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Pound Hill photographer shortlisted in Sussex Wildlife Trust competition

Crawley resident Stephen Webb has been shortlisted along with 11 other finalists chosen from over 500 entries.



Stephen Webb's photo of Konik ponies at Old Lodge in the heart of Ashdown Forest.

A Crawley resident has been shortlisted along with 11 other Sussex photographers as part of Sussex Wildlife Trust’s photography competition.

Sussex Wildlife Trust Photography Competition judges, headed up by professional international wildlife photographer David Plummer, recently had the difficult task of selecting 12 finalists from over 500 entries.

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And now it goes over to the public vote and local residents are able to choose their favourite photo online.

Crawley resident Stephen Webb of Knepp Close in Pound Hill, sent in his photo of Konik ponies at Old Lodge in the heart of Ashdown Forest.

The winner of the photography competition will win £100 but there are runner up prizes to win too: a pair of reusable KeepCups and Sussex Wildlife Trust’s 2019 printed calendar.

Voting closes on Tuesday 30 October 2018 with the overall winner being announced in early November.

The final 12 photographs will feature in an online calendar, available in December, and will be display at the Trust’s AGM on 10 November 2018 and at the Booth Museum of Natural History, Brighton during 2019.


Crawley school students launch petition for change as funding cuts threaten their education

The petition has been launched by some students at Thomas Bennett Community College and already has over 200 signatures.



The school has been in the news over the past few months due to the funding cuts by TKAT.

With teachers leaving the school and residents community meetings being held with councillors it has been and continues to be a turbulent time for all associated with the school.

Now some students have taken it upon themselves to launch their own petition aimed it seems at changing the school for the better.

The students say:

“We are Students that are currently attending Thomas Bennett. We are undertaking our GCSE’s and are month’s away from exams. With limited welfare support throughout the school, such as a medical room assistant or a pastoral support assistant for each year we are struggling tremendously with the way the school is run due to low funding.”

The student who has launched the petition also mentions how he emailed the CEO of TKAT raising his concerns but was told it ‘wasn’t in their hands and overall should stop talking about it’.

Whilst the petition does not mention it there is a feel that the aim is to bring the school back into public sector as stated by Crawley Council leader Peter Lamb who has show his support of the petition.

The petition states:

“Over the years Thomas Bennett has struggled with funding, only to which this struggle became increasingly more difficult when the academy, TKAT, took over our school. Profit not students success is what this academies aim is and large group of students including me are ready to do whatever needs to happen for something to change! Whether that’s a whole year walkout or a strike with the whole school. “

It adds:

“A walk out is something TKAT does not want to face especially with media coverage and limited time for year elevens, a whole year will not just get bad qualifications with missed time but will also reflect on the education that is being provided for students by this school run by the academy.”

The very fact that students themselves have now made the decision to make a stand shows how passionately the pupils feels about their educational needs but a viable outcome still seems distant.

A spokesperson from the Kemnal Academies Trust commented,

“We welcome our students’ active involvement in their education and the Trust has been working directly with the students at Thomas Bennett.

Funding is a national issue for Education affecting all schools, with the West Sussex “worth it” movement taking a leading part in the campaign to improve funding for all schools”.

The petition can be read here.

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