Classics on the Common

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The winners are…… Probus Secundus!

The triumphant Probus Secondus team with Town Mayor Cllr David Heritage and Rotary in Harpenden President Liz Jack.

A new name now appears in the list of winners of the long-running Harpenden Quiz of Quizzes – the Probus Secundus club. They pipped past winners Goldenball by two points, with Witless taking third place.

Thirty teams packed St George’s School hall for this, the 24th Quiz of Quizzes, organised by Rotary in Harpenden.


Event manager David Nye said: ‘We were delighted to have such strong support from the community. It was also encouraging to have with us our Town Mayor, Cllr David Heritage, who presented the winner’s cup - and helped sell raffle tickets. We thank everyone who took part, who enjoyed a fun evening together and raised nearly £4,000 for charity.


‘The principal charities this year are Harpenden and Wheathampstead Scouts and Polio Plus, the international Rotary charity aimed at eliminating polio from the world.’


The 25th Harpenden Quiz of Quizzes will be held on Friday, 6 March 2020

Battle royal for public speaking

Twenty-four students making up eight teams guaranteed a battle royal at the Harpenden heat of Youth Speaks, the national Rotary public speaking competition. The event, organised by Rotary in Harpenden, was held at Harpenden Indoor Bowls Club.

Beechwood Park School, Markyate, saw off stiff competition from Roundwood Park and Sir John Lawes schools to lift the Intermediate cup (ages 11-14) with their topic ‘The World’s Greatest Invention’. Roundwood Park, whose topic begged the question ‘Does Truth Exist Anymore?’ came out winners in the Senior section (ages 14-18).


Beechwood Park School’s winning team of Joshua Griggs, Jonathan Webb and Freddie Williamson with Rotary in Harpenden President Liz Jack and Harpenden Town Mayor Cllr David Heritage

Roundwood Park School’s winning team: Alastair Holmes, Tyler Birkwood and Emma Carney

The judges were distinguished toastmasters Elizabeth Jordan and Richard Rutty, both from the Hertfordshire Circuit of Toastmasters. They were joined by Harpenden Town Mayor Cllr David Heritage.

Senior judge Elizabeth Jordan commended all the teams for their strong teamwork and for their inspirational, powerful and engaging talks.

Lottie’s Blog


A former student at St George’s school, 19-year-old Lottie Apsey is spending eight months in Malaysia as a volunteer, teaching English at a secondary school.


Of the £5,500 she needed to raise to cover flights, other expenses and basic overseas living costs, £1,000 came from grants by Rotary in Harpenden and Rotary



Lottie is sending us reports and pictures of her experiences. Here is the first ‘Lottie’s Blog.’


Lottie (in blue) with Lara and the art class, pictured with the striking mural designed and painted by the students

I can’t get over how friendly everyone here is! Most days my fellow volunteer Lara Burdorf and I are invited for breakfast, lunch or dinner by various teachers and students.


We have just started teaching our own English lessons. We’ve also been busy helping preparations for a big language week competition between all the schools in our area. We’ve assisted with the drama performance, public speaking, poetry slam and story telling, trying to build confidence in the students and helping with pronunciation.


At the host school we enjoyed two days jam packed with competitions. Our school didn’t win anything but we were so proud of their performances. It also helped us to really get to know some of the students and better understand what it’s like to grow up in Malaysia.

Sharpening students' interview techniques

Few school leavers seeking a university place or a job will have experienced the all-important face-to-face interview. This is why, each year, Rotary in Harpenden offer local students the opportunity to go through a 'mock interview'.


Working in pairs, our members draw on their own experience of being interviewed and, in the course of their careers, interviewing others.


This year 52 students from Roundwood Park, St George's and Sir John Lawes schools grabbed the chance of a 20-minute mock interview, followed by a 10-minute review of their performance. Feedback every year confirms how much students come to value this experience.

New challenge for young photographers

Budding young photographers have been given the opportunity to enter their work in a new competition. Rotary in Harpenden have initiated a Harpenden heat in the nations-wide Young Photographer Competition, run by Rotary International in Britain and Ireland (RIBI).

The competition is split into three age-defined sections: junior, intermediate and senior. The judges, who had no knowledge of the identities of the competitors, were the chairman of the Harpenden Photographic Society, Peter Stevens, and the society’s external competition secretary, Torben Cox. Highly placed entries in the local heats can progress to district and national levels of the competition. The theme for photographic entries in 2017/18 was "A Different Perspective"


Rotary in Harpenden

Rotary in Harpenden is a charity that runs community events in Harpenden and surrounding villages, with help from Rotary Club members and others. Ten regular events are pictured below. For more details click on any picture, or on "Events and Activities" in the menu above.

Classics on the Common
Rotary Shoe Boxes
Mock Interviews
Santa's Float
Christmas Carol Concert
Youth Speaks
Young Photographer Awards
Technology Tournament
Quiz of Quizzes
Young Citizen Awards

For Harpenden Village Rotary Club website click here

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Rotary in Harpenden CIO is a charitable incorporated organisation, Registered Charity No.1163420
For Harpenden Village Rotary Club website click here