Two days of celebration of the Year 13 girls’ time at the Royal High School sent them off with something to smile about as they knuckle down to their A-Levels and an even bigger grin for the IB girls who had already finished. The Leavers’ Ball on Thursday before half-term sparkled through the drizzle, with champagne to start the evening, and fireworks to bring it to a close.
Games, merriment, speeches and dancing accompanied a fresh summer menu, a marquee full of wildflowers, and elegant dresses teamed with co-ordinating umbrellas, to create a celebratory atmosphere in defiance of the rain. Particularly memorable was Mr Hayward’s human beatbox, and his touching rendition of Ben E King’s ‘Stand By Me’, alongside the late-stayers at the end of the evening.
The following morning, the atmosphere was transformed from summer charm to terrifying chill, as the girls decorated the school and themselves along their chosen theme of ‘Haunted House’. To an audience of sepulchral characters at their final assembly, ‘Jane Austen’s ghost’ was let loose on the mic again to deliver his traditional valedictory poem* to the girls, whilst in her closing speech, former Head Girl Ellie McKenzie captured the girls’ departing sentiments, coining the adage ‘Royal High ‘til I die!’.
An hour or two of make-up removal, costume-changing, and ice-cream eating later, the girls were restored to their usual chic selves for the final event - a Celebration and Prize-giving with their parents. Back in the marquee, with a backdrop of Art and Music, Mrs Duncan wished the girls well, and, recognising that ‘even the longest lives are short’, urged them to make the most of every day of their flourishing future.
Prizes were awarded for Subjects and achievements, with Mr Hayward reminding all the girls of our pride in each of them. Scones and more champagne rounded off an uplifting afternoon for girls, staff and parents.
We wish all the Year 13 girls well in their exams, and in making their mark on the world!