Oundle Chronicle shines
21st July 2015

For the third year running, the Oundle Chronicle (Oundle School’s community newspaper) has been recognised for excellence at The Shine School Media Awards at Stationers’ Hall, London. Nominated for six awards, the Oundle Chronicle was Highly Commended for four: Best Newspaper, Best Community Initiative, Best Business Strategy and Best Feature Article for Isabella Bradstock’s (17) article about the Oundle postmasters.

Head Librarian, Leigh Giurlando commented, “Editor Tom Bailey (18), who represented the Chronicle team at the ceremony, has been with the newspaper for three years and has served as editor for two. As a driving force behind the paper, he helped develop the paper’s business strategy, initiated the redesign of the logo and website, wrote prolifically for each issue and led the team. He was commended by the judges for his obvious potential in the field of journalism.”

During the morning of the awards day, Tom had the opportunity to attend some very useful and interesting workshops with the social media editor of The Sun, The City University School of Journalism, and Steve Marchant from the Cartoon Museum.

Twenty-seven shortlisted publications were judged by a panel of thirteen industry professionals, who praised the Oundle Chronicle for the opportunities to develop real journalism skills and ‘the almost professional standard coupled with equally professional content’. The awards ceremony was presented by judges Simon Heffer from The Telegraph and Suzie Cox, editor of Cosmopolitan.

The Oundle Chronicle is produced by a group of pupils drawn from the Fifth Form (Year 11) and above, who meet on Wednesday afternoons as part of the School’s Community Action programme. A tabloid of approximately twenty-four pages, the Oundle Chronicle was founded in 1991. Published twice a year, the paper covers news and features based on people and events in the town of Oundle and East Northamptonshire. It is delivered free to every house in Oundle and is also distributed to shops in the surrounding villages. All printing costs are funded by advertising from local businesses and profits are donated to local charities, allowing pupils an opportunity to gain an insight into running a non-profit business. Profits are donated to local charities.

Leigh Giurlando added, “The paper receives so many positive comments from its readers; we are delighted that the quality of the team’s work, and the value of the paper has also been recognised by media professionals.

There was great variety in the styles of the entries, but relatively few publications were targeted at a local news readership, as ours was. We received due commendation for this approach, and for many other aspects of our outfit.”

In previous years the Oundle Chronicle has been awarded the Best Original Photography and Best Community Initiative awards.


Editor, Tom Bailey


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. Phase two of the SciTec vision is now underway, with enhanced Design Technology facilities and a new purpose-built Mathematics Department planned to link the STEM subjects both physically and philosophically. A concurrent Sports Masterplan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion in 2015.

There are currently 1110 pupils are on roll at Oundle School, with 865 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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