Students were urged to live life to the full by dental practitioner who ‘filled in’ as a guest speaker at a celebration event to honour academic success.
Dentist Simon Stretton-Downes was guest of honour at Northallerton School and Sixth Form College’s annual celebration of achievement which recognises pupils who have excelled through hard work, commitment to their studies and volunteering within the local community.
Mr Stretton-Downes, who has worked in general dental practice, as a civilian dentist with the Army and for nine years as a dentist in Ethiopia with a Christian mission.
Speaking to hundreds of pupils and parents at the event at Hambleton Forum, Northallerton, Mr Stretton-Downes said: “You only get one life, this is not a rehearsal or a trial run – this is it. The point is you need to make the most of it, find out what motivates you, work hard and always do your best.
“All young people are different, you need to work out what is right for you, follow your dreams and learn from others. Remember we are all in a race, the race of life. Don’t look back with regrets – you only have one life so live it to the full.”
The annual event was hosted by student council members Thea Crocker, 16, of Romanby and Rhys McClew, 17, of Northallerton, assisted by assistant principal Trevor Starkey.
The ceremony, for students past and present, recognised achievements in a wide range of areas from academia and music to drama and art, including awards for citizenship, design and technology, effort, determination and commitment and enthusiasm in sport.
Special posthumous awards in memory of former students were presented by the father of former sixth form heath and social care student Libby Dawes, who was tragically killed in a car accident in 2007, and John Hyde, whose son Lance Corporal Ben Hyde was one of six royal military policemen killed in June 2003 in Southern Iraq.
The celebration event also welcomed back former pupil and twice British shot putt champion Scott Lincoln, who is currently training to represent team GB in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Entertainment was provided by the Northallerton School and Sixth Form Choir, conducted by Andrea Rhodes and accompanied on the piano by Adrian Bramley, a performance from the Drama Group with a taster of this year’s school production of The Caucasian Chalk Circle and singing one of their own compositions ‘I’ve Been Here Before’ school rock band The Undecided.
Geography Award: Nick Yates.
Libby Dawes Award for Outstanding Commitment to Health and Social Care: Amy Long.
SSAFA Forces Help for Musical Excellence: Alexander Bell.
Andrew Rawling Award for Outstanding Commitment to Design and Technology: George McNaught.
David Bradley Award for Drama: Lauren Chambers.
Northallerton and District Round Table Community Award: Katie Corner, Grace Sharp, Niamh Wheldon.
Henry Blakeston Charity Award: Katie Hunter, Joseph Mableson.
Hayes Travel Citizenship Award: Brandon Wright.
David Dick Award for Art: Jacob Hobbs.
David Dick Award for Sporting Achievement: Rebecca Boakes.
Ben Hyde Award for Sporting Commitment and Enthusiasm in KS3: James Boucher, Ellie Vayro.
Ben Hyde Award for Sporting Commitment and Enthusiasm in KS4: Christopher Barley, Halcyon Flint.
Ben Hyde Award for Sporting Commitment and Enthusiasm in KS5: Owen Forster, Amelia Grayson.
Award for Outstanding Achievement at GCSE level: Jake Bennington, Sam Kirtley, Samuel McNaught, Rebecca Tyrer.
Rotary Club Award for Highest Achievement at GCSE level: Samuel Pratt.
Award for Outstanding Achievement at AS level: Matthew Place, India Richmond, Mia Richmond.
Rotary Club of Northallerton Mowbray for Highest Achievement at AS Level: Joshua Form.
Rotary Club of Northallerton Mowbray Youth Award: Emily Peaurt.
Award for Outstanding Achievement at A2 level: Kiah Berry, James Bramley, Kamil Bronka, David Brooksbank, Callum Porter, Katherine Sanders, Kyle Surtees.
Teesside University Award for highest achievement at A2 level: Jack Brent
Graham Garlick Award for Determination: Jessica Spence.
Alan Hinkes Award for Endeavour: Stewart Wilson.
Chris Sheehan Award for Courage and Perseverance: William Farnaby.
The John Dennis Award: Thea Crocker, Thomas Wood.
The Cuthbert Cross: Abbie Grange, Jake Piper.