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Thornton College has a spectacular co-curricular programme. 


In addition to the host of regular lunchtime, after school and House activities there are special events throughout the year dedicated to the development of the girls' all-round education. In addition to our annual day of service each February and numerous informal concerts and stage productions, we welcome schools to join us for the Luffield Festival of Arts, held each June. Look at our media page to see a full overview of what we have been doing recently. 

activities week

Activities Week is held during the last week of June each year and normal classes make way for experiences of a lifetime including action-packed adventure holidays and creative workshops.  In 2017 students travelled to Poland, London and the Isle of Wight as well as spending days out all over the country.


Activities Week 2016

Activities Week in 2016 saw Prep girls enjoy life-enriching day trips, plus a fabulous range of hands-on activities and workshops within the school grounds. 

  • Years 3 and 4 visited The Living Rainforest near Newbury
  • Years 5 and 6 girls spent an exciting week at Barton Hall, a PGL site in Devon

Years 3 and 4 at The Living Rainforest

To celebrate the end of the Trinity term’s topic on rainforests, Prep girls enjoyed an exciting trip to The Living Rainforest near Newbury.

Here, two enormous tropical glasshouses house 700 species of plants, plus exotic birds, butterflies and animals. The girls could move about freely as they explored the trails through the hot and steamy jungle with a new delight to see every which way. It was amazing to get close to some of the world’s food and medicine plants.

They also crossed paths with free-roaming lizards, toucans, turtles, tortoises and a chameleon, plus pygmy and black monkeys leaping from branch to branch above their heads. The resident sloth named Cinammon proved elusive, however. In the water lived stingrays and priranhas, which the girls witnessed courtesy of an underwater viewing gallery.   

The guide talked about ‘Amazing Adaptations’, telling the group how animals and birds have adapted to rainforest conditions. The black money is dark because it lives on the forest floor, for example, while some plants have leaves pocked with holes to allow the light to shine through them.

With also time to play, shop for gifts and eat a picnic lunch, the girls were unanimous in their verdict of such a special day off-timetable – they all loved it!

Years 5 and 6 at PGL Barton Hall, Devon

A residential trip saw Years 5 and 6 spend an amazing week in Devon where they could try lots of new and daring activities.

Active days involved trapeze, survival skills, abseiling, orienteering and testing their nerves on the zipwire. Daily challenges also encouraged the girls to work as a team. 






School Trips

science club field trip, march 2017

In our co-curricular Science Club, students have been investigating whether flushable toilet wipes really are as disposable as standard toilet paper. They’ve been conducting their own investigations in school and discovering how difficult it is to tear and break down flushable wipes, unlike paper which simply disintegrates in water.

To find out how much of an impact these wipes have on the environment, they went on a field trip to Cotton Valley Water Treatment Centre in Milton Keynes to see first-hand how our water is purified and hear what experts have to say on the issue.

Students explored the site to get a first-hand overview of the different stages of the sewage treatment process. With their findings, along with further classroom experiments, they hope to put together a project to submit to The Big Bang. If it is accepted they will be offered a stall to showcase their research at The Big Bang Fair in March 2018.


Years 3 and 4 at ashmolean museum, mARCH 2017

We went to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford to learn about the Ancient Egyptians. We saw loads of cool things. First, we looked around a gallery and we had to find the objects in our room on our list. Next, we looked at a statue of a pharaoh who was famous for killing people – he killed 47000,290 people!

After that we saw the main room of a real Egyptian temple. We also got to see real artefacts and got to touch them. It was a great day. We learnt so much.
Greta B, Year 3


Year 6s attend Mass with 200 schools, October 2016

More than 200 Catholic primary schools in the Northampton Diocese congregated in Dunstable in October to celebrate mass with Bishop Peter at St Mary’s Church. All our Year 6 students participated with form captains Lucy and Clara proudly carrying the Thornton College banner.


Year 5s at the Food Bank Milton Keynes, May 2016

After hosting a question and answer session with two representatives from The Food Bank Milton Keynes as part of the Year 5 RE topic the girls were so inspired by the work of the charity that they volunteered their time to help sort the food that it receives on a daily basis.

As the Food Bank can only accommodate eight children at once we also offered to help out at Baby Basics a few doors down. It operates in a similar way to the Food Bank, but provides families with clothes, toys and equipment.

At The Food Bank the girls accepted donations and separated the donations into appropriate boxes, such as pasta, rice, fruit, custard and rice pudding. Once the boxes were full the girls also organised the items into date order and put them into labelled boxes. Hannah, Evie and Jasmine enjoyed checking the dates of the food and were pleased that they found some that were out of date so that they weren’t handed out. Izzy worked very quickly to organise the donations into the boxes.

At Baby Basics the girls organised suitable donations into sizes, decided which donations needed a wash or iron and chose items for each box. Elisabetta said of the experience: ‘My favourite thing was choosing items for a baby boy aged 9-12 months – all of the clothes were so small and cute!’ Harriet added: ‘I enjoyed Baby Basics because I knew we were helping people near us.’
Miss Marum


Year 5 girls visit Baptist church, February 2016

The Year 5s spent an afternoon at Loughton Baptist Church to support their learning about Christian denominations. As part of their topic, the girls had already learnt that Christianity is made up of many different groups, for example, the Salvation Army, the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, Amish and Quakers. Before they set off, the girls were eager to learn more about the Baptist faith, but didn’t really know what to expect.

Once we arrived we were met by Craig, the Pastor, and his wife, Elyse, who we already knew from our Bridgebuilder Trust assemblies! We were surprised at the age of the original part of the building; it was built in 1864.

The girls were amazed at the size of the baptismal pool and were keen to learn lots about how Craig filled it ready for baptisms. We learnt that those who are baptised have made a personal choice to follow Jesus. This was quite surprising because in the Catholic faith babies tend to be baptised and their parents and godparents make the promises for them.

We met Craig and Elyse’s son, Garrett, who is a worship leader in the church. He was very musical and plays the guitar during services. We were allowed to choose from a selection of percussion instruments and joined in with some lively and uplifting songs. We found that their songs were more modern than those we sing in school.

Craig told us that the motto of Loughton Baptist Church is ‘Christ in the Community’. He, along with his congregation, organise many different groups, classes and social events throughout the week. Each week they help at a Soup Kitchen and during the winter months have worked with another church to provide food and shelter for homeless people. In contrast to this, several exercise classes run inside the church. Next week, children from their local school will invite their mums for a special Mother’s Day assembly where they will present gifts they have made.

We thoroughly enjoyed the trip and hope that other classes from Thornton will have the opportunity to visit too. 
Report by the girls in 5CM

Christmas theatre trip for pre-prep and prep school girls, December 2015

Years 1 to 6 enjoyed a special treat when they were whisked off to the Royal & Derngate Theatre in Northampton to watch a spellbinding production of The Snow Queen, based on the Hans Christian Anderson story.

Seven highly-talented actors brought the touching story of best friends Kai and Gerda to life in stunning fashion. Locked up by the unfeeling Snow Queen in her Ice Palace, Kai prays for the loyal Gerda to rescue him, which she does with some help from the Raven, Snow White and Prince Charming, not-so Little Red Riding Hood, Mrs Wickedy Wickedy Witch (aka Mrs Johnson) and a Santa-loving reindeer.

Plenty of thrills, songs and laughter were to be found along the way. The girls and staff thoroughly enjoyed the show which set them happily on the road to the holidays!
Mrs Macleod

Year 5 Visit to Sulgrave Manor, March 2015

Year 5 students loved studying the Tudors in the spring term. They finished the topic on a high with a visit to Sulgrave Manor, a Tudor manor house on the border or Northants and Oxon and the ancestral home of George Washington.

To really get into the spirit of life as a Tudor, the girls dressed as Tudor maids – and fellows. They did some role-play about their old friend Henry VIII and his wives. Some of them were even beheaded. They learnt about Tudor music and dance and had a tour of the manor, finding out about Tudor lifestyles by examining recreated rooms, such as the kitchen, the dining room, the master bedroom and some outhouses. What a fabulous finish to a wonderful topic.
Mrs Macleod




Our most recent school production has been Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, with Years 5 and 6 raising the roof of Thornton College School for Girls during their four performances in March 2015.

All the girls sang and acted their hearts out to produce a fantastic performance.

Latest Sports Results

A round-up of our Prep School successes in the sporting arena.

Second Place At St Teresa’s Athletics Championships

The U9, U10 and U11 students selected to compete at the annual St Teresa’s Athletics Championships set a new personal best for Thornton College by finishing second out of 15 schools. Between them, the 12 students collected an impressive haul of medals.

it was a photo finish silver medal for the Year 6 relay team and bronze for the Year 4s. Victorious won gold in the 75 metres and silver in the long jump, while Stephanie finished first in both the 75 metres and the standing triple jump.

Year 4’s Isabella earned a high jump bronze medal and it was gold for Maia with a 1.09 metres win. Kene, meanwhile, came away with two medals – bronze in the standing triple jump and silver in the 75 metres.

Izzy K even broke a championship record for the vortex with a 35 metre throw, beating the previous record by seven metres!


The Thornton Trail, November 2016

The Thornton Trail, now in its third year, saw more than 100 external girls from 10 local schools join Thornton for two nail-biting cross-country races.

The U10/11 race had students in Years 5 and 6 compete in a 2,000-metre course around the school grounds. Our team performed magnificently with Hannah S from Year 6 finishing in a splendid fourth place. The U8/9 race covered approximately 1,200 metres with Chloe C in 4T placing a deserving sixth.

Well done to all the competitors. Special thanks also to ex-student Anna Radford who returned to run as the hare and to the crowd of spectators cheering on their runners.


horse riders qualify for NSEA regionals

We’re very proud of Isabella (Year 4) and Zara (Year 5) for their success representing Thornton College at the NSEA (National Schools Equestrian Association) qualifier in September 2016.

Isabella came second in the 40cm and fourth in the 50cm, meaning Thornton qualifies for the regional championships in both classes. Zara won the 50cm, again taking the school straight through to the regionals. She also won ‘best rider’ in the class! 


12-medal haul at St teresa's junior athletics championships 

The athletes in our U11, U10 and U9 teams came away with 12 bronze, silver and gold medals between them in the fifth annual St Teresa’s Junior Athletics Championships on 8 June 2016. Thornton College ranked fourth overall out of 27 competing schools  a fantastic achievement considering the event was for boys and girls and, naturally, we had girls' teams only!

The medal winners:

Victorious D: 75m gold; triple jump silver; relay gold
Izzy G: 150m bronze; high jump silver
Skye H: triple jump gold
Issy K: long jump gold; relay gold
Stephanie P: long jump bronze
Jasmine S: 150m bronze; relay gold
Hannah S: relay gold 


equestrian team qualifies for the NSEA National Schools Championships

Stand-out performances at Buckinghamshire’s inter-schools show jumping competition in April 2016 means that Thornton's grassroots team is through to the championships.

Isabella R (Year 3) Anna S (Year 4), Lizzie L (Year 5) and Charlotte L (Year 7) – along with their ponies – had a very successful day. The team secured first place for Thornton in the grassroots style and performance class by gaining the highest marks.

On an individual level, Anna earned first place and Isabella came third out of more than 40 entrants. The team also placed second overall in the 50cm class where Charlotte took the ride on Isabella’s pony to complete the fastest clear.


Year 1’s Scarlet K wins the 8 and under mixed Australian Open at David Lloyd Milton Keynes

Scarlet served and rallied her way brilliantly through the final on Saturday 23 January to win with a convincing 10-3 final score. She went on to play again the following day, winning all five matches at Berkhamsted Lawn & Squash Rackets Club.

Our Year 1 tennis player continues to go from strength to strength in her sports career with a slate of wins over the past year. She brought her latest trophy in to school to proudly show it off to her classmates. 




school hosts 141 children for its annual thornton trail competition

Open to pupils from Year 3 to Year 6, the cross-country challenge every November is open to state and independent schools. Pupils run in teams of four, with medals awarded for the best-placed teams and also for the first runner from each team to finish the course.  

The event is now its second year and in November 2015 saw double the number of runners on 2014 from 11 different school. Competition was strong, but our own girls performed magnificently.

The Thornton team (including strong Year 2 runners Eleanor P and Lizzie S) came first in the Year 3 and 4 race over a distance of 1,200 metres. The 2,000 metre Year 5 and 6 combined race around the school grounds saw Nikki K from Year 6 finish strongly in second place overall. Well done to all the entrants!

Horse riding success, November 2015

Congratulations to Daisy G (Year 6), Isabella R from in Year 3 and Year 9 student Molly L (pictured left to right) for competing so magnificently in the Akeley Wood Show Jumping event at Addington Manor Equestrian Centre in November 2016.

The girls finished third overall in the dressage team competition. Daisy and Molly went on to both go double clear in the 90cm jumping, while Isabella cleared 40cm. The girls (usually along with Year 10’s Amy H who couldn’t compete on Sunday) belong to Thornton’s Equestrian team. Members have to be able to jump at least 90cm and have their own pony.