All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. That’s what they say. When he was not mobilising this country’s war effort against the Nazi threat, Winston Churchill would spend time painting in oils or build walls in his Chartwell garden. Following that lead, perhaps, our current Prime Minister refreshes himself from fighting the pandemic by giving his young son an outing to Peppa Pig World, and finds enough ‘downtime’ to have (yet) another child!

Of course, we ask much of our children academically at BCS, but at the same time we encourage them to have outside interests, and we ensure that, while here, they have fun. The build-up to the Christmas holiday is always a hugely atmospheric, exhilarating time of the year, with or without snow on the ground. There is music and drama. Quiz time, too. And this week the children surpassed themselves in all areas.

Pre-Prep and Years 1 and 2 put on two spell-binding Nativity plays, with the children showing excellent stagecraft. I know from chatting to the staff afterwards how pleased they were with the clarity of voice and the skill of the acting. The children have shown maturity beyond their years. Well done to all, and a big thank you to all the teachers for their hard work.

Sometimes the hairs stand up on the back of one’s neck, and that was the case for me with Tuesday’s Christmas Concert. The music in this annual event was captivating and, once again, the musicianship was sublime. The upbeat twist to the traditional music certainly had the audience entranced. Thank you to the music department and children for what was a major highlight of the term.

The Lower School (Monday) and Upper School (Thursday) put on wonderful Advent carol services, with children singing and acting their hearts out. They should be proud of the parts they played in getting Christmas off to a cracker of a start!

Today, in the black chair, the children had their annual Mastermind eliminator. Next week the leading contestants will strive to become BCS Mastermind of the year. This is an exciting and dramatic way to finish off what has been a highly successful term. Click here if you want to have a go at the eliminator questions!

As the senior school results come flooding in I must congratulate the Year 6 cohort for excellent results and scholarships. I am delighted with the results locally and nationally.

As this my final update of the year, I would like to thank the staff for picking up the mantle and going above and beyond. I am truly blessed to work with such a great team. Thank you all. To you, the parents, your support continues to be invaluable. I am delighted that we have worked together for each individual child. We will continue to strive for excellence in all that we do. As all say at BCS: Individually strong, unbreakable as one!

Happy Christmas, everybody.

Noel Neeson