This week is quite clearly my Christmas treat to myself as I seem to be spending most of my time at my favourite schools! After Monday at the lovely Dunster, Tuesday found me back at Parkfield School in Taunton. I was warmly welcomed back by Mr Sides again, who was his usual charming pleasant self. This school really is somewhere special. The staff are all lovely, generous to the extreme and really switched on to their pupils. The two main class teachers had dressed up in full Tudor togs and looked beautiful indeed! The group, which was about 65 children, gathered in the main hall for my opening talk. As ever, this little school produces some of the brightest sparkiest children you could ever want to meet. They ALL got the jokes. They ALL had great Tudor knowledge, and they all just wanted more, more, more! We had a truly special day. It is even the little things at Parkfield that make the place special. When I was first unloading in the morning I discovered one of my jousting targets had a slightly lose top. This is immediately whisked away from me by the caretaker who fixes it in no time at all. I have cups of tea lavished on me all day, and not just during breaks! My lunch is not only bought for me, but it is also collected for me from Tesco's during a Monsoon! And at the end of the day the children all become my roadies and help me load the props back into the Henry-mobile! Fabulous. The afternoon was particularly fun, with loads of laughs and jokes around the stocks and a rip-roaring joust. Yet again the boys triumphed. Perhaps they have finally perfected the way of winning. The press came and took some photos and even one of the Governors had come in on his day off work to see how Henry was doing! Parkfield, you are wonderful and I salute a premier school!
I have had today at leisure (if that is how you can describe going shopping with a 3 year old) before tomorrow when I am up at the crack of dawn and heading off to Sutton in Surrey for a third return visit to St Cecillia's Roman Catholic School. And after that? The weekend has Father Christmas written all over it at Leeds Castle. See you there!
The picture above this time is also from the Christmas bash at Taunton Castle and shows the King this time just testing the cooking skills of the wenches on the hog roast. Just don't tell his Rabbi.