Category Archives: Pinewood Adventure

Year 8 Leavers Trip: Day 5


“After breakfast, my group went to the rafting place. This time, the instructor let me captain the boat for a bit and in the first few minutes we got stuck in some rocks! Then we came back and had lunch, after which it was my group’s turn to do the “fine dining” challenge. We went shopping for a bit and came back and played table football. Then I went with some of the others to the sports hall and played football. We had a penalty shootout before we came back.”

Nathaniel Ramsay

Tonight, we get to sample the fruits of the children’s labours in terms of the dining challenge. Tomorrow is another travelling day; we have some worn out children but they are all thoroughly enjoying the Leavers’ Trip!


For more photos from the trip, please go to the Photo Gallery.

Year 8 Leavers Trip: Day 4


“Today has to be my most memorable day! I woke up this morning anxious about the challenges to come because I am not very good with heights. Our first activity was high ropes! At the beginning, I was racked with fear but after a few daunting zip wires and bridges I had overcome my fear. After that I was completely ready to go on the 100m zip wire. We then had a packed lunch in a grassy picnic area consisting of  cheesy baguette and a granola bar. Our second activity was climbing. After my previous experience, I was able to climb without any trouble! I was in a group with Lily P and Bo. While climbing, I even saw a snake that was sleeping in one of the rocks; luckily, I noticed it before I trod on it (it was harmless!). The coach journey was an hour to get back to the hostel and we were all very tired!”

Milly Thompson

Tomorrow, we are back whitewater rafting and then on to the “Cooking Challenge”! A pub quiz tonight to test out their knowledge of the local area, sports and France!


For more photos from the trip please go to Photo Gallery.

Year 8 Leavers Trip to the Pyrenees: Day 3


“We had an extra early start to the day and woke up at 7:10am. We needed to grow into our shoes and feel what our backpacks were like. We then had breakfast and were ready to go! We took a coach to the starting place for our 24km walk. We all started off thinking that it would be a walk in the park (pardon the pun); then soon there was a sudden increase in the slope and the pain started to get to all of us. I kept on thinking that there was only one hour to go when really there were 8 hours for the whole walk. 3 hours past and we were nearly at lunch. We finally managed to get to Lac du Bethmale and the view was the most beautiful view in my whole life. We had lunch and we were off again. Raff, Matt and I were playing games to try and forget how long we had to go. Without realising, we were only 5km away and all the adrenaline kicked in. We made it as fast as we could back to the hostel and finished our 24km walk!”

Daniel Lockhart.

The hottest day I’ve ever had in the Pyrenees, but the children were so resilient and got on with it. All a bit tired, but safely back and ready for a trip to town before dinner. We’re off to the the high ropes tomorrrow and rock climbing – an equally adrenaline filled day!


For more photos from the trip please go to the Photo Gallery.

Year 8 Leavers’ Trip to the Pyrenees: Day 2


“Just finished washing my hair because… wait for it… I went whitewater rafting! It was so much fun – I went in the “safe” boat with Parris, which wasn’t actually the safe boat, because we were all pushed in anyway! But we didn’t flip over, which was very good. Someone tried to push me off the raft but my foot was so secure in the strap that my head went in and I bobbed back up. Eventually I did go in…Anyway, this morning, after breakfast, we did a kit check for the walk tomorrow and then we decided who was running and who was playing football for the inter-team village challenge. I was chosen to play football which was so much fun; however, my team, Superdry, lost 5 – 4. Today has been really fun.” Darci Reeve

Tomorrow is the day of the big walk – 27km or so. The weather is very hot, but all children are having a great time so far. Lots of “best trip ever” being heard!


For more photos from the trip so far, please go to the Photo Gallery.

Year 8 Leavers’ Trip to the Pyrenees: Day 1


We had a good journey down to Seix, followed by a stroll through the village and then we celebrated two birthdays!

It’s very hot here, 35 degrees in Toulouse and not much cooler in the mountains.

Everyone is excited about white water rafting tomorrow (Monday) and the chance for a few team games in the village.

Year 8 Scholars’ Trip to Devon & Cornwall

scholars trip 7

I felt a little guilty organising a trip to the coast for the scholars whilst the rest of the school were doing exams. As the wind howled, the minibus wobbled and the rain beat down on the M5, it did not feel like such a treat after all! Fortunately the weather improved after our stop in Taunton, though the lunch stop on Dartmoor at Postbridge was quite wild too. Postbridge is where the school was evacuated to during WW2 so it was fascinating to see the Pinewood dedicated pew in the church and the famous clapper bridge over the river.

Two more hours in the bus saw us reach Gorran Haven, a delightful little village beyond Mevagissey and a sheltered bay for a swim and a paddle. A short hop to the YHA at Boswinger, a hearty supper and a stroll down the hill to Hemmick beach which was beautifully rugged as the sea raged.

We had planned some water sports for the Wednesday, but it was still too windy; however, a delightful couple of hours were spent on the beach at Pentewan Sands where the scholars regressed to children, digging holes, collecting shells and playing French cricket. We used our water sports budget to go to Prezzo in St Austell instead! A civilised, relaxed lunch with lovely Italian food was had by all. As the rain began to fall, we headed indoors to the Eden Project. It was stunning as we wandered happily in the warm biomes. Many climbed to the suspended platform high above the plants; it is supposed to wobble and it did. I clung on!

The evening brought indoor games as the rain lashed down and our sea view had disappeared by the morning. Outdoor plans were again abandoned as we went to the cinema in Exeter on our return. ‘Wonder Woman’ was surprisingly entertaining ! We eventually returned to school having had to detour to avoid horrendous traffic. Adaptability had been key all trip.

My thanks to Mrs Hoyland and Miss Gye for their supportive presence at all times. The children were quite wonderful in their behaviour, flexibility and interaction.


For more photos from the trip please go to the Photo Gallery.

Year 7 Pinewood Adventure Trip to Chateau du Broutel

adventure year 7 39

On Friday 21st April at 7:45 we left school with a 7 hour journey ahead of us, before we got the magnificent Château du Broutel.

At 4:30 we got to the Château and were sorted into our dorm mates, but before we put our bags in the dorms we went for a welcome tour around the Château grounds. After that we went into our dorms where we had a bit of free time to unpack and relax. After about half an hour we had supper which was fish and chips, which was really nice. Then we had our first activity, which was a scavenger hunt (or scav for short) and my team came 3rd in both of the sheets. After everyone had finished all the questions we then got into the same groups we had for the scav and built snail houses and bridges for the snails and then we had a completion on the best bridges and snail house. About 45 minutes later we were all in bed nearly asleep after a very long day of traveling and snail house building!

On Saturday we all got up early as we were going to the Albert Museum, the Lochnagar crater, the Thiepval monument and the British front line trench. After Breakfast we all got on the bus and went straight to the Albert Museum, were we went underground to the museum were we heard about some very moving stories. Once we got out of the museum there was a gift shop were they sold some of the real equipment such as helmets, shell cases and lots of medals. Next we learnt about the clothes and guns in the 1st World War. After hearing about the clothing of the soldiers we had lunch for an hour and then set off again to see the Lochnagar Crater, which is 30 meters deep and 90 meters wide (that is MASSIVE). It was really interesting learning about the crater and all the people that died.

Once we were on the bus we traveled to the Thiepval monument were we all found one of our family’s surnames which were really cool! After learning about all the graves at the back of the monument we all got back on the bus and went to the site where one trench had been made so you could walk in it, which was awesome. When we got back to the Château we all had a rest and went to sleep.

On Sunday we had breakfast and then made mayonnaise, which my team won!!!!!! Then we went to the market where we all spoke French to buy whatever we wanted. When we got back from the market we all went into our groups to do our activities. I did raft building and abseiling. Then in the evening we had a camp fire which was so cool.

On our last day we had one last activity, which was zip wire for me (it was amazing, we all went so fast.) Once we had all finished our last activity we all got back on the bus and went home. At 5:30 all our parents picked us up and we went home for a well-deserved sleep!!

For more photos from the trip, please go to the Photo Gallery.


Year 8 Leavers’ Trip Blog Day 5


We split into two groups, with one half having another chance to go white-water rafting and the other half preparing their Pinewood Fine Dining dishes. After a lovely lunch – the staff were unfortunate enough to have to sit outside! – the groups swapped over. Children are now preparing their curtain call performances and writing in their diaries. Tomorrow we head home…

We woke up (obviously) and had a stroll up to the top of the hill. Most of us picked a one euro pain au chocolat or croissant and after breakfast we headed up to our second time of whitewater rafting. As we all boarded the raft we knew how stupendously fun this could be, which it was. But this time, we had extra stops for swimming and jumps. After a great lunch, as per usual, we headed up to la fromagerie (smelly shop) and le supermarché (lots-of-food shop). We made a basic, but delicious (not) supper. Then in the afternoon heat we headed up to our swimming spot up-river. The sweltering heat left as the cool flow of the Salat river hit us! This trip simply sums up Pinewood – not over the top, but UNFORGETTABLE!

Ed Hartley

I woke up later than usual after a long, beautiful day yesterday. I then did yoga to loosen up my tense muscles after the walk up the mountain. After a refreshing yoga session, it was time to do the last sport of the trip: whitewater rafting. I was in a group with different people and a different instructor. We went into the freezing water – even colder than last time, as the intense heat was melting the snow from the mountain. Our instructor (David) made the trip such fun as he made us do activities, such as headstands, running around the edge of the boat and then capsizing it. Then it was time for the weir – the water was too shallow to go over on the boat, so we had to jump off it and it was the highlight of my journey. After whitewater rafting, it was time for cooking. Our group, Davidoff, was to make a starter and a pudding. Mason, Kenny, Oscar and I were to make the starter and I thought that, personally, ours was the best and definitely the most neatly presented! (we’ll wait and see – SD) After that, it was time for the last dip in the river. After a refreshing dip in the river it was time for curtain call practice. Then we gave thanks to the amazing people who looked after us and provided amazing food. This trip has been unforgettable and a blast, it also sums up Pinewood – amazing, daring, pushing and most definitely unforgettable!

Charlotte Hannon

For more photos from Day 5 and the whole trip, please go to the Photo Galleries.

Year 8 Leavers’ Trip Blog Day 4


Today was the day of the big walk!

Today was a little different. As normal, wake up was at 7.30, followed by a cold, yet refreshing walk in the village. Today, I bought a pain au chocolat for breakfast, homemade and very, very delicious. I don’t know how the French can make such wonderful pastries, but I sure can’t. After that good start, we travelled on the bus for half an hour to start the walk. We were to walk 25km up the mountains and down to the hostel without the bus! For the first three hours the walk was fairly enjoyable, in fact I enjoyed every second of it. The bees buzzed and the trees hummed with the breeze and everything was absolutely stunning and wonderful at the same time! We stopped by an enchanting crystal blue lake, which was extraordinarily hypnotic. The fish were very happy to have such a lovely home. After our well-made packed lunch, there was a two hour brutal climb, that was very challenging. At times I couldn’t breathe amongst the sweat and dirt in my throat, but, at last, we reached the top – not in my entire life have I ever been so happy to sit down! Also, the view from the mountain was better than the snowy Alps! It was true beauty… 3 hours later, I am sitting here writing this; the walk down was nearly as hard as the walk up. My feet killed and my groin rubbed and my legs itched with a rash. However, this was an awesome day, full of pain and beauty. I will never forget this.

Max Moseley

Today was the day of the much anticipated 25km walk. We woke up full of dread and went for a short intro walk to test out our boots. After the walk, we walked down from the hill and bought a sweet treat from the boulangerie. We ate a huge breakfast, which was very much needed and then we were off. We started the walk at about 10 and eventually arrived back at 6pm! I have to say that the only thing that kept me going up those leg-killing hills was the scenery, which was beautiful! A couple of hours later we ate lunch at a lake that looked so nice that I wanted to jump in it! We started walking and after another hour it was time for the descent. Three hours later we were back at the hostel; soon after, we ate a huge dinner and went to bed.

Sebbie Kimber

We woke up bright and early to a lovely morning.  We went to the bakery to buy croissants for breakfast. Then we came back from breakfast and before we knew it we were packed and hopped onto the coach. We were off for a 25km walk up and down the mountain! The first 10 minutes were good, but then the heat and steepness got up and our legs started to hurt! It started to get hard for everyone, but we all stayed strong! The views were incredible – I have never seen anything like it! Everyone managed to do it and when we got back, everyone had smiles on their faces! Everyone was glad to get back and all in all, it was a great day!

Olivia Redman

For more photos from the day, please go to the Photo Gallery.

Year 8 Leavers’ Trip Blog Day 3


Today, the group split into two again, with one half doing the High Ropes course, whilst the other half did rock climbing. At lunch, they swapped over.

High Ropes

Today we went about 30 minutes away from the hostel to the place where the high ropes were. We had to do about a 1km walk to get to the route and the first thing we did was get on our kit and get briefed about how to clip on and other safety information. We went up to the zip wire. At first, I was really nervous about going on the zip wire, because I’m scared of heights, but I conquered it and went for it and it was really fun! We then did a higher zip wire and some bridges. After we had done the bridges, we began to ascend to the highest one. The ascent was scary enough, but the zip line was a thin metal wire running between two mountains. I was not scared this time as I had conquered my fear of heights. When I was on the zip wire, I saw the river running under me and I saw a beautiful view of the forest and the snow-peaked Pyrenees mountains. The high wires was one of my best experiences of my life so far!

Jonathan Cowie

Rock climbing

I was very nervous that I would let people down in the belaying and climbing, so I was grateful for all the support I got while climbing. also, I was very thankful to Gregor when he did not get cross at me even though I was really bad at belaying! The most terrifying bit is when you abseil, having to put all your trust in your partner! Also, I loved the people who taught us how to climb; they were very nice! It was a great day and I can’t wait till the next!

Billy Tulloch

This evening, the children had a bit of a chance to explore the town again. We are just sitting down for dinner having prepared ourselves for the 27km hike tomorrow!


For more photos from the day please go to the Photo Gallery.