Other Half Achievements

Music Achievements

ATCL or Dip ABRSM Music Diplomas

  • Three Piano diplomas
  • Bass voice diploma

Individual Pupil Successes

  • Gap Year Organ Scholarship at Gloucester Cathedral for 2016/17
  • Winner of the EPTA Piano Competition (Junior category)
  • Two places on the Eton Choral Course
  • Solo roles in both the National Youth Music Theatre and the Abingdon Operatic Society
  • Played whole Saint-Saens piano concerto no 5 (Egyptian) with the Wantage Orchestra

The following concertos have been played this year

  • Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No 2
  • Elgar Cello Concerto
  • Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No 5
  • Bach Harpsichord Concerto in D minor
  • Vivaldi Concerto Grosso

Higher Education Music Scholarships

  • Organ Scholarship to St John’s College, Cambridge, to read music from 2017
  • OA 2015 has a composition scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music
  • OA 2015 organ scholar at Balliol College, Oxford, reading Classics
  • Countertenor OA 2015 is a Choral Scholar at St John’s College, Cambridge, whilst reading Music
  • OA 2014 is a French horn scholar at the Royal Welsh College of Music
  • Tenor OA 2014 is Choral Volunteer at King’s College, Cambridge, reading Music.
  • Tenor OA 2013 is Choral Scholar at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, reading Music.
  • Countertenor OA 2013 is a Choral Scholar at Magdalen College, Oxford, reading Modern Languages
  • Bass OA 2012 is a choral scholar at Homerton College, Cambridge, reading Government and Politics

Group Successes

  • Pro Corda National Chamber Music Festival, 2016 - A large number of Abingdon ensembles were entered for the National Festival in 2016 and three won through to the semi final stage
  • Thames Vale Youth Orchestra - Some 25 Abingdon boys play in this orchestra, which meets after school on Mondays and involves many of the best musicians from schools in Oxfordshire. The orchestra is conducted by Abingdon’s Director of Music, Michael Stinton

Recent and Forthcoming International Tours

  • Bielefeld, Germany 2017
    • The Abingdon Orchestra tours to Bielefeld (9 to 14 February 2017) to celebrate the 50th Anniversary between Abingdon School and the Ratsgymnasium in Bielefeld with a Festive Concert and several others in churches in the region.
  • Barcelona and Catalonia July 2014
    • The School’s First Orchestra and Chapel Choir toured Barcelona and Catalonia giving five concerts over five nights.

Solo Instrumental Competitions

  • The academic year 2015-16 saw the inauguration of the three tier solo instrumental competitions, held in Michaelmas (senior), Lent (intermediate) and Summer (junior) in front of an invited examiner.

Drama Achievements

Drama

2015:

  • Joint sixth form production "Chapters of Chekhov" tours to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for 7 performances in August
  • 6th form student wins place on the full three year acting course at the Oxford School of Drama
  • 5th form drama student secures a place in Youth Music Theatre UK's summer production of "Dirty Stopouts"
  • Old Abingdonian (former pupil) wins place on the postgraduate acting course at the Juliard School in New York
  • 6th form drama student wins BBC radio young sports reporter competition
  • 6th form drama students act in award-winning short film "Billy the Kid" alongside Hobbit star John Bell.

2014:

  • After completing the RADA foundation course, an OA won a place on the full three year acting course at RADA. Nine sixth form drama students from Abingdon and St Helen’s took part in the National Theatre's "New Views" playwriting scheme and each produce an original play. Two of the plays made the NT’s shortlist for plays to be given rehearsed readings at the National. Fourth form drama student successfully auditioned for the Youth Theatre Music Theatre UK’s summer 2014 production. Plans were finalised for a joint Abingdon/St Helen’s sixth form production of Chekhov at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in summer 2015.

Abingdon Film Unit (AFU)

The Film Unit's website 'publishes' a selection of the students' films

The Film Unit's Vimeo channels, one for each year in which we have been active, contain all the films (with the exception of those screened last month, which are still in the process of being uploaded. The films first screened in September 2014 can be found here.

2015:

  • AFU alumnus wins BAFTA scholarship to study creative film production in Hong Kong
  • AFU alumna wins Colchester Film Festival's 60 hour film challenge
  • AFU members debut film Blindside is selected for more international film festivals than any other AFU film. These include:
    • BFI Future Film Festival at the National Film Theatre in London (top three fiction films)
    • Depth of Field Film Festival (Award of Merit)
    • Sidewalk Film Festival, Birmingham, Alabama
    • Startfest, Goldenrod, Florida
    • Speechless Film Festival, Mankato, Minnesota
    • Student Filmmaker Awards (awarded a place in the top four films)
    • AFU alumnus successfully raises £25,000 budget to shoot his debut feature film Never Better which premieres at the Picturehouse in Hackney and features performances by two AFU alumni.

2014:

  • A pupil won a place on the BFI’s prestigious Future Film Academy residential course at the National Film and Television School at Beaconsfield; An AFU film “Für Immer Mutter und Kind” was selected for the 2014 Aesthetica Short Film Festival in York.

Sporting Achievements

Athletics

  • 2016: There were individual and squad highlights throughout the 2016 athletics season. A senior athlete reached the 100m semi final of the English Schools’ Championship in a qualifying time of 10.94s. Abingdon finished in bronze medal position at the prestigious Harrow meet, behind only Harrow and Oakham. An Intermediate athlete showed his wide ranging prowess with victories in high jump and 2nd place finishes in the 100m in a number of meets. The junior team won the Magdalen College School Athletics meet.
  • 2015: Our ESAA U14 team reached the Regional A Final for the first time for a number of years, achieving a creditable 6th place. A pupil achieved a national time in his ESAA competition as a first year U17, while another pupil just missed out at 400m (also first year U17). A pupil continues to impress on the national scene at 800m, currently running for Germany.
  • 2014: Winners of the Senior 4x800m Achilles Relays. 2013: Winners (joint) of the Inters Radley Medley Relay Competition. 2012: ESAA Inters through to the regional A team final for 4th time in 7 years. A pupil represented Oxfordshire in National Schools 1500m finals lowering the school record to 4:25.37 in the process.

Canoeing

  • The Canoe Club continues to go from strength the strength with a wide range of modern paddlesports equipment from Open Canoes and White water Kayaks to Stand Up Paddleboards. The club continues to be affiliated to British Canoeing and we often run training and assessments for pupils. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is now extremely popular and offers boys the chance to complete their expedition via Open Canoe. At Bronze level the boys paddle the River Thames and are introduced to white water on the River Medway. We alternate rivers at Silver and Gold levels with assessments taking place on the River Wye in Wales and the River Severn in Shropshire. A pupil represents GB Canoeing at National Marathon & Sprint Championships.

Cricket

  • The Cricket Club currently has boys representing Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and Berkshire across all age groups.
  • In 2016, the Cricket Club toured Sri Lanka with the U15 side, who returned to complete a very successful season, getting to the last 16 of the National Competition. 
  • Six of the 1st XI squad of 2015 represented Oxfordshire U17s the previous season, being crowned National Champions in September 2014, with one of our senior boys going on to make his 2nd XI debut for Sussex over the course of the 2015 season.
  • A pupil was awarded Oxfordshire Cricket's U13 Player of the Season 2015.

Cross Country​

  • Number of boys: 30-40, varying year on year.
  • Over the last seven years ranked in the top 3 or 4 of all independent schools in the UK.
  • Knole Run various bronze medals and cups.
  • VoWH Championships: winners for 12 consecutive years.
  • County Championships: winners for 10 consecutive years.
  • Radley Relays won 6 times in 11 years, bronze and silver the rest. Course records.
  • Wellington College Relays won 9 times in 11 years, bronze and silver the rest.
  • Malborough Relays won 10 times in 11 years, bronze and silver the rest.
  • Harrow School Race won twice, silver and bronze the rest.
  • 5 boys gone on to captain their university teams including at Varsity matches.
  • In October half term 2015 a pupil competed for England in the Junior Home Internationals Orienteering event held in Magilligan, Northern Ireland. Competing against Ireland, Scotland and Wales, he won the individual event and placed 3rd in the Relay competition.

Fencing

  • Public Schools Fencing Championships 2016 - The Fencing Captain won the Boys' Junior Epee for the second year in a row (the first time this has been achieved in 33 years.) In the Boys' Senior Sabre one pupil won through to the final and finished in 2nd place. Other strong performances came from a pupil who finished in fifth place in the Mount-Haes Boys' Epee and in 8th place in the Boys' Mount-Haes Foil, and again, from the Fencing Captain, who managed 8th place in the Boys' Junior Foil. 
  • International Success 2015/16 - The Fencing Captain won the London U17 GBR qualifying event in November 2015 and was selected to represent Great Britain at internationals in Copenhagen and Bratislava. He is currently ranked 2nd in Great Britain at U17 level, having spent 2 weeks at the number 1 spot after Bratislava, and he was selected for the European Championships in Novi Sad, Serbia, and the World Championships in Bourges, France.
  • Southern Region Age Group Epee, 2016 – One pupil won gold in his age group.
  • Fencing Fixtures 2015/16 - An unbeaten season against Charterhouse, Winchester College, RGS High Wycombe, Wellington College and Dauntsey's.
  • A sixth former won Gold at the Junior Commonwealth Games in South Africa in July 2015 - an exceptional achievement. 
  • Public Schools Fencing Championships 2015
  • Pupils won Gold in the Boys' Junior Epee, Bronze in the Boys' Senior Foil and Silver in the Boys' Senior Epee and Bronze in the Boys' Senior Sabre. In addition a pupil won the prestigious Senior 'Master at Arms' trophy and the club as a whole won the Hilary Hammond trophy for the second year in a row, which is awarded to the club with the highest number of points scored with less than 25 weapon entries.
  • Southern Region Age Group Epee Competition 2015
  • Eight of Abingdon's fencers won medals in the following categories: Under 12 Boys' Epee Bronze. Under 14 Boys' Epee: Bronze and Silver. Under 16 Boys' Epee: two Bronze medals and a Gold. Under 18 Boys Epee: Silver and Gold.
  • Southern Region Team Competition 2015
  • U14 Epee Team won gold in their age category. A team also competed in this category and won bronze. The U18 Epee team won bronze in their age category.
  • Unbeaten in 2014-2015 academic year, with fixtures against Winchester College, Bradfield College, Dauntsey’s, Charterhouse, St John’s School Marlborough and Wellington College.
  • British Youth Championships 2014 - A pupils won Gold in the Under 16 Boys' Epee.
  • Public Schools Championships 2014 - Pupils won silver (out of 101 fencers in the Boys' Mount-Haes Epee) and 5th place in the Boys' Junior Epee. Silver (2nd place) in the Boys' Senior Epee, out of 95 fencers.
  • Southern Region Age Group Competition 2014 - Abingdon School Fencing Club took 18 fencers to the Southern Region Age Group competition at Wellington College. This competition is a qualifying round for the highly prestigious British Youth Championships, held at the Institute of Sport in Sheffield in May. The club won seven medals on the day.
  • Two pupils were chosen to be members of the Under 17 GB Epee Squad in the academic year. Both have fenced in a number of international competitions as part of the GB squad.

Football

  • 143 games played in 2015/16. 1st and 2nd XI both second in their respective Thames Valley Football Leagues. One pupil represents Oxford United Scholars and makes last 40 of Independent Schools Football Association (ISFA) South Central region side. Two first years and one second year represent ISFA regional representational side. Three pupils have been selected for Oxford United and Swindon Town. Six players representing the Independent Schools Lions side
  • Three boys selected for U13 South Central Lions Development Squad
  • 2014-2015 – 1st XI and 3rd XI both second in their respective Thames Valley Football Leagues. 2nd XI win their league. 1st XI and U15A both beat Hampton School who were Independent Schools Football Association cup finalists.

Golf

  • 2014-2015: ISGA Area Plate Champions
  • 2013-2014: ISGA Area Champions and National Finals Carnoustie. Tied 6th

Hockey

2015-2016

  • The Hockey Club saw all sides compete in the national ISHL league.
  • The U16s and U18s got through the finals of the National Indoor Competition held at Whitgift.
  • The U13s VII got through to the regional finals.
  • One pupil represented England at U16 and U18 level.
  • The 1st XI went on a pre-season tour to Barcelona and competed against some of the top sides, including the Catalan national side.
  • 8 representing the regional team.
  • 26 players representing Oxfordshire County sides.

2014-2015

  • The Hockey Club saw all sides compete in the national ISHL league.
  • The 1st VI, came runners up in the plate at the National Tournament ‘St George’s VI’s’.
  • The U16 XI got through the National Finals in the National Cup competition.
  • The U13s VII got through to the Regional Finals.
  • A pupil captained England U18s at the 6 nations.
  • A pupil was selected for the U18 Welsh Side.
  • 5 boys represented the regional team
  • 23 players representing Oxfordshire sides

Rowing

2015-2016

  • International Selection: 
    • 3 boys selected to Great Britain Junior Rowing team.
    • 1 Gold Medal Coupe De La Jeunesse Boys VIII.
    • 1 10th place Boys Pair Junior World Championships.
    • 1 11th Place Boys Quad Scull Junior World Championships
  • National Results:
    • 8th Championship VIIIs.
    • 5th Championship 4+.
    • 6th J15B VIII.
  • 2 crews competing at Henley Royal Regatta in the Princess Elizabeth and Fawley Challenge. Quarter finalist in Fawley Quads

2014-2015

  • Silver medal GB Coxless 4 World Junior Rowing Championships Rio 2015.
  • 7th GB Coxed 4 World Junior Rowing Championships Rio 2015.
  • Bronze medal GB VIII at Coupe de la Jeunessse Hungary 2015.
  • Gold medal England Coxed 4 Home Countries International regatta 2015.
  • National Results:
    • Final Championship VIIIs
    • 2nd Championship Pairs at National Schools Regatta
    • 2nd J15 Single Sculls.
    • 4th J14, J15 Octuple and VIIIs.
    • 1st VIII Winners at Nottingham City, Metropolitan and Reading regattas.
    • J16A Winners Bedford Regatta.
  • International Selection:
    • 1 Silver Medal Junior World Championships
    • 1 4th Place Junior World Championship
    • 1 Gold Home Countries Regatta for England
    • Winners of GB Junior Pairs trials.
    • 5 boys invited to Junior Final Selection trials taking place July 2015.

Rugby

2015-2016 

  • One pupil invited into the England U17 training side
  • 7 sixth form boys representing Wasps U18 Academy
  • 2 boys representing Wasps U16 Academy
  • 3 boys representing Wasps U15 Academy

2014-2015

  • Abingdon 1st XV - 7th in the Daily Mail Schools Trophy League, ahead of big rugby playing schools such as Dulwich, Millfield and Warwick. The nearest Oxfordshire based school was St Edward’s who came 41st
  • The three 5th formers selected for U16 Divisional sides playing at the international festival over Easter
  • The U13 Sevens side that for the first time in Abingdon’s history made it to the Rosslyn Park National Semi Final Stage
  • U15 County Cup Winners / Senior 2nd XV Finalists
  • Two boys represented Scotland and England at U18 with one captaining the U18 England squad.
  • Two boys featured in the weeklong U16 International festival at Wellington College over Easter. One represented the South West of England and the other was selected for the North of England side. Both 5th year pupils competed against France, Scotland and Wales.

Sailing    

  • Dinghy sailing: Abingdon has a strong history for competing in National and International sailing fixtures. We have recently competed in Cowes week and attended the Laser SB20 Nationals in Torbay. The sailing club also places a strong emphasis on match racing events and has competed in the National Schools’ and National Youth Match racing championships, coming 4th in the youth (U23) event this year. Interschool matches against Cokethorpe, Radley and St Edward’s are regular fixtures, allowing middle school pupils to gain valuable experience racing and representing the School. All pupils are invited to take part in weekend racing using school dinghies on a regular basis.
  • Offshore sailing: Yachting trips on the south coast, the Channel Islands and Greece for pupils ranging in ability from beginners to RYA Day Skipper level (12 pupils achieved their day skipper last year) building confidence and enjoyment of this exciting pastime.
  • DofE Sailing: The DofE provision for expeditions to be undertaken by sail has increased this year to allow students to do this at Bronze, Silver and Gold Level.

Windsurfing

  • A pupil competed for the Great Britain team at the Techno Worlds windsurfing competition in October 2015, coming a very creditable 9th in the Silver Fleet

Shooting

  • 2015: National representation for three pupils
  • 2014: One second and a third place in D class in the Oxfordshire County Championship. A pupil won the Tyros cup in the Oxfordshire County Championship.

Squash

  • Abingdon won their qualifying group in the National U19 Boys competition, and go through with a good seeding.

Swimming

  • 2015/16 - Most successful year. All age group squads qualify for the ESSA secondary Schools’ relay finals at the Olympic Pool (top 30 teams in country qualify), the U15s finishing 15th in country. 2nd at Warwick 100s, winners of all age groups at Abingdon Sprints, U18s winners of freestyle and medley relays at Bromsgrove Relays. Fixture win over Harrow. U18s 10th in the country in the Bath and Otter Cup.
  • 2014-2015 season - U18s win Bromsgrove Relays (Freestyle), U14s second at the Warwick 100's, U14, U16 and U18s win their age groups at the Abingdon Sprints, U16 and U18 undefeated at Bradfield Gala.

Tennis

  • 2016 - Semi Finals of National Championships.
  • 2016 - U15 top four players came 3rd in Eton Pairs Independent Schools Tennis Association Competition. 
  • 2016 - One pupil is number one U14 player in Oxfordshire, played in the National Aegon Finals in Nottinghamshire.
  • 2016 - U14 and U16 teams won the county stages of the Year 8 & 10 Aegon National Competition. 
  • 2015 - Five boys got through to the Year 10 Aegon Regional Finals, putting Abingdon School in the top 16 schools in the country for tennis, so far.
  • 2015 - Semi Finals of National Championships.
  • 2015 - U15 top four players came 3rd in Eton Pairs Independent Schools Tennis Association Competition.
  • 2015 - A pupil was number one U14 player in Oxfordshire, played in the National Aegon Finals in Nottinghamshire.
  • 2014 - U15 teams Oxfordshire Schools and Independent Schools Champions.

Clubs, Societies and Service Achievements

Combined Cadet Force

  • Numbers involved:
    • 2015-2016: 124
    • 2014-2015: 119

Achievements:

  • A number of cadets attend the Air Cadet Leadership Course and Frimley Park Army Cadet Leadership Course each year. This year one of our RAF cadets was announced as the best cadet on the Air Cadet Leadership Course.
  • In 2015 after coming 2nd at the regional competition our team came 5th in national final of RAF Section Air Squadron Trophy competition.
  • 1 of our cadets attended and passed a drill course in both 2014 and 2015.
  • In the RAF Section there have been 4 Gliding scholarships and 1 Flying scholarship.

Chess

2013-2014: Abingdon knocked out Magdalen College School and reached the last sixteen of the prestigious National Schools’ Championship. (Last year they reached the quarter-finals of the Plate.) 16 players qualified for the UK Chess Challenge county Megafinal and Abingdon won the U13, U15 and U17 sections. Six players in all subsequently qualified for the Southern Gigafinal. We again had a team in Division 3 of the Oxford and District Chess League, playing a total of 14 graded matches in the evenings against local club sides. The School Club meets five times a week in the Michaelmas and Lent terms and a Grandmaster coaches during the main Wednesday afternoon session.

Debating

  • The School runs a lively debating society and a full programme of internal and external competitions with boys competing in British Parliamentary, Mace, EU, UN and public speaking formats, as well as social events with girls' schools and the annual inter-house debating competition including over 100 boys from the nine different houses. 
  • The Debating Society holds a weekly debate on Friday afternoons which is open to the whole school, with speakers mainly from the sixth form, but also including Middle School and occasionally Lower School pupils too. Attendance averages at 50 every week, with all year groups from 1-7 well represented. We also hold a weekly sixth form debate (with invited fifth years) on a range of contemporary political and ethical topics with an attendance of 15-20 boys. There is a separate Lower School weekly debating club and a third year club was also started in the summer term of 2015
  • In 2015-2016, Abingdon boys have taken part in the following external competitions:
    • ESU Mace Debating competition 
    • ESU Public Speaking competition
    • Model United Nations conferences: Malvern St James, Magdalen College School, and Haileybury. Delegations won a variety of awards including Best Delegation, Best Delegate, Highly Commended Delegate, Commended Delegation, Commended Delegate, and Best Young Delegate.
    • Oxford Union debating competition 
    • Cambridge Union debating competition
    • Blenheim Palace public speaking competition

Writing

  • We run a weekly creative writing club ('The Postmen') attended by about 15 boys from the 4th-U6th. This started in 2012, and boys are working on pieces to enter into national competitions, and in order to produce an anthology at the end of the year. We offered Creative Writing AS for the first time in 2013-14 (the first time it became available for teaching) and 15 boys took this qualification in addition to their other AS and A2s. We have welcomed many writers in to run workshops for boys taking part in extra writing activities, too. In the past two years, we have been visited by Stephen May (Costa nominated novel), Luke Wright (performance poet and regular on Radio 4’s Saturday Live), Mark Forsyth, a day workshop run by Bath Spa University’s acclaimed creative writing department. We have had visits from Jason Hewitt and Melvin Burgess scheduled for the coming term. We have also secured development funding for a writer in residence in the coming academic year. This led to the publication in summer 2015 of ‘The Abingdon Anthology’, a complete volume featuring creative writing and short stories by pupils and teachers (from a range of departments). It was available for purchase at the local bookshop, ‘Mostly Books’ in Abingdon - who were very happy to support the project.
  • We also run a creative arts newspaper 'Words and That' which is published on a termly basis and includes creative, comic, descriptive, and political/ satirical writing, along with film and music reviews, and pieces of artwork. It is published and edited by a student team, led by a member of the English Department. A member of this department also runs ‘The Martlet’ which is a more mainstream publication covering school news and events.
  • Publications:
    • Hard copies are available of ‘The Martlet’ (also published electronically)
    • ‘Words and That’
    • ‘The Abingdonian’
    • ‘Timeline’ (History)
    • ‘Griffenomics’ Economics
    • ‘The Polyglot’ (MFL) (also published electronically)
    • Electronic publications (only) are available for: ‘The Axiom’ (Philosophy)
    • The Blazer (Lower School)

Young Enterprise

2014-2015

  • Four teams were run at Abingdon this year. 'Flame' won Best Product and Best Customer Service at the Cowley Trade Fair. Be.spoke won 'Highly Commended Product' at the Cowley Trade Fair, as well as 'Highly Commended Product' at the Banbury Trade Fair. At the South Oxfordshire and Vale Area Final, Be.spoke won through to the County Finals stage and also won an award for 'Creavitiy and Innovation'. A boy from Kinetic also won an award for 'Outstanding Personal Contribution.' At the Oxfordshire County Finals, Be.spoke won the 'Oxford Instruments Award for Innovation' and came runner up in the 'Taylor and Francis Award for Best Display Stand', while Flame won 'The JSP Award for Manufacturing' (the second year in a row Abingdon has won this prestigious award). Be.spoke also won Tutor2u's 'Bin Business Challenge' for their range of upcyled bicycle products.