Shaftesbury Young People held their 175th Anniversary Event on Friday 3 August at Esher Place, one of their former residential homes in Surrey.
The event took place on a beautiful hot summer’s evening and the 100 guests in attendance, and all have links to the charity old and new, were welcomed with a drinks reception. Those who attended included former pupils who were looked after by the charity in the residential homes and on the ship ‘The Arethusa’ when it was docked in Medway. Plus former staff, trustees and friends and business associates of the charity including local councillors and dignitaries. This was then followed by Phil Williams, our CEO, giving a welcome speech and providing background about the charity’s history, which set out where we started and where we are headed.
This was followed up by a presentation by Graham Davey, Trustee of Bisley Village Hall Heritage Project on the charity’s past history, our residential homes and the young boys and girls who went there. The evening programme began with a beautiful rendition of three poems written and performed by David Neita, Poetry Lawyer and former Trustee with BASCA Composer of the Year, Deborah Pritchard on Double Bass. Everyone was taken aback at his performance which really took your breath away it caught all the guests attention.
Then our host BBC Radio Devon Presenter David Fitzgerald interviewed our very special guest, Falkland’s War Veteran Simon Weston CBE, about his experience as a soldier and how it has changed his outlook and thinking on life and his work with his own charitable cause. His stories were ‘stirring stuff ’commented Councillor Alex Paterson on Twitter.
The auction took place with 14 lots on offer to raise money for the charity and we thank our very kind donors for their auction gifts and for the people who bidded in the auction and won their prizes. We raised over £2,000 from the auction and over another £1,000 from donations received from people who were unable to attend the evening.
The event was rounded off with the most spectacular fireworks and laser display supplied by Platinum Fireworks who did a brilliant job choreographing the fireworks and lasers to electrifying and stirring music, including mottos from the residential homes and the logo and 175 to finish of the show which was all displayed on the front of the grand and impressive Esher Place.
Our notable guests that evening included:
Deputy Mayor of Elmbridge Mary Sheldon and Consort, John Sheldon, Deputy Mayor and Mayoress of Medway: Habib and Bridget Tehan, Medway Councillors: Vince Maple, Alex Paterson, Andrew Mackness
Nicholas (Nick) Ashley-Cooper Shaftesbury, 12th Earl of Shaftesbury, Ark Royal RN Commander Paul Bolas
SYP Trustees: Brian Scott, Chair, Elliot Bancroft, Clare Searle
Arethusa Old Boys Association Members: David Bunce, Roger Alford, Brian Baker, Kevin Wells
Esher Place ladies: Mrs Susan Gunn and Mrs Josephine Duffy
David Fitzgerald & Simon Weston, hosts and celebrity VIP guests
Bisley Village Hall Heritage Project Trustees group shot: Graham Davey, Susan Smith, Keith Mansfield, Dave Grist.
What the guests wore: Suits and Cocktail Dresses with a splash of red – we provided red rosette name badges with a sparkle
What the guests ate: Chicken or Vegetable Curry, Lamb or Vegetable Tagine and a selection of cold dishes with Raspberry & White Chocolate Tartlet and Vanilla Baked Cheesecake for desert
What the guests drank: Prosecco, The ‘Williams 175’ Cocktail all proceeds went to the charity
What the guests thought of the event:
Medway Councillor for River Ward, Andrew Mackness, and his wife Nancy says: “We were delighted to join the celebrations support the 175th anniversary of Shaftesbury Homes and Arethusa recently and look forward to working with the trust to deliver many more years of support for children and young people in Medway “
Vince Maple, Leader of the Medway Labour Group says: "It was a fantastic event organised by Shaftesbury Young People with an opportunity to both look back of the past 175 years and look forward to the future. In particular hearing from Simon Weston CBE on how young people need to be given the best start in life was very powerful. Hearing the first hand stories from people like David was incredibly moving too. My congratulations to all involved"
Mrs Susan Gunn, former Esher Place pupil, says: ‘It was a dream come true, I loved everything about it.’
With special thanks to: Unite the Union and Richard Griffiths, The General Manager who supported the event and made it possible. The Chris Dunne band who serenaded us while we ate and Katherine Rhodes the Magician who entertained people with close-up magic.
On 29 April our friends at Bisley Village Hall invited Shaftesbury Young People to attend an afternoon tea and presentation of their Heritage Project the aim of which is to bring to life the story of the former Shaftesbury School and the Village Hall. Around 80 people gathered at the former Shaftesbury’s chapel to share their memories; view artefacts and displays of memorabilia and contribute to the rediscovery of their local heritage.
In the second part of the 19th century Bisley became a place of refuge and support for poor, homeless and orphaned children. The Refuge Farm School was constructed in 1868 then, in 1873, the larger Shaftesbury School. In 1874, a chapel was built to accommodate the pupils and staff from both schools, with a separate room in which villagers could buy a cheap cup of tea and meet friends. This was the only chapel built by Shaftesbury Homes & Arethusa.
Farming was a common subject at the time, together with chemistry, engineering, gymnastics, gardening, music, technical drawing, and the trades (tailoring, boot making, carpentry, wood and metal work…). Vocational training was an important part of the curriculum, with some boys trained to join the armed forces. The boys, many of them from disadvantaged backgrounds and had few social skills often describe their time at the school as tough and the education method very strict. But they also say that it helped to set them up for life.
In 1919 the Farm School and the Shaftesbury School amalgamated due to changes in the law and became the Upper and Lower House of Bisley School. Even before they were amalgamated, they shared two buildings: the hospital - the first place some boys saw on arrival from London too weak to start with their studies - and the chapel.
Shaftesbury School was finally closed in 1959 and a prison was built on the site which is in existence today, Coldingley Prison. As for the chapel, this building exists today as the Village Hall and is very much the heart of the village for meetings, and community events.
We would like to thank the trustees at Bisley Village Hall for inviting us to be part of such an exciting project and we are very pleased that they will be attending our 175th anniversary celebrations on 3 August.
If you were a pupil at Bisley or are in contact with anyone who went to Bisley and would like to share your memories, please contact the trustees Graham Davey ((firstname.lastname@example.org / 07753 672778) or Susan Smith (email@example.com) who would be delighted to hear from you.
Fraser Preston is Head of Operations at the Arethusa Venture Centre, and is running for Shaftesbury Young People in the 2018 London Marathon for the first time.
Here's what Fraser says about why he wants to run for SYP.
''Shaftesbury Young People is an excellent charity that I really look forward to representing in the 2018 London Marathon.
The opportunities that they provide give some children the only chance possible to experience what all children should when growing up. Young people across the UK who are from vulnerable and difficult back grounds are given the tools, freedom and support to fully enjoy what life has to offer whilst developing as young people.
As an ex-serviceman within the Parachute Regiment. I was able to influence the development and future of young recruits who in some cases, came from equally difficult backgrounds. I found this extremely rewarding as a mentor and instructor. My only wish would be if I could be given the opportunity to capture and help these individuals at a younger age like the support that Shaftesbury Young People offer. I now have the chance to make a difference earlier than before.
Shaftesbury Young People charity and all they deliver paves the ways for a brighter futures for these children.
Thank you very much for the opportunity.''
If you want to donate to help Shaftesbury Young People and Fraser achieve his fundraising target. Visit Fraser's Fundraising Page here:
Fraser has been training hard and has vlogged about his efforts.
Help increase your strength and aerobic fitness levels with this true hybrid class with the use of individual and teamed circuit based sessions. Multiple circuit stations combine resistance training with muscular endurance and strength building. Pick your starting station and your instructor will define how long you will perform each exercise for before you move to the next station. Each class is built with progressions and regressions so is suitable for all fitness levels and everyone gets a great workout. Classes often combine body weight exercises with weighted resistance equipment and mix aerobic and strength based moves. A typical session will focus on different parts of the body, including…
UPPER BODY - This includes all muscles in the arms, shoulders and the upper back.
CORE AND TRUNK - The core muscles are essential, not just in achieving a toned stomach but also to your balance
LOWER BODY - The muscles targeted in this section include the glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves.
WHAT WILL I GET FROM THE BOOTCAMP?
Circuit training is considered by many to be one of the most effective workouts out there. And while it can be done on your own, working out so hard in a group keeps you motivated and can be more fun than going it alone.
HIGH-INTENSITY FAT BURNING - Circuit training is a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which focuses on combining short periods of intense exercise with recovery periods in between. This style of workout has not only proven to be more effective at burning fat, but the incorporation of weights and resistance training keeps your muscles working throughout, so you only lose fat.
KICKSTART YOUR METABOLISM - Due to the nature of circuit training, a single class will kick your metabolism into a high gear. You’ll not only find that you burn more calories in the same time compared to steady cardio, but you’ll also experience an afterburn effect that will keep the calories burning long after you finish the class.
YOUR HEART GETS HEALTHIER - Although a lot of people may feel as though they are pushing themselves to their limits during exercise, the truth is that not many people actually reach their anaerobic zone. An extreme form of exercise, like circuit training, pushes you into this zone and that gets your cardiovascular system working harder than ever.
The Arethusa Venture Centre has many facilities to use from gymnasiums to pool based sessions. We also have the use of the top field at Beacon Hill. All sessions regardless of location and facilities will be charged at promotional rate of £6 per session. THE COST OF THESE SESSION WILL ALL GO TOWARDS SUPPORTING THE CHARITY OF THE ARETHSA VENTURE CENTRE AND WILL HELP CONITINUE TO DELIVER OUTDOOR EDUCATION TO CHILDREN.
First session free, beginning Tuesday 20/02/18 onwards.
TUESDAYS 1800 - 1900 (20 spaces)
THURSDAYS 1800 - 1900 (20 spaces)
The sessions will be run by Fraser Preston who served as a section commander in the British Army’s Parachute Regiment for over 10 years with two combat tours of Afghanistan. Fraser received the Top student award from the Army School of Physical Training in 2013 competing against 104 students. This allowed him to train his fellow soldiers to a level of fitness both physically and most importantly mentally superior to others for the conflict zones of Afghanistan, supporting them to push their minds and bodies to a level in which many believe they cannot achieve. He is an expert in military influenced Bootcamps and can create challenging but achievable workouts in every environment and believes to his core that everything can be achieved as a team and likes to incorporate this into his camps. Fraser also assisted soldiers in reaching their optimum level of fitness specific to sports. He is a keen football enthusiast who competed at the Army national level with a coaching background. One of his most enjoyable roles would be coaching and training injured soldiers during the rehabilitation process which is what led him to completing his level 3 Diploma in fitness instructing and personal training with Premier Global NASM after leaving the Parachute Regiment in February 2017
WHAT TO BRING
- Towel and change of clothes if required as we have shower and changing facilities.
- Water bottle
- Clothing fit for training including footwear.
- Completed consent forms and Bootcamp Questionnaire (download at the bottom of this post) which can be done on arrival
- Any inhalers/medication for any existing medical conditions
- Cash payment or Pre book over the phone.
- For return consent forms or any other question then please forward them to
- FPreston@shaftesbury.org.uk or 07816497995
- For any other information then please contact the Arethusa Venture Centre on 01634 719933
DOWNLOAD THE BOOTCAMP QUESTIONNAIRE BELOW:
In the last few weeks of term leading to Christmas, our students here at The Keresley Centre were working hard and preparing for Coventry’s Christmas Market as the centre had got a stall to run for the day.
The items the centre were selling were all hand made by the students in the centre, these items included book holders, Christmas decorations, hats, garden decorations, stockings and bird houses. After a lot of hard work and preparation Wednesday had finally come round and all of our students were full of excitement and were ready to get out into the public and sell their amazing creations. Our students arrived at the market at 9 am coming two at a time to run the stall and interact with the public teaching our students about social interaction skills, enterprise and help build their self-confidence.
Our first students to run the stall were amazing, talking to the customers and telling them about what our stall is for and what they knew about Shaftesbury as an organisation as well as making a lot of sales and handing out business cards for our centre, all in all the first group of students interacted amazingly with the public, handling customer care, handling cash and handled bagging items that customers had purchased. Our second group of students did just as well as the first, managing all of the above and all in all, every student did the centre proud, showing how sensible they are and responsibility and over all showing a great deal of maturity.
One of our members of staff that helped run the stall had said “The Christmas Shaftesbury Market Stall was brilliant! It was full of handmade goods, made by our students, it was a great experience where the students had the opportunity to sell their creations, interact with the customers and have this job experience for the future.”
Over all the Christmas market went as smooth as the snow that plastered the ground, with all our students making us and their selves proud.
On Friday 15th December here at the Keresley Centre we took part in the national Christmas jumper day, with staff and students wearing Christmas jumpers and creating Christmas T-Shirts as well as making donations to “Save The Children” throughout the day.
For the first half of the day we held a competition to see who can make the best Christmas shirt, using plain white T-Shirts, stencils, fabric colouring pens and a lot of hard work and imagination. All of the students created amazing T-Shirts through their hard work and imagination, each one as good as the last. Once all students had created their Christmas masterpieces we created a Christmas T-Shirt display, showing off their all of their amazing T-Shirts.
After the T-Shirts had been made the students started creating a nativity scene out of different materials they had found around the school, putting their all into making it even creating a baby Jesus in his crib, showing the students dedication to raising money for “Save The Children” Charity.
At the end of the day the winner for the Christmas T-Shirt competition was announced, all students were on the edge waiting to find out if their Christmas T-Shirts had won. All the students’ shirts were amazing but in the end Emily was announced as the winner, followed by Helen, Callum and Dan.
As the day drew to a close, all of the students had contributed to the day, leaving with big smiles on their faces after a happy and fun day of activities.
The trainees started on a full-time 46 week Traineeship Programme at the Arethusa Venture Centre on 18th September which will finish in July 2018. The course is a full and all encompassing training programme and it will allow the trainees to gain different in-house and National Body Qualifications in the outdoors and in the work place.
This is a starting point into gaining qualifications and experience working in an outdoor activity centre. The qualifications will give them the technical and safety side of what is needed to run specific sessions, and the shadowing and leading of activities will give the trainees the confidence and necessary skills and experience of working with young people in an outdoor environment.
They will have access to use all the necessary equipment and facilities at the centre, as well as have help from experienced staff to practice and implement what they have been taught. The staff will be paid as well as have the option to live on-site, and also have their meals supplied.