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Speech Day rewards pupils’ excellence


Pupils, parents and staff packed out the historic Stockport Plaza for this year’s Speech Day where professional climber and adventurer Ben Heason delivered an inspiring address.

Ben was the lead climber of a team who made the much heralded first free-climbed ascent of the main wall of Angel Falls in Venezuela – an ascent that was described as ‘one of the finest achievements by British climbers on foreign soil’.

Whilst at SGS in the morning, Ben visited the climbing wall in the Sports Hall where he spoke to pupils and Outdoor Education Co-ordinator Mr Adam Hughes about his experience and watched on as the avid climbers scaled the rock face.

In the afternoon, Ben took his seat on the stage at the Plaza alongside Chairman of Governors Christopher Dunn, Headmaster Dr Paul Owen and Old Stopfordian President Graham Earles.

Following an opening address by Mr Dunn, the Big Band performed Hairspray’s ‘You Can’t Stop The Beat’ and ‘It’s Been A Blast’, the latter of which was written and conducted by Sixth Form student Alex Pollard.

Dr Owen gave the Headmaster’s Statement before Head of Lower School Mrs Helen Lawson helped Ben present prizes to pupils who had excelled themselves throughout the school year.

In his address, Ben spoke in depth about his expedition to climb Angel Falls and the preparation and qualities that it took. The pupils were impressed by what they heard with Joseph and Tom Farrelly hailing his talk ‘fascinating’ and stating that he was a ‘brilliant speaker’.

Following Ben’s talk, Mr Earles gave a vote of thanks before proceedings were concluded with the National Anthem.

Download the Headmaster’s Statement