Schools compete for Prep Schools Science Cup
20th May 2015

Five Prep Schools recently visited Oundle School’s SciTec to compete for the third annual Prep School Science Cup.

Teams of four Year Six pupils from Beeston Hall, Old Buckenham Hall, Spratton Hall, St Hugh’s and Orwell Park, thoroughly enjoyed an afternoon of practical, hands-on science.

Over the course of three hours, the teams completed practical work involving the extraction of DNA from bananas, making coca cola, and cold science. The teams were graded on their scientific thinking, enthusiasm, practical ability, and understanding whilst completing these experiments.

After all the scores had been added up, the Oundle Science Cup was awarded by the School’s Registrar, Gary Phillips. The winners were the Old Buckenham Hall team, who received the trophy, as well as iTunes vouchers for each team member.

Sanderson Fellow and Chemistry teacher at Oundle, James Bessent commented, “Enthusing young children to the delights of scientific experimentation is of huge importance. Getting younger pupils talking about and practicing science is an excellent way to develop a love not only of science, but of learning.”

Senior Master of Old Buckenham Hall School, Chris Bunting commented, “It was a marvellous enjoyable afternoon of science and our pupils really appreciated it.”


Background Information on Oundle School

Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.

The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2007, SciTec - a major and ground-breaking new science complex - opened, housing 16 state-of-the-art laboratories. The School is now embarking on a large SciTec Campus development project which will see a new Mathematics department constructed adjacent to SciTec as well as a significant upgrade to the Design and Technology department within the Patrick Engineering Centre. Due for completion in September 2016, the development will unite Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. A concurrent Sports Masterplan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion due to open April 2015. 

There are currently 1100 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 850 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day School for children aged 4 to 11. 

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