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Business & Enterprise News
RES Apprentice 2017 Round 1
Thursday, 13 October 2016 00:00

RES Apprentice 2017 Round 1

BP International Centre for Business & Technology

Fifteen, Year 12 students from RES started out on their journey to be crowned the next RES Apprentice winner.

Rydens Enterprise School RES Apprentice 2017

This competition sees students face 4 gruelling rounds working in groups, pairs and then individually throughout the competition. Following a series of eliminations at each round the remaining 4 go through to face an individually based task, these will be presented at the Grand Final in February 2017. The tasks in the competition are all business related and set by our local business contacts who have kindly offered to sponsor each of the rounds. Throughout the competition students are encouraged to be entrepreneurial, articulate, committed and confident and need to impress.

Supported by BP we headed to their site in Sunbury on Thames for the 1st round of this competition. Welcomed by Saul Moorhouse, students were given an informative tour of their Upstream Engineering Centre before being lead to the training room for the day which would become their base to work on the task set to them.

Rydens Enterprise School RES Apprentice 2017

The Task

In the Retail Fuel market, differentiation is challenging. Consumers generally buy fuel on either a cost of location (convenience) basis. Whilst the quality of their fuel remains essential, BP also need to demonstrate differentiation to their consumers when it comes to their forecourt offers.

BP Retail wanted to address these frustrations and provide their customers with a more positive customer experience when using a BP forecourt.

Rydens Enterprise School RES Apprentice 2017

Students worked in groups of 3 and they were tasked with developing and presenting a compelling offer that they believed will enable BP Retail to provide a differentiated experience to their consumers, one that drivers would preferentially choose to buy their fuel from a BP forecourt. They were to deliver their concept to a small team of Senior Level Leaders who were to make up the judging panel. The student teams were;

Team 1Jack Saunders, Dani De Freitas & Rosie Chapman
Team 2Joe Taylor, Hayden WoodJacob Levy Davies
Team 3Saqlain Ahmed, Adam Lamont & Joe Rolfe
Team 4Max Hirst, Charlie Lees & Lana Robinson
Team 5Samuel Maton, Oscar Rolfe  & Daniel Herbert

Each team watched each other's presentations which ranged from Fast fuel light up pumps to show you which lane is free, pay stations at each pump, rewards initiatives and triple points ideas, pre-order shop and petrol idea with your order being ready to collect when you arrive. Each idea that the teams came up with was well delivered and explained by the team members. They had researched the feasibility of their ideas and answered questions fired to them at the end of the process.

Rydens Enterprise School RES Apprentice 2017

The judges gave feedback to each team and put 4 teams through with one team being fired.

The teams going through were:

Team 1, Team 2, Team 3 & Team 5. We say goodbye to Team 4: Max, Charlie and Lana.

Rydens Enterprise School RES Apprentice 2017

A huge well done to all students who put themselves forward to take part in this competition and good luck to those going through to the next round which will take place on the 18th November at IBM’s Emerging Technology Centre at Hursley, Hampshire.

Round 3 will be on the 8th December at The Bingham Hotel, Richmond.

For information about being involved with The Apprentice Competition please contact Sarah Maton - Deputy Head of Claremont House and Business & Enterprise Co-ordinator on either 01932 242994 X361 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

RES Apprentice 2016 Final
Friday, 11 March 2016 00:00

The RES Apprentice 2016

The Final - Friday 11th March

The 4 Apprentice finalists, their parents, staff, invited guests joined together at The Enterprise Suite at RES on Friday 11th March for the long awaited Final of The RES Apprentice competition.

The competition which is now in its 11th year saw 12, Year 12 students start this competition back in October 2015 with the first round being hosted and the task set by Hugh Bourne of BP at their premises in Sunbury on Thames. Subsequent rounds took place at IBM’s emerging technology centre in Hursley, Hampshire and at the beautiful riverside Bingham Hotel in Richmond upon Thames.

Throughout the competition students took part in group and paired activities and students were fired along the way, which left 4 students to face the Final and to see who would win the coveted title of The RES Apprentice 2016. Our Finalists today are Alexander Drummond, Thomas Blunden, Hamzah Rasheed and Liam Sewell.

The judges for the day were ~
Hugh Bourne – BP, Advisor – Scale Prediction and Control Upstream Engineering Centre
Paul Archer – IBM Big Data Business Development Manager
Erick Kervaon – General Manager – The Bingham Hotel, Richmond
Nikki Shephard – RES Principal

Guests who were in attendance to see our students perform included the Mayor of Elmbridge Cllr Jan Fuller and Consort John Caton, Head of Sixth Form Bob Hope and Deputy Head of Sixth Form Mrs Natasha Blackiston. We were also so grateful to see so many of our business sponsors, RES invigilators, parents and Apprentice Winner 2015 Will Whitmore who had come back today to hand over the trophy and to let us know what he has been doing since winning the title last year.

Students had been set the final task a few weeks before the Final so they had time to prepare before presenting to the Judges today ~

“The task was to come up with an everyday household item, problem or issue and show how they would solve, improve it or design something to help with the problem or issue,  Their idea did not have to be groundbreaking as often the smallest of changes make the biggest impact such as left handed scissors or a remote control”

Throughout the competition students were encouraged to be entrepreneurial, articulate, committed and confident and were expected to discuss why they chose their idea, what problems and issues they had faced along the way and how they overcame them and also to show examples of their work. They were judged on their ideas and innovation, the success of their idea and the communication and resources they used to promote their idea.

First up to present was Alex Drummond and his idea of the ‘No Brainer Strainer’ which Alex was hoping he could partner with a leading tea or biscuit manufacturer. Alex had researched that over 65 million cups of tea are consumed daily with each person dunking a biscuit 107 times a year. The gadget Alex felt would revolutionalise tea drinkers was his idea which would catch unwanted crumbs falling in your tea, was act as a tea infuser and a water purifier. Alex presented clearly and articulately and had answers for the questions posed to him by the intrigued judges. Unfortunately Alex’s idea seemed a little cumbersome and made it awkward to drink the tea with the strainer still in place.

Second up was Thomas Blunden with his invention of the ‘Hot Pot’ - Tom felt that there was a gap in the market for his idea. Built and designed very similar to a flask, this could be used in Hospitals, Care Homes and with the elderly living at home. This would also be great for holiday goers / campers for keeping food hot. You can heat up any type of meal in the ‘Hot Pot’. Tom was articulate and presented his design very well with great drawings. The judges, however felt that the idea was a little cumbersome and would be too big to carry around when out.

Next was Hamzah Rasheed with his idea of the ‘Eco Wash’. Hamzah discovered that the Dishwasher was the most expensive piece of Kitchen equipment, averaging at a cost of 27 pence for 1 hour (just electricity), using 1800 Watts of electricity for a 2 hour cycle, 54p for one cycle of a dishwasher, used around 2-3 times per day calculates to over £500 a year! Hamzah researched that water is a much cheaper resource, It’s renewable and it’s much more Eco-Friendly.

Hamzah’s idea of Eco Wash, using NO ELECTRICITY but instead – Hydroelectric Power (Renewable resource). Pressured water turns a turbine to turn a generator to generate electricity. This water will then help to clean the dishes afterwards and the water will be used in a continuous cycle, keeping costs down. Hamzah had certainly done his research and put an interesting, well planned presentation together. The judges felt however that his idea, although good would not be a viable product.

Finally it was the turn of Liam Sewell to try to sell the audience and judges his invention of the‘desktop’.

Liams idea of a desk which incorporated the PC, USB ports, monitor plugs, optional graphics tablet to name a few was  a revelation and got the interest of all the judges and audience. Current PC problems of over heating, limited space as cases become too big and cost  seemed to be solved in Liam’s invention whilst still acting and looking like a standard ‘desk’. Liam had drawn up some plans of what his idea would look like which appealed to lots of people and certainly would prove to be very popular. A great idea and a great presentation.

During a short break, judges had the opportunity to discuss each finalist and deliberate as to who would be crowned The RES Apprentice Winner 2016.

4 very nervous finalists came back to find out the results. Each student was given feedback from the judges and in reverse order places were announced ~

Runners up ~ Alex Drummond & Tom Sewell
2nd place ~ Hamzah Rasheed
1st Place ~ Liam Sewell

A very deserving winner and a young entrepreneur in the making!

Congratulations to all the finalists today for all their hard work throughout this competition and to making it through to today’s final.

Prizes and trophies were handed out by Mayor Cllr Jan Fuller. A special prize of a ‘A meal for 2 at The Bingham Hotel’s’ was also offered by Erick Kervaon.

Thank you to everyone for attending this exciting Final and with special thanks to all business partners for their continued support, especially Erick from The Bingham Hotel , Paul from IBM and Hugh from BP for hosting a round and returning to judge today.

For information about being involved with The Apprentice Competition please contact Sarah Maton-Deputy Head of Claremont House and Enterprise Co-ordinator on either 01932 242994 x361/x344 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 3

RES Apprentice 2016

Round 3 - The Bingham Hotel, Richmond, Surrey

The 3rd round of this year's competition saw our return to the beautiful Bingham Hotel by the riverside in Richmond upon Thames.

This boutique hotel is one of London’s most unusual. A Georgian townhouse overlooking the Thames, the Bingham Hotel is a chic retreat for romantic getaways, a gourmet bolt hole for gastronomic experiences, and a unique wedding and events venue.

Upon arrival we were met by General Manager Erick Kervaon who gave the students an interesting talk about the background to the hotel and to some of the new businesses he has recently been involved in setting up, with particular interest to The Alliance of Independent Restaurants (A.I.R.). This is a new concept dreamt up by Erick in response to supporting and working with independent restaurants to help them as a group, compared to the larger already established chains of restaurants. A.I.R will support with procurement, HR & Legal work, Support Network and PR & Marketing. There is a joining fee of £350 per year and Erick and the 6 other shareholders guarantee that this will be returned through helping get cheaper prices for their food drink and insurance.

The student's task in this round of the competition was to come up with some creative and innovative ideas to help Achieve members of 100+ in the first 3 months of launch. Ideas were then to be pitched to Erick, taking into consideration methods, time frames, cost and financial implications.

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 3

Team 1 – Hayden Nicholls & Owen Nicholls
Hayden and Owen had the idea of offering various levels of membership ~ Diamond, Platinum, Jade & Gold with each type giving you different benefits such as higher perks, better publicity, links to their own websites and invites to exclusive events. This was to try and encourage members to opt for the higher level of membership. They were going to advertise this on radio stations and social media. Members would have an initial supplier meeting and would get revisited every 2 months to see if they were happy with the service they were getting and benefits they were receiving.

A well-structured and delivered presentation, although Erick felt that the research had not been in depth enough into getting the members on board.

Team 2 – Alex Drummond & Tom Blunden
Locally sourced, National Growth was Alex and Toms unique selling point. Their idea was to encourage members to join A.I.R. and this would then make them become a regional hub for restaurants in their area. Alex and Tom would as well as giving them the benefits that Erick had already created and would also give them personal introductions to other restaurants in their region so they can share good practice, advice and contacts.

Again a very well delivered presentation but Erick felt that lots of their ideas had already been covered by his own research. He liked their thinking behind the idea but wasn't sure whether it would be viable or not.

Team 3 – Hamzah Rasheed & Liam Sewell
Hamzah and Liam’s vision was to allow smaller restaurants to remain in control of their business whilst also proving support. They would approach large independent hotels and give FREE membership of A.I.R. to approx. 10 clients. These restaurants would then have a wider reach to the smaller restaurants that they then would encourage to get on board to become fee paying members. They wanted to promote A.I.R. as a prestigious high end club to join and many restaurants would want to become part of it to support their own brand image.

Erick liked this idea but the delivery was a little bit long winded rather than getting directly to the point.

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 3

After all the presentations were given Erick then gave feedback to the 3 teams and said what they could have done better. He said that many did not cover all aspects of his original brief but he did like some of the idea that they had come up with. After a lot of through Erick fired Hayden and Owen leaving the remaining 4 students to go to the Grand Final.

The Final this year will take place on Friday 11th March 2016 from 12.15 – 3pm and is being hosted in the Enterprise Suite at Rydens Enterprise School.

For information about being involved with The Apprentice Competition please contact Sarah Maton - Deputy Head of Claremont House and Business & Enterprise Co-ordinator on either 01932 242994 X361 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 2

RES Appretice 2016

Round 2 - IBM Hursley, Winchester, Hampshire

On Wednesday 18th the 8 remaining RES Appretices visited IBM’s Emerging Technology Centre in Hursley, Hampshire to face the 2nd round of this competition.

Welcomed by Paul Archer, Big Data Business Development Manager, students were given a tour of the Emerging Technologies Lab and showed some of the latest technologies that IBM were working on. Students were also introduced to Watson Analytics which students found out is a smart data discovery service available on the cloud. It guides data exploration, automates predictive analytics and enables effortless dashboard and infographic creation. Students were then given the Task for this round and working in pairs they started discussing their ideas.

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 2

The Task

Having been shown a range of the emerging technologies that IBM are currently working on as well as some that are already in place in shops and homes, students were to come up with and then present an alternative potential market or selection of businesses that one of the technologies could then be sold to and ultimately stand the best chance of success. Students were to  be judged on a number of key areas so their presentations would have to be clear in their explanations. They would need to consider how good their ideas are, how realistic it is in relation to the market, if there is a potential for it and how well they would sell their idea to the judges.

Students had the weekend until Paul Archer was to return to Rydens School to judge their ideas. On Monday students worked in their pairs on finalising their presentations.

First team up to present was Hamzah Rasheed & Hayden Wood – Their idea was the use of a CO2 monitor which would be placed in care homes and hospitals which would be worked independently from a smart phone or smart watch. This would enable the levels of CO2 to be monitored carefully in these areas. They had the idea of also using Vision goggles for children that had difficulty moving their necks to help them see the world they live in.

Team two was Alex Drummond & Tom Blunden  -  Their idea was aimed at the elderly and with the use of ‘Sphero’ (Computerised robot) as a health assistant in hopsitals saving the time of a nurse. The Sphero would be able to monitor the person, pick up on any irregular habits, monitor blood pressure etc and this would be reported back to the doctor. They felt this would be invaluable to those patients needing monitoring over 24 hours.

Team 3’s idea was presented by Owen Nicholls & Liam Sewell  - They had researched the use of sensors to turn controls in your home on and off. These could be fitted to CO2 sensors, Wi-fi, central heating and there would be a central control hub. They felt this would be invaluable to many householders and they had found out that on average £86 each year is wasted on electrical items left on standby.

Team 4 was Rhys Marshall & Alice Bryant - The Occulus Rift -  The idea was to use the mind operated headgear to help trainee surgeons or University students to perform virtual surgery. Their aim being to increase the percentage chance of patients survival as new techniques could be constantly and safely practiced.

Paul gave invaluable feedback to each of the teams, looked into whether it was a viable idea as well as the costs involved, whether their idea was innovative and the teams overall presentation. Three teams were put through to  the 3rd with one team being fired today. Unfortunately we lose Rhys & Alice from this round.

RES Apprentice 2016 Round 2

A huge well done to all students who put themselves forward to take part in this competition and good luck to those going through to the next round which will take place on the 8th December at The Bingham Hotel, Richmond.

For information about being involved with The Apprentice Competition please contact Sarah Maton - Deputy Head of Claremont House and Business & Enterprise Co-ordinator on either 01932 242994 X361 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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