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Lower Sixth Residential

As a school, we believe that team-building exercises are an important component in shaping a students future. It allows them not only to get to know their peers, but it gives them real world skills in learning about human interactions, working as a team, and prepares them for their future career.

We are delighted to have been able to re-establish the Lower Sixth Teambuilding Residential at Patterdale following several years of being unable to attend, largely due to the impacts of covid-19 and the block bookings by Bolton School, who own the outdoor centre.

Mr Robinson, Head of Sixth Form, has kindly shared an overview of the trip; please take a read.

Lower Sixth Patterdale Residential 2023/24

"We set off in the morning of Monday 11th September and despite the inevitable delay on the M6 we arrived at the outdoor centre full of a variety of emotions. After a quick lunch it was time for an afternoon of canoeing around Ullswater lake. Following a short guide on how to paddle it was onto the lake. Lots of fun was had as confidence in the open canoes grew. There were a couple of capsizes but they all quickly got the hang of heading in a straight line. Off we headed to the “jump”. The young ladies of the group had the commonsense to merely observe as the young men challenged themselves to take on the low and then high jumps. It was terrific to see lots of support and encouragement from all in the group.

We then paddled back across the lake and head back up to the centre to get showered and changed before supper. As has always been the case, the food was excellent and the students thoroughly enjoyed it. Supper over, it was time to jump into some waterproofs for a series of teambuilding challenges around the grounds of the centre. There was lots of thinking through and working together to solve the various challenges with the rain not impacting on the group working effectively together.

A busy, successful and enjoyable first day led to many having an early night.

Everyone was up for breakfast at 8.00am on Tuesday and quickly kitted up for a morning of rock climbing. Following a 30-minute walk up to the cragg, the three instructors set about explaining and demonstrating how to put the harness on, climb and support the students climbing. Despite some initial trepidation, it was fantastic to see all the group attempting the climbs, collectively supporting each other and celebrating the successes. It was also good to see many really push themselves to meet the challenges of the different climbs. Even when the light rain started the enthusiasm to climb did not diminish. Everyone should be very proud of their achievements, big or small.

We then trekked back down to the lake and the group split into two teams where each team to tasked to build, and then paddle, a raft made out of plastic barrels, wooden poles and rope. The instructors offered advice on the best design and how to tie up the raft. Teamwork in action was evident and it was good to see some taking a lead.

Rafts built and shaken to test the soundness of the construction and then it was onto the lake for the race. Success! The rafts floated and were fiercely paddled but inevitably, some on both teams decided to try and cheat but in light hearted humour, good fun was had by all. While many were happy to stay as dry as possible a few brave young men decided that, even without a wetsuit, they would brave the lake for a dip.

It was then back up to the hall to warm up with a warm shower and another excellent supper. The rest of Tuesday evening was given over to the group organising their own activities, including a pool competition. It was good to see increased bonding evident. Given a busy day of activity, it was no surprise that a good night’s sleep was high on the agenda for most.

The following morning we were back up early for breakfast, followed buy packing, tidying and stripping off the bedding. With all rooms tidied, bags were removed to a storeroom to allow the centre staff to prepare the rooms for the next group, a Year 8 group of girls from Bolton School who were due to arrive at 11.30am.

The morning activities started off with archery. Following some excellent instruction, the group moved from missing the targets completely to eventually not only hitting the target but, in many cases, scoring bullseyes. A great life lesson – the more you practice, the better you become. I am looking forward to seeing this reflected in the academic studies. Then it was off to the low ropes course. An initial, try-out to get a feel for each of the challenges and then in groups, trying to get round the quickest, and finally, trying to get one of each sub-group around the course while wearing a blindfold. Again, lots of teamwork in action.

It was then back up to the centre for lunch and then, when Mr Davies arrived in the minibus and it was time to head back to school.

I am grateful to Mrs Marshall and Miss Cheetham for their help and support during the trip and to Mr Davies who drove us up and then drove us back – a real example of Res Non Verba.

It was a successful trip and I was greatly impressed by the way that the whole group worked together and embraced the challenges. They also should the Res Non Verba spirit and well reflected a core values."

P. Robinson

Photo Album

If you would like to see more photos from the trip, please follow our link below to the full Flickr album:

Patterdale 2023/24 - Photo Album