Simon Weston OBE, inspirational Falklands veteran, speaks to years 11 and 13

This week, years 11 and 13 were fortunate enough to be able to listen to Falklands War veteran, Simon Weston, deliver an inspirational speech.  Drawing on his experiences since the dreadful events of 1982 (when Simon was on board the Sir Galahad which suffered heavy bombing) he encouraged the students to take responsibility for their own lives. 

His message of resilience, self-containment and learning from your mistakes was an important one.  Simon was also able to give advice to those who asked questions.  Students said afterwards they’d been inspired by Simon to make the most of their lives and the opportunities open to them.

 

Fabulous Christmas Concert in our new Main Hall

On Thursday 15th December, just a few days after we’d taken possession of our new building, the Performing Arts department put on our annual Christmas Carol Concert in the new Main Hall.  The pupils taking part had given up the option of a day off school and had instead come in to rehearse in the new space.  Getting to grips with not just a new stage, but lighting and sound systems too, both pupils and teachers had their work cut out.  Nonetheless, as we’ve come to expect over the years, the concert, played to a packed audience, was fantastic. A few photos are included over the page but many more are available on our website.

There was a wide variety of performances on show, many of which were developed and supported by our excellent peripatetic teachers.

Thanks also to those who bought raffle tickets on the night, and mulled wine and mince pies.  The proceeds from these have made a significant contribution to our Learning Resource Centre.  We’re grateful for the staff of The Boar in Tyla Garw for providing the refreshments.

Congratulations to the pupils and staff for such a festive end to the year.

Performances

Ieuan Davies (Trepak)

Classical Choir (Somewhere In My Memory & Hail Holy Queen)

Sarah Pugh (The Christmas Song)

Mali Rhys-Thomas (Where is Love)

The Cast of Oliver (Be Back Soon)

Millie Smith (Reading—The Night Before Christmas)

Woodwind Group (Frosty the Snowman)

String Group (Sans Day Carol Wind Through the Olive Trees)

Year 10 Band (Walking in a Winter Wonderland)

Orchestra (Various carols)

Hannah Mealey (Reading from Dylan Thomas)

Percussion Group (Roll On Christmas)

Brass Group (Silent Night)

Ukelele Club (Various songs and carols)

Pop Choir (Need a Little Christmas)

Year 12 (God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen)

Tom Prosser (Reading—Luke 2:1-20)

Year 13 (Faith)

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Christmas Tree Festival

The MFL department held a cultural workshop creating Christmas decorations in French, Spanish, Welsh & Italian ready for the annual Christmas tree festival at the Parish Church in Llantrisant. The Year 12 French team took the lead to ensure a lovely display of hand made decorations created by Year 7 & 8 pupils.The MFL tree can be seen at the church all over the festive period.

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Emma’s performance of the Last Post for Remembrance Sunday

On Remembrance Sunday 13th November, I performed The Last Post whilst wreathes were laid in honour of those who have given their lives for our country. Even though this is the second year I have performed it was still a heartfelt experience and amazing to see how many people were there (but also very nerve-wracking to have so many people watching!)  Members of the armed forces, police service, scouting and guiding laid poppy wreaths at the memorial, followed by a short service, the last post and the two minute silence. The service then continued inside the church. 

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Other commemorations in the area were held on that day and a particularly significant one was at Llantrisant War memorial which was finally unveiled this year and remembers the 93 soldiers from the area killed during the Great Wars.
 
Emma Willington, year 12

Cross-country runner Bethan’s off to join sister Rebecca at the University of Alabama at Birmingham in the USA

Over the October half term, Bethan Evans from Year 13 flew to America to visit the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where she is hoping to continue her education after she finishes at Y Pant next year by studying for an English Degree.

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Bethan has been running since she was 9 years old and has competed for Glamorgan Valleys, the South Wales Region, and Wales at both Cross Country and Track and Field.  Over the last year, Bethan has finished 3rd in the Welsh Schools Cross Country Championships and also 3rd in the Welsh Athletics Cross Country Championships which gained her selection for the Home Countries International in Falkirk.  On the track, she won the Welsh Schools and Welsh Athletics Under 20 1,500m titles where she went on to represent Wales in the Celtic Games International.  She also ran in the Virgin London Mini Marathon which races the last 3 miles of the main marathon route.

Whilst in America Bethan travelled to Charlotte in North Carolina to watch the UAB ladies team compete in the Conference USA Championships where they finished in a very credible 7th place.  UAB were led home by Bethan’s elder sister, and former Y Pant pupil, Rebecca, who finished in 8th position and gained All-Conference USA 2nd Team Honours.  

Over the last year Bethan has kept in touch with Matt Esche, Head Cross Country Coach, at UAB who has been monitoring her performances and believed she would be a great addition to his team, and offered her a 4 year Sports Scholarship to which Bethan has now committed by signing a National Letter of Intent.

Bethan is very grateful for all the support she has received from all the staff at Y Pant and is looking forward to her time in the USA.

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