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Crawley entrepreneur crafts her way to a Greek Island cruise

Crawley based entrepreneur Natalie O’Shea has just returned from an all-expenses paid cruise around the Greek Islands.



She earned the trip as a reward for her exceptional work as a self-employed Demonstrator for global craft company Stampin’ Up!

During the seven-night cruise, Natalie got the chance to visit Santorini, Athens, Mykonos and Katakolon, as well as starting and ending the tour in the beautiful Italian city of Rome.

To earn this trip, Natalie had to show exceptional achievement in sales and team development.

The arts and crafts entrepreneur became a Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator in 2008 and runs crafting events in her local area together with running an online business. Natalie has built a sizable team stretching across the country.

Natalie comments:

“Earning my place on Stampin’ Up!’s annual Incentive Trip was such a proud moment for me and being able to enjoy a beautifully scenic cruise around the Greek islands was a fantastic reward for my efforts this year.

“Experiencing the trip with the other Demonstrators was hugely motivational and reinforced the superb sense of community that Stampin’ Up! encourages. I’d like to say a massive thank you to all my customers, team and, of course, Stampin’ Up! for making the trip possible!


Crawley A-Level students show that it’s not just about University



L-R, Angelo Amirthanayagam, St Wilfrids Headteacher Michael Ferry and Liam Draddy. Liam gained A* A* A* and Angelo A* A* A, both are off to study physics at Bristol and Warwick respectively.

There is always a deluge of press releases every year from schools across the town ready to impress everyone with their top students results.

Of course it’s always great to celebrate these and this year is no different but before we mention some outstanding results it is worth nothing that it is not all about going to University.

An ecstatic Kieron Stephens gained A A and is off to Exeter to study politics and Int. relations with study abroad.

There has always been a large amount of pressure of young people to follow the course of University after doing A-Levels, but in-fact this should be looked at as a choice not a necessity.

In this modern world the route to your chosen career can take many routes and whilst some do require a degree avenue there are many more that simply don’t.

One student from St Wilfrids is a prime example.

Faye Bromige with St Wilfrids Headteacher Michael Ferry.

Faye Bromige did exceptionally well in her results this year with A* A* A, but rather than choosing a place at University she battled through over 500 applicants to gain an apprenticeship with Virgin Atlantic in their finance department.

A spokesperson for Virgin Atlantic said:

“We’re delighted to welcome Faye along with four other finance apprentices this September. Faye and her peers will be an integral part of our finance business partnering team and will graduate with level 7 qualifications at the end of the programme. We’re also investing in apprenticeship programmes across our engineering and cabin crew teams and look forward to welcoming our new recruits this Autumn.”

Faye is not alone though as headteacher Michael Ferry explains:

“Some of our students have already gained apprenticeships since leaving Yr 13 with many being successful in gaining university places from September.”

For others though there was great joy that they were able to take the places they were offered.

Thomas Bennett Community College students celebrating their results.

Over at Thomas Bennett Community College there was real pride. A Level students achieved excellent results across all subjects.  In vocational students achieved 100% pass rates across all subjects at Merit and Distinction level with half of all the results at Distinction* (equivalent to A* at A Level). The Chelsea Academy also posted a 100% pass rate for all its NVQ students.

Headteacher Stuart Smith said:

“These results are an outstanding achievement for the college community.  Congratulations to all students on their hard work and for continuing the rise in exam success.  We would like to thank the staff who have given many additional hours of guidance and support to help our students realise their potential. We wish all leavers the very best of luck as they move on and know they have a bright future ahead.”

With other Crawley schools having similar success it is another great year for the towns schools.

But the real message here for all students is to remember it is not just about university and there are plenty of options always available no matter what your results are as this is just the start of an exciting journey!

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