Founder's Day Service 2019
Friday, July 26, 2019

It was a real pleasure to represent the College at Barnabas Oley School Founder’s Day. I met with the school’s new Headteacher, Michelle Downes, and its new Chair of Governors, Stephanie Reardon, and was given a lovely tour. After lunch, it was a short walk to St Bartholomew’s, the parish church where Oley himself was Rector (Fellow responsible for the building of Clare Bridge and Old Court), and where Clare remains the patron. The Founder’s Day service is an opportunity to say goodbye to the Year 6 pupils, but also to celebrate all the achievements of the previous year, and the church was packed to the rafters. I was really struck by the confidence and giftedness of the students - each year group sang a special song, complete with individual costumes and actions! - and by the enthusiasm and care of the staff members. It was a great privilege to present Bibles to the leavers, to give a short address, and to share with Rachel Blanchflower (the new vicar of St Bartholomew’s) in giving a final blessing. The whole day was full of joy and encouragement, and is just one small example of the wonderfully vibrant ongoing link between Clare and Barnabas Oley School.

 

The Rev Dr Mark Smith (Dean)

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