School Cycle Event

Angus Watson (Governor):

“Ever since the building of Preston Primary’s new main hall, I’ve wanted to find more and more ways to enable it to be used as a sports and social venue by the School and the local community. One thing the hall lacks is a permanent projector and screen to enable films or sports footage to be displayed, but I’ve always known this would be expensive.

On resigning as chair of governors after many years at Preston Primary, I thought it would be great to find a way to do a fundraising activity to achieve this aim. And, having held an ambition to one day cycle the width of Britain, I discussed this with Mrs Winters and we realised we could use the Coast to Coast to raise money for the projector.”

Katie Simpson (PTA):

“The idea for a school cycle event began in May 2011 when I entered my dad and I into the Kanalrittet cycle event in Norway for his 60th birthday. At 56km the event was long but very sociable, involving many stops to eat delicious Norwegian pastries, chat and enjoy the views and the company of Norwegian friends.

With this in mind I was waiting for the right opportunity, and this came along at Christmas 2011 when I met Angus Watson, one of our school governors, at the PTA Christmas party. He told me about his plans to cycle the Coast to Coast and raise money for the school. Between us we hatched the idea to combine the Coast to Coast with a school cycle event where the kids would become involved. Our aim was to raise enough money to buy a new projector for the school hall.

In September 2012 I enlisted the help of Vicky Fawcett of Stockton Borough Council, who overwhelmed me with talk of public liability insurance and risk assessments. However, she assured me all would be fine and was kind enough to supply SBC items for goodie bags for the kids. In addition, many other organizations offered their help and services for free: Preston Park Museum and Grounds development manager Nick Smith was happy to host the event and offer prizes. The Hub and Sustrans provided their expertise as well as supplying extra bikes for those who needed them. Paul Curran, a two-times Commonwealth gold-medallist cyclist, of Blackhawk Bikes agreed to open and finish to event and give out prizes to the children. Graham Reeves, events manager at Stockton Borough Council, supplied staff and two large gazebos and tables. GLG Cycles and Skinnergate Cycles kindly provided more fillers for the goodie bags. Cleveland Police attended and post-coded the children’s bikes and JJS First Aid Training provided a qualified first aider on the day. Finally, Warbuttons for supplying the buns for the hotdogs.

Tuesday, 9 October, 2012 turned out to be a lovely sunny day and the two courses were set out, one 250-m loop around the bandstand area and a 1-km loop around the showfield for the more capable cyclists. The gazebos were assembled very quickly and filled with cakes, sweets and hot dogs as well as a registration and first aid point. After a short briefing, Paul Curran sounded the air horn and the cyclists were off, led out by the weary legged Angus Watson and some guide cyclists from Stockton Borough Council. The children had half an hour to complete as many laps as possible. The Evening Gazette photographer captured the children’s smiling and determined faces as they cycled around the course, cheered on by friends and family and the marshals who kept them on track. When the event was over the children collected their goodie bags from Paul Curran and enjoyed a well-deserved rest and some food and drink.

All in all the event was a great success – the children thoroughly enjoyed taking part, many local businesses came together to help out, the weather was glorious, and we were amazed to learn that over £2,000 was raised by Angus and in sponsorship by the children.”

Link to Gazette article online.

Your kind words

Your teaching staff work so well together, they are an absolute credit to you and your school (as are the children).
I have to say the children, and staff, are an absolute credit to the school and I wanted to let you know as they were fantastic.
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“A lovely school with a good atmosphere for learning and having fun”
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Keep up the good work, without confidence it’s hard for a child to grow.
You were both very understanding and I really do appreciate this. Thank you so much.
You all do fantastic jobs and I appreciate this.
Not only has he progressed academically, he has also gained more confidence and I would like to thank Mr Clift for playing an instrumental part in this.
Many thanks to all the staff at Preston, it is you who make us parents feel our children are happy and safe.
She has really enjoyed Year 3. We are really pleased with the progress she has made in many subjects – especially in maths.
I just wanted to say “well done” for this year’s year 6 sats results! They were amazing and I know that it would have taken sheer hard work from the children and teachers to enable your pupils to achieve with the unrealistic expectations set the Gove & Morgan camp.
Thank you for the report it was a pleasure to read and we greatly appreciate all that you done for her this year.
“Communication from the Early Years team is great”
“I would like to express my gratitude for your support regarding last week’s royal visit. Your children behaved impeccably” – Stockton Learning Officer
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“Thank you for your continued help and support”
“Keep up the hard work”
“I hope the ‘Be the best week’ goes well, you have a lovely school” – Chris Cook – Olympic Swimmer
“The arrival of a new head teacher has been managed brilliantly”
“I would also like to say a HUGE thank you to you and everyone at Preston Primary personally. It was an absolute pleasure to visit to your school”
“Really happy with Preston Primary, have recommended many friends as it is a warm, family friendly school”
“My child enjoys school and makes good progress”
“You are a very welcoming and accommodating school and there were lots of comments and praise about your fantastic environment” – EY LA consultant
“We love this school, my boys are very happy here and all of the staff work hard and really care for the children”
“I have visited four times in total and every time I have been made very welcome by all the staff and pupils”
“Thank you for all of the hard work”
“The children were all very attentive, enthusiastic and polite. I enjoy my job and visiting schools like yours makes it even better”

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