Lancaster Lecture

Dr A LeemannOn Thursday 17th January, a select number of Year 10 and 11 students and our English Language A Level Year 12 and 13 students, attended a taster lecture from Dr Adrian Leemann from the University of Lancaster. The lecture focused on ‘Forensic Linguistics’ and how we can learn a lot about a person from the way they talk and their use of words. This can then be used to assist in a criminal investigation. Dr Adrian Leemann continued with a lecture on Language and Variation which explored how the words we use, and the way we say words can change depending on where we live, but also over time. Needless to say, the question of the ‘correct’ pronunciation of scone remains a contentious one. Roza Mrozowska a Year 12 student, had this to say about the lecture: “The lecture was incredibly informative and covered many engaging areas. I enjoyed hearing about the power of regional speech differences and how they can be taken for granted when really, they can tell us as much about a person as a photograph. The lecture was an insightful taster into university life and something I am aspiring towards.” We thank Lancaster University and specifically Dr Adrian Leemann for providing an utterly thrilling experience and inspiring our students in their future studies.

U16 Basketball Success

Under 16s Basketball Team

Well done to the boys who represented St Mary's at the recent Basketball tournament for Blackpool Secondary Schools. The fixtures were played at Unity and the squad of six players gained a 100% record in their matches. The students' attitude and performances were excellent throughout the competition.

Blackpool is a Fairtrade town

Fairtrade logo

Blackpool has been awarded Fair Trade Town for the second term running. Since becoming a member of the steering committee to get this award St. Mary's has facilitated most of the meetings and been a central part of the town team. Our Fairtrade Co-ordinator, Mr Gibson, has acted as Schools Representative. We will be working closely over the coming weeks to share not only what we are doing in Fairtrade Fortnight but to publicise the work going on in the town also.

Donating to and Decorating at the Streetlife Night Shelter


On a very dark and dank afternoon on Thursday 6th December our SVP group made our annual pilgrimage to visit the Streetlife homeless night shelter. During the visit we learnt a bit about what the charity does and were given a tour of the facilities, before spreading some Christmas joy. Streetlife is a homeless charity that deals with young people aged 16-25 to which our students were able to donate £174.95, on behalf of the Blackpool Family of Catholic Schools. This sum was raised as a result of their joint Advent service the previous Tuesday. Thank you to Tony and all those who volunteer at the shelter at this time of year.

Creativity & Enterprise Learning House Advent Charity Mini Olympics 2018

CELH Charity Olympics
On Thursday 29th November 2018 the Creativity & Enterprise learning house held a mini Olympics to raise money for our advent charity. All forms took part enthusiastically and good fun was had by all. The events included bean bag balance races, three legged races, egg and spoon races, mini hurdles and crash mat carry races. There was also a form teacher 3 legged race which was won by Miss Machowiecka and Miss Baxter. The winning forms were:

  • 1st place: 9L
  • 2nd place: 10H
  • 3rd place: 11H

The top 3 forms were presented with trophies created on the laser cutter. Congratulations to all who took part. Thanks to Mr Webb for organising this wonderful event. Check out the gallery for more photos.

Fairtrade Advent Calendar

Competition to get free Fairtrade stuff just by clicking the link below and good luck: Fairtrade Advent Calendar

While you're entering this competition each day, we'd like you to think about just where your shirts, t-shirts, jeans and trainers etc. are being made this Christmas. There are alternatives to a mass produced, cheapest is best - profits come first way of living and we think this video is worth a look at .

Active AOK Week

AOK 2018

Our sixth annual Acts of Kindness Week was celebrated earlier on this month.  Throughout the week we made over £100 for charity selling bracelets and lollipops.  We celebrated Mass with special prayers, with those in need of kindness in mind.  A recycling plastics project for the Year 7's was also launched with a bang, we've already filled a wheelie bin with bottles.  Staff also took part in a successful act of kindness week, with acts of kindness being carried out all over the Academy.

Trip To Castlerigg

Castlerigg November 2018

Last week, a group of 21 Year 10 students, accompanied by Mr Webb, Miss Baxter and Miss Smith, spent the week at Castlerigg Manor in Keswick. The weather was chilly but sunny, the house was warm and we were all filled with joy and happiness at spending such a great week together. From the walks to the artwork, a powerful asylum simulation game to our prayer times, everyone got stuck in with every activity and had the best time building relationships and reflecting on their St. Mary’s journey so far. We even learned a new Hungarian game that none of us will ever forget - shimmying our way around the main lounge with everything we had!

A huge thank you to the superb team at Castlerigg Manor and to Mr Webb & Miss Baxter for giving up their week to accompany us on what was a fantastic week!

For those of you in either Year 10 or Year 11 who enjoyed Castlerigg and want to go back, or for anyone who missed out on the school trip and would like the Castlerigg Experience, there is an open Advent Weekend from Friday 7th to Sunday 9th December. More information can be found at