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Sporting success

By This is Kent  |  Posted: December 21, 2008

SPORTING ELITE: From left, Joshua Parkin, cycling, Luke Bennett, trampoline, Lewis Gray, table tennis, Rebecca Manford, horse riding and Jake Hill, motorsport

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ANGLEY School came together in the 1970s when the Cranbrook based Mary Sheafe Girls' School merged with Swattenden Boys' School.

The school developed under headteachers Michael Head and Stephanie Bedford.

Current principal Philip Morris joined Angley in March 2006 after seven years as the deputy at the Judd School in Tonbridge.

In 2000, the school, on Angley Road, Cranbrook, became Kent's first specialist sports college and it now prides itself on its sport.

Students of all ages are involved in a full fixture list throughout the summer. Current star teams are the Year Nine boys' basketball team, who have been dominant in their fixtures this year and the girls' under 14 football team.

The status has allowed stars to thrive, and the school boasts England number one under-15 cadet in table tennis Lewis Gray, who has his eyes fixed on the 2012 London Olympics. In December the 15-year-old will represent Great Britain in an international tournament in Portugal.

Rebecca Manford, 14, is a top equestrian who performs at the highest level in show jumping, dressage and cross country. She recently came second in a major dressage event with her sister Katy, who also attends the school.

Champion go-carter Jake Hill is 15 and 13-year-old Josh Parkin is a nationally ranked cross country and BMX cyclist, while 15-year-old Luke Bennett had trampolining success earlier this year.

Since gaining the sports specialist status, the school has gained further specialist status in maths, ICT and vocational education.

Mr Morris said: "These achievements have placed Angley as a leading school, both locally and nationally, and have allowed its students to thrive in a supportive environment where everyone can achieve their potential."

A key element of the sports specialism is Angley's Community Partnership which involves more than 40 primary and nine secondary schools in tournaments and festivals across West Kent.

In addition Angley has enjoyed a long term partnership with the Nonsi Witthaya School in Bangkok, supported by the Youth Sport Trust and British Council.

Mr Morris said: "This has led to expeditions by our students to visit Thailand and carry out community projects in the country including running sports festivals in our partner school."

He added: "Visits from Nonsi School to Angley have allowed students here to encounter a very different culture and has enriched their experience, giving them a broader view of the world."

This month Angley extended its connections by agreeing a partnership with a Shanghai school, which will provide opportunities for joint language, enterprise and sports projects.

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