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Nine former Trent students had a wonderful day on Thursday 28th November when they travelled to St James’s Palace to receive their Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award certificates. Mr Shuttleworth, Trent Co-ordinator of Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and Expeditions reports for us.
"These occasions are always exciting for the awardees and their guests alike, due partly to the chance to go inside such a historic palace. This event was especially memorable as the Duke of Edinburgh himself attended.
Gold Award Presentations are large and impressive affairs, with a group of 370 young people getting their awards in the morning and another 370 in the afternoon. The Duke of Edinburgh, at the age of 92, showed amazing stamina to attend both sessions and he spoke to the awardees and their guests in groups of about 25, each for around 5 minutes. The groups are spread about various rooms within St James’. His enthusiasm for the achievements of the young people and his ability to engage in chat and repartee is very impressive. He has, of course, had a lot of practice!
After the Duke has passed through each room, the awardees are presented with their certificates by a different person. The Trent group received theirs from Fiona Phillips, while other rooms had celebrities such as Tanny Grey-Thompson and John Culshaw. The presenter makes a short speech and the awardees are congratulated on their achievement in following the Gold Award through to a successful conclusion. Formal group photos are taken in each room and then the end of the presentation sees most people head outside and take more informal photos with the Palace as a backdrop. Overall, it is a fitting way to mark the end of the D of E process for the young people.
Trent was well represented at this Gold Award Presentation. The nine former students were; Harriet Livesey, Lauren Crosse, Abbi Last, Clare Steele, Josh Gundry, Zac Menzies, Matthew Shuttleworth, Natasha Sheard and James Bottom. I was also delighted to be a Group Marshal for the Central England region at the event, so getting the chance to meet The Duke and introduce him to our group. It was a pleasure to be there as the awards were presented to the Old Tridents."