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Harry Potter and the Crusade Against Cancer

Who’s been making the news round your way this week?

24 February, 2017 — By Gabe Evans

Year 6 pupils from Thornhill Primary with a cheque for their wizard wheeze fundraiser: Maya Diklich, Renata Appoh-Amasanti, Gloria Gooden, Amelie Glover, Elena Shackleford

AFTER reported sightings of young witches and wizards at Thornhill Primary two weeks ago, it can be confirmed that Harry Potter and clan did in fact take charge of the school. That is, in the guise of Year 6 pupil Amelie Glover and five magical friends, Maya Diklich, Renata Appoh-Amasanti, Gloria Gooden, Diyanah Tasnim and Elena Shackleford. The girls hosted a Harry Potter-themed fundraiser, Harry Potter and the Crusade Against Cancer, on February 7 and raised an amazing £314.25 for the charity Children with Cancer. “Here at Thornhill we encourage all children to display initiative and be leaders of their own learning,” said deputy head Paul Robinson. “Children pitching to run their own clubs or organise events is not unusual. However, this really was a completely child-led fundraiser.” With the flick of a wand and the flash of a cloak, Thornhill could have been mistaken for Hogwarts. For a small price, fellow pupils were invited to wear their finest robes, gorge on two Honeydukes cake sales and test their knowledge in a Pottermore quiz, before finally settling down to a screening of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. “It gives us great pride as a school to watch our pupils become such conscientious and driven young people,” said Paul. “We aim to instil a confidence and love of learning in every child that equips them to be successful in whatever they may chose to do in the future.” A magical future certainly look promising.

How Canonbury kids learn from Welsh lambs

Joshua, left, and Marbel from Canonbury Primary meet the lambs at Lower Treginnis

WITNESSING the birth of a lamb is not a common experience for school children in the centre of London, but Hughes Class in Year 5 at Canonbury Primary School can now declare themselves among the rare few. After a week on Lower Treginnis – the most westerly farm in Wales – in late January the class was opened up to any number of new experiences. But the birth of a lamb was of particular fascination.

Harmony, Eden and Maddison also enjoying the trip to Wales

“It’s that awe and wonder at how life is created,” said headteacher Patrick Mildren. “They all said ‘It breathes! It breathes!’” Lower Treginnis is one of children’s author Michael Morpurgo’s Farms for City Children, a charity he established with his wife Claire in 1976 offering urban children, who may have limited opportunities to explore different lifestyles and often have no idea where their food comes from, the chance to live and work on a real farm. “We have such a diverse range of children at our school, from the more disadvantaged to the more affluent,” said Patrick, “but it is a unique experience for them all. Working together, mucking out, feeding animals, picking vegetables… They can see what work is and learn to take responsibility for a task. It’s a great thing.”

Arlington Square’s gardenathon

Gardeners Gordon McArthur, Penny-Nicholls and Dee Austin at work in Arlington Square

A MARATHON day of community gardening was held at Arlington Square Gardens last Saturday to finish the replanting of their circular beds in style. Volunteers aged from 7 to 70 shrugged off their weekend lie-in, arriving before 8am ready to plant more than 1,000 plants of 14 different varieties. The makeover was made possible by a grant from the Tesco Bags of Help Scheme, which awarded Arlington Association £8,000 last October, and volunteers have been working hard since. The project will be fully complete this coming autumn, though it already looks set to be a blooming summer in the square.

Open space that’s now a little oasis

CULPEPER Community Garden, in Cloudesley Road, is believed to be one of the oldest community-run open spaces in the UK. Set up in 1982 after local school teacher Anthea Douglas chanced upon the then derelict site through a hole in the high wall surrounding it, the garden has since been transformed into an ever-flourishing “little oasis”. Containing 65 plots for local people and groups without gardens, a lawn, communal flower beds, rose arbour, a pond and a wildlife area, it is a remarkable green haven for the neighbouring community. This evening (Friday), trustee Margaret Pitt is giving a talk on the history of the gardens at the Stuart Low Trust’s Friend Evening Event. To find out more about this amazing space be sure to go along. There will be tea/coffee from 6.30pm followed by the presentation at 7.30pm at St Mary’s Neighbourhood Centre, Upper Street.

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