At the end of September the boys and staff made their traditional bi-annual visit to Stonyhurst and St Mary’s Hall.  As a fellow Jesuit School, St John’s enjoys very strong links with Stonyhurst and it is always the cause of some considerable excitement for the boys and staff to visit every 2 years.   Traditionally the boys compete against St Mary’s Hall (Junior School to Stonyhurst College) in swimming and rugby as well as joining together to perform an informal concert on the Friday evening.

This year was particularly exciting as the School Archivist Mrs Jan Graffius has organised a special quiz for the boys using some of the priceless relics from the School’s famous collection.  The boys had to use their investigative skills to work out what the items might be used for and also their date of manufacture.  Additionally to this they had to solve a forensic puzzle, in much the same way as Sherlock Holmes might have done, but with a 21st century twist, which included blood matching and chromatography.  We are pleased to say that the murderer was caught and is now safely behind bars!  

The tour started with a very exciting swimming gala which St John’s won and it was lovely to see some of our younger boys being given the opportunity to swim up a year against very strong opposition.

Saturday morning, following Mass, the U10 Colts A and U14A played St Mary’s Hall.  Despite a fierce rear-guard action and a strong second half, the U10A were nudged off their pedestal by a very physical and quick St Mary’s Hall team.  However, it was wonderful to see our Colts A go from strength to strength and their resolute defence was matched wonderfully by very quick movement of the ball and outstanding support running.  The final score, 35-0.

The first XIII match was an extraordinary match which see-sawed to-and-fro during a nail biting first half which saw SMH go into the break 3-2 up.  However, St John’s rallied tremendously well and played the kind of rugby in the second half that epitomised outstanding team work and utter determination.  The final result of 15-40 was reflective of the boys’ dominance in the second half.

We are tremendously grateful to Stonyhurst for their wonderful hospitality and continuing