Warminster School
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Issue 45
18 January 2019

Happy New Year. I hope you had an enjoyable Christmas and managed to get a decent break. At school, just as it should do, it feels already as though we never left. I’d like to start the first Heads Up of 2019 by thanking the grounds and maintenance team for some of their recent work around the school site. The last of the 39 trees has been planted, each with its own plaque, to commemorate the boys and masters from this school killed in the First World War. These are dotted around the entire site, so please do stop to read them and reflect when you come across them. They are a fitting memorial to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War. I am also delighted that the Roll of Honour in the school chapel has been updated and now includes the five names that had been missing for one hundred years. Some of you will also have spotted the six beautiful new benches beside the artificial pitch. Five of them have inscriptions on them, so please do read them. I am very grateful to the WSPA and to the Old Verlucians, both of which bodies helped fund their purchase and installation. Lastly, outside my office, Dr Tawny – our brightly painted owl – now sits resplendent on his perch to greet visitors as they come round the bend. He was one of the 82 Minerva Owls of Bath public art trail and was painted by Vera Carbin, a teacher at the School.
As you know, Rick Clarke left the School in December to become the Headmaster of Frensham Heights. Following a rigorous selection process, I am delighted to announce that the new Deputy Head, who will start here on 1 April, will be Huw Jones, currently a boarding housemaster and Head of Boarding at St John’s School, Leatherhead, where he has been for 5 years. Before St John’s, he was Head of Geography at St Edward’s, Oxford. He also happens to be the second most capped Welsh international hockey player of all time, with 135 caps, having first been capped at 18 and going on to captain his country. Unsurprisingly, therefore, he’s the boys’ and girls’ 1st XI coach at St John’s and a former lead coach at the Oxford JRPC. His wife, Kerry, is expecting their first child. She too is a teacher, and also Director of Netball at St John’s, as well as a coach at Surrey Storm netball, the netball superleague franchise for London and the SE. I’m sure they will be superb additions to our school community. Lastly, in terms of staff news, I am pleased to inform you that Simon Rossiter is now Head of Life Skills, and Georgia Jukes is now Head of Lower School (see the ‘Spotlight’ feature on her below).
On the subject of school uniform (as I’m sure some of you have heard from your children), from September, girls will have the option of wearing trousers to school. The trousers will be supplied by School Blazer, the School’s outfitter. I stress that it will be optional (i.e. the uniform is not changing, rather we are increasing the choice) and there is absolutely no requirement to change. Although this is an addition to the dress code that is right and proper for the world of 2019, the actual impetus for it came from some of the younger girls in the School and I was impressed by their determined and articulate argument. Exactly the sort of thing we encourage. More details on uniform will be sent out in due course.
The term has started with a real sense of purpose, helped by a superb first Saturday of sports fixtures with a block fixture against Downside School. Almost all of the matches, whether hockey, football or netball, were hard-fought and the afternoon ended with honours even, in reality the ideal school sports block fixture. Tomorrow is another busy day of sport and tonight I look forward to seeing many of you at the Music Scholars’ Recital Evening in the TA Hall. Next Saturday sees the WSPA’s Burns Night Supper & Ceilidh, an event at which my kilt will be making a rare appearance (my mother is Scottish!) I am delighted to learn that the evening is already sold out.
Looking further ahead, Matthew Williams, my successor as Headmaster, will be visiting the School to meet and talk to parents on the following dates. All parents are most welcome. Please add the dates to your diary.

Thursday 28 February at 7.30 p.m.: a drinks reception for all parents in the TA Hall
Friday 1 March after Celebration Assembly: coffee with Prep parents
Friday 1 March at 11 a.m.: coffee with Senior parents in Boniface Hall 

Even further ahead – but auditions are taking place this week – is the news that next term’s school production will be Mary Poppins, involving well over a hundred pupils and taking place in the Sports Hall on June 20 – 22. More details to follow.
Lastly, a reminder that the School uses Twitter a tremendous amount (we have, in total, almost fifty separate accounts) to update parents and to provide a steady stream of information about what your children are getting up to on a day-to-day basis. I would encourage you to consider setting up a Twitter account if you haven’t got one. The School’s address is @Warminster1707, the Prep School’s is @WarminsterPrep and mine is @markd_mortimer It is very easy to set up an account, but please contact the School if you require assistance with getting started.

Mark Mortimer

Latest News


18 JANUARY 2019
An evening of musical glitz and glamour. Read more


17 JANUARY 2019
Warminster is a special community that you will never experience again. Read more


16 JANUARY 2019
Hola to our Spanish exchange pupils. Read more


15 JANUARY 2019
Quizmaster Robertson has us guessing again. Read more


15 JANUARY 2019
Gavin Mortimer joins us as part of our TA Lecture Series. Read more


14 january 2019
A spectacular performance is planned. Read more


11 JANUARY 2019
Crowned king for a day. Read more


10 JANUARY 2019
Our new Head of Lower School has high expectations. Read more


9 JANUARY 2019
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8 JANUARY 2019
Germany proved 'Wunderbare' for our pupils. Read more


7 JANUARY 2019
Happy New Year from the Development & Alumni Office. Read more

A selection of our Twitter accounts to follow:


Georgia Jukes, Head of Lower School and Teacher of Modern Foreign Languages

Georgia was born in the South West of England and is the daughter of a police officer and charity fundraiser. Her family comes from Plymouth and she loves spending time with them in Plymouth whenever she can. With her parents' encouragement and their inspirational careers, Georgia was always looking for ways to help others and she became a teacher for this very reason. Georgia has always loved travelling and since an early age, wanted to learn languages to communicate with people she met along the way. She studied Spanish and Latin American Studies at the University of Southampton and was lucky enough to spend her University Year Abroad living and working in Jaén, Spain. She worked in a Spanish Primary School as an English Language Assistant and has since enjoyed working with children of both Prep and Senior age. After graduating from Bath Spa University with a PGCE in Modern Foreign Languages, Georgia started teaching at Warminster School and hasn’t looked back. She has been a Lower School tutor since she arrived, Head of Life Skills for the last two years and is embracing her new Head of Lower School role with gusto. Read more


Warminster School
Church Street
Warminster, Wiltshire
BA12 8PJ

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