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House of Lords Visit


Students from Ysgol Maesydderwen, Ystradgynlais, winners of the Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe prize, tell us about their visit to the Houses of Parliament

On 14th November 2017, we had the opportunity to visit the Houses of Parliament to gain an insight into the workings of our Government. We were graciously allowed to spend the afternoon with Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe, who gave us a comprehensive tour of the House of Lords.

Firstly, we were shown the extravagant artwork and architecture, which is an integral part of our British heritage. The buildings are, of course, officially a palace and remain to this day under the jurisdiction of The Queen. The ‘Palace of Westminster’ certainly lives up to its name, with a huge array of breath-taking art and gold leaf ceilings and walls, bursting with symbolism and wealth. This was a great chance to further our knowledge on the history of our country.

Following the tour, we were allowed into the debating chambers of Parliament. We watched the opening ceremony of the House of Lords as the mace accompanied the Lord Speaker into the Chamber and was placed on the Woolsack (the Woolsack itself symbolic of the wealth that founded the British Empire). We observed a series of oral debates in the House of Lords, giving us first hand experience of what is seen on television.

We then moved into the House of Commons gallery where we had the chance to observe a debate on the contentious topic of Brexit. This was a lively and often humorous debate, with M.P.s such as Frank Field, Hillary Benn and Kenneth Clark contributing passionately on the topic of the country’s leaving date.

Apart from this, we were greatly excited to see notable and famous political figures, such as Lord Alan Sugar, Jacob Rees-Mogg and Lord Menzies Campbell. Above all however, we were very privileged to spend the day with a Lord who has sat for 20 years and made great strides in the fields of mental health and substance abuse.

In the company of Lord Brooke, we spent time at Westminster Hall and were fortunate to acquire access into the Chapel of St. Mary undercroft. We were able to stand in the broom cupboard where Emily Davison spent the night of the 1911 census and see the plaque that Tony Benn installed to commemorate the fact! To round off the day, we stood on the terrace overlooking the Thames, saw the modern offices of Portcullis House and were treated to tea and scones at the House of Lords tearoom. What a day!

We are extremely grateful to the WHSI for presenting us with this unforgettable opportunity and we extend our thanks to Lord Brooke for his hospitality and for giving us a taste for British politics. We both aspire to one day also be in a position to have such a positive influence on society and have our say.

Many thanks. Daniel Edwards and Anya Welch, Ysgol Maesydderwen

2017 Awards Ceremony


The 2017 Awards’ Ceremony took place at the Halliwell Centre, University of Wales Trinity St David – a lovely theatre very appropriate for this kind of event. Dr Dylan E, Jones, Dean of Education and Communities at Trinity St David welcomed everyone to the Ceremony and musical interludes were provided by the Carmarthenshire County Big Band. Once more we were entertained by a historical character,the pirate Barti ddu or Bartholomew Roberts from Pembrokeshire (or actor Dion Davies) from the theatre company ‘In Character’ came to strike fear in the hearts of the children and to present prizes to the primary sectors.

The awards were presented by WHSI committee members:

  • Foundation Phase and Special Schools: Geraint Bevan
  • Primary Schools: Nia Williams and Dr Stuart Broomfield
  • Secondary Schools: Dr Dylan E Jones

Alun Morgan, Vice-Chair of WHSI presented the Eustory Prize and made the closing remarks.

Winners of the National Museum shield for best entry in each category and the winner of the Eustory award

Hodge Foundation Prize £750


Hodge Foundation £750


Moondance Foundation Prize £750



Moondance Foundation Prize £750


Eustory Winner:

berlinThis year students from the winning schools will attend a European Academy in Berlin in October 2017.