Event raises £43,000 for Bangladeshi bursaries and Bedales Sports Pavilion

At the end of term, Bedales held its first combined fundraising Summer Party in a marquee in the grounds for parents across its three schools: Dunannie, Dunhurst and Bedales. The evening comprised student music and magic, an auction, dinner supplied by Madhuban (of Liss) and an entertaining talk by broadcaster and former Bedales student Peter Grimsdale.

Organised by the Bedales Parents’ Association, the event raised £43,000 for a new Sports Pavilion, dedicated to the memory of Old Bedalian Sam Banks, a keen and talented cricketer who died at the age of 20 whilst travelling in India. 25% of the funds raised go to The Sam Banks Memorial Fund to provide bursaries for Bangladeshi students from low income backgrounds to study photography at Pathshala South Asia media Academy in Dhaka.  The Banks family decided on this initiative as Sam had been accepted on a place to study Film and Television Production at the London College of Communication when he returned from his travels.

The fundraising auction was expertly run by Jonathan Pratt, TV auctioneer and MD of Bellmans. Donated by members of the school community and local businesses, auction lots ranged from a tour of Rolls Royce and tickets to the Goodwood Revival Meeting, to a week’s work experience with Vintage TV and a stay at a beautiful family villa in Barbados. On the night, the combination of great entertainment by Bedales students, some very moving personal recollections of Sam, and a clear desire from guests to have fun and throw their support behind the event produced a special atmosphere and an amazing result from the live auction.

The Sam Banks Pavilion will provide a multi-sport facility supporting tennis, hockey, athletics, rounders, cricket and football, and will also be available to the local community. Bedales students will help construct the new building.

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Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge

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