Chairman's Address for 2014 AGM

As I conclude my fourth and final year at the helm of the Friends, and my first year working with Stephen and Amanda Symonds, I am delighted to report the past twelve month’s have proved to be another resounding success story for the Friends of Tockington Manor School.

We have (to name but a few items) secured sufficient funds to reshape a dedicated infant outside learning area, designed and purchased a new adventure playground and bought blinds for the newly decorated school hall. In addition, we have seen a record number of parents joining our ranks and because of this we have been rewarded with yet another successful twelve months of fundraising during what has proved to be the busiest year yet of my FOTM chairmanship.

This is how we did it.

In the Summer term of 2013 we rolled up our sleeves to sell ice creams and lollies at the end of the school day and raised further funds by hosting the Tovey’s farewell disco for the whole school by selling yet more ice-creams, along with sweets, teas, and cakes. We also co-hosted (with the help of the Old Tockingtonians) a farewell summer event to celebrate Richard and Jane Tovey’s thirty eight years of dedication to Tockington Manor School. Our Night with the Stars Ball attracted in excess of three hundred sixty guest from all corners of the globe and was not only a very fitting manner in which to say goodbye to Richard and Jane but it was a very enjoyable way in which to spend, what proved to be, a fabulous summers evening.

The Autumn term of 2013 saw us welcome the new TMS headmaster, Stephen Symonds and his wife Amanda and I would like to take this opportunity, on behalf of the Friends, to say how pleased we are to have you both on board.

We kicked off our Friends duties in September by hosting Harvest Festival teas which were held in the now newly decorated front hall and mezzanine area outside the school dining room. Although this was not a fund raising event, it provided a great opportunity for the Friends to promote our work and meet other parents.

A little later in the same term we held our curry and quiz night. It was a complete sell out and not only did it tease our brains and expand our waistbands with delicious homemade Indian cuisine, but it raised a very respectable sum for our coffers too.

Quiz Night was closely followed by our Bonfire Night celebration at which we served everything from hot chocolate to hot dogs while a disco, the bar and the most enormous bonfire provided entertainment for all who attended.

We rounded the Autumn term off by making cakes and selling them at our bake sale with tea and coffee while the children were occupied with face painting, biscuit decoration etc. This also proved to be both a very lucrative and sociable event.

The Spring term of 2014 was equally busy.

Just like Quiz Night our Burn’s Night was once again a complete sell out. The dining room was transformed into the perfect dining experience and a fantastic evening of entertainment was laid on and enjoyed by all who attended.

A little later in the term we encouraged parents and children alike to clear out their cupboards and by doing so raised further funds with Cash for Clothes. Then, in the final week of the Spring term, we sold drinks in the intervals at the school's production of The Wizard of Oz.

The Friends of Tockington Manor are clearly going from strength to strength and, although I will not be hanging up my chairman’s hat for a little while yet, I would like to take this opportunity to say how pleased and proud I am to have had the chance to be part of the Friends success.

All that remains for me to say is,

“ I thank you all”.
With the festive season once again a fond but distant memory and a very successful Burns Night Event already under our belts, the Friends recently met to plan our fund raising events for both the Spring and the Summer terms.
See below for a sneak preview of what we have in mind;

Monday 24 and 25 March 

Play drinks during the interval of the school play, The Wizard of Oz 

Saturday 21 June 
Triathlon and Family Fun day in Tockington Manor Grounds

Cash for clothes
Date to be confirmed

I am also delighted to be able to report that last terms events alone raised in excess of £2,300 and this money together with the substantial funds raised from the previous academic years events has already been put to good use. Since September 2013 the Friends of Tockington Manor School have paid for the current construction of the free flow area in front on the colonnade, the new blinds for the school hall as well as the electric retractable screen, a gazebo for shelter at cross country events and also the soon to be constructed and much anticipated adventure playground.

The Friends fund raising abilities have clearly continued to go from strength to strength over the years and as a result the funds raised have helped to enrich the Tockington Manor School experience for our children with some very desirable purchases. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have given so freely of their time and their expertise along with all those who have supported us with both their donations and their attendance.

I thank you all.