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Shell End of Year 2022

Shell End of Year 2022

As a treat after the end of term internal exams all of our Shell pupils had the opportunity to enjoy time together at the stunning Knoll Beach, Studland. It was a beautiful summery June day, perfect for being out on the water enjoying the exhilarating water sports on offer, and a chance to cool down after a walk on the beach and nearby heathland overlooking Studland Bay. We are incredibly fortunate to have such a beautiful location on our doorstep for our boarding community to explore and make amazing memories.  

The theme for this year’s National Boarding Week is #oneboardingcommunity.  Here some of our Shells reflect on their first year at Canford, including their highlights of joining the Canford community and their recent trip to Studland:

Georgia, Shell Boarding pupil

“At the end of my first year at Canford, which was full of friendships, sport, lessons, fun and many more, we finished our Shell exams. This meant that the day after we went to Studland Beach to celebrate and reflect on the year. It consisted of many ice creams and sea activities with your friends and followed by a long walk on the beach, in the sun. This had been a day to look forward to since the very beginning and was much appreciated. During my first year at Canford it is hard to say what I have enjoyed most, or which places were the best, but I must say that house days is up there. Spending a day at the beach with your second family is always one of my highlights. On the other hand, I look forward to matches, sport is my passion and playing other schools and the competition between us also makes me love those moments too. In all honesty I can’t decide which activities or events I have enjoyed most, because there are so many, for example, house music, the rowing regatta, beach trips, house drama, fixtures, academic achievements and so many more, but all of them have shaped my first year and given many memories.” 


Harry, Shell Boarding pupil

“With the academic year nearly gone, a lot has happened, and it has gone in a flash. I have experienced many things throughout and have been on many trips. Recently, the Court Shells ventured out to Studland beach to do all sorts of activities like riding on pedalos and banana boating, which was especially fun.  The sea was refreshing to swim in, and relaxing on the beach was great. 

Academically throughout the year Canford have pushed to my limits. Every set of assessments I had, I tried to improve them each time. And it worked, I learned many new things, expanding the knowledge I have, and I figured out how far I can push myself.

The Christmas term was a tough one for me and my house mates. A long 14 weeks of school was hard, especially being the first term of my time at Canford. However, because of this long term I was able to settle in well, making new friendships, learning new things such as Spanish and getting to know the place. By the end of the term mid-December, I was stunned by how fast it passed by; yes, I was certainly tired, but I found out how much fun I was having at Canford by the speed of which time passed. Through the final weeks Court practiced for the House Cross-Country by going on a 3.5K run every Wednesday. As dreadful as it sounds, it really helped as on the final Thursday, I ended the term off on a high by coming second in the Cross-Country run!

Coming back in January feeling refreshed from a chilly Christmas, I was ready to tackle this term. The ten and a half weeks flew by,. During this term, I was first introduced to hockey. I ended up making the B team and it was a blast because we were undefeated for the whole season! I had really settled in now, however there was still so much to come that I hadn't known about yet. Arriving at the end of the term, I was introduced to the Shell exams that were to be taking place at the end of the Summer term. This gave me a signal that although the Summer term would be fun, I would need to work hard also.

The final term of the year started with pleasing sunshine. I was able to play football and cricket in the evenings for clubs and start my journey in athletics for sport. My main events were high jump and sprinting. We went to different meets across the country, and I ended up coming second in the county for high jump, jumping 1m 62cm! Towards the end of the athletics season, I tried some sprinting and ended up again smashing my PB in the 100m from 14.50 seconds to 12.90 seconds, however that was a two-year gap! Heading to the exams I was heavily worried although I tried to tell myself they would be fine. I had done revision over the half term and was all set. Once completed, I felt relieved and ended up receiving 8s and 9s.

Progressively over the year things got better and better. I was able to try out various new things. I particularly enjoyed shooting, which is a part of the weekly carousel, my improvement of high jump in athletics, creating another huge friend group and much more; a list would go on forever!

With the term ending, I’m incredibly happy with how this academic year has gone. I have improved my physical and mental self and learned many new things along the way. I am at the final Monday of the term and excited for the long summer holiday to come.”

Tess, Shell Boarding pupil

“Last week all the Shells went to Studland Beach as a treat for finishing our exams. The girls’ boarding houses got breakfast in house which meant a lie in which everyone was very happy about! Once we arrived, we walked all along the beach in the bright sunshine and went swimming. The water was pretty cold, but we all managed! Afterwards we got into groups and went banana boating, which was such a laugh, we would all get tipped off and get dunked into the water. Waiting for all the groups to banana boat we were able to use pedalos and paddle boards. Most of the girls connected the paddle boards and sunbathed as the weather was nice and warm. Overall, it was a great day to spend with our friends after a week of exams and I can’t believe we almost won’t be Shells anymore.

My favourite bits of the year have been house sport, for example house tennis and netball. Another highlight was the Christmas dinner which was done as a house. A delicious supper was prepared by the kitchen staff, everyone dressed up and each year performed house entertainment.

This year has gone so quickly, and I have loved being a Shell."

Lola, Shell Day pupil

“My year in Lancaster Shells has been the best year of my life. There have been so many highlights and it has been full of fun, friends, new opportunities and laughter. 

I joined Canford from a local state school, not knowing anyone else, and from the very first day I was made to feel so welcome in house by all the other new Shells, other years, Mr P, Matron and all the house staff. It was so weird as I felt completely at home within about 2 or 3 days. Compared to my previous schools, I noticed that we were given more freedom and responsibility and everything seems to be about reaching your potential, trying new things and having a great time while doing it. 

I have done things this year that I never imagined I would. I auditioned for the Junior play Peter Pan which was a bit scary as I'd never done drama before but I'm so glad I did as it has been so fun being involved in the play. Having never played hockey before, going straight into hockey in the Christmas term was a bit daunting but it was so great, I loved all the fixtures and being part of the team. Rowing this season has been amazing, a brand new sport for me and one I will continue during my time at Canford. I've taken part in house cross country, house tennis, house rowing, house netball and house art - these are always great fun even if you are just a beginner - we always dress up in house colours and face paint. I took part in the charity fashion show, designing and making a dress out of recycled fabric that was then modelled on the cat walk. I've been part of the Bourne Academy book club which has been a great experience and the Art scholars Inktober project where we had to do an ink drawing every day of the month - a challenge but it really got me developing my drawing skills.

A lot of the highlights of the year have been Lancaster events - House Song, the charity concert (Shells won!), water park trip and our recent end of year trip to Studland where we got to try lots of different watersports and had a banana boat ride which was the best thing ever! 

Academically, I'm really proud of my progress and achievements, the amazing teachers and small classes have meant I have learnt so much. 

But the very best thing about the year has been the amazing friends I have made and how brilliant it has been to be a part of Lancaster, it really does feel like my home at school which is so nice.

I can't wait to see what next year brings!"

Please click on the link for photographs from the Shell Studland trip here: