The winner takes it all?

I confess. It's my guilty pleasure.

I love Abba.

There. Said it. And here's my favourite:


The Winner Takes It All. Like all great songs it evokes an era for the listener. I'm taken back to the1980 Moscow Olympics. Scene for the denouement of perhaps the greatest British sporting rivalry ever: Coe versus Ovett. The winner takes it all.

Seb Coe vs Steve Ovett

Steve, winner of the 800m indeed seemed to have taken it all. Seb, the loser, standing small.

Seb Coe vs Steve Ovett

You've come to shake my hand...

Seb Coe vs Steve Ovett

Then, Seb's redemption.

A moment so brilliantly captured in our student Molly Atkinson's 'Scream'.

Seb Coe painting after Munch

So good it recently featured in Athletics Weekly's special 'Supermilers' celebration of 60th anniversary of the First Four Minute Mile.

Athletics Weekly Image

Molly Atkinson with her painting of Seb Coe
Molly Atkinson with her work in progress.

Competitive sport in schools of course hit the headlines on Friday, with Ofsted's Report, ' Going the Extra Mile'. In crude summary, it said that competitive sport in state schools is inconsistently offered, and is not as strong or wide-ranging as that in the independent sector. Winners, and losers...

It was with therefore with great pleasure that I accepted the offer of an interview on BBC Five Live. An opportunity not only to explain the outstanding competitive offer at Park House, but also to reflect on how elite performance builds on wide opportunities to participate, and the benefits of sporting engagement for effective learning across the curriculum.

BBC Radio 5Live Park House Girls

I don't need to write any more. You just need to hear what these wonderful young people had to say. They are fantastic role models. Listen from 9.12 onwards...


Next week sees students from Park House compete in the finals of two other, non-sporting national competitions: TeenTech on Wednesday and Debating Matters over the weekend. Already regional champions. Winners all.

I'll take a chance on them. (Sorry, Benny and Bjorn!)