While Pangbourne has a vast campus with facilities to cater for every student’s needs, it is important to explore the wider world to bring subjects to life and demonstrate the school’s ethos outside of the College.
Throughout the year, trips are arranged by each academic department to a multitude of destinations, both inside the UK and overseas, there are a number of tours and various expeditions are arranged to help pupils adapt and react to challenging environments.
As well as the many departmental trips to theatres and lecture halls, and weekend boarders’ trips to destinations across the south of England, there are a number of trips to exotic locations and events of great significance in the context of Pangbourne’s public outreach.
A Level Classics students travel to one of Greece, Italy or Turkey every year for a study tour of the sites and museums which bring the subject to life, a skiing trip is organised for Forms 3 to the Upper Sixth over the Christmas holidays each year, the Modern Foreign Languages Department arranges an exchange with a school from either Spain, France or Germany each year and the College Choir is going on a trip to Slovenia this July.
Every year, Pangbourne is privileged to be involved in the Annual National Service for Seafarers at St Paul’s Cathedral – a tradition that dates back to the College’s founders, Sir Thomas Lane Devitt, who was a national figure in the seafaring community and his son, Sir Philip Devitt, who succeeded him, who both wished for Pangbourne to be represented at this national event.
A tour which is growing in popularity at Pangbourne is the World Challenge which offers young people the chance to explore the world, experience different cultures and develop valuable life skills. Every summer, Pangbourne sends out teams to far-off lands for the World Challenge and the College for the first time was represented by four teams, with more than 40 students, out to Bolivia, Laos and Vietnam.
Pangbourne Hockey Club goes on tour every year, with recent destinations including the Netherlands, Belgium and Gibraltar, the Rugby Club has toured Newcastle and South Africa, and the Cricket Club has visited Barbados, while the Boat Club regularly travels abroad for regattas.
One of the popular expeditions run by staff at Pangbourne is the Ten Tors Challenge. Each year, a team of six Pangbournians take on the Challenge, along with thousands of other children, over a weekend with the aim being to cover 35 miles in 34 hours unsupervised across the middle of Dartmoor.
To prepare for the arduous task, students cover 20km around Ashampstead and Bradfield with full rucksacks and a whittled down squad of participants take part in a five-day training camp in Dartmoor, navigating 80km with full rucksacks, in the months leading up to the Challenge.
All Form 3 students go to Llangorse in Wales in the last week before the May half-term where they undertake climbing, indoor ropes courses, outdoor ropes courses, a dingle scramble, team-building activities and a two-day practice expedition as part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.
Other DofE expeditions include Silver Award students going to the New Forest for three days and Gold Award students going to the Lake District for six days for their Assessed Expedition.