Good news Friday: Bug hotel inter-house competition at Wycombe Abbey and John Watson tackles his fear of heights

The Telegraph, 17.07.15, in this week's Good News Friday round up pupils at HMC member school Wycombe Abbey created their very own bug hotels and HMC member John Watson, headmaster of Bablake School tackles his fear of heights.

2. Bug hotel inter-house competition

Pupils at Wycombe Abbey built bug houses as part of the school’s ecologically-friendly ‘Bug Hotel Inter-house Competition’. The girls were invited to create monumental and sumptuous houses for Wycombe Abbey’s bugs.

The challenge was to provide accommodation for a great variety of species. After some keen research, the girls decided that the perfect lodgings were bamboo for hardworking solitary bees, pine cones for voracious ladybirds and corrugated cardboard for delicate lacewings.

Preparing the bamboo was one of the hardest tasks, as pupils had to cut hundreds of lengths of 8 inch bamboo and then drill them to remove the internal diaphragms and fibrous material, which would have rendered the canes uninhabitable.

However, the girls worked enthusiastically, soon coming up with 'Telebug', inspired by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s iconic red telephone box, 'Bugwarts', 'the Arc de Triomphe', 'the (Insect) Full Tower' which was modelled in the shape of the Eiffel Tower, and to crown it all, 'Buggingham Palace'. Some girls even built a beetle jacuzzi in the basement of their bug hotel.

The happy winner was the '(Insect) Full Tower', whose sunny position, open vista and lofty elevation provided a secure abode, away from home wrecking ants bent on devouring insect larvae.

6. Coventry headmaster tackles fear of heights

One headmaster in Coventry went above and beyond to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Mr John Watson, headmaster of Bablake School, was among those to abseil down the school’s main tower, an event which raised over £700 for charity.

The event took place on one of the hottest days in Coventry’s history, with both staff and students getting involved in the organisation required.

Upper Sixth student, Katie Hodge, was the first pupil ever to officially abseil down the main tower, followed by a number of other students (and the headmaster) who managed to conquer their fears.

Mr Watson commented on his blog: "You may be aware that some of us hurled ourselves off the school tower in an abseiling challenge earlier this week!

“As I told my colleagues, I had rashly broken one of my golden rules: Never say ‘yes’ in the corridor.

“Abseiling was not part of my training as a head – and I don’t cope terribly well with heights – but sometimes you simply have to lead by example in facing up to your fears and anxieties.”

“I’m very proud of the pupils who also faced up to their fears and entrusted themselves to the guidance and encouragement of others.”

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