Overall the trip was fantastic, the students were lovely, one of the best groups we’ve ever taken; the hotel staff even complimented us about them when we left, which has never happened before.
We met up at penrith railway station at 5.40a.m. on Tuesday 10th November. A quickish journey to London Euston and then a short walk to London St. Pancras, we had a little time before check in, but just enough for a quick wander round the shops and a toilet stop. Checking in was easy, but passport control was a bit of a nightmare for Diana Wokhukukwa; they didn’t like her passport so hauled both her and me off to a room which lots of people speaking French and making telephone calls. At one point I didn’t think they were going to let her through and I was thinking how I could pay for her to get back on the train up to Penrith. Thankfully, eventually they let her through.
The Eurostar is fantastic; it’s pretty unbelievable that it only takes 2 hours 20 minutes. Another shortish walk to the hotel from Gare du Nord, students given a bit of time to settle and then straight back out on the metro. I’d already pre-bought 5 day travel cards for everyone so it was easy for us all to use the metro. We went down to the Latin Quarter to soak up a bit of the Parisian atmosphere and to eat out. We also met up with an old student Joe James, who’s younger sister Megan James was on our trip. It was great to meet up that evening to have a meal as it was there birthday that day, they unusually share the same birthday, and by some quirk it was Megan’s 18th birthday and Joe’s 21st; quite a night to remember for them.
The next day we started off drawing at Notre Dame and then walked up to Musee Picasso. It was a beautiful sunny day. It was a bit of a coup getting into the Picasso; it only re-opened last October after being shut for 6 years. When planning back in England, they refused us entry as a group several times, but I found a loophole on their website, so I posed as three different people and managed to get enough tickets for us to all get in. It was outstanding; you could easily spend several days there, the range and quality of work and display is pretty exceptional. Back on the metro to the next gallery, Musee de l’Orangerie. The Orangerie holds the 360 degree massive Monet paintings and also a great collection of post-impressionist works, all set in a beautiful building in the Tuileries. Back to the hotel and then out again for the evening to Sacre Coeur and up the steep and numerous steps. The view at night of Paris from Sacre Coeur is wonderful and gives the students a great experience of looking down and across at Paris. A quick walk round the corner to Montmatre to eat out and see where the post-impressionists used to meet.
The next day started with a visit to Galeries Lafayette and then on to the Brancusi studio outside the Pompidou Centre. Then into the main galleries at the Pompidou Centre which hold a vast collection of contemporary art. We left late afternoon and took a short metro journey to Musee des Arts Decoratifs and the Musee de la Mode et du Textile which had a stunning fashion exhibition focused around buttons. They had pulled together costumes from the last 200 years with particularly interesting button detailing. It was also special because they hold many original drawings by a whole host of couturier designers which they were then able to display next to the actual item of clothing. We then took a quick trip to the Arc de Triomphe and Champs-Elysees to see them at night, and then back to the hotel to eat locally and collapse.
Another beautiful sunny day on Friday and a start at Musee Rodin; students are always surprised just how contemporary Rodin is and how much then enjoy seeing his work set in beautiful surroundings. Another shortish walk to the Eiffel tower to go up and eat locally. In the afternoon we walked from the Eiffel tower along and over the Seine to Musee d’Art Moderne, our last gallery visit. This gallery is huge and houses a very strong collection of major 20th and 21st century artist’s work.
The last day in Paris on Saturday was a little damp but we started by revisiting Notre Dame so we could climb to the top and see the view. Although it was wet, a bonus of the weather is that we saw the famous Notre Dame gargoyles working, spouting the water away from the building. Our last trip was then on to the flea market area in the north of Paris. It was visually stunning and stylistically very French but unfortunately horrendously expensive.
Back to the hotel, and on to Gare du Nord and a quick journey back to London. Laughably we then had to transfer to a coach as there were rail works that weekend. The coach journey from London to Penrith took almost 3 times as long as getting from Paris to London, and we arrived back at UIlswater at quarter to one Sunday morning.
Head of the Creative Arts Faculty
UCC Music Department are going on their first music tour in fifteen years to London. We will be going from Monday 16th to Thursday 19th February and we will be performing music from the UCC Big Band, Wind Band, UCCO, Keyboard & Guitar Group, Brass Quintet and UCC Singers as well as solo and small group performances including the band Zig Zagg. If you want to hear what we will be performing then why not come along to London: The Concert in Cumberland Hall on Tuesday 10th February starting at 7pm; tickets are £5 for adults and £4 for concessions. If you cannot make this then why not consider buying a London Tour album, featuring 7 tracks all for the cost of £3 or a one time promotion, 2 for £4.
We look forward to bringing you more news from the London Tour!
The UCC Music Department are going on tour to London in February half term and we cordially invite you to London - The Concert! This is on February 10th at 7pm in Cumberland Hall. Tickets are £5 for adults and £4 for concessions and are available from Lakeland Music, the LRC or the Music office. It's sure to be a great night of musical entertainment featuring some of the music that the Orchestra will play on their tour.
You can now view the Summer Edition of UCC's own magazine, Success, online or pick one up from the school. This issue is our largest ever and features reviews of the Year 11 Prom, trips, the DT Showcase in the New Squares and much more. The online version of the magazine is available by clicking here.
We finally arrived at the chateau after a long journey which was fun but tiring. We were sat on the bus for around 18 hours, so by the end of the journey as you can imagine we were very tired. We arrived late evening on the Friday to be greeted kindly by the friendly staff.
Saturday arrived and we had an early awakening at 7:00am. Firstly we had breakfast and then off to the town to have a look around the markets. We worked in teams to make our dinner in a master chef style. We purchased foods from various markets, which helped us practice our French. We came back to the chateau to make the food with a time limit of 10 minutes.
After our dinner we went to a dairy farm, to look around at the number of animals they had and we also got to make our own butter. We tried the butter and apple jam they made at the farm. The farmers were very friendly towards us. We got to hold and learn a little bit of information about each animal. As the farmers only spoke French this helped each of us learn some more vocab and conversational skills.
After the farm we came back to the chateau and had dinner. Following this we went to a crepe making class where we learnt about crepes and made and ate our own yum!
By Becky Spurrett and Louise Mayhew"
"LE VOYAGE: Nous sommes partis à dix heures et quart de Cumberland yard. Nous sommes arrivés au Château à cinq heures et demie. Le voyage était long.
MARCHÉ: Samedi, nous sommes allés au marché à Fougères en Bretagne. Nous avions deux euros pour acheter le déjeuner qui était jugé dans trois categories: présentation, rapport qualité/prix et valeur nutritionnelle.
FERME: Ensuite, nous sommes allés à la ferme et nous avons vu des cochons, des poules, des cochons d’Inde, des moutons, des chevaux et des lapins. Nous avons fait du beurre. C’était amusant.
Après, nous sommes allés au supermarché et Jamie a acheté un sandwich au jambon et fromage. C’était délicieux.
Par Callum et Jamie"
Having said our goodbyes to the Ofsted team who visited UCC on Thursday 13th and Friday 14th February 2014 we might expect the pace of life in the school to ease up a bit. That’s certainly not been the case. At half term, Peter Lee took 31 students and staff to the Italian Alps ski-ing and half of Year 11 were in the school doing additional lessons to prepare for their exams.
Since the beginning of term we’ve seen Key Stage 3 students dominating the County Badminton scene with Yasmin Bowness, Alice Christy, Ellen Robinson, Tara Simpson-Sullivan and Isla Souter achieving success in the Center Parcs Badminton competition. This superb victory takes them to the North West finals in Liverpool on 14 March 2014.
Year 9 students under Mr Kent’s supervision created a strong impression on Friday 28 February 2014 in their “Penrith Futures” presentation to Eden District councillors in the Methodist Church. The task was to look carefully at the way in which Penrith provided for its young people and the students made a series of fascinating points and responded to a range of probing questions from their audience. I was impressed with the confident and self-assured way they dealt with this task. The students involved were Rachel Glendinning, Jacob Hulme, Lauren-Ann Oates, Caitlin Poulson, Oliver Raine, Elizabeth Seaton and Mollie Slattery.
On Friday 7th March we are raising funds for Ataxia UK with a non-uniform day. The £1 donations will go to this charity at the request of the Year 8 organisers: Poppy Dixon, Edie Fairlamb, Beth Morton, Chelsea Twiddy, Sally Waistell and Beth Walsh. We hope to raise at least £1100 for this worthy cause.
I hope the recent improvement in weather will at long last allow the school fields to dry out. I’ve still got my potato and carrot field to plough and before too long we’ll be lambing again. We’ve a busy spring ahead of us and another examination season to look forward to.