This week at St Faith's

22 March 2024

Beauty and the Beast

The Year 6 production always marks a rousing finale to the Lent term and this year’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’ was no exception. Our production was based on the Disney Film written by Linda Woolverton, with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Tim Rice and Howard Ashman.

The familiar story focuses on the relationship between the Beast, a prince who is magically transformed into a monster and Belle, a young woman whom he imprisons in his castle in exchange for her father’s freedom. The story is also brought alive by the Beast’s servants, who have been turned into household objects as punishment for his arrogance and cruelty. To break the curse, the Beast must learn to love Belle and earn her love in return before the last petal from an enchanted rose falls, or else he will remain a monster forever. Will the spell be broken before the last petal falls, or will the selfish Prince be doomed to remain a Beast for all time? If you were lucky enough to see the performance, you will know the answer to that!

It truly was a remarkable production. Narration, singing and choreography came together superbly and the children’s hard work in learning lines, songs and dances, all expertly guided by the Drama Department, was rewarded by a wonderfully uplifting show in front a of highly appreciative audience. A special mention must go to the extraordinary costumes and set. From cheeses to spoons and candlesticks, the attention to detail of the props, costumes and the set itself was remarkable – and testament to the talent and tireless work of our Art department in bringing the stage to life.

The whole experience was summed up beautifully in this quote from the cast, “Everybody has come together to create a magical performance – overcoming great challenges and working tirelessly throughout rehearsals. We are extremely proud and overjoyed to share our production with you.”

The retiring collection for ‘Andy’s Man Club’ raised £883.14. Please note that the photos and recording of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ will be available on My School Portal next week.

Ray Pallister

This week we have published an obituary article about Mr Ray Pallister and his outstanding contribution to education, which you can read on our school website. Ray’s husband and their children, would like to express their thanks to both the staff, parents and pupils of St Faith’s for all their support and wishes over the last month. “The outpouring of love towards Ray and messages about what he has meant to people as a teacher and colleague has been overwhelming and will be treasured by myself and the kids.”

Easter Service

We ended the Lent term today with the Easter Service for Year 3-8 pupils in Ashburton Hall, for which we were joined by our Foundation Chaplain, the Reverend Simon Coleman. We considered some of the Easter traditions and celebrations from around the world, such as visiting the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem and the blessing of Easter eggs in Ukraine. A reflection on Passover and the lighting of the Passover candles had been written by one of our Year 5 pupils, and in his address Reverend Coleman shared his reflections on the importance of The Last Supper.

Psalm 23, read by Year 4 pupils, was followed by readings from the Gospels of St John and St Matthew, ‘The Good Shepherd gives his life for his sheep’ and ‘Jesus and his Disciples eat the Passover Meal’. Our Chamber Choir also sang a beautiful rendition of Vaughan William’s ‘Love Bade Me Welcome’ (words by George Herbert, 1633) and we were reminded about the Easter message of peace.

Speech and Drama Recital

Last Friday afternoon a selection of Speech and Drama pupils took to the stage to share their work with an audience of parents, siblings and their peers. Pupils from Years 3-8 performed a variety of work which included an animated reading from ‘The Hundred Mile-an-Hour Dog’, to a variety of solo and duologue acting scenes, from ‘Jane Eyre’ through to ‘The Boy Who Fell Into a Book’. Pupils have been working on their scenes since January, as they prepare for the exams that they will take in the summer term. The recital was an entertaining way to round off the penultimate week of term and we look forward to seeing further performances in the summer.


By the end of the Lent term, we have received the results of all the recent scholarship assessments undertaken by St Faith’s pupils. We are extremely proud of the efforts of all pupils choosing to undertake this challenge across a range of areas in the curriculum. We are also delighted to share the news that this year, 43 awards have been made to St Faith’s pupils – this is a new record, breaking the 2022 record of 38 awards. This year’s awards include Academic / Foundation / STEM scholarships, Sports scholarships, Art, Drama, Music and a Creative Writing scholarship, across a total of 7 schools.

Plastic-Free Snack Day

Well done to the Year 3 and 4 children (and their parents) who embraced the Single-Use Plastic-Free Snack Day initiative, aiming to collectively reduce plastic waste. There was lots of enthusiasm for this activity, and awareness raised. Many pupils opted to bring in completely waste-free snacks and hopefully remembered to bring their containers home too!

St Faith’s Global Litter Pick

Continuing with our sustainability and environmental theme, next, we are launching the Great St Faith’s Global Litter Pick….

Wherever you are over Easter, it only takes 2 minutes to pick up some litter, so please join in and help us play our part to clean up the planet. We are also encouraging pupils to take a picture and send it to us as an attachment with the location of the litter as the subject. You can send as many pictures as you like, and we will upload them onto the map. Thank you for your help looking after our world – wherever in the world you are during the Easter break!

Library House Tokens

Members of Newton House celebrated their Library House Tokens win at morning break today! Who will take the crown in the summer term?

Year 5 Passover Tasting Experience

Year 5s finished their studies in Judaism with an opportunity to taste some of the foods eaten at the Passover Festival. Year 5 pupils sampled matzah crackers, reminding them of unleavened bread, parsley dipped in salt water, representing the tears of the slaves, charoset paste (made with apple and brown sugar), symbolising the mortar used in building Pharaoh’s cities, and some pupils were brave enough to try horseradish, symbolic of the bitter lives of the Hebrews under harsh rule. The welcome sweet grape juice reminded us that this is a celebratory meal of thankfulness for freedom.

Year 5 Narnia Projects

Mrs Switsur’s Year 5 class have been working hard on their ‘Narnia Guidebooks’ and they have chosen to guide the reader around the book by means of 3D models.

Year 5 Science Trip

Last Monday, Year 5 enjoyed a fabulous demonstration lecture by Professor Peter Wothers at the University of Cambridge Department of Chemistry. The theme was ‘Just Add Water’ and we learnt about the chemical composition of water and a range of compounds containing H2O. They saw and heard just how flammable hydrogen gas is when mixed in just the right proportion with oxygen. The pupils learned about properties of water when heated to boiling point and they also learned that 1ml of water will produce 2000ml of steam. Our pupils were even more fortunate to have front-row seats, letting them feel the heat wave and experience the ‘boom’ (from a safe distance) when large hydrogen-filled balloons were ignited! Year 5 were a great credit to the school throughout the trip.

Year 7 Humanities

Two of our Year 7 Humanities classes are currently undertaking a detailed look into Cambridge and our surrounding area. As part of the inter-disciplinary Local Area Study, pupils have explored different types of industry and what makes Cambridge an attractive location for ‘footloose’ quaternary industries. In lessons, pupils have explored the pull of being located in a university city with an impressive talent pool, as well as the opportunities provided by the Biomedical Campus and the Cambridge Science Park. Earlier this week, some Year 7 pupils were treated to a visit by a parent who works at GSK to learn about the factors that influence the locations in which they work, including the Addenbrookes site. This enriching talk really sparked pupils’ curiosity and provided an excellent opportunity for them to apply their learning to the real world.

Year 8 Art & Design Group Visit the Museum of Zoology

On Tuesday afternoon, the Year 8 Art & Design Group visited the Museum of Zoology. The pupils listened attentively to a talk given by a researcher at the University, who spoke about his research which was based on butterfly conservation. Following this, the pupils toured the galleries and collected digital images which captured patterns and the iridescent colour on butterfly wings. The trip added an extra dimension to the pupils’ visual understanding of insects and the pupils will use the visual images they collected in the galleries as a starting point for their planning and design work for forthcoming photography and textile projects in Art.

Chess Success

This week, we are delighted to announce that St Faith’s has finished runner-up in the county championships for chess. Congratulations to all of the pupils who took part. Chess is thriving at St Faith’s and we have three teams in the Cambridgeshire Chess Championship (CCC) League. Any pupil who is interested in playing, whatever their level, should contact Mr Mitchell ( The chess Megafinal will take place on 9th June at Perse Upper School.

Swimming News

A super afternoon of swimming was enjoyed on Tuesday when pupils from Years 5 and 6 took part in our annual House Swimming Gala. An impressive 68 children chose to take part across the two year groups. Pupils cheered and supported their housemates, displaying great enthusiasm and team spirit throughout. There were some wonderfully competitive races, and two new school records were set in the U11 boys’ Backstroke and Butterfly races. Overall it was a really enjoyable occasion.

The final scores were:
1st Chaucer 355
2nd Newton 331
3rd Bentley 300
4th Latham 291

In addition to the above, we have heard this week that 21 of our pupils from Years 6, 7 and 8 have qualified for the IAPS National Swimming Finals in June: 6 relay teams and 8 individuals (further details can be found in the sidebar). This is a fantastic achievement for all pupils involved and testament to the hard work and dedication they show in their swimming training all year round.

Inter-House Cross Country

Continuing with the theme of inter-house events, over the last two weeks of term pupils in Years 3-8 have been taking part in their respective inter-house cross country events. We hope that you enjoy these photos and videos.

Cross Country 

Cross Country

Years 6-8 House Netball Matches

The House netball matches this week have brought the netball season to a close. Mrs Shaw was delighted by the competitive spirit and the teamwork that the girls displayed. You can read her full match reports in the sidebar of this newsletter.

U12 Boys’ Hockey East Area Finals

Mr Johnson writes:

“Having won every group game and not conceding a goal since becoming national champions last week, the U12 boys played some tremendous hockey once again at The East Area finals.

In the group stages there were victories against Bedford Modern, Culford, Chigwell, New Hall, Hitchin & Glebe House, which placed us top of the group and then pitched us up against Ipswich in a keenly fought semi-final. St Faith’s deserved the win and demonstrated their most efficient and organised defensive play of the day, which meant we had yet another final against our Cambridge neighbours, just as it was in the final of national finals last year. This time the spoils went to The Perse who won a tight final 1-0. Our Under 12s are a wonderful group of young men, and they were superb ambassadors for the school once again!”

Pre Prep Open Morning

Very soon after the beginning of the summer term, we look forward to welcoming prospective Pre Prep families to our Open Morning event on Thursday, 25th April, 10:00-12:00. Registrations can be made via the home page of the school website. Even if you are a current parent and already have a child at St Faith’s, all our families with younger siblings wishing to join the Pre Prep in the future, are most welcome to join us for the morning.

And Finally….

We have many activities taking place over the Easter holidays ranging from Little Wyverns to Cookery, Coding, Multi-Activity, Bikeability, Art and Design, or Trampolining. As always, I am extremely grateful to all the staff who make these holiday activities possible. I also wish the Year 8 pupils who will be joining The Leys in September a really enjoyable 24-hour visit this weekend.

To all the staff and children who are going to South Africa to visit our partner school, Makukhanye, I wish them a wonderful trip, with memories which will no doubt stay with them throughout their lives. The pupils are our most important ambassadors for St Faith’s, a responsibility which I know they take very seriously.

Finally, whether you are travelling or staying close to home, I would like to wish all our families a very happy and blessed Easter and we look forward to our whole community gathering again for the first day of the summer term on Wednesday, 17th April.

Dr Crispin Hyde-Dunn