Heywood Prep has once again enjoyed an outstanding year of sport. Despite being a relatively small ISA school (up to Year 6) of only 170 pupils and based on a limited facility two-acre site in the middle of an historic town in Wiltshire, Heywood Prep continues to achieve County, Regional and National sporting success.
Whilst success can be easily measured against the above criteria, Heywood Prep ensures that they not only provide outstanding sport for each and every one of our children, but their talented staff encourage every child, whatever level, to participate across a varied programme of sports and extra-curricular clubs. Heywood have created a unique Individualised Learning Programme, where, for 30 minutes a day we further support children who need additional help, support and enrichment, through developing gross motor skills, to extending and challenging our talented GAT children.
Being a small school on a small site, we fully utilise community facilities to train and to play; Corsham Cricket Club, Corsham Rugby Club and the astroturf at Corsham Football Club is used for hockey. Years 3-6 play weekly fixtures, with rarely a team left at school; those that are left back at school train hard for the next big match and are never left sitting on the bench.
Our community links are continually extending and we have created close links with local primary schools who do not have access to the specialist staff or facilities that we have.
Affiliated with Youth School Games, Heywood initiated, and has hosted, the Mid Wilts Cross Country and Quad Kids events for over 400 local primary school children for the last three years and this year we have applied for the School Games Gold Award.
After school, Heywood’s commitment to offering sport opportunities to all continues. We run in the region of 60 clubs per week, including Mini-Red Tennis, Rugby with the Bath Rugby Development Coaches, Fencing, Judo, Netball, Hockey, Ultimate Frisbee, Dance, Cricket with Corsham CC, and Multi-Sports. These clubs encourage in the region of 140 children per week to participate in sport-related after school clubs.
In hockey, both the boys’ and girls’ teams enjoyed enviable success. In the Autumn, the girls U11A team competed at the Lee Valley Olympic Hockey Park, coming out ISA Bowl Winners, whist the boys U11A team took Bronze in the main ISA Cup Competition. This coupled with them coming runners up in the Wiltshire County Cup, showed the depth and talent within the school. On the back of this, our boys’ goalkeeper was selected for the ISA
Athlete of the Spring Term.
Heywood Prep continually strives to increase the opportunities for their pupils and this year provided this in swimming, where two of our pupils qualified for the ISA Finals at the National Olympic Aquatic Centre, where we narrowly missed out with two 4th places. On the slopes, our English Schools Ski Association team competed in the Midlands and South West Dry Ski Slope competition, where the boys’ team came first and the girls’ team came third. They were due to compete at the ISA indoor ski championships at Hemel Hempstead in April.
In the Spring Term, Heywood Prep achieved significant success in the ISA South West Regional cross country, where 12 out of our 16 runners from U9 to U11 qualified for the National Finals at Worksop. The U9 U11 Girls Teams also won the team events, whilst the U11 boys came in 2nd place, showed the development of our pupils from the previous year in this sport. The girls’ netballers competed for the first time at the ISA South West Regionals in Devon, coming second and went on to compete in the National Finals at Rugby School. This was buoyed on from the extremely popular Parent-child Netball, in Bristol, led by England Netballers @seriessporty Serena Guthrie. We even had the only dad competing!
Outside of our major team sports our fencers and equestrian team continue to develop and enjoy success. Alongside regular inter-schools’ fixtures and Wishford Group Festivals, individually, our older pupils qualified for the British Youth Championships in Epee and Foil and competed again at the internationally in Challenge Wratislava, Poland. Our Equestrian team continues to grow with success in the Winter League Dressage and Jump Events, while individually, they have earned qualification into unaffiliated Junior Championship of GB in August.
Sports staff are passionate about providing opportunities for pupils to meet and to watch professional sportsmen and sportswomen. Our pupils had the opportunity to be flag bearers for a Bath Rugby match versus Worcester Royals which encouraged more children to be enthusiastic about improving their own match play, whilst the girls were lucky enough to be ball girls for Team Bath’s netball quadrangular warm up pre-season competition.
Every year we provide an overnight Sports Tour, and this Spring Year 4 and Year 6 pupils travelled to Salisbury to play fixtures, against Salisbury Cathedral School and Chafyn Grove. We were delighted that a record number of children achieved Sports Scholarships moving onto their secondary schools, whilst some have gained JDC hockey, County and District Cricket trials.
As we constantly strive to provide more sporting opportunities for every single child at Heywood Prep, whether a national champion or novice, we encourage all children to participate, and for the school community to be supportive of each other’s efforts. Regular updates are always provided on the school’s dedicated Sports Twitter Page @HPS_ Sport and Facebook pages, and in the school’s weekly newsletter.
To go one better this year and achieve an ISA Award for Outstanding Sport would make our staff and our children extremely proud. We are such a close-knit community and despite the ongoings of the pandemic, we have fully supported each other through sporting videos, live PE lessons and sporting challenges and even brought in the daily mile. We feel we are a
school that punches well above its weight in sport, and one that constantly provides opportunities and excellence in sport for our pupils.