Massing at Midnight

By Weenson Oo on 14:33

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On a moderately cold and damp Saturday night, faithful worshippers make their way to a brightly-lit Westminster Cathedral for the celebration of Midnight Mass, a feast to mark the birth of Christ our Saviour.

At the conclusion of mass, several make their way to observe and pray at the crib which on this occasion was a modest affair, much in the way as Jesus himself was born into this world.


As those gathered began to journey home, they were met by Archbishop Vincent Nichols in the Cathedral Piazza. A good shepherd tending to his flock making this a blessed and memorable occasion.



Merry Christmas Everyone




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Westminster Cathedral prepares for Gaudete Sunday

By Weenson Oo on 17:49

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The season of Advent originated as a fast of forty days in readiness for Christmas though nowadays Christians are not by practice, expected to enter a period of fasting. As in Lent however, Advent remains a penitential season. Purple is worn as a colour for instance. For Gaudete Sunday which is the third Sunday in the season, there is a relaxation of the penitential observances as more focus is placed on  the joyful anticipation of the birth of Christ. Gaudete means Rejoice so Gaudete Sunday fittingly is a day of bright lights greeting the early worshippers seen here as they prepare to join in the celebration of mass.



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What would Jesus do?

By Weenson Oo on 10:41

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60 days have passed since the Occupy London Stock Exchange camp was established. With the location of it’s initial target being in privately-owned Paternoster Square which had been sealed off by the police, the camp was set up in the vicinity of St Paul’s Cathedral as a peaceful demonstration against economic inequality, social injustice and corporate greed along with other inconsistencies in the society of today. Initially the cathedral was happy for the right to protest to be exercised peacefully outside the building to the extent of asking the police to leave the area. Then within a two week period the cathedral closed it’s doors on the grounds of health and safety concerns surrounding the camp only to reopen them a week later when these issues had been addressed. Disagreements as to how the continued presence of the camp should be handled resulted in the resignations of the canon Dr Giles Fraser, the part-time chaplain and finally the dean of the cathedral in a show of dissent against the cathedral’s intention to join the City of London Corporation in a forced eviction of the protestors. Since then and while the Corporation continued to adopt a position to remove the camp, the cathedral had distanced itself from a position of actively seeking to remove the protestors given that the debate promoted by the demonstration appears to have support from leading members of the Church of England including the Archbishop of Canterbury.




Opinion on where the cathedral actually stands though is divided with the latest reports it has provided the City of London Corporation a dossier complaining of graffiti, soiling of the grounds of the cathedral and alcohol-fuelled noise levels. The statement provided also noted that more than half of the school parties originally scheduled to visit the building had been cancelled owing to safety concerns. The cathedral is believed to be frustrated that attention appears to be focusing more on the camp itself than the message it hopes to deliver and it’s officials have said that it has proposed other ways by which the protestors could continue their demonstration and added that it would consider providing a similar witness statement backing up the cause of the camp if requested. In the meantime the cathedral and it's surroundings remain a constant draw to visitors to the city, those who work locally who along with the protestors form a part of the tapestry of life in St Paul's Churchyard.




Quite where all the changes of direction with officials of the cathedral lead is a little confusing but each day that passes brings us all closer to the first major celebration of the church’s year, that being the anniversary of the birth of Christ. What would Jesus have made of the persistent irregularities of today’s financial system and the manner by which it remains unchecked. Christ even as a young boy raised questions with the elders at the synagogue. If believers are to follow his example, should searching enquiries not be made of the state of society today? On the matter of the apparent impasse in the City during this season of Advent, the words of the written message on one of the original signs of the camp are sure to echo continuously amongst attentive consciences while the elements of this real life story play out in the arena where those who seek to pray and those who come for profit go about their daily schedules,  “ What would Jesus do? "







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A Triumph For All Reasons Part 2

By Weenson Oo on 01:55

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The supporting cast of Noughts and Crosses provided backup to the principal players that was second to none.

The McGregors as Noughts in the drama were members of the under-privileged class of society.  Ryan the patriarch holds on to the tradition of being the man of the house, Jude the elder of the two boys with a jaundiced outlook of society seeking change through strife, Lynette  gentle and troubled who is probably closest to Callum and Meggie, the backbone of the family trying to hold on to and making sense of everything in an environment where at times right and reason had become secondary.





Kamal Hadley is a prominent politician heading for high office but for the moment he heads  a broken family having accused his wife Jasmine  of infidelity. She has now taken to drink as an escape from the life's woes. But  for Sephy and Minerva, perhaps hope for renewed sibling joy. Kamal has plans of his own which do not include his family once the elections are over but for now the problems of society and the family's troubles come to him.





All these elements had been brought together by drama tutors Gemma Heald and Helen Coney who at the end of the final show were presented with a floral and some edible tributes by the cast.




It was a production not to be missed and quite the best school play I have ever seen. I realise school days for me were quite some time ago but I really do not recall having seen anything as memorable as Noughts and Crosses. For those who had the misfortune of not being able to catch it, I know of a man who kept a video camera running through the second show.......... Alas, not me I hasten to add.


Further images may be found here


Enjoy my friends!!




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A Triumph For All Reasons Part 1

By Weenson Oo on 18:12

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Noughts and Crosses was  tale of a segregated society and the pressures it bore on a young couple who despite their roots in opposing camps were to meet and fall in love amidst the disapproval of almost everyone in their respective circles. The Middle School production which culminated in shows on consecutive evenings last week too had it's own tale to tell since despite a relatively short time over which to prepare,  the cast and production staff ensured that a gripping, moving and professionally-executed show was presented to appreciative audiences on both nights.

Alice Tow was superlative in providing a narrative for each developing scene and took to her role in the lead character of Sephy Hadley a Cross, with determined flair and verve.




In Charlie Whitehead was Callum McGregor, Sephy's beau and a Nought, seen here with Lynette his on-stage sibling, the perfect opposite for our stage heroine, a figure who was to be torn between love, family loyalty and finally faced with a choice no young life should be asked to make.




Both Sephy and Callum would also have to endure turmoil at home, all of which pressures I'm sure would make almost any young teenager want to run away to boarding school!! Even there it seems the divisions in life would visit their unwelcome attentions on our teenagers in love.

Tragedy, mayhem and infidelity in the home along with the dark forces of social unrest follow Sephy and Callum throughout the path of their young lives when at last hope and love arise from an unexpected betrayal  though not before  a final calamity when Callum has to choose between saving his own life and ensuring one for his young child.




Noughts and Crosses was a triumph for many reasons, all of which had to do with people. The people on stage several of whom assumed multiple roles and those off it who directed and provided valuable technical support. In them would be found the root to the final triumph of Sephy and Callum.






To be continued.....

Learning By Experience

By Weenson Oo on 15:11

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As part of experiencing a less-cumbersome version of a United Nations debate, students from Year 9 at Ellesmere College each representing a different country, were assigned the task of producing a policy on the issue of child labour as part of a focus on the world body's work at making humanitarian decisions.


Following several weeks of preparing their allocated country's policy, the students had to present the views of their individual nations prior to making alliances with the representatives from other countries, the aim being to have their resolutions passed at the assembly of member states. Thus there was much discussion


engaging debate


while alliances or highlighting differences


and voting,



prior to the final plenary meeting which was held in Big School


where under scrutiny by representatives of all the gathered nations,


final attempts were made to have resolutions adopted before the assembly of members.





It's fun even if it isn't always games, at SY12 9AB



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Armed and Extremely Dangerous....

By Weenson Oo on 10:32

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You better believe it!!!



More here and to folllow

Now it's time to get down to more viewing and shooting :)




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Long Hard Climb

By Weenson Oo on 21:23

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The match against Rydal wasn't  looking very promising. We weren't batting very well and unsurprisingly the opposition seemed to be getting the better of us. I had intended on shooting some batting today but the opportunities were far and few in between. There was also a chill in the air which made staying out less than pleasant. But then the first team started to dig their heels in


and as the afternoon wore on, began to pull out all the stops to bowl out Rydal


As spirits were on the rise, the game began to turn. Remember " it ain't over till the fat lady sings ".


So May 14 turned out to be memorable day after all as following a determined fightback,  Ellesmere's 1st XI walked tall by the close of play.



Please remember you can enlarge these images by clicking on them. More pictures on the match against Rydal here


Can't wait to catch you in June friends. Enjoy your half term.

Out here on my own

By Weenson Oo on 15:30

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You may be surrounded by teammates, onlookers, well-wishers and the opposition at times doesn't  feel far away enough but once out there you're on your own. Your hands tightly gripping the bat, your eyes and mind focussed on that ball coming at you. And then as it is hurled, making it's trajectory in your direction, you know your moment has come and everything rests on you.





May 11, 2011 - Ellesmere U14 v Oswestry, another home match, another home win

When the going gets tough

By Weenson Oo on 12:00

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With energy held in check since the postponement of the competition two weeks ago, the anticipated pulling forces of the annual House Tug of War were finally unleashed on The Terraces during the sunshine and intermittent rain of last Thursday. Muscle power was on show but to no avail


since with an unbeaten run, Wakeman-Lambert went on to prove that when the going gets tough, the toughest simply get going



That was such a lot of fun friends. Sadly, it was over all too soon so do please let me know when you're doing it again. 

Three Choirs Concert - The Event

By Weenson Oo on 11:32

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Roger Paul, seen here with the chapel choir of the college conducts a successful rehearsal in the afternoon


prior to the great summer musical extravaganza at Ellesmere which began in the evening and showcased outstanding performances by singers and instrumentalists drawn from the vast pool of talent at the college beginning with the choir from Lower School led by Rebecca Paul.


The audience were then treated to a rendition of three songs by Gaenor Ellis who was accompanied by Roger on the piano


Then at the helm of The Scholar's Ensemble, the walls of big school reverberated to the
sound of Rossini's William Tell Overture


before the full orchestra unleashed it's might and prowess, performing music from Star Wars, The  Lord of the Rings and Eye of the Tiger to the obvious enjoyment of all present



With much on offer in a packed program, Big School and it's adjacent corridor were cramped with Ladies in Waiting


and their gentlemen counterparts of the Ellesmere College Choral Society



It was another triumphant evening of excellent music making as Roger once again took to the keyboard with an arrangement of Somebody to Love



The evening concluded with a medley from The Phantom of the Opera with all three choirs being on stage




My advise to everyone is not to miss The 3 Choirs 2012!!!


Enjoy my friends



More images here and here

Little League Players Battle The Rain

By Weenson Oo on 10:04

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The Year 8 Rugby League Festival, a brainchild of Alex Murphy was held jointly it seems with the coming of summer showers at Parry's Field on Thursday May 12th. Ellesmere battled under trying conditions as may be seen here


showing combative spirit throughout the afternoon


aided by strategy meetings


creative planning


and support at the highest levels