have on children's lives. 

     

      

     

     

     

    Visit the ABBOTS BROMLEY WEBSITE

     

  • Ripon Grammar School

    A project to plant a fruit orchard at boarding schools across Britain is blossoming in Ripon as students leave a fruiting legacy for the future.

     

    Boarders at Ripon Grammar School have planted a cherry tree as part of the Boarding Schools Association initiative to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK.

     

    Girls who live at Johnson House, the grammar school's boarding house for girls, unanimously chose 'cherry summer sun', or prunus avium, from the list offered.

     

    Lucy Mumford, 16, of Pickering, explained: "We were given a choice but everyone wanted a cherry tree because they think it's pretty and we can eat the fruit in the summer."

     

     

     Digging deep: Beattie Knights, 16, Lucy Mumford, 16, and Millie Dias, 17, plant the new cherry tree at Ripon Grammar School

     

    The grammar school’s tree will be plotted on a special section of the Boarding Schools Association website, which will expand and grow as the orchard develops across Britain.

     

    The tree's arrival has coincided with the school building on its boarding provision for the future with work underway on an extension to Johnson House, which will see capacity increase from 38 to 50 girls from September.

     

    The new extension will provide single rooms, primarily aimed at sixth formers, as well as communal areas and additional accommodation for live-in staff

     

    Ripon Grammar is one of only 38 state boarding schools in England, where education is free but boarding is paid for, and is a popular choice for parents with jobs that take them out of the country, who live too far from Ripon to do a daily commute or who want to give their children more independence before university. The school also has 40 boy boarders aged 11-18.

     

    Headmaster Martin Pearman said: "The girls were very keen to join the Boarding Orchard initiative and to play their part in this national initiative to plant more fruit trees across Britain.

     

    "We're all looking forward to the tree blossoming in the garden of Johnson House and complementing the new boarding extension when it's completed later this year."

     

    Visit the RIPON GRAMMAR SCHOOL WEBSITE.

  • St Mary's Calne

     


    A ‘fruitful’ day at St Mary’s Calne

    On Friday 23rd January, St Mary’s Calne was delighted to welcome Mr Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA), to the school for a special tree-planting ceremony.

    The BSA launched ‘The Boarding Orchard’ campaign in 2014. It aims to be the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    Mr Fletcher joined Dr Felicia Kirk (Headmistress of St Mary’s Calne), Mrs Vicky Wilson (School Governor), Miss Sarah Wright (Geography Teacher and Head of Eco Group) and representatives of the school’s Eco Group (Athina, Carina, Emily, Georgia, Joyce, Megan and Phoebe) to plant the apple tree (Ellison’s Orange) in a prominent place within the school grounds, in front of the Science Labs.

    UV Form student, Emily, commented “Our Eco Group was very happy to be involved and embraced this opportunity. At break time we all assembled (in the freezing weather) to help to plant the apple tree. We hope that we can participate in many more events such as this in order to help the environment. Thank you to Mr Robin Fletcher for so kindly coming to participate in the tree planting with our Headmistress Dr Kirk, and Governor Mrs Wilson, and Miss Wright for her organisation of this event, not forgetting the grounds men who dug the hole - which was very impressive in these sub-zero temperatures!”



    Mr Fletcher was impressed by the girls’ dedication to the Eco Group: “I am absolutely delighted that the girls of St Mary’s Calne are participating in the Boarding Orchard and I hope that the students will look forward to one day enjoying the fruit from this tree! Our aim is to encourage all boarding schools to be part of this campaign and it is fantastic to see our international schools taking part too – we have Boarding Orchard schools in Africa, Australia and Switzerland already, with quite a range of fruits in our worldwide Orchard, including apples, figs, oranges and plums.”

    St Mary’s Calne has an orchard within the school grounds too, where the girls enjoy relaxing in the warmer weather. The trees bear exceptionally good fruit – so much so that each year the Parents’ Guild of St Mary’s produces St Mary’s Calne own-branded apple juice for all the girls and parents to enjoy! 

     

     Visit the ST MARY'S CALNE WEBSITE.


  • The Read School

     

     

     

     

    When we received the email to join in with the boarding school orchard everybody was keen to do so. We had already planted some apple trees in the newly formed school fruit and vegetable garden, which had been donated by parents and the teacher in charge of the garden project. These trees were joined by two other dessert apple trees in late October, again donated by the teacher in charge of the project; making a total of six apple trees now flourishing in the garden.

     

    The planting was carried out by the after-school gardening club, who meet each week to work in the garden. The trees chosen to add to the orchard are Malus domestica 'Discovery'. They are recommended by the Royal Horticultural Society to be ‘an excellent attractant and nectar source for bees and other beneficial insects’.  This will be very welcome to support the whole school garden and the healthy environmental impact we are trying to create. 

     

    The school is very proud to join the Boarding Orchard and we are all looking forward to harvesting some apples next year, which along with our other fruit and vegetables are sure to be a welcome addition to the catering at the school.

     


     

     

     


     


    Visit the THE READ SCHOOL WEBSITE

     

  • Aiglon College

     

     

     

    On Friday 14th November, 2014, Aiglon College, Switzerland, became the first International school to join the Boarding Orchard. The tree, which is a red Japanese maple, was planted by Richard McDonald, Headmaster, and David Moos, Head Gardener, on a grassy bank above the main entrance to Aiglon College. The tree has been dedicated to the memory of a distinguished former member of staff, Teddy Senn, who passed away in November 2013.

    "Mr Senn was a passionate advocate of the pursuit of knowledge, and for this reason it is apt that he should represent the “tree of knowledge” symbolised by the Boarding Orchard." Richard McDonald, Headmaster. 

      

    Visit the AIGLON COLLEGE WEBSITE

     

  • Royal Alexandra and Albert School

     

    On Wednesday 12 November, 2014, Royal Alexandra and Albert School officially became a member of the Boarding Orchard. 

    Mr Spencer Ellis, Headmaster, Royal Alexandra and Albert School said "The Boarding Schools' Association is coordinating the creation of the UK's largest orchard. Boarding schools throughout the country will be planting trees in their school grounds. Today I planted an apple tree (Malus domestica) in our school orchard and this tree will be included within the virtual 'Boarding Orchard'. The tree is a 'family tree' so one branch will produce cox’s and the other two branches will each produce different varieties of apple!" 

    Visit the ROYAL ALEXANDRA AND ALBERT SCHOOL WEBSITE

  • Stamford Endowed Schools

    On 12th November, Robin Fletcher, the new national director of the Boarding Schools Association, visited each of the Stamford Endowed Schools’ five boarding houses to oversee the planting of fruit trees in the gardens. This is part of the BSA’s plan to create the largest orchard in the world by planting fruit trees in boarding schools across the country.

     

    Jon Hodgson, Head of Boarding at Stamford Endowed Schools, said “We are very pleased to be a part of the BSA’s Boarding Orchard, which for us symbolises the bond between a unique community across the UK. We were also grateful to Robin Fletcher for visiting us and look forward to a continuing relationship with the BSA.”

     

      The following fruit trees were planted:

    Apple “Scrumptious” ( Malus Domestica ) planted at St Michaels.

    Pear “Conference “ ( Pyrus Communis ) planted at Welland House.

    Peach “ Peregrine “ ( Prunus Persica Peregrine ) planted at Brown House.

    Apricot (Prunus Armeniaca ) planted on the sports hall car park bank.

     

    Visit the STAMFORD ENDOWED SCHOOLS WEBSITE

  • Westonbirt School

     

     Westonbirt Schools were delighted to be invited to join the fantastic initiative to plant a tree and be part of The Boarding Schools’ Association’s online virtual orchard.


    Given our great affinity with all things arbor, Headmistress of the Senior School Mrs Dangerfield decided that we should not only have a single tree, but a number, hence our own orchard.

    Our Mary Henderson Orchard has been named after the former Headmistress of our Senior School, Mary Henderson who very generously donated 12 local and traditional varieties of apple tree.

    On a rather grey and muddy Friday, Mary Henderson, boys, girls, staff and visitors donned their wellies and gathered together for the big 'dig in'. A representative from each year group dug in one of the twelve trees, with help from a staff member and the head of pastoral care, representing the nurturing and pastoral side of the school.  The first trees were planted by Henry and Tilly Ellis, the youngest in Reception.

    Mrs Dangerfield was delighted with the result saying "We hope to add a bench or two, where in the years to come we can sit, ponder and hope the apples do not fall on our heads!"

     

     

    Visit the WESTONBIRT WEBSITE. 

     

     

  • Wellesley House School

     

     

    From Headmaster Simon O’Malley:

    Trees are the perfect analogy for the nurtured growth that occurs in the best boarding practice and are important backdrop to life at Wellesley House, enriching our environs.  A variety of mature trees frame the grounds, offering protection from sea breezes and separating the playing fields.  Perfect for climbing and shade during summer events, children gather on the circular benches which ring their trunks, a fitness trail weaves beneath their boughs and an outdoor stage for alfresco performance nestles between them.  A unique (we think?) wild colony of bright green parakeets roosts in the tops of the row of poplars sheltering the tennis courts and their raucous din is a familiar call to staff and pupils.  

    Built in 1898, Wellesley has a long history and its trees are an integral part of the memories of Old Welleslians (one beech is estimated to be more than 250 years old).  We are determined that this will continue and our Diamond Jubilee celebrations in 2012 involved the planting of a commemorative English Oak (Quercus robur). 

    The girls’ boarding house, The Orchard, takes its name from the grove of fruit trees in which it nestles and which line the girls’ route to and from school each day. They punctuate the changing seasons and are at their best with wonderful blossom in spring. There are cherry, pear, apple (eating and cooking), plum and even apricot varieties, with summer and winter crocuses and daffodils planted at their feet.  Having been in situ for many years, a process of renewal and maintenance is an on-going concern so we welcomed the opportunity to add new stock as part of the BSA boarding orchard initiative. The new tree is a three year-old cherry:  ‘Merton Glory’ (Prunus Avium), with a double-headed white blossom.

    The tree was planted by pupils under the supervision of Orchard Housemaster Matthew Nichol and the watchful eye of Head Gardener, Caine Hawkesford. 

     

      

    On Monday 2nd February, Robin Fletcher, BSA National Director, visited Wellesley House School to see their Boarding Orchard contribution which was planted in the autumn of 2014.

     

     

     

    Visit the WELLESLEY HOUSE WEBSITE.


  • Princess Helena College

    On Wednesday 29 October, 2014, Princess Helena College officially became a member of the Boarding Orchard, following the replanting of the College's historic orchard in April. In 2011, the Old Girls' Association launched an appeal for the replanting of the orchard, which had gradually died as a result of age and disease, until there was only one apple tree left. The new orchard includes local species of apples, crab apples, plums, pears and some heritage species, and was officially opened on Saturday 10 May 2014 by the Chairman of the Old Girls' Association, Carol Murray (pictured below). BSA is extremely happy to welcome this sizeable contribution to the Boarding Orchard, and looks forward to watching it grow.

     

     

    Visit the Princess Helena College website

  • Tudor Hall School

    John Gloag, Chairman of Governors, planted an apple tree (Pyrus Malus) in the walled garden at Tudor Hall as part of the BSA's Boarding Orchard intiative on Thursday 18 September.


    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the BSA in 2014. It aims to be largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    BSA National Director Robin Fletcher said: “I am delighted Tudor Hall has joined The Boarding Orchard and look forward to hearing about how well your tree is growing and flourishing.”

    Tudor Hall is proud to be a founder member of the scheme as one of the first schools to plant a tree. 

      

     

    Visit the Tudor Hall School website

     

  • King's School Bruton

    On the 17 October 2014, Mr Robin Fletcher, the National Director of the Boarding School’s Association, came to visit King’s and planted a medlar tree (Mespilus germanica) as part of their effort to plant an ‘orchard’ in all the boarding schools in the UK and abroad.  Also today, Aiglon School in Switzerland is planting a tree for this purpose. While he was here, Robin had a tour of our newly refurbished boarding house Priory and was very impressed with the rooms stating that they looked so comfortable, he would like to stay. He was also impressed with their tidiness and the beautiful views from the rooms facing the gardens and medieval dovecote on the hill. He was pleased that boarding staff had been trained by the BSA including their Certificate and Diploma Courses. BSA have helped King’s put training programmes together for our matrons and training our academic staff to aspire to be Housemasters and Housemistresses.

     

     

     Visit the King's School Bruton website.

  • Llandovery College

    On Monday 6 October, Llandovery College welcomed the new National Director of the Boarding Schools Association Robin Fletcher, along with several boarding school Headmasters and Mistresses, to a day of debate on the future of boarding. Guy Ayling, Warden of Llandovery College, was delighted to host the gathering: ‘It is important that Llandovery Colleges embraces national organisations in order to better face the challenges in education’.

    Professor Medwin Hughes, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wales, addressed the group on the role boarding can play in creating the right environment for education and Robin Fletcher outlined his plans for the promotion of British boarding at home and abroad: ‘there is passion for boarding at the schools I have visited, with really dedicated staff, and I am confident that this important aspect of our education system has a very bright future’.

     

    As part of the ‘Boarding Orchard’ the National Director planted a tree in the College’s grounds. The Malus domestica 'Marged Nicolas' variety, which produces yellow speckled russet apples, was chosen as it originates from Dinefwr in Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire. By planting a tree in as many of the 450 member schools, the Board School Association hopes to create the ‘largest’ orchard in Britain.

     

    Visit the Llandovery College website

  • Harrogate Ladies' College


    Harrogate Ladies’ College boarder, Michelle Lai, planted our first fruit tree for the BSA Boarding Orchard on Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 in the Willow Garden on Clarence Drive. This garden is one of the many green areas we encourage our boarders to use for relaxation, games and gardening activities. Also in attendance at our ceremony was Mr James Welham (Head of Boarding), Mr Chris Briscoe (Estates Manager) and Dr Felicity Johnson (AHM, Clarence House).

    A medlar fruit tree (Mespilus germanicus var. Nottingham) was chosen for its ability to provide a Winter harvest when our other trees are bare of leaves. The medlar is an unusual, English fruit referred to in such esteemed works as Chaucer and Shakespeare’s plays, and having been cultivated here since Roman times. Medlars require bletting to ripen (not unlike persimmons) with the ripened fruit tasting much like apple sauce. The flesh is a valued component of jams and preserves.

    We look forward to the next 30-50 years of medlar tree harvests for all of our pupils in the BSA Boarding Orchard in the grounds of Harrogate Ladies’ College. 

     

     

     Visit the Harrogate Ladies' College website

  • Wellington College

    On Tuesday 24th September, Wellington College planned to plant a pear tree for the boarding orchard. The School’s Master, Sir Anthony Seldon, was accompanied by the two Heads of College Nicky Maxwell and Emily Curtis. As you can see from the photo, miracles do happen at wellington College – not only did the tree grow very rapidly, but it also bore apples……well, actually the gardeners forgot to leave the new tree for planting and so the actual pear tree had a less auspicious ceremonial planting a few weeks later.

     

      Visit the Wellington College website.

  • Steyning Grammar School

    On Thursday 18th September Mr Robin Fletcher, the new National Director of the Boarding School Association (BSA) visited Steyning Grammar School to meet the Headteacher Mr Nick Wergan, key members of boarding staff and students and to have a tour of the boarding facilities.

     The new Director’s key mission is to promote boarding, and provide support and training to boarding schools in the UK.  Mr Fletcher is keen to meet as many boarding schools as possible and to meet as many staff as possible with a traditional ‘boots on the ground’ approach.  Mr Fletcher said:  “It’s clear to me that the Boarding Schools Association, working with its member boarding schools, performs a very valuable role and I am keen to see how we can develop our services further over the next few years.”

    Mr Nick Wergan, Headteacher, Steyning Grammar School said: “We are delighted that Mr Fletcher was able to visit us so early in his new role, and we look forward to evolving further our strong working relationship with the BSA who were instrumental in supporting the expansion of Boarding provision with our Sixth Form Boarding House which opened in 2010.”

    To mark this special visit Mr Fletcher was invited to plant an Egremont Russet apple tree (Malus domestica 'Egremont Russet') within the grounds of Boarding.  This tree was the first to be planted as part of a ‘Boarding Orchard’ organised through the BSA.  Steyning Grammar School will be the first contribution to what is hoped will be over 500 trees forming the UK’s largest orchard by distance from other BSA member school’s, as each plant a tree for the orchard.  Sister BSA schools worldwide will also be encouraged to join the ‘Boarding Orchard’ scheme. 

     Visit the Steyning Grammar School website.

     

  • Appleford School

    Chief Executive of the Boarding Schools’ Association visits Appleford School

    David King, Headmaster of Appleford, was delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, Chief Executive of the Boarding Schools’ Association to Appleford School on Wednesday 27 April. Appleford has now joined many other boarding schools across the country and worldwide to become part of the BSA ‘Boarding Orchard’ scheme.

    The initiative was set up to plant the largest orchard by distance hence boarding schools have been encouraged to plant fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.

    Appleford School aptly chose an apple tree which was planted by the Lower School outside the new Sixth Form Centre. They hope it is not too long before the tree bears its first fruit.

    Head of Boarding, Kezia Maynard said, ‘It was a pleasure to meet and talk to Robin and to show him around Appleford. We hope to welcome him back one day to an apple pie, made from the fruit of our very own apple tree.’

     

     

     Visit Appleford school website 

  • Queen Mary's school

    As the School was celebrating its 90th anniversary recently, the girls of Queen Mary’s School thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to take part in the BSA’s Boarding Orchard in trying to create the largest orchard in the UK.

    The Heads of Houses in Year 11 all selected a tree each, many of which represent their house colours, and planted them on the Croquet Lawn at the School. This already beautiful garden now boasts a new pear, apple, plum and cherry tree which we hope will produce lots of wonderful fruit for the girls to bake with and eat during the weekends.  

    Mrs Hickling, the Head of Boarding said: “We were delighted to take part in this fabulous venture, especially as the school has been celebrating its very own 90th birthday recently. The school has a thriving boarding community of full, weekly and flexi boarders who will benefit from the fruits these trees will bear”. 

    Click here to visit Queen Mary's School website 

  • Truro High School for Girls

    Truro High School boarders join a growing tradition


    Truro High School is helping to create the largest orchard, in terms of distance, in the UK after planting a “tree of knowledge” in its grounds.

     

    As part of the celebrations for the BSA Golden Jubilee, an apple tree was planted at the school with the help of headmaster, Dr Glenn Moodie and head boarders Tia Joslyn and Karen Chan.

     

    The Boarding Orchard is a nationwide project run by the Boarding Schools’ Association which was launched in 2014.

     

    The school is the first in Cornwall and the 70th in the UK to join in with this growing tradition in a cohort which includes schools such as Wellington College, Millfield School, Sherborne Girls and Rugby School.

     

    The school’s tree will be the most westerly planted in the UK. Placed looking out towards Truro Cathedral, a Cornish apple tree was chosen to represent of the tree of knowledge and demonstrates the school’s commitment to growth and the environment.

     

    Head of Boarding, Mrs Emma Menmuir said: “Our boarders have an important role to play in the life of Truro High School. We currently have pupils from Germany, Spain, Hong Kong, mainland China, Russia and even Australia living alongside our UK boarders and today’s ceremony was a wonderful way to show that wherever our girls come from they will always have roots with their ‘second’ family in Cornwall.”

    Since the project’s launch, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined the Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA. It is hoped that 500 schools from all over the nation will become part of it.

    To visit Truro high school for girls website please click here.

  • St George's School

    On Thursday 5th May 2016, St George's School in Harpenden planted three fruit trees to proudly become part of the Boarding Schools' Association's Boarding Orchard. St George's have planted a Victoria Plum Prunus Domestica outside School House and two Bramley Apples Malus Domestica - one in each of the house gardens. The School Chaplain, The Reverend Steve Warner, blessed each of the three trees. Chris Wetten, Boarding Head Boy, and Anjola Ogunade, Boarding Head Girl spoke on behalf of their respective houses.    

     

    To visit the school website click here 

  • Talbot Heath School

    Talbot Heath School, Bournemouth were delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools’ Association on Monday 25th April 2016 in their 130th Birthday week.

    Robin, helped by some of the boarders, planted a Winter Gem apple tree in the school grounds, the 82nd  tree to be planted in the Boarding Association Jubilee Orchard. The tree was chosen so the fruit could be picked in the autumn when the boarders are back at school after the summer break. The tree was planted on the front lawn and the ceremony was watched by Mrs Angharad Holloway (Head), Mr Graham Exon (Chair of Governors), Reverend Dr Christopher Rutledge (governor who oversees Boarding), Mrs Catriona Stone (Head of Boarding/Deputy Head Pastoral) and Miss Debbie Hornsby, (House Parent).

    Robin toured the school, Boarding House and the grounds including the restored air raid shelter. He enjoyed seeing the excellent facilities, being particularly impressed by the colourful washrooms, comfortable lounges and cosy bedrooms and dorms in the Boarding House.

    The School was founded in 1886 by Mary Broad, a pioneer of girls’ education who was determined to offer a first class liberal education to the daughters of the professional classes. A woman of great character, humour and warmth, Mary Broad believed in the importance of a holistic education based on Christian principles. The School’s motto ‘Honour Before Honours’ reflected the value she placed on integrity. Bournemouth High School as it was known then, outgrew its original premises and in 1936 the School moved to its current site and was renamed Talbot Heath.

    Miss Broad’s school was the first in Bournemouth to have a gym and a domestic science department, of which she was most proud. She was also one of the first teachers to take her pupils on trips abroad, organising visits to Germany, Italy, Belgium, France and Switzerland so that her pupils received an education in the broadest sense. Her original vision and ethos are still at the very heart of Talbot Heath.

    To visit school website click here

  • Westminster School

    It was wonderful to today plant a beautiful cherry tree in the very heart of Westminster School as part of the Boarding Orchard, an initiative launched by the Boarding Schools' Association (BSA) in 2014. This project aims to plant the largest orchard by distance in the UK and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds.

    The trees symbolise the 'tree of knowledge' which resonates with the school's enduring values of a liberal tradition, reflected in the 1560 Charter of Westminster's Elizabethan foundation where it is stated that:

    '...the youth which is growing to manhood, as tender shoots in the wood of our state, shall be liberally instructed in good books to the greater honour of the state...'

    We were delighted to be joined by Robin Fletcher, Chief Executive of the BSA, for the event at which the Head Boy and Head Girl planted the tree and marked the event with a plaque celebrating the BSA's Golden Jubilee.

    After planting the tree, the Head Girl commented:

    "It was great to be asked to do something that reminds me of why I have loved boarding at Westminster so much. Living right here in the middle of London and being part of such a close-knit community with teachers who have almost become mentors has given me independence at the same time as being part of a family".

     

  • Rossall School

    Rossall School was delighted to become part of the Boarding Orchard during a visit from the BSA’s Chief Executive, Robin Fletcher on 9th June 2016. The BSA is on a mission to create the largest orchard, by distance, with fruit trees growing all around the country in boarding schools.

    Robin was joined by Elaine Purves, Head of Rossall School, Deputy Head Robert Robinson and pupils representing all the houses across the school for the official tree planting ceremony in the Hall Garden.

    With the help of Chief Gardener Andy Curwen, the group planted their ‘tree of knowledge’ – a Cox’s Orange Pippen, already bearing some tiny apples. We look forward to watching it flourish and grow!

     

      

     

  • Cranleigh Prep School

    Robin Fletcher, Chairman of the Boarding Schools’ Association, visited us this week to commemorate Cranleigh Prep School joining the Boarding Schools’ Orchard.   This initiative was introduced by the BSA to symbolise member schools’ commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  They aim to create the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK and this involves boarding schools joining together by planting fruit trees in their grounds. 
    Our current orchard was initially planted in 1947, to cover the mess created by the air raid shelters beneath it during the war.  We invited two Old Cranleighans, Dudley Couper (also former Chairman of the Governors from 1995-2005) and Arthur Tabor, to join us on this special occasion, as their parents donated the original apple trees and their names are recorded in the painting that hangs in the Keppie Room.  
    Arthur and Dudley entertained us with tales of Prep School life during the war over lunch in the Head’s Dining Room.  With cold showers, uncomfortable mattresses on iron beds and shocking food, amongst a much tougher culture with no home comforts, it was clearly a very different world to the one our pupils enjoy today!  They recounted their experience of running for shelter in the cricket pavilion as they heard the ‘doodlebugs’ flying overhead. 
    The tree planting ceremony then took place in the orchard, with Dudley and Arthur both planting their new apple trees in the same position as their previous trees.  We have now replaced approx. 75 trees so far and we plan to sell apple-related produce to raise money for the charity, ‘Tusk’ (www.tusk.org).

     

  • The Royal High School

    The Royal High School is the latest school to join the largest orchard, by distance, in the UK.
    The Boarding Orchard was launched by the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) in 2014 and involves boarding schools joining the orchard by planting fruit trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.  
    Robin Fletcher, the National Director of the BSA took time out during a recent visit to the school to perform the ceremony – planting an apple tree on the lawn in front of Gloucester House. He was joined by Head Jo Duncan and staff and students from the school’s boarding community.
    Since its launch, schools across the UK - including Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - have joined The Boarding Orchard, and trees have also been planted at boarding schools in Switzerland and the USA.
    Jo Duncan said: “We are delighted to be involved in this nationwide scheme and to welcome Mr Fletcher to our school. We look forward to watching the tree grow and blossom for generations of boarders to enjoy.”

     

     

     

     

  • Kolej Tuanku Ja'afar

    Kolej Tuanku Ja'afar opened a new sensory garden to help students understand science and to give a quiet, relaxing space for pupils to use.  As we started with no plants we asked each year group to supply plants to stimulate different senses. For the sense of taste, the students chose a lime tree. Kailash is seen planting a lime tree he brought into school from home.

     

  • Clifton College
    Wednesday 11 May 2016, Robin Fletcher from the British Boarding Schools' Association visited Clifton College and Worcester House to plant a tree, entering them into the 'Boarding Orchard.'

    Robin Also had a guided tour from the girls at Worcester House and saw many features of the boarding house, including the impressive and unique House Hall.

     

      

  • Hazelgrove

    Hazlegrove boarders were delighted to welcome Robin Fletcher, National Director of the Boarding Schools Association (BSA), to plant the latest tree to join the BSA Golden Jubilee Boarding Orchard.  

    Robin explained to the boarders about the aim of the BSA Boarding Orchard to be the biggest in the country, not in terms of the number of trees in it but by the area across which it extends.  The trees symbolise the ‘tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.   Robin then went on to plant the tree within our own orchard area next to the go-kart track.  The tree is an apple “James Grieve” which is traditional variety reported to produce “juicy apples packed with flavour”.  We hope to be able to enjoy them for many years to come!

    After expressing his thanks to the boarders – the largest group of children he had experienced supporting a BSA Boarding Orchard planting – Robin was able to have a look around Hazlegrove and to enjoy some lunch before heading off.

     

     

  • Woodhouse Grove

    National Boarding week saw the children of Woodhouse Grove planting a fruit tree outside one of their boarding houses, ably assisted by new Headmaster James Lockwood, who proved he wasn’t afraid to roll his sleeves up and get his hands dirty. The fruit tree will be part of the Boarding Schools Association’s National Boarding Orchard – an initiative to create the biggest orchard in the world, with trees being planted by schools across the globe.

     

  • Rydal Penrhos School

    Staff and pupils at Rydal Penrhos welcomed a prestigious guest this week as the school lent their support to a boarding association initiative. Robin Fletcher, national director of the Boarding Schools’ Association, visited the school on Wednesday, May 25, where he planted a Mulberry tree as part of their Boarding Orchard scheme.

     

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