Pupils at Ipswich School were reminded that they should think carefully about the work they want to do after they leave school by Old Ipswichian Sir Neil Garnham, a High Court Judge who was the guest speaker at this year’s Speech Day (6 July 2023)
Sir Neil recounted his first day at Ipswich School, when he arrived two hours early by mistake, and reflected on the many things that had changed since his time there, as well as those which had remained the same: “Pupils were taught then as they are taught now, that it takes more than success, whether in the exam room or outside it, to make decent human beings.”
He went on to explain how he decided that he wanted to become a barrister, and was guided to the best A Levels to take and University to apply to: “The result for me has been a career of which I have loved every minute,” adding: “Earning a decent living is important, but it is not the most important thing. Doing something that interests you, and that you think will interest you for the rest of your working life, is far more important.”
Chairman of Governors, Henry Staunton, outlined some of the key events for the school over the last year, including the ‘Double Excellent’ ISI inspection report, inspirational visits from former pupils including Commonwealth Gold medal winner Hannah Martin, and Oscar winner Aneil Karia, and the money raised by the school community to support a school in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Headmaster Nicholas Weaver took inspiration from an Elton John diary entry and the weekly school newsletter as he looked back through a busy school year, including the recent success of the U17 girls’ cricket team becoming national champions, and the shortlisting of the school in the Independent School of the Year awards for Student Careers Programme.
After the Speech Day event, which included the awarding of prizes to over 80 pupils by the Mayor of Ipswich, Councillor Lynne Mortimer, the Year 13 students attended a Graduation Service with their parents in the school chapel.
Nicholas Weaver said afterwards: “It has been another busy year at Ipswich School and it has been wonderful to see our students enjoying Ipswich School activities inside and outside the classroom throughout the past 12 months. It was lovely to celebrate their time at Ipswich School with the Year 13 leavers, who have given so much to the school, and leave an impressive legacy for others, and to say well done to all those pupils who received a prize this year, recognising their academic and other achievements.”