Creative arts, D of E, marathons and penalty shoot outs

Braving the rain


Last weekend saw the DofE Silver practice expedition go out between Friday afternoon and Sunday. And the practice couldn’t of possibly got more difficult for the students as they encountered constant downpours on the Saturday and walked through torrential if shorter rainstorms on the Sunday!

In terms of character development and preparation for their Qualifying Expedition it couldn’t of been much more challenging!  We had three teams go out made up of 12 year 11 students and 3 year 12.
First night was a short walk from Hearhfield to the camp site at Teigngrace. A nice, serene and easy introduction to their expedition.

The Saturday provided more challenges as the students woke up to heavy rain on their tents, testing their tent setting up skills in terms of staying dry. Mr Brett and Mr Adams delayed their start time to avoid walking in constant rain but even so the majority of their hike from near Starcross, across Haldon, through Kingsteignton back to the campsite was very wet! However some good navigation and teamwork meant the students remained in good spirits despite the elements.

With a dryer return to camp and a hot meal inside them the students checked their route for Sunday. And after a warm breakfast cooked on their trangia stoves the students set off on route through Stover Country Park, towards Bickington, around Liverton and finishing near to Heathfield again.

A fantastic achievement over a difficult weekend, so roll in on the qualifying expedition during the first weekend of Half Term.

Well done to the following:vNathan Bayliss, Seb Grute, Finn Drew, Dimitar Dinev, Harvey Bates, Alex Green, Gareth Mufford, Sam Foley, Milla Schwarz, Abi Jones, Emanuel Korolyk-Markiewicz, Emma Harrison, Archie Hodgson-Hunt, Elizabeth Cameron, Will Bevan.




Creative Arts Update


Nothing But Thieves

Our sixth form music performance students headed to Plymouth Pravillions after school on Thursday to see the English rock band, Nothing But Thieves, supported by Airwaves and Yonaka. For all of the students, it was the first live music event they have been to since the lockdown began. It’s been particularly tough for our performance students throughout this time so we were delighted to be able to give them this opportunity. They have returned to school totally inspired, quite tired, and full of ideas to integrate into their own performances!



Year 13 Music Master Classes


Our Y13 Music Performance students have been put through their paces for their Performance Technique exams this half term. We are passionate about making learning as authentic as possible in our music department and have been working with a top-session musician from London. Anthony has been running zoom masterclasses with each of our students, critiquing them on their performances, and running university audition preparation sessions.


Welcome Y12 Musicians!

We are delighted to welcome our latest cohort of Y12 musicians; there are so many of them! One of the highlights of the year so far has been being able to mix year groups. This means we have been able to bring our KS3 music classes in to watch the older students perform. Here is one of the Y12 bands performing to a Y8 class. At the end of the performance, the Y8s gave some very insightful feedback to the performers. Every student said they had been inspired to learn a musical instrument after watching the performances.


LAMDA Exam Success!


Congratulations to the following student who all took graded LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art) exams and all passed with distinction! Pictured left to right; Kole Gjikolaj (Grade 3 distinction), William Bevan (Grade 2 distinction), Katie Packer (Grade 3 distinction), Lizzy Cameron (Grade 2 distinction). Not pictured Bea Corline (Grade 2 distinction).

Y11 Drama Exams


We are very proud of our Y11 Drama students who completed their first official drama exam; Acting for Camera. Students were required to perform to the camera and then take live direction from Mr Hills whilst the camera was still rolling. We are extremely proud of how all of the students did.

Year 9 Music Technology

The year 9 Music Technology students have made a fantastic start to the year creating compositions for a BMW advert. Students were tasked with sourcing and syncing sound effects for the ad in addition to producing original music. The following video is from Gemma Ford’s who produced excellent work for this project.


Instrumental Lessons

Instrumental lessons have now begun with timetables available for all students. Students are strongly encouraged to accept our invitation to the instrumental lessons google classroom where all announcements regarding lessons are made. Through the classroom students will get a daily reminder of which lessons are taking place and when. With Covid restrictions lifted, students will not be collected for instrumental lessons but required to make their own way to the music department in good time to ensure that they maximise their one-to-one time.


Identity in Art


Students in years 10 and 11 working on the theme of “Identity” were asked to create a portrait using only two pieces of paper, one white and the other black. It allowed students the opportunity to explore a visual problem and to demonstrate creative endeavour. What emerged from this exercise was a range of highly individual and imaginative outcomes.





For the first time Torquay Academy’s RAF Cadets were able to fire the Cadet Air Rifle.

Marksmanship goes a long way back in the history of CCF Cadets and is one of our most popular activities. Think you can concentrate on distant targets and fire with consistent accuracy? It’s not easy. It requires focus, concentration, discipline and a very steady hand.

To begin, the cadets learn safe weapons handling and move on to a Weapons Handling Test before they are allowed to fire the rifle. Once complete, firing is always done lying on your stomach (the prone position) at static targets. The cadets demonstrated great discipline and respect for the rifle which resulted in some amazing target scores.

Well done to all the cadets who managed to fire the Cadet Rifle.

As we progress through the RAF CCF syllabus we work toward getting the cadets on Ranges that come in different shapes and sizes but all are in controlled conditions with full training on any weapon that they handle – safety is our top priority. To start with they will be firing at targets that are fairly close – around 25m away. As the cadet advances through weapons and your skill builds, they will fire at targets 100m or more away.




Battle of the brains


Miss Risk has organised a fantastic house battle of the brains this week.

Hnet-image (5)



Marathon duo


Mr Christophers and Miss Pappin both successfully completed marathons this weekend.  Mr Christophers travelled to London to take part in the London Marathon, whilst Miss Pappin was able to stay closer to home as she took part in the Virtual London Marathon.  Miss Pappin also completed the Brighton Marathon just three weeks ago.  Congratulations to them both on this incredible achievement.



House of the Week


This week’s featured house is Darwin. Darwin is having a particularly successful start to the academic year with 7D being the winners of the house point competition several weeks running.

The colour for Darwin is red and the house has always been a very popular one-not only due to the colour but because everybody has some knowledge of Charles Darwin whom the house is named after.
Darwin’s house leader is Doctor Hocking who is so proud of Darwin’s current success that he dons a red suit every Friday. Darwin’s house captain is Mrs Lynch who is in charge of 7D; Mrs Lynch is incredibly competitive.

As referenced earlier, Darwin house takes its name from Charles Darwin -the famous biologist, naturalist and geologist. Darwin is of course best known for his Theory of Evolution and his book, The Origin of the Species, in which he proposed that all humans are descended from apes. Whilst Darwin’s theories are empirically accepted today, at the time of his work’s publication he faced major criticism from those who believed his views contradicted the words of The Bible.

Some lesser known facts about Charles Darwin are: He appeared on the English £10 note from 2000-2017. At school he had the nickname “Gas “, as he was exceptionally good at Chemistry and finally that he went on a life changing voyage on The HMS Beagle visiting five continents from 1831-1836

Charles Darwin lived for a time at Meadfoot in Torquay.

The motto for Darwin house is Be Industrious. This means to work incredibly hard. We expect all students in Torquay Academy to be industrious and to make the most of their educational opportunities. Additionally, an industrious Darwin student may take an exceptional interest in their Science lessons. Doctor Hocking himself is a scientist. Furthermore Darwin students could study animals and their different habitats by combining Science with Geography.

Our featured students of the week are Riley Calland and Kacper Piwowar from 7D. Riley has been awarded the Homework Star of the Week and told me how he managed to achieve this by making sure he did his homework one day in advance to give him time to seek teachers’ advice should he encounter any problem. Riley also advised that it was a good idea to get his homework finished before he went to play football and how he would spread tasks out over the weekend. Kacper- who achieved the Darwin Star of the Week is displaying his red Darwin star with pride. He relayed how he had been commended by both Mrs Lynch and Doctor Hocking due to his punctuality and excellent efforts in all subjects.  I am sure you will agree that both boys look very smart in their Darwin colours.


Windmill Centre


Year 13 triple HSC pupils visited their former teacher Mr Tilley’s Turning heads project at the Windmill Centre in Hele earlier in the week. This allowed them to evaluate a youth work project for one of their coursework assignments. The pupils particularly enjoyed meeting all the clients, discussing the activities on offer and the benefits of such an approach to the individuals but also the wider community. Alongside this, they specifically looked at the purposes of monitoring, evaluation and tracking progress when working with young people. Overall it was an extremely rewarding and invaluable afternoon, allowing the girls to gain a hands-on experience, which will be further enhanced by the opportunity of volunteering at the centre.





Fun Friday!

Year 7




Winner – Gracie-May Tolley

Year 9




Winner – Bradley Cook


Year 11


Winners Jett and Maddie



Team TA

All Change!

This week, it has been all change for the boys’ and girls’ curriculum in PE. The boys in Y7-9 have moved onto Rugby, whilst the girls in Years 7&8 have started their Netball lessons. Year 9 and 10 girls have commenced Table Tennis, Fitness, Gymnastics and Trampolining and the Y10 boys have been out on the astroturf enjoying football. The students in Year 11 have been continuing to follow their optional pathways of competitive sport, fitness or various sports in the sports hall. It has been fantastic to see the energy and enthusiasm from the students to discovering sports for the first time or reconnecting with sports that they haven’t played in a while.

Supercurricular clubs seem to be getting even busier, with students attending every evening in their droves. Some of the progress being made by the students in Table Tennis and Rugby, in particular, has been very impressive, and it is wonderful to see so many students enjoying themselves and utilising our exceptional facilities.

We are hopeful that more and more students join in each week with the PE & Sport department to have fun, compete and excel!

It has been a very successful week in terms of sports fixture results, with the Y11 boys’ football team recording an outstanding result last Friday in the National Cup. The Y10 boys’ football team also put on a stellar performance in front of a healthy home crowd on Wednesday, and not to be outdone, our Year 9 Netball team had a very impressive set of results in their Central Venue League fixture on Tuesday too. Our Year 7 and 8 Netball team had their first matches on Monday – well done to Miss Lewis and Miss Felton for working out how to keep the match going despite the awful weather! The Year 7 boys’ football team showed unbelievable character to come from 2 goals down to win their National Cup tie and finally, our First XI football team returned from their tough away game at Bridgwater College with a point after a 1-1 draw. Unfortunately, a couple of our rugby fixtures fell victim to Covid related issues at opposing schools, but they will be back out training next week in readiness for their upcoming matches.

Read the match reports below. Well done to everyone who has participated with or competed for Team TA this week, we are proud of your efforts!


Year 7/8 Netball


Year 9 Netball


The Year 9 Netball Academy travelled to Paignton this Tuesday to play in the Central Venue League against other schools from across South Devon.

The team of 12 girls all played brilliantly considering this was the first time they’d played together this season, winning 3 games, drawing 1 and losing 1.

Miss Lewis and the PE department are extremely proud of the girls who have a positive season ahead of them.

Congratulations to Evie Reece who was voted our player of the tournament.


The team of 12 were: Elise Pile, Daisy Bond, Tammy Westacott, Summer Connolly, Elspeth Herring, Emily Graham, Rosie Mahoney-Billis, Megan Sellick, Evie Reece, Maisy Green, Roberta Bankes-Fay, Ella McLachlan.


Year 10 Football

Year 10 beat local rivals Cuthbert Mayne in the second round of the National Cup. TA dominated the game from start to finish playing some fantastic football. The final score was 7-0 with the goals coming from Zac Rowland-Steele x4 , Josh Thompson, Danny Frankum, Cole Shobbroke and Evan Kinghorn.

First XI Football

team ta

Our first team travelled to Bridgwater knowing this game was important for us to get our season going. Since the start of the season, we have had so many injuries and Covid still raising its ugly head, never giving us the chance to have everyone available.

This Wednesday was no different but we felt good about the lead up to the game and the preparation in training. We put in a good performance and there were many positives to take from it.

The game ended 1-1 and to be fair we felt we missed 3 really good chances to take all three points, on another day those chances get finished but we learn and move on.

Next week takes us to Wales again where we are looking at coming home with the win.


Year 11 Football

team ta 1

Year 11s put on a fantastic performance last Friday to secure a place in the next round of the national cup, The football on show was so good to watch, build-up play, individual brilliance and ruthless in front of goal. The final score was 8-1 with the goals coming from: Harley Sneap x3, Kye Graham x3, Liam Poole, Dan Green. We now face Boys Grammar in the next round.


Year 7 Football

team ta 2

This game was not for the faint-hearted! Our year 7s played West Exe in round two of the national cup and it was one to remember. With the horrible traffic coming from Exeter the kick off was delayed by 30 minutes but once they arrived at TA the game was on. 

Our boys played so well and had many opportunities to take the lead but with a combination of some great goalkeeping and us having some wasted chances we found ourselves giving them two chances and they took them both.  At half time it was 2-0 West Exe.

The second half was all us again and it looked like it was going to be a frustrating day, thankfully though in the last 10 mins the breakthrough came with Oscar Mills hitting a volley into the top corner.

4 minutes later we scored the equaliser with a powerful drive from Charlie Wise, we kept pushing for the winner but time beat us.

Dreaded penalties to settle the game………….. It was never going to be nice to the losing team going out this way after such a thrilling match. The confidence shown by our players to take a pen really showed as all 5 scored to take us into the next round, TA winning 5-4 after pens.

Never a dull moment with the year 7s but I’m already looking forward to the next game.


Harry Lee heroics


Harry, who left TA this summer to take up a pro contract at Exeter City, was the hero of the day as Exeter City beat Cheltenham Town in the Papa John’s Trophy.  Harry saved penalties from Lewis Freestone and Elliot Bonds in the shootout after the game had finished 2-2 in normal time; he correctly guessed which way to dive for four of the five penalties.


Students of the Week


Year 7 – Toby Waring and Connie McMahon



Year 9 – Max Lee and Phoebe Hewings



Year 10 – Phoebe Lown and Steve Fitzpatrick



Year 11 – Jasmine Armour and Tyler-James Nunn



Sixth Form – Paige Godwin


House Stars of the week

Year 7

Brunel – Charlie Guite

Christie – Harrison Richards

Darwin – Joe Boyce

Fawcett – Adam Sadlick

Harrison – Kelsey Drew

Kitson – Susie Lester

Nearne – Edwards Evers

Pengelly – Malachi Morris

Year 8

Brunel – JJ Cossey

Christie – Mya Hoskin

Darwin – Jessica Nicholson

Fawcett – Ryan Williams

Harrison – James Reynolds

Kitson – Billy Botten

Nearne – Willow Kendal

Pengelly – Millie Sneap

Year 9

Brunel – Rebecca Glasson

Christie – Finley Anderson

Darwin – Samuel Stimpson

Fawcett – Nisha Cosslett

Kitson – Amalia Mihai

Nearne – Tyrone Ross

Pengelly – Emma Roadnight

Homework Stars of the week

Year 7

Brunel – Ben Jolly

Christie – Anisha Kale

Darwin – Summer Holmes

Fawcett – Alba Fogarty

Harrison – Barnaby George

Kitson – Adam Copping

Nearne – Mason Mitchell

Pengelly – Carla Lawrence

Year 8

Brunel – Olivia Riches

Christie – Daisy Faulkner

Darwin – Cerys Lowe

Fawcett – Jayden Field

Harrison – Will Godfrey

Kitson – Liam Trapp

Nearne – Rayan Nafim

Pengelly – Leon Bell

Year 9

Brunel – Luke Le Huray

Christie – Cleo Fry

Darwin – Leah Scott

Fawcett – Ashton Lindow

Kitson – Tammy Westacott

Nearne – Lilly John

Pengelly – Alfie Walker-Fenner


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