ANNUAL celebrations that commemorate the beginnings of Lady Hawkins School in Kington marked out the old and the new this year as recently appointed headteacher Gary House helped pay tribute to its founder for the first time.

As is customary, students marked the school’s 377th anniversary by remembering Lady Margaret Hawkins, who opened one of Herefordshire’s oldest schools in 1632, and flying the Royal Navy’s Red Ensign flag as the only place in the country with special permission to do so.

Rev Neil Weston also addressed pupils and staff past and present on the theme of hopes and dreams at a service in St Mary’s Church, while head boy Max Guyud and head girl Joanne Allford led the responses.

Glenda and Hannah Allaway also played the harp before the chairman of the school governors, Phil Sharp, led a thanksgiving with deputy head girl Anne-Marie Duggan and sixth former Tom Balcombe.

Bursar Kevin Gwynne said: “This was followed by an afternoon of sport with teams of students playing a variety of sports, including rugby matches, against Tenbury High School – all of which were played in true sporting spirit.”

The celebrations also followed an open evening at Lady Hawkins the night before, which saw more than 200 parents and prospective students visit.