Tom Fogden
Mr Fogden

What is your role at Pinewood? Houseparent, PE & Games Co-ordinator, Gap Co-ordinator

What do you like most about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? Welcoming the boarders back into the boarding house after their school days, and getting involved in the activities, especially spotlight!

What is your favourite boarding event of the year? Boarders’ Feast… it’s a no brainer! It is lovely to see all the boarders dress up in their ‘Sunday best’ and celebrate all that is good about boarding here at Pinewood!

Do you have a memorable/funny story to tell us about your time working with boarders at Pinewood? Mrs Hoyland and I forgot wake-up once. Only to realise at breakfast there where no boys… We did wonder why it was so quiet.

What did you most like about boarding when you were younger? I was very fortunate to go to prep school just north of the Cairngorms in Scotland. During the Spring Term we would go skiing on weekends and even weekdays! We were always encouraged to be outside as much as possible, playing in the woods, building dens, making jumps for our bikes etc.

What would be your advice to new boarders? To get stuck into activities and give everything ago.

What do you like doing in your free time? Walking the dog, playing sport (cricket, tennis and golf) and travelling home to South West Scotland, it is a beautiful part of the world and one that I will certainly miss when we are in Thailand.

Miss Parris

What is your role at Pinewood? Maths teacher, Year 5 Form Tutor and Houseparent.

What do you like most about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? Getting to know all the boarders so well and planning treat nights.

What is your favourite boarding event of the year? Definitely the Boarders’ Feast.

Do you have a memorable/funny story to tell us about your time working with boarders at Pinewood? One of the Australian Gap students was helping put the laundry away and couldn’t understand why she couldn’t find a peg for John Lewis!

What did you most like about boarding when you were younger? Hanging out with my friends after school and going to the tuck shop.

What would be your advice to new boarders? Boarding at Pinewood is very special make the most of this time and create memories with your friends.

What do you like doing in your free time? Planning fun things for the boarders to do!

Parris Bigley

Nici Bailey
Mrs Bailey

What is your role at Pinewood? As the Headmaster’s wife, I have quite a lovely varied role, but in this instance I help with our boarders and their pastoral care.

What do you like most about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? Being involved in the children’s lives outside of their ‘school day’ is a real privilege and the rapport you can build with each child is hugely rewarding. You also never know quite what the day will bring, but that is the nature of working with children!

What is your favourite boarding event of the year? The Boarders’ Feast is a fantastic evening and we are really looking forward to their BBQ at the end of this term.

What did you most like about boarding when you were younger? Being able to spend every evening in the art room with my friends, I would not have changed it for anything!

What would be your advice to new boarders? Try to immerse yourself in everything that is on offer and enjoy all of the friendship and fun around you. Bring some things from home to help make the area of your dorm feel like your own. Remember it is ok and very normal to feel sad sometimes and, during these times, find a friend or a member of staff and know the feeling will pass.

Helen

What is your role at Pinewood? Housemistress

What do you like most about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? It is great seeing a different side to the children once they are in a more relaxed atmosphere and seeing them grow into independent young people. I also love it when Old Pinewoodians come back to the school (sometimes looking round for their own children) and make a point of coming to say “hello” to me and reminisce about their time as a boarder.

What is your favourite boarding event of the year ? I love the Boarders Feast, seeing the children getting dressed up; the girls in their sparkly clothes and the boys in chinos and shirts (some even putting on a jacket!) Then carols afterwards – a fitting end to the Christmas Term.

Do you have a memorable/funny story to tell us about your time working with boarders at Pinewood? As you can imagine there have been a lot of funny moments over the years, but the ones that always make me laugh are when the children are doing something silly to entertain their friends and don’t realise I have walked into the room until all their friends have fallen about laughing!

What would be your advice to new boarders? I would say embrace all the experiences of boarding and enjoy the facilities and activities on offer. It may be tough to start with, but being surrounded by friends helps and there is always an adult to turn to.

What do you like doing in your free time? Spending time with friends and family; walking, swimming, listening to music and going on holiday.

Helen

Alex Newcome 001
Mr Newcome

What is your role at Pinewood? Science teacher and Houseparent ‘to be’ from September 2021!

What do you like most about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? I love the transition from the working school day to boarding. Whatever has happened in the classroom or around school that day can be left behind and the Pinewood pupils are free to do what they do best (play!), making the most of all the fantastic facilities available to them. There is a great sense of camaraderie between boarders and this never fails to lift my mood; working with a brilliant team, getting to know the pupils in a different context (and, of course, play!)

What is your favourite boarding event of the year? The first swimming activity in the Summer Term. It was particularly special this year, after a “year off”, but the joy and excitement is palpable each time; it is such a great perk to have the outdoor pool, and what boarding is all about.

Do you have a memorable/funny story to tell us about your time working with boarders at Pinewood? Being up running with the boarders through the night for the 24-hour marathon was a very surreal experience, but I am so glad to have done it; it really showcased the resilience, determination and tenacity that is harnessed within the boarding community; they were amazing. Trying to rid the boys’ corridor of a “killer” hornet with the Gaps did not feel funny at the time, but certainly would have been to the onlooker!

What did you most like about boarding when you were younger? Developing a phenomenal support network. It was not just the staff who were there to care for you, but also the other boarders, however senior they were, would be there for you when needed. Meeting Mrs Newcome was also a bonus!!

What would be your advice to new boarders? Get excited and go for it! It is an opportunity to make memories and friendships that will last for life.

What do you like doing in your free time? Mrs Newcome and I still believe that we might one year get a wildcard entry to the mixed doubles at Wimbledon and so we have to maintain our training, just in case!! Following and watching (when it does not clash with Peter Rabbit or Power Rangers) sport – any/all. I also love relaxing and playing with my family (inc. dog and guinea pigs) and am very excited they will be a part of and get to experience Pinewood boarding.

Mrs Newcome

What is your role at Pinewood? Music Administrator and House Parent ‘to be’ from September 2021!

What are you most looking forward to about being involved in boarding at Pinewood? I am so looking forward to being part of the boarding team at Pinewood and getting to know the children well. It will be great to see them develop over the academic year, grow in confidence, make great friends and generally help prepare them for whatever lies ahead.

What did you most like about boarding when you were younger? I loved every minute of boarding. I made the best friends and have remained in close contact with several of my teachers too. I loved how easy it was to get involved in so many things: sport, music, drama and I suppose there was a little bit of work and a few exams along the way! There were so many fantastic events and I was fortunate enough to go on music and sports tours all over the world. I also met my husband, Mr Newcome, at our scholarship day almost 20 years ago!

What would be your advice to new boarders? Get involved in as much as is physically possible; never again will the opportunities present themselves so readily. Be an honest, hardworking, trustworthy and humble person and most importantly HAVE FUN!!

What do you like doing in your free time? I love spending time with my family and our dog, quite a lot of my time is spent supporting Mr Newcome as he undertakes some sort of physical endurance challenge!  Playing tennis, growing veg and flowers, baking. In the holidays we would most likely be found somewhere in the Lake District or Scotland up a hill or by a lake or beach.

Immy