Work Hard. Be Brave. Believe in yourself.

Heather Fisher

Securing a truly great Prize Giving Speaker can be a tougher job than you might think!

And it’s not just about their availability on a certain date!

The evening is the most important celebration of student achievement in the school calendar and you really want someone who can speak directly to the young people themselves, make an authentic connection with their own learning journey and inspire them with a compelling vision of what more they can go on to achieve in the future.

We’ve done pretty well in the past...

Clare Balding
Lewis Moody

And last Thursday Heather Fisher more that continued the tradition of inspirational impact with a speech that resonated with its honesty and relevance; a perfectly pitched reflection on the wider learning from the personal challenges that she has successfully overcome on her journey to sporting greatness.

Heather Fisher

Heather has conquered both anorexia and severe alopecia to emerge as one of the country’s greatest – and most versatile – Rugby players, winning the World Cup in the 15-a-side format in 2014, but also representing Team GB in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and England at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Sevens, where she won a Bronze medal.


What really resonated about Heather and her speech - and made her connection to the achievements of a wonderful year group so special - was a passionate belief in the importance of holding on to core values. Her core values of:

Work hard. Be brave. Believe in yourself.

Work hard. Be brave. Believe in yourself. Exactly the attributes and qualities shown by those young people in tackling head on the challenge of last summer's GCSE exams – widely acknowledged as the toughest for a generation.

And also in achieving our best ever Progress 8 – the measure of progress made by young people across eight different subjects across the curriculum - and now principal measure of how well a school is seen as performing.

So, as I had hoped I my initial search for this year’s speaker, an evening which rightly celebrated the  qualities hard work, bravery and self belief in the presence of a guest who personifies them.

It was pleasure, as is now also Prize Giving tradition, to present our speaker with a portrait painted by one of our amazingly talented student artists by way of thanks. The genuineness of Heather’s response to receiving Sabina Collado’s wonderful work confined everything we had learnt about her throughout the evening. Inspiring in every way...

Heather Fisher
Heather Fisher
Heather Fisher