Nottingham Girls’ High School is serious about sport, and it shows in the enthusiastic participation of girls in lessons and clubs, and in the results achieved in matches and competitions. So it was wonderful to recognise the girls’ achievements in a celebratory Sports Awards Evening at school.

The evening consisted of performances by our Junior dancers and Senior gymnasts, entertaining the audience of staff, parents and friends with their brilliant skills. Speeches followed, by members of PE and Outdoor Learning staff, praising the commitment and resilience of our girls who continually take up activities, and often gruelling challenges, in the pursuit of sporting success, excellence and self-development.

Our guest speaker this year was Claire Bennett, who is a GDST alumna, and was voted Alumna of the Year in 2012. Claire was a member of the Great Britain Women’s foil fencing team and part of the World Class Performance Programme, and has represented Great Britain in European and World Championships since the age of 14. Claire was also the former Athlete Manager at the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, and is dedicated to progressing women into leadership roles, as well as promoting sport for young people – which made her the perfect speaker for this event.

It was wonderful to hear her inspirational talk and see her genuine interest and pride in what we do here at NGHS. The proudest moments however, were watching the girls receive their awards and trophies for all of their extraordinary achievements in all things sport!

Our girls take part in a wide range of sporting activities, from the conventional netball and hockey, to the more specialised cricket, football and rowing, and a truly exciting range of outdoor opportunities involving exploration trips and world challenges overseas. There is so much on offer and the girls love it. We have seen their confidence grow as they explore ever more challenging pastimes and work even harder as part of school teams in local, regional and national competitions.

This commitment does not go unnoticed as our girls notch up one success after another, and we are incredibly proud of all of them. Celebrating with them at their own special evening is the best way to show them, and their families, how proud we are in all of their achievements and that their hard work and commitment is valued.