November 8, 2019 | Issue no. 146

Head Master's Notices

Ian Robertson, the BBC rugby commentator, gave an entertaining Mercers’ Lecture last night.  It was a fascinating insight into his work, as well as a timely reminder that sport has the power to bring communities together just after South Africa triumphed in Japan.

Our Remembrance Day Service takes place at 10.45 on Sunday and the speaker is Old Dauntseian, Lieutenant Rosie Wild RA.  All members of the congregation are invited for coffee and drinks in the Dining Hall immediately after the service and parents currently serving in the Armed Forces are warmly invited to wear uniform, if they so wish.

I look forward to seeing Fifth Form parents at the Sixth Form presentation this evening.  It takes place in the Memorial Hall and supper will be served in the dining hall afterwards for everyone.

I hope that our Sixth Formers enjoy their Halloween party tomorrow night.



Whole School Notices and Reminders

Mercers' Lectures - Autumn Term 2019

'A Tudor Christmas'
Alison Weir and Siobhan Clarke
Wednesday 20 November 2019 at 19:30 in the Memorial Hall

Best-selling historian, Alison Weir and Senior Guide Lecturer at Historic Royal Palaces, Siobhan Clarke will give the next Mercers’ Lecture on the subject of, “A Tudor Christmas”. Further details are given below:

We might assume that our modern Christmas owes much to the Victorians. In fact, Alison Weir and Siobhan Clarke will reveal, many of our favourite Christmas traditions date back much further. Carol-singing, present-giving, mulled wine and mince pies were all just as popular in Tudor times, and even Father Christmas and roast turkey dinners have their origins in this period. The Tudor Christmas was a time of feasting, revelry and merrymaking, a twelve-day-long festival, over which the Lord of Misrule held sway, and convention was thrown to the winds. Christmas was so beloved by English people that its traditions survived remarkably unchanged in the Tudor age of tumultuous religious upheaval.

Alison Weir is the biggest-selling female historian in the United Kingdom. She has published twenty-three titles and sold more than 2.7 million books. She has written extensively about the Tudor period, focusing in particular on Henry VIII and the lives of his six wives.

Alison will be joined by fellow historian, Siobhan Clarke, to present a lecture based on their book, A Tudor Christmas. Siobhan is a Guide Lecturer for Historic Royal Palaces and her second book, The Tudors was published earlier this year by Carlton Books.

There will be refreshments following the lecture when Alison and Siobhan will sign copies of their books and Devizes Books will run a book stall selling the authors’ recent publications at stocking filler prices.

Please book online here.


Ant Middleton, former soldier, adventurer and TV presenter
Thursday 21 November (Fully Booked)




Drama Programme - Autumn 2019

Living with Lady Macbeth: 19 - 21 November in Annabel’s

A surprising and interesting look at Shakespeare's classic character from a different perspective, by Rob John.

In the Heights: 3 – 7 December in the Memorial Hall

The December musical is always a much-anticipated highlight. From the writer of Hamilton and Disney's Moana, Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical tells the story of a vibrant community in New York's Washington Heights neighbourhood.

We now have an online ticket box office system which allows you to select your seats. You will be sent a digital ticket with confirmation of your seat number, via email.

Attached is a copy of our Drama Programme for the full year which includes more detail on each production.

Tickets for all productions can be booked here



For Fifth Form Parents: Sixth Form Presentation

This evening at at 18:30 in the Memorial Hall

A Reminder that the Sixth Form Presentation Evening for current Fifth Form pupils and their parents takes place this evening. Please come along to find out more about life in the Sixth Form at Dauntsey’s. You are warmly invited to stay for supper and a glass of wine in the dining hall afterwards. Many thanks. 
Jon Tyler, Deputy Head Academic.



Music School Notices

Autumn Concert ‘Women in Music’
Thursday 14 November in the Memorial Hall at 19:30


Jazz Night
Monday 18 November in the Pavilion at 19:30

Featuring National Youth Jazz Orchestra along with Dauntsey’s Dance Band and Soloists
Free Tickets available from
The bar will be open to purchase drinks




'Well-Being' Area on Mercers Fields

Please find attached letter about the new ‘well being’ area on Mercers fields, and how to register your interest in donating a tree, bench or picnic table complete with plaques to add
to the area, as a legacy for your children’s time at school.

First Form DSPA events

Friday 22 November at 10:00
Coffee & cake at Planks Farm Shop

Thursday 28 November 18:30 - 20:00
Christmas drinks at The Royal Oak, Easterton 

Please email Anna Wilson or Claire Locking for further details.

DSPA Noticeboard

Please have a look at our digital noticeboard here. It is our own online community to connect Dauntsey's parents and businesses in order to buy, sell and advertise to each other in one trusted place. If you'd like to place an advert here, please email

In The Heights

Ticket sales for the show are going fast, which means there will be lots of drinks to pour. We need your help please!
If you would like to help (short shifts and a great way to meet other parents) please sign up to help with the DSPA bar for In the Heights here

Our online shop will be open for pre orders soon!

Joining the DSPA

The DSPA has two main purposes: to raise money to provide equipment and activities for the pupils, outside of the budgeted curriculum; and to arrange social events for parents to meet and make new friendships. We strongly encourage parents to join the DSPA and become more involved with the Dauntsey's community - Year Representatives will then keep you informed of upcoming events and after joining you will be provided with a contact form for other parents in your child's year group. There is a one off charge of £25 per pupil. 

If you have not yet signed up to join the DSPA then please do so here.
If you are not sure if you have already joined then please contact Pip Wall, Membership Rep at

Please follow us on Twitter here @DauntseyDspa



Supporting the Filling Station 

Please could you help and encourage your son or daughter to bring in tinned food to help us continue to support the work of the Filling Station charity in Swindon.  We particularly need: tinned fruit, meat based meals in a tin, rice pudding, corned beef or ham, soup, tins of spaghetti or ravioli.

The read the attached letter for more information.

With many thanks
Rev Johnson



Lower School Notices and Reminders

Manor Matters

The Manor Bonfire and Firework night on Tuesday provided the Manorites with a wonderful evening of entertainment following their half term holiday, and it was great to see the pupils all enjoying being back with their friends again after the break. 

A group of the Manorites really enjoyed listening to Ian Robertson speak at the Mercers’ Lecture yesterday evening, and they returned to the House full of enthusiasm and tales of a very interesting talk. 

This weekend we will all be attending the Remembrance Service at School and preparations for Christmas begin next week when we will be baking our Christmas Cakes – we are all looking forward to the wonderful aroma that will fill the House as the cakes are in the oven!
Anne Sampson, House Mistress.

Please do follow us on Twitter @ManorDauntseys to keep up to date.



First Form Parents' Evening

Friday 15 November, 18:30 - 20:30 in the Memorial Hall

A reminder that the First Form Parents’ Meeting takes place next week, on Friday 15 November from 18:30 - 20:30 in the Memorial Hall. I hope you can make it and please do see me if I can help with anything. Many thanks. 
Jon Tyler, Deputy Head (Academic)



Second and Third Form Parents' Reception

Saturday 16 November in the Pavilion from 12:00 - 13:00

Please find attached a letter, emailed on behalf of Eleni Conidaris, Head of Lower School, inviting you to the Second and Third Form Parents' Reception on Saturday, 16 November taking place in the Pavilion from 12:00 - 13:00



Lower School Ski Trip Reminder

Paperwork forms, including parental consent form; medical form; and pupil code of conduct; due in by Friday 15 November.

Also, please note that the balance (£900) will be added to the school bill, unless you pay by cheque or Bacs before the 15 November.

Please contact Mr T Butterworth at with any queries.