Reigning Olympic Champion Presents Trophies At Inaugural Louth Academy Awards Night

Louth Academy Presentation Evening. The most prestigious award - The Chief Executive's Special Award For Outstanding Student - was presented to Maddalynne French by special guest speaker and Olympic GB Hockey gold-medallist, Kate Richardson-Walsh OBE, and TMAT CEO, David Hampson OBE.

"Be visionary, aim high and dare greatly." These were the words of an Olympic Gold Champion to Louth Academy students at their first ever Presentation Evening, held at Louth Town Hall.

Kate Richardson-Walsh OBE OLY, who in 2016 was Captain of the first Great Britain Women's Hockey Team ever to win Gold at the Olympics, said even she had doubts about herself right through her teenage years and early career.

"For a long time I was not comfortable in my own skin," she said. "But there was a period when I was just fumbling along, and I was dropped from the hockey squad. I will always remember seeing that my name was not on the team list, and I gave myself a talk and asked myself what I really wanted from life. I knew then that it was to win a medal. Four years later we won Bronze at the 2012 London Olympics, which was one of the best days of my life. Four years after that, in Rio, we won Gold.

"You have to aim high, even higher than you think you are capable of achieving. Sometimes you will miss, but you will only come as close as you can by daring greatly. Be the best version of you because you are amazing and you are enough," she said.

Kate was speaking to an audience of students, parents, and family members at a packed Louth Town Hall. Earlier in the day, she had visited the new Louth Academy Upper Campus and given students a masterclass in hockey techniques.

"The sports facilities the children have here are simply amazing," she said. Kate signed autographs and chatted for a couple of hours with the students, who were all eager to meet the Olympic Champion.

Eighty-three awards were presented at the inaugural Presentation Evening for Progress, Achievement and Endeavour in all subject areas, and were interspersed with musical performances from students. These included a stunning classical guitar solo by Eloise Belding; a voice solo by Evie Lancaster; Amber Burton, Sophie Miles, Madeline Williams and Abigail Williams singing "Let Her Go" by Passenger; and Louth Academy Choir closing the event with "This Is Me."

The winner of the most prestigious award of the night - The Chief Executive's Special Award for the Most Outstanding Student - went to Maddalynne French. David Hampson, CEO of Tollbar MAT, described her as "a student who stands out as being exceptional".

He said: "Maddalynne completed Year 9 with 100% attendance and achieved on or above her target grade in every one of her GCSE subjects, despite extremely difficult personal circumstances. She steered her way through with dignity and determination, and it gives me the greatest pleasure to present her with this award."

The Principal's Cup for Best GCSE Progress (value added from KS2-KS4) went to William Gardner. It was presented by Martin Brown, Louth Academy Executive Principal, who said: "William showed determination and perseverance throughout a challenging year and came out with a host of GCSEs, including two grade 9s."

The Philip Bond Cup for Best GCSE results went to Kayla Phillips, who received the highest point score in her GCSE exams. TMAT Chairman Philip Bond described her as "dedicated, conscientious, and always polite."

The House Champions Trophy was presented to Vela House, who won the most Inter-House competitions throughout the Academic Year. It was presented to House representatives, Harry Kingswood and Kathryn Storr.

Martin Brown addressed an appreciative audience at the Awards. He paid tribute to the way the students had coped with all of the changes that had taken place in just two years to transform two former failing schools in the town into the now thriving Louth Academy.

"The Trust has ensured that both sites are now places that the students can take great pride in," he said. "The results of the improvements are stunning on both sites and represent a commitment to children's education in Louth that was desperately needed."

William Gardner (centre) receives the Principal's Cup for Best GCSE Progress from Kate Richardson-Walsh and Louth Academy Executive Principal, Martin Brown.

Kayla Phillips receives the Philip Bond Cup For Best GCSE Results from Kate Richardson-Walsh and TMAT Chairman, Philip Bond.

Kate Richardson-Walsh addresses the large audience at Louth Academy Presentation Evening at the Town Hall.

Louth Academy Awards Night winners with guest speaker and GB Olympic Hockey Champion, Kate Richardson-Walsh. Also pictured are: Louth Academy Executive Principal, Martin Brown; TMAT CEO David Hampson; and TMAT Chairman Philip Bond.

Lucas George-Jones receives the award for Year 10 Progress.

Emily Billings receives the award for Year 9 Progress.

The award for Year 8 Progress went to Amy Wrisdale.

Faith Jupp receives the award for Year 7 Progress.

Eloise Belding plays classical guitar at the Awards Night.

Harry Kingswood and Kathryn Storr receive the House Champions Trophy for Vela House from Kate Richardson-Walsh.

Thomas Scott and Kandi-Alexis Austin receive the Sports Day Cup for Perseus House from Kate Richardson-Walsh.

Evie Lancaster performs "Slipping Through My Fingers" at the Awards Night ceremony.

A group performance of "Let Her Go" by Amber Burton, Sophie Miles, Madeline Williams and Abigail Williams.

Louth Academy Choir performs "This Is Me" to close the Awards Show.

Year 11 student Keisha Oldroyd, who won the award for KS4 Achievement in English, presents Kate Richardson-Walsh with a gift to thank her for visiting Louth Academy.

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Louth Academy
Executive Principal

Martin Brown
BA (Hons).

Tollbar MAT
Chief Executive

David J Hampson