Our Spring 2017 newsletter featured interesting articles about two former Hurstmere pupils and their continued success since leaving the school. 

Former pupils, who are now in higher education or have started their career, can be inspirational and relatable role models to our current boys. 

Hurstmere is always delighted to hear from former pupils and will be recognising and celebrating their varied talents and achievements with future articles.

Ronnie Richardson
Former student Ronnie Richardson has achieved rowing success in two major competitions in 2016. Rowing for Globe Rowing Club he was selected into the Junior quadruple scull team for the National Schools Regatta where he volunteered as “bow steers” for the boat, a position of great responsibility as he has to coxswain the boat guiding over the course. The competition took place at the Olympic Venue, Dorney Lake Eaton and Ronnie’s crew were crowned National Champions after winning the Kingston Cup. In 2016 the same crew were Silver medallists at the British Rowing National Junior Championships. In addition to this Ronnie has attended GB training camps and has also been invited to attend GB Junior Trials, we wish him every success with this.
Whilst at Hurstmere Ronnie was a quiet and unassuming boy and was not one to blow his own trumpet but it is clear that his dedication and single mindedness to training and achieving his goals has paid off, everyone at Hurstmere is extremely proud of his achievements.
Josh Scales
Josh Scales left Hurstmere in 2014 - he has completed a course at North West Kent College and, as a result of a partnership with the company BBA Reman, he was one of only four boys selected for a position at the company after extensive interviews. This is yet another success story for an ex-Hurstmere pupil.

Dr Robin Bunce (Class of 1990)
Bunce%2c Dr Robin (Picture 1)Robin Bunce studied at Hurstmere School between 1985 and 1990.  After leaving the school, he gained a first class degree in Politics and Government from Kent University and a PhD in the History of Political Thought from Cambridge University.  He writes about politics and culture, and has recently published Renegade: The Life and Times of Darcus Howe, with Bloomsbury. The book, which was written with Paul Field, is the first major history of the Black Power movement in Britain, and is due to become the basis of the feature film Mangrove Nine.  Robin advised Oscar Winner John Ridley on the history behind his script for his latest TV show Guerrilla.  He blogs for the Huffington Post on politics, and continues to teach and research at Cambridge.

Jack Playford (Class of 2014)
Playford%2c Jack.1 (2017)Whilst in Year 7 at Hurstmere, Jack began Kayaking at a club set up by one of his teachers, Mr Baston.   Jack is currently Under 21 Canoe Polo World Champion.
Jack became instantly obsessed with Kayaking and within a few months was training six times a week.  When it came to his GCSEs, he juggled studying with Kayaking and achieved well-deserved grades.  In 2015, age 17, Jack competed for Great Britain in the Canoe Polo European Championships and achieved a respectable 4th place, after being knocked out by the Germans.  His training, along with his team mates, was increased to 12 sessions a week.  The team became unstoppable in the 2016 World Championship season, comfortably reaching the finals…against the Germans, and their superior fitness beat their opponent’s strength.
Jack became top goal scorer (28 goals in 10 games) and has now been signed by an Italian team, with a trip to China planned for Summer 2017.
On a personal level, Jack feels that going from a chubby Hurstmere Year 7 to standing on a podium, with his best friends, in Sicily with a gold medal around his neck is all thanks to Mr Baston setting up the club back in 2010.   Of course Jack will recommend Kayaking!

Sam Nunn (Class of 2013)
Nunn%2c SamAfter leaving Hurstmere in 2013 and gaining A Levels at Chis & Sid, Sam was awarded a rowing scholarship at the University of Washington.   Sam achieved numerous successes in rowing and athletics, including a bronze medal in the British Championships Single Scull, gold in the Ghent International Regatta 4x and he became silver medallist in the U23 High School Crash B's Indoor World Championships. Now studying at the Oxford Brookes University, Sam rowed against Cambridge and Oxford in the boat race warm-up fixtures.  Following a series of injuries last year, Sam is back to fitness and will be taking part in the Henley Royal Regatta this summer and aims to represent GB at either the U23 European or World Championships.  We wish Sam all the very best for the future.

Ryan Ball (Class of 2009)

Ryan had thoroughly enjoyed his time at Hurstmere and would love to have stayed, given the opportunity.  He admits that whilst he was never very academic, Hurstmere taught him a lot of life and social skills which have helped him get to where he is today. Ryan always had the ambition of becoming a Fireman, but realising he might have to wait a few years because of their recruiting policies, he took an apprenticeship in tiling.  This, he felt, could be his trade as a second job to do between a Fireman’s shift work. Five years later and an experienced tiler, Ryan was still keen to work in a public service role so joined the Police - and has never looked back.  He completed three years as a PC in Lambeth, serving on the Response Team of a Counter-Terrorism Unit.  He passed the National Investigator’s Exam and applied to become a Detective. Currently Ryan is with the Met.Police in the CID Team, Lewisham.  He says that it is amazing fun, no two days are the same and the best thing about his job is helping a victim of a serious crime.
Of course, the tiling still comes in useful on his rest days!

Billy Ramdhan (Class of 2012)
After leaving Hurstmere in 2012, Billy studied Sports Science at Blackfen School Sixth Form.  His success there has led him to study Sports Coaching Science at St Mary’s University.  Hurstmere remembers Billy well for being a keen sportsman and he has not changed!  He has represented the South East of England Student Rugby League Squad, is a first team player in St Mary’s Rugby League (playing in the BUCS National Premier South of England competition) and after being Vice-President of the St Mary’s Rugby League in 2015-16, he has now made President for the 2016-17 season.  Billy was also a Volunteer at the London Youth Games 2017, as well as for the London Rugby League Foundation and Richmond Schools Sports Partnership.

Euon Brown (Class of 2003)
When Euon left Hurstmere in 2003 he signed a contract to join QPR's Professional Youth Football Team.  Euon was also offered an England U16s school boys trial, but injury halted his opportunity.  Following his recovery and an offer from Grenada's U17s Youth Team, Euon played for their U17 team through to U21 team. At a professional senior level, Euon had stints in Sweden, Finland and Denmark before ultimately being called to represent Grenada at Senior International level in 2009 at the CONCACAF Gold Cup.  Unfortunately, after succumbing to a number of injuries at a young age Euon suffered continuously and he consequently had to retire from professional football in 2012, after failing to recover from a lower back issue. During Euon's stop-start football career he developed a love for music and managed to achieve a top 5 Channel U (now Channel AKA) hit called Snares and Kicks.  The song also featured on the first ever Channel U The Album CD. Since retiring from football and chilling with music, Euon has moved away from the entertainment industries, and on to find a career in mentoring, programme and project management.

Jamie Day (Class of 1992)

Jamie left Hurstmere at the end of Year 9 to attend the FA National School in Lilleshall which encouraged the best young footballers to develop in the sport, whilst ensuring they had a rounded education.  Whilst there Jamie played for the England youth teams and was then signed as a trainee for Arsenal, where he earned a professional deal in 1998 under Arsene Wenger. Jamie joined AFC Bournemouth, in League 1, for a fee of £20,000 in March 1999.  His first goal for the club came the following 1999-2000 season in a 2-0 away win against Cambridge United.  In the summer of 2001 Jamie moved to Conference National side Dover Athletic, followed by Welling United in the summer of 2004.  He remained at Welling until May 2007, when he returned to the Conference National signing for Grays Athletic, where he stayed until moving to Dartford FC in August 2008. Whilst playing football, Jamie achieved his UEFA A Coaching Badge and assisted with transforming the fortunes of Welling United before moving to Gillingham FC in January 2017 as the First Team Coach.

Tom Gills (Class of 2012)
The Brit School was Tom's first stop after leaving Hurstmere where he achieved a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Creative Media Production.  Tom joined ITV in 2014 as a Runner and in 2015 became a Researcher for ITV’s Loose Women, The X-Factor, This Morning and Saturday Night Takeaway. At ITV Tom was known for his creative flare, being a fantastic and enthusiastic member of the team – always looking for ways to improve his skills and knowledge. In 2016 Tom joined Fremantle Media UK where he is currently working as a Casting Researcher on a BBC One prime-time show called Pitch Battle. 

James Bennett (Class of 2013)
James went to Wilmington Grammar Sixth Form, after leaving Hurstmere in 2013. He studied English Literature, Media Studies and Physical Education at A level, as well as being House Sports Captain and competing for their Men’s Football 1st Team.  James is now studying Sports Marketing at Coventry University and has become the founding President of their Dodgeball Club, achieving 61 members in their first year. In addition to his studies, James has worked in recruitment for The ICC and with Groningen University in Holland and is considering a 12-month work placement with in Windsor.  He will then return to Coventry to complete his final year, before studying for his Masters. James believes that none of his achievements would have been possible without the incredible support and guidance that he received at Hurstmere.

Jonathan Salmon (Class of 2012)
After leaving Hurstmere in 2012, Jonathan went to North West Kent College to study Sports Coaching and Fitness.  Jonathan has continued his love of dance and is currently, in the Amateur category, ranked No.9 in the UK, No.44 in Europe and 150th in the World. Jonathan has competed in many competitions, including the Amateur Latin Open, Kent and Surrey under 21 Amateurs and the ISTD (Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing). As well as competing, Jonathan now teaches Ballroom and Latin Dancing to children and adults.  He is also a popular fitness and exercise teacher in the local area.

Jamie Moreland (Class of 2016)
It was whilst at Hurstmere that Jamie discovered his passion for filmmaking, media and news.  His productions started in Year 9 and continued until he left in 2015, when he joined The Brit School. Jamie is studying Film and Media Production and is the Assistant Director of the Student Council and the Series Producer of the college's flagship entertainment show, The BRIT Live.  Outside of his studies Jamie can be seen wherever and whenever there is a news story to be captured - from Soccer Saturday to Sports Relief, Parliament and Sky TV studios, the list is endless! Jamie says that his time at Hurstmere has given him the strong base to start his career which, we are sure, will continue to rise.

Phil O'Kane (Class of 2009)
After leaving Hurstmere, Phil went to North West Kent College to study Sports Science.  He planned to become a Physiotherapist but as he had been a talented snooker player from a young age, this took over. Although Phil represented England until the age of 17 and played for Kent until age 21, playing in professional tournaments meant he could no longer play for county and country.   He was crowned Kent Amateur Snooker Champion in 2015 and 2017. Phil has played some of the main names on the snooker circuit – Ronnie O’Sullivan, John Higgins and Judd Trump to name a few - in events including The Wuxi Classic and The Australian Open.  In 2016 he finished third in the World Amateur List, missing his professional tour card by one match. As well as competing, Phil is a Snooker coach and also provides marketing support for with a cue manufacturer.

Sachin K. Patel (Class of 1997)

Sachin attended Hurstmere from 1992 to 1997 and was always part of every sports team - football, cricket, basketball and athletics.  Whilst Sachin went to Orpington College and achieved A levels in Mathematics, Graphical Communication and Sports Studies, he is happy to admit that he did not flourish academically but stayed true to sport. Whilst on holiday in the USA in 1999 Sachin took up a trial to play football at Augusta State University.  Injury cut-short his football career so he decided to study and in 2002 graduated with BSc Computer Science and BSc Mathematics.  After working at the Medical College of GA, Sachin returned to the UK to study at Oxford where he gained a Masters in Bioinformatics, a new field of study related to Human Genome. Following his Oxford graduation in 2006, Sachin returned to the USA and worked for a financial company developing software to file on-line income taxes.  He also founded a software company called where, at the height of its activity, he had 20 employees and a portfolio of $1 million.  Since 2012 Sachin has worked as a Faculty Research Instructor at the Medical University of South Carolina, where he is responsible for data management and software programming for health technology applications.  In 2014 Sachin founded, and is currently running, a mobile health company called Patient Guided Health Solutions, LLC. Sachin was a ECB & MCC Professional Cricket Coach from 1997-2000 and has been a UEFA Professional Soccer Coach since 1998, which he is still heavily involved in within his local community.  Sachin was keen to mention that Mr Jones and other Hurstmere PE staff were a huge part of his upbringing and were supportive mentors in many ways. 

Andrew Priston (Class of 1993)

Andy was at Hurstmere from 1988 to 1993, after which he studied A levels in Business Studies, Accountancy and Sport Sciences at Orpington College.  From Orpington he went to Loughborough University and achieved a BSc in Management Science. After leaving Uni in 1999 Andy joined Financial Futures as a Trader specialising in Short-Term Interest Rates, Government Bonds and Equity Indexes.  Among his many successes, Andy has run the Montreal branch of CFT Financials, has been a Member of the Chicago Board of Trade and was single-handedly responsible for a major percentage of the Chicago's Future Markets.  Andrew is one of the most successful traders in the world, trading between £25,000 and £300,000 contracts in a day.  He set up his own company in 2014, 'Priston Futures Trading Limited', with its headquarters in London and is currently living between England and Canada.  We can understand why he has the nickname of ‘Braveheart’. 

Connor Wood (Class 2012) 
Following my five years at Hurstmere I studied Chemistry, PE and Sociology at Blackfen Sixth Form.  I have since achieved BTEC Level 2 and 3 courses in Childcare, during which time I completed an Apprenticeship at a local Bexley primary school.  This school then offered a full-time permanent position as a Teaching Assistant and I have been lucky enough to work with children of all age groups, throughout the school.   I help run a number of extra-curricular clubs and activities, which I thoroughly enjoy. My love of sport, particularly golf, continued throughout Hurstmere and beyond.  I have been a member of Birchwood Park for six years and I have been Competition Secretary since 2016.  I have won six majors during that time, including the Masters in 2012 when I set a new course record that still stands today and the Singles Knockout in 2014. I finished 15th (out of 120) in the 2017 EnglandGolf tournament, at Sonning Golf Club, and qualified for the National Final in August at Woodhall Spa, the home of EnglandGolf.