News Archive - 2


On Friday 10th May, we were invited to explore the new Smithills Estate by the Playing for Success team at Bolton Council. We were joined by volunteers from the Woodland Trust to hear about the tree planting scheme, before studying local wildlife in the river. We also learnt some new skills and help made stakes for the new hedgerows.

Mr Scholefield who accompanied the pupils on their exploration said, "Everyone Really enjoyed the day, our pupils loved learning about our local history and plans for the future. All of our pupils were fantastic despite the wet and windy weather!" 


Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s Mary Poppins JR. played at Smithills School on Monday 1st April through to Wednesday 3rd April (at 7pm) in Smithills main hall. The “practically perfect” musical, designed for middle school-aged performers, is based on the classic P.L. Travers stories and the Walt Disney film.


At Smithills we often have fundraising events for staff to participate in.  We annually hold the Macmillan’s ‘World’s Biggest Coffee Morning’ and we have also started to have a big annual fundraising event chosen for a charity.  This year the charity chosen was Cancer Research UK.  This was in memory of Lynn Burns, our Office Manager who sadly passed away earlier this year. 


The fundraiser was a 1950s themed event consisting of:


- 1950’s music and videos with glitter ball

- Fancy dress 

- Popcorn, Candy floss, balloons, bubbles and retro sweets

- Hotdogs, burgers, pink lemonade ….

- Many baked cakes donated by staff

- 1950s retro themed table decorations

- Large Juke box and Popcorn decorations 


The event was held on 6 th April and organised by Kathryn Worsley and Karen Critchley, Learning Teaching Assistants in Learning Services. There was a themed 1950s pub quiz which saw staff become extremely competitive, winning prizes and was all planned and delivered by Mr Allen.


Over £300 was raised for this fantastic cause. Well done everyone!


33 of our boys from years 7 -11 took part in a dance workshop on Wednesday 25th January. The boys were taught set repertoire and key athletic movements that helps them understand the demands of a male dancer. They were all extremely thrilled to be part of this initial workshop and are looking forward to working with Company Chameleon and Dance Manchester on a dance performance piece that will be performed nationally in April 2017.


Former Smithills School pupil and star of Eastenders, Bridget Jones Edge of Reason, Harley Street, Law & Order UK, The Trench (with James Bond actor Daniel Craig) and many more besides, Paul Nicholls (Smithills 1990-1995) returned to visit his former Drama teacher Mr Wormald here at Smithills on Tuesday January 18th.


As a Year 7 pupil at Smithills, Paul started in September 1990 just five months after Mr Wormald was appointed Head of Music and Drama at the school and Paul was immediately cast in the school’s production of “Bugsy Malone” even as an 11 year old (1991). On leaving Smithills and joining the actor’s union Equity, Paul chose to take the surname Nicholls as there was already a member named Paul Greenhalgh (his name throughout his time at Smithills) and one of his very first roles on leaving Smithills was playing the part of Joe Wicks in BBC1 television’s Eastenders.


In the film The Trench, Paul’s name appears above that of James Bond actor Daniel Craig and he also played the part of Jed in the second Bridget Jones film of the series. He has also appeared in numerous television series including Holby City.


Former Smithills School Senior Brass Band Tenor Horn player Mark Almond (1995-1996), now Co-Principal French Horn of San Francisco Opera in California, USA, returned to Smithills once again on Tuesday January 17th to spend a full day in school with his former French Horn teacher Mr Wormald and meet members of the current Senior Brass Band. Mark last spent two full days with Mr Wormald back at Smithills in June.


Mark was Principal French Horn of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain for many years in the 1990s at the same time former Smithills musician Ben Ellin also played Tuba in the very same, internationally renowned orchestra. Both boys also played with Eagley Band under the conductorship of Mr Wormald in the 1990s as well as in our Senior Brass Band, since when Mark has played for many years in major English orchestras ranging from the London Symphony Orchestra to the Philharmonia and has literally toured the World playing in these orchestras. Mark has also played on many major Hollywood film soundtracks and appears on numerous DVD extras!


Last September Mr Wormald travelled to London to watch the Philharmonia Orchestra perform a concert at Cadogan Hall, the entire evening conducted by former Smithills pupil Ben Ellin and featuring Mark Almond in the horn section. Ben continues to conduct all over the World, from America to Italy and St Petersburg in Russia and also calls in on Smithills regularly, where his mother is a member of our Community Choir.


Having completed three, hectic Marks & Spencer December Saturdays and three similarly hectic Marks & Spencer December Sundays already this month (plus the Victoria Hall and school concerts as well), all the members of our Senior Brass Band and their conductor Mr Wormald are now spending three more full days in a row of over six hours each day (9.30am to 4pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, December 22nd, 23rd and 24th respectively) performing non-stop carols, Christmas music and bag packing to raise more, much needed funds for the band’s major tour abroad next July.


The six photographs show the opening session of quintet carols on the Thursday morning whilst the remainder of the band members were standing at the checkouts in pairs, helping shoppers to pack and carrying large bags to cars, taxis and waiting vehicles. The Smithills musicians are highly experienced at such bag packing as they have already undertaken a number of highly lucrative days at Morrison’s this year as they do each Christmas.


All of the band members (with the exception of percussionists) take turns to play in the quintet throughout each day at the entrance to the store and therefore every player performs as well as bag packs and this means that embouchures are fresh all day long for the performances. As always, a number of parent chaperones are present throughout each day to support, led as ever by Mrs Jane Dunlevy, Mr Prash Patel, Mr Simon Colderley, Mrs Sarah Taylor, Mrs Pauilne Hemmings and many others.




Huge thanks to the staff and pupils of Smithills School who participated in a reverse advent calendar last week as part of our Session Zero work on charity.


Over 500 bars and numerous boxes of chocolate were donated in aid of Urban Outreach.


Staff and students were asked you to help change lives in our community this Christmas and their generosity will do this.


Thank you
Mrs Goldie


On Saturday evening, December 17th, over 200 of our senior instrumentalists and singers once again took to the Victoria Hall stage to perform a Christmas concert in aid of Bolton Hospice in front of a packed audience of over 1,100 people.

Opening as ever with our award-winning Senior Brass Band, led by current Principal Cornet Phoebe Matthews, the band played a stunning set ranging from Lynwood and Merry Christmas Everybody to White Christmas and also joined forces with the Community Choir in brand new settings of Midwinter, Away In  A Manger, Bridge Over Troubled Water and The Way We Were.

The combined Senior Big Band and Community Big Band, led by Alto Saxophonist Sophie Dunlevy, then stunned the packed hall with a set which included St Louis Blues, Mack The Knife, Caravan, Chicago and Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow.

After the interval, the combined forces of our Senior Brass Band, Senior Concert Band, Senior Big Band, Community Wind Band and Community Choir then took to the stage and the superb 55 minute set included Troika, Sleigh Ride, The Incredibles, Toccata, Rocking Carol, Zither Carol, Jingle Bells, three interspersed audience participation carols and We Wish You A Merry Christmas to bring the evening to a rousing conclusion at 9.45pm.

Well over £6,000 was raised from this latest Smithills concert.


Congratulation to all the stall holders who were successful in their bids for a Stall in the Hall at Smithills on Monday 12thDecember 2016.


Students were set a challenge during their session zero lesson during Global Entrepreneurship Week this year. Forms who had provided details of how they could generate profit from a small start- up cost of £5.00 were given stalls. Winners were the forms who generated the most profit.


Lots of fun was had by all over the lunch hour and there was a great Christmas atmosphere in the Hall. £187.00 has so far been raised in one lunch hour for Children in Need.

Students demonstrated their creativity, presentation skills, team work and financial capabilities during this challenge.   


Thank you to all forms who planned and ran the stalls in the hall and to all those who supported the event.


Congratulations to all but special recognition should be awarded to the following winners; 

1st place –     Ashton 11                 £36.80 raised 

2nd Place –    Naughton 12            £28.20 raised

3rd Place –     Naughton 11            £24.21 raised


All monies will be donated to Children in Need this year.


Throughout 2016, the geography department have been working closely with the Manchester City of Trees project which aims to plant one tree for every citizen of Greater Manchester in the next 10 years. That will be a total of 3 million trees and they hope to create 2,000 hectares of woodland in areas such as Smithills Moors. Woodlands are important habitats for wildlife and a fantastic leisure facility for humans. In addition to this, trees will help to reduce flood risk in the River Mersey Basin and help to counter the adverse effects of climate change.

On a previous visit, members of the team took some of our Year 8 pupils into the woodland surrounding our school to look at the biodiversity found there and to collect seeds. During December’s session, Year 7 pupils planted cherry, rowan and birch trees on site which will be transferred onto moorland when they have matured. They very much entered into the spirit of the activity, even though the ground was slightly frosty and difficult to dig.

In March the trees will be removed and transferred to their final planting point to grow into a woodland ecosystem which will act as a facility for everyone in the county to enjoy.

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