As a House we were extremely lucky to welcome our new Housemaster Mr Orchard and his family Emma, Ellis, Luca, Bertie the dog and later in the year, new baby Luca into the Southwood family. Mr Orchard had an instant impact on House life as we all came back from a Covid way of living: the House was brightened up with new décor and paintings, a new library were put on for us all to look forward to. Mrs Hartley joined the matron team and her scones with jam and strawberries on a Saturday were just one of her culinary highlights. We’re grateful to have her support and kindness alongside Mrs Hutchins and Mrs Thomas.
As a House we have been very fortunate with the wide range of events we have been able to take part in this year. We’ve had many outdoor movie night which are a great way for the whole House to sit down together and enjoy a film while drinking hot chocolate and eating popcorn. There was also a House quiz and challenge night, and then some physical challenges in the garden. Another House event which we missed out on last year was the annual Christmas Dinner but this year we had an incredible meal laid out for us in the Function Room at Southwood, with everyone there. It was a great time to see the whole Southwood community come together – boys, tutors, matrons and House staff – in one room and enjoy a light-hearted evening together.
A highlight of the year was the preparation and execution of House Singing – despite not being able to sing…I’m sorry, I meant to type ‘win’…it was a great show of House spirit to come together and put on such a bravura performance. A big feature this year has been the Band of Brothers events kindly run by Mr Williams. We have been involved in many events ranging from the aforementioned quiz and football to a mini Olympics around the House. It has been great to see all of the boys involved and the competitive spirit always high.
Huge congratulations to Luke R and Jack W for securing their academic Full Colours, as well as Half Colours going to Charlie W and Jude R. Charlie K secured his music Full Colours. Another nod goes to Luke R for his Silver in the Chemistry Olympiad.
Keeping the tradition of previous years, Southwood was very successful on the sports pitch this year. Our Third Form and senior As and Bs 3F got to the rugby House Pots finals. Southwood boys, including Tom U and Heath G have been making steady progress with Gloucester U16 and U18 levels while Full Colours for rugby were awarded to Eddie B and Ross B-J. The senior House hockey team also went unbeaten against all other Houses to win the senior House Pots, with particular congratulations going to 1st XI captain Jack W (Full Colours) and Raife H (Full Colours). Harvey S deserves plaudits for being selected at U18 level for Wales, as well as winning his Full Colours for hockey, too. In cricket, Southwood also saw a number of its boys selected for the 1st XI and congratulations to Eddie B, who captained the team this year. Eddie also secured Full Colours for football this year. The main event of the year was Sports Day, where I am proud to report around 70 boys came out to compete for or support Southwood. It was a great day with wins on both the track and in the field, as individuals as well as in the relays. A special mention must go out to Troy F who smashed his 100m race. The Third and Fourth Form ended up a respectable fifth. Going into the senior boys’ final relay Southwood were overall in the lead but only by a few points. Knowing this we knew that winning the relay would mean a win for the House. As the relay started the cheers from the boys were huge but coming into the last leg we were in second place. An incredible last leg from Jason M meant the win was secured and Southwood won the overall senior boys’ trophy. It was an incredible day and all of the boys should be proud of coming out and contributing to a great House win.
Not technically a sporting achievement, but important nonetheless, Southwood’s Lower Sixth also secured a number of Duke of Edinburgh’s Silver Awards, well done to Joseph C, Ben R, Luke R, Mickey S and Joseph T.
Coming to the end of the school year always means we have to say goodbye to certain people. Mr Campion will be taking up a new post in Christowe but I am sure that all of the Southwood boys will miss the laughter and advice that he brought to the House and our community. We also say goodbye to our current Upper Sixth; they have been a great year and have always been there for a game of football or a word of advice. Many of us have forged great friendships with them, which I am sure will continue to grow as they move on. We wish them luck with the next steps of their lives and hope that they continue to keep in touch.
House Editor: Mickey S