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Ground-breaking Ceremony
Tuesday, 22 March 2016 00:00

Ground-breaking Ceremony

New Rydens Enterprise School Build

The first turf is dug

On Tuesday 22nd March 2016, Rydens Enterprise School and Sixth Form College held a ground-breaking ceremony to mark the start of the construction of their new school.

Watched by over a hundred and fifty students and guests, Nikki Shephard, Principal of RES dug the first turf with a spade presented to her by Anthony Nagle, Director of BAM Construction South East, the main contractor for the new school.

In recognition of the close relationship  between School and Council, Mrs Shephard invited Mary Sheldon, Councillor, Hersham North Ward, Elmbridge BC, to dig the second turf immediately after her.

The ceremony was attended by governors of the school, representatives from Surrey County Council and local Elmbridge councillors together with all the companies that have taken the project from the initial design stage to the start of construction. Also present were Bewley Homes PLC, who will be developing the existing site when RES has moved into its new building.

RES Ground-breaking Ceremony

Mrs Shephard spoke about the reasons behind the decision five years ago to try to take advantage of the freedoms that academy status could bring, to build a new school:-
“… We believed then and still do now that these wonderful students deserved a fantastic school with outstanding facilities that they can be truly proud of, and that show how they and their education are valued by the community...”

She thanked all of those who had been involved in the design and development of the plans:-
“…you signed up for this vision and came on board because you to wanted to design and build a truly inspirational school, and one that aspired to win awards for architecture, sustainability, innovative engineering and construction...”

And she spoke about the journey it had taken to get to this point:-
“… RES is one of the first academies to use its freedoms this way and completely self- fund the build of a brand new school. The project is highly innovative and ground breaking in itself, as very few schools have the vital combination of available land and the ability to continue to operate in one building while constructing a new one ... The support of the local community has been essential to the project. Without it, we would not have had the tenacity to keep going despite the many hurdles and delays that were imposed on the project...”

Mary Sheldon congratulated the school and all involved for getting such an important project to this stage. She spoke warmly about the links between the school and the local community and said how welcome the new school will be for the Hersham community both now and into the future.

RES Ground-breaking Ceremony

The future for RES

The start of construction marks a new phase in the organisational development of the School. RES will shortly be joining The Howard Partnership Trust, a multi academy trust of six schools across Surrey led by Rhona Barnfield CBE. Mrs Shephard moves on to a new role as Head of Education at Fleet Tutors, a national private tutoring company.

Rock Challenge Winners
Tuesday, 22 March 2016 00:00

'Rock Challenge' Winners

Rydens School RES Rock Challenge Winners

We are OVER THE MOON to announce that Rydens Enterprise School won the Open School Dance-Drama competition, 'Rock Challenge' held in Guildford on 22nd March 2016. With a performing cast of only 24 students in Year’s 7, 8 and 9, students secure 1st place at the open heats! The students were not only judged on their performance but in a whole number of categories. We are thrilled to tell you that RES won a grand total of nine Awards of Excellence in the following areas: Concept; Visual Enhancement, Entertainment; Video Performance; Soundtrack; Costuming Character; Excellence for Drama; Set Design and Function and Stage Use. The performance cast, back stage crew, lighting, sound and camera techies have worked extremely hard with us to create an overall amazing piece for performance. We are extremely excited as RES is now set take this piece to perform at the Live Southern Finals, in Portsmouth on Tuesday 21st June 2016!

Rydens School RES Rock Challenge Winners

A massive thank you from Miss Jones, Miss Todman and Miss Simmonds to; Mr Rossi, Mr Powell, Mr Caswell, Ms Andrews and Mr Coombs for helping with set design, set building, costume and sound. A massive thank you to parents and carers who have supported their child through the rehearsal process and for everyone who came to support us in the performance last night- we hope to see you at the live finals in June! But the biggest THANK YOU goes to every student who took part, contributed ideas, worked together and never gave up! We are SO proud of you all! WELL DONE!

Rydens School RES Rock Challenge Winners

Title: One lie: enough to question all truths

What begins as a little white lie, soon becomes enough to create contagious doubt over every other truth told in the village of Salem. As the story unfolds, watch how the villagers become fixated on delivering accusations in an attempt to save themselves. But how far are they willing to go? Who will be damned and who will survive...

RES Productions - Wizard of Oz
Monday, 21 March 2016 00:00

RES Production - Wizard of Oz

RES Productions - Wizard of Oz

There cannot be a school in the UK doing better work in the field of musical theatre than Rydens and their Wizard of Oz, which played to full houses on every night, was yet another winner.You couldn't find more disparate musicals than their last four, the blood-curdling Sweeney Todd, Avenue Q, Evita and Oz, but under the enthusiastic leadership of Head of Drama David Swann and music coach Alicia Johnson, Rydens have knocked them all out of the park.” – Jeremy Chapman, Surrey Advertiser

We are currently celebrating the success of our recent school musical production of The Wizard of Oz. Performed to the public over three evenings and one matinee, reviews for the show have been outstanding. Cllr Tannia Shipley, Deputy Mayor of Elmbridge, said of the performance: “My husband and I were astounded by the standard of performance” and Mrs Shephard, Principal, said “Once again the students have put on a highly professional and inspiring performance, the talent within our school community is amazing and I can certainly see a number of the leading stars going on to perform at a very high level. The beauty of a school performance is the chance for all students taking part to shine, from those taking part for the very first time and learning how to hold the audience to the experienced performers that lead the show and take us to another world. This year over 140 students were involved on stage and back stage and all pull together to ensure that the audience had a great evening out. All performances were sold out with a lively matinee on Saturday afternoon that included face painting and the opportunity for the younger children to talk to the tin man, scarecrow and lion in their costumes. Dorothy not only had to learn her lines, but also took time to train ‘Toto’ a real dog that was also a star of the show. The Wicked Witch kept the audience on their toes and added the evil element that makes the show so popular with all ages."

RES Productions - Wizard of Oz

RES has always been well known in the local community for the quality of its productions. Over the last three years we have presented some of the most challenging performances in the music theatre repertoire including Evita, Avenue Q and Sweeney Todd. The performing arts department provides excellent opportunities for students of all abilities and diverse backgrounds to discover their passion and build confidence and we have been supported in this by several charities, eg, The Walton Charity, The Robert Phillips Charitable Trust and Puppy Dog Rules dog training who kindly provided Toto.  

On average between 70 and 120 students take part in the musical each year and as many students also get involved back stage. We also invite our local primary schools to a specially tailored performance and we invite elderly residents in the community to a special dress rehearsal; The Wizard of Oz has proved to be one of our most popular shows with both these audiences.

RES Productions - Wizard of Oz

Surrey Higher Education Trip
Tuesday, 15 March 2016 00:00

Surrey Higher Education Exhibition

UCASOn the morning of Tuesday 15th March 2016, Mrs Blackiston and Mrs Hunt took a group of Year 12 prospective university students to the Surrey Higher Education Exhibition at Surrey University. The event brought together over 154 Higher Education Institutions and professional organisations from across the UK to advise young people on their options after school or college. The event was an ideal opportunity to investigate the range of possible courses and choices and for the students to talk directly to admissions staff and university students.

There were presentations throughout the day on topics of key interest such as: applying to university, student finance, applying to Oxford and Cambridge and student life.

The RES students who attended, found the event informative and interesting and came away with lots of information and university prospectuses.

RES Sixth Form Students

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

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Rydens Enterprise School and Sixth Form College, part of The Howard Partnership Trust. The Howard Partnership Trust: Registered Office: Lower Road, Effingham, Surrey, KT24 5JR. Registered in England and Wales. Company Number: 07597068. An exempt charitable trust.