This year’s Oundle School Combined Cadet Force Adventure Training (AT) Camp was stationed in Capel Curig, Wales, where cadets and staff were able to experience some stunning scenery within an excellent open environment for testing their AT skills.
Anthony Orr (16) commented, “Some cadets only had three afternoons of training before the camp, so most of us were exited but perhaps a little nervous.”
The pupils started off the weekend with some mountain biking across challenging terrain; most were negotiating hills with significantly more ease by the end of the session. During the navigation exercise, Lower Sixth formers demonstrated to the younger cadets the skills they had learned in previous years and during the steeper sections of the navigation, all cadets were able to practice their mountain safety.
Day Two involved outdoor climbing in an area with a variety of difficult routes up to the top.
Anthony added, “This meant we had to apply many of the different techniques we learned indoors on the climbing wall. By the end of the session, even the most challenging routes were being scaled with ease by climbers who were less confident to begin with. Overall, the weekend was an absolute success, and sets up the AT section well for future adventures, both in Oundle and beyond.”
Trip organiser Walter Holmstrom commented, “The purpose of the trip was to introduce/re-familiarise cadets with more advanced Adventure Training skills than is possible to experience on a weekly basis in Oundle. They had to apply themselves over a period of days rather than hours; enabling them to experience a more remote and mountainous area and more meteorologically challenging climate than is normally encountered in Northamptonshire.”
Background Information on Oundle School
Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.
The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2007, SciTec - a major and ground-breaking new science complex - opened, housing 16 state-of-the-art laboratories. The School is now embarking on a large SciTec Campus development project which will see a new Mathematics department constructed adjacent to SciTec as well as a significant upgrade to the Design and Technology department within the Patrick Engineering Centre. Due for completion in September 2016, the development will unite Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. A concurrent Sports Masterplan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion due to open April 2015.
There are currently 1100 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 850 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day School for children aged 4 to 11.