Five Peter Symonds students were recent guests at St James Palace to collect their Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards (DofE Awards) in a prestigious awards ceremony. Eleanor Chambers, Eryn Ann Fyson, Rosalind Martin, Amita Muthalagu and Michael Charles Sessions, were all recipients of the DofE Gold Award, a youth achievement award run in conjunction with the College and Hampshire County Council.

Following on from the successful visit of HRH the Earl of Wessex to Peter Symonds College at the end of April this year, Principal, Stephen Carville, and Deputy Principal (Students), Julia Tucker were also invited as VIP guests to the ceremony, along with Sarah Gibson, Head of Study Support and Patrick Dolan, the College’s DofE Coordinator. All guests were given a tour of the palace by a past DofE participant, followed by refreshments and a talk by the DofE Chief executive, Peter Westgarth, who thanked everyone for making DofE such a successful award.

HRH the Earl of Wessex spoke and joked with many of the participants and proud parents about their expeditions and activities they undertook as part of their awards. Rebecca Stephens MBE, the first British woman to climb Mount Everest, presented the certificates to the award winners on behalf of HRH, the Earl of Wessex. She then gave an inspirational talk to the participants about her exploits climbing the seven summits and how they have helped to shape her view of life, family and friends as being precious. Rebecca told the Gold Awards holders, "The time and commitment to get where you are today is fantastic, a big well done to you all. All of you have worked very hard to be here, continue to listen to your inner voice and pursue what you want to do."

Actors James and Oliver Phelps, who played the Weasley twins in the Harry Potter films, were also present at the awards ceremony with James Phelps receiving his DofE Diamond Award.

Commenting on the day’s events Principal, Stephen Carville said, "I was delighted to be present when so many of our students received their Duke of Edinburgh Gold Awards. It was also a real honour to meet HRH the Earl of Wessex again, so soon after his visit to the College. I was very impressed by his ability to put young people at ease. It was also fascinating to hear Rebecca Stephens speak about her ascent of Everest, along with her career in television and journalism."

Posted on 05/01/17 at 17:16

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