The Shell Speak out: first impressions

As this is the House’s first blog post in its revived format on the new website, it seems fitting that it should be the voices of Hilton’s youngest yeargroup that are heard.  Here are this year’s Shell with their first impressions of the College. 


My experiences of my first week at Ardingly College were above and beyond what I pictured it to be, it was an action-packed week full of laughs, meeting new friends and teachers, and some focused studying (honest!). This includes a blast at the Ardingly reservoir, and loads of sport. All the classes were encouraging for my future GCSE exams and I have the confidence they will help me get my results. I have loved meeting loads of new boys and girls from not just my year but years above as well. This past week was just a glimpse of my future at the school, and it’s an exciting one.

Noah R.

I was greeted straight away by Mr Walters as I walked in the door and we were instantly put into lots of challenges and tasks we had to do in every day school life. We had to do lots of exciting team building activities with mixed group of people in our year. it was good how our year spent the first day and a half getting to know each other and the school. Our first lesson on the second day was quickly followed by the reflection of our weekly mass.

Our first experience in the senior school sports training was also very fun as we got put straight into teams to play matches and test our skill.

Daniel B.

I remember being very excited and also a bit nervous at the same time. I came to the house and went to my bedroom where I unpacked all my belongings. After a brief farewell to my parents I began my first few days. It was quite confusing having to remember where all the classrooms were. However I surprised myself because I actually managed to find my way around this giant maze reasonably quickly. All the people in the house were very supportive of all of the new boys and helped us to get to classes and showing us all these little tips for surviving the first week. The days are long but I like being a boarder as it means I have flexibility what I want to do and I don’t need to be picked up at a certain time so I can throw myself into different things. My first week of Ardingly was a very enjoyable experience and I believe the next year will remain the same.

James S.

My first week in Hilton has been great. I have settled in well and already knew some of the prep school boys which helped during the day. I enjoy the freedom, independence and amazing facilities. I’m getting good sleep which helps during day. I also know some of the prefects, and they’ve been really kind. Most importantly, I think I’m making good use of my prep time.

Alex J.

Boarding life and football was pretty exciting in the first week at Ardingly. I have never boarded before except for summer camps. It is a very different experience compared to living at home. When you live at home, your parents help you most of the times, but here, I have to be more independent and take up more responsibilities. The first week was pretty nice. Playing football here is pretty exciting because Ardingly is well known for football. It means that I get to learn and play football with some of the best players and coaches in England. Moving to an environment made me a bit nervous. I am not a very sociable person, so meeting a whole lot of new people is a pretty big challenge. But I made it through and met many nice friends and teachers. The first week was great overall; people here are amazing and I am looking forward to the next few years here.

Simon L.

I would say last week was quite an adventure. It went from emotions to happiness. The hardest thing about last week was definitely when my parents left because I’ve spent every night since I was born with my parents. It was quite a change and the days went past I had more and more friends and then here I am sitting at my desk looking back on why I was upset and wondering why! This school already has taught me to be independent, happy and to enjoy it. Even though school is boring sometimes I’m still know I’m enjoying every step of it. When I was told I was going to Ardingly College and I’m was in Hilton I got the sense that I should start the new me. I’m very grateful for what every one has done for me to help me through the struggles of CE and here I am at the school I dreamt of for years of going to.

Hamish H.

After turning up eagerly early on my first day at Ardingly I had slight excitement but also anxiety in my stomach as I stepped into the house of Hilton; I remember the amazing welcome people would give when you met for the first time. They were all very warming and that is what has been so great at Ardingly. Quickly I settled in and before I knew it I was Pico sailing in the middle of the reservoir having a laugh with newly made friends from many different houses. This was followed by a rather intense football training session engaging me even more to my new school. A week has already flew by and it feels great to be part of Ardingly College.

George Gs.

In the first week, on Tuesday and Thursday I liked the introduction to the school and to how everything worked. I also liked the fact that there were no lessons on the first two days. It was very nice to start the year when we weren’t stressed!  On Saturday I loved the water sports particularly, it was an amazing way to get to know people, and introduced to me sailing for the first time and I thought it was brilliant all the way up to the bit 30 seconds before we got back to dry land so I was drenched all the way back to house!  Sunday was I nice late start and a good day in general.  In all, it’s been a good start all round!

Hugh M.

My first week at Ardingly was very nerve-wracking, but I managed to make friends quickly, which made me more confident going into the first days. I was also worried that I may of forgotten some of my knowledge over the summer, but after a few days it came flooding back. I am really looking forward to making new friends and I can’t wait for the cricket season. I really enjoyed the water sports at the Reservoir, as it helped me make more friends. It has been a great first couple of weeks, that I have thoroughly enjoyed.

George Gt.

On the first day I was very nervous and not really looking forward to it, but after the first few hours I now really enjoy it and actually look forward to going to school! I have never boarded but its really fun and I love it here. I love the sport and it’s played to a very high standard, I am also looking forward to my first football match representing the school. I’ve made loads of friends and people here are really nice and helpful!

I have really enjoyed the first week and look forward to the rest of the year.

Ollie S.