Form III visit High Ashurst

Posted: 13th October 2017

A residential visit to remember

The annual Form III residential visit to High Ashurst is something to look forward to!  Combining adventure activities, fun and companionship it gives Form III girls the opportunity to stretch themselves and get to know their whole year group through teamwork, activities and recreational time together.  This year’s visit was from Thursday 28th – Friday 29th September, two great days together.

Julia, Szewczyk, Form IIIA, enjoyed the visit to High Ashurst, saying, ‘My group’s first activity was archery.  We had lots of fun shooting arrows and playing games.  Our second activity was a mix of different tasks.  From walking on ropes to swinging on logs, we had lots of fun.

After a long day and fun night we all got into our pyjamas and drank our hot chocolate.  My roommates took ages to get to sleep but we all got there in the end.  The next day we got dressed and went to the hall for breakfast.  After that we went to our third activities.

My group’s activity was called Woodland Skills.  We joined another group to form one big team.  We learnt how to start a fire and toast marshmallows.  The next activity was my favourite – trapeze.  As we got our helmets and harnesses on our teacher explained what we were about to do.

When everyone was ready we headed down to the trapeze.  We divided into pairs or groups of three.  Then we decided who was going first, it was me.  I got clipped on to a rope and up I went.  Once I got to the top I was asked to put my feet over the edge and jump.  It was really fun floating to the ground.  I wish I could do it again.  High Ashurst was a really fun experience and I wish I could go again’

Amelia Szczurek, Form III Alpha, takes up the story, ‘On arrival, after everyone got to know their group and leader well, we straight away went to our first activities which were:  low ropes, survival and archery.  Each activity tested our abilities with teamwork, strength, courage and listening.  Everyone absolutely loved the activities and learnt at least one new thing.

After a long day of hard work, we all went to our meeting point and were told who we were sharing our cabins with.  We were shown into our rooms and unpacked and then went to dinner.  The food was incredibly tasty and most people went up for seconds.  There was a range of meat, bread, fruit and pastries and either water or squash to drink.

Anyway, after we had eaten we were all called outside to play a night game.  The point of the game was to collect three or four pieces of coloured paper which contained verses to a well-known hymn.  After being sorted into our teams the whistle blew and each team ran off trying to find their missing papers.  Around half an hour lager each team arrived back at to the starting point panting and gasping, probably because of all the running that was going on.

The teachers then led us into the hall and unexpectedly they started singing happy birthday.  We all then remembered that it was our friend’s birthday and we all joined in with the singing.

After a while the teachers reminded us about the hymn verses we had collected and asked us to put them in order and sing the hymns in groups.  Everyone was excited and when each group performed, they did really well.  After everybody sang their hymns the winning team was announced.  We all ended with a round of applause for the winners and called it the end of the day.

The next morning, we all woke up at 7.15am, got dressed, ate our breakfast and set out to our activities.  Two groups each had the trapeze, a long thing you had to climb on and then jump off and the other two groups had Jacob’s ladder, an enormous wooden ladder with humongous gaps in between which you had to climb on.  After we had all completed our activities we then had to pack quickly, put our luggage into the coach and off we went.’

Madeleine Easting, Form IIIA, adds, ‘My trip to High Ashurst was amazing.  It really pushed my determination and will to carry on. When I went on the high ropes, I didn’t really want to continue but, with encouragement from the leaders and my teammates, I managed to complete the task and make it to the top. I learnt that even though you don’t want to do something, it’s always worth doing it in the end. One of my favourite activities was bushcraft because we learnt how to use flint and steel and our survival skills were really put to the test. Overall, High Ashurst was a great experience and I’d love to go again!

Simona Savic, Form III Alpha, summarises this year’s visit, ‘High Ashurst was most definitely the best residential visit yet at St Augustine’s Priory!  It was not like any other as it gave us a really big chance as a year group to socialize and also to conquer and overcome any fears through the activities.  Personally, I really think there were huge benefits.  I met so many new girls whom I didn’t really even know – I think every girl in our year has a great personality.  Not only did I meet amazing girls but there were so many new skills we learnt that you could use if you were in a really risk-taking situation.  For example, I learnt how to make a fire.  With the challenges we faced we learnt strategies, for example, with the high ropes.  I believe that the main thing you had to think about was putting your trust in other people.’

Categories: Senior Whole School