Bedales students support local community

Posted on 27th September 2019

Relocating a chicken coop and gardening in a local primary’s forest school, restoring village community facilities and raising funds jointly for a Pupil Referral Unit are just some of the events that took place at Bedales for this year’s Badley Day which culminated in a live rock show in the school’s theatre.

An annual event, Badley Day sees students and staff work together to practise the school motto – “Work of Each for Weal of All” – and improve the outdoor environment at Bedales and beyond, as a celebration of the school’s foundation by education visionary John Badley. This year’s projects included clearing a pond on the school site, extending the parking area adjacent to the school theatre, relocating a chicken coop, maintaining footpaths and clearing a pond at Steep Primary School, and carrying out maintenance at Steep Common and All Saints’ Church.

Students in 6.2 (Year 13) followed Bedalian tradition by working on a legacy project – this year, laying a patio outside the Music School – while visitors from the Key Education Centre made pizzas alongside Bedales students in the school’s outdoor pizza oven throughout the day to raise funds to build a similar pizza oven at their Pupil Referral Unit in Gosport. So far Bedales has raised £894 for this project. Bedales also welcomed over 20 visitors from Fitzroy’s ‘On Track’ unit for adults with learning difficulties, who enjoyed touring the grounds and seeing what Badley Day entails.

Other contributions to this year’s Badley Day included clearing parts of the school grounds, carrying out maintenance to a footpath constructed last year, log splitting, coring and juicing apples, and weeding and planting on the school’s apple orchard. Students also planted approximately 700 bulbs around the school site and All Saints’ churchyard.

The class of 1967 returned to Bedales for a 50-year reunion, where they enjoyed comparing notes with current students. In the evening, over 40 Bedales students performed in Band Night, now officially the forerunner to the revered Bedales Rock Show, which runs for three nights in the spring term.

Bedales Prep, Dunhurst and Pre-prep, Dunannie hosted their own Badley celebrations earlier in September. Children from Dunannie carried out work around the school playground and orchard on 14 September, while Dunhurst held a community working bee followed by a choice of two walks and a ploughman’s lunch in the playground on 21 September.

Head of Bedales Magnus Bashaarat commented: “Despite the damp conditions, Wednesday’s celebration of John Badley’s ideals was Bedales at its best, showing what can be achieved when students and staff embrace the challenge of tackling practical projects together. Thank you to all members of the school community, past and present, who made the day so successful and enjoyable.”

View Badley Day photos here and Digital Photography A Level students' photos from the day here.