For the first Nightingale Lecture of this academic year, the Sixth Form students were regaled with the travels of journalist Simon Parker, who has sailed and cycled from China to London, driven the length of India by rickshaw and tracked through the Andes in Peru.

The Nightingale Lectures are part of our series of termly Sixth Form ‘black-tie’ events. For each Lecture we have a new and engaging speaker that provides different mindsets and experiences of the world.

For his speech, Simon showed us videos of his adventures around the world while expanding on his biggest milestones. He was relatable in the fact that at our age he only had a vague idea of what he wanted to achieve in life and inspired us with the story of his early years of travelling. His dream was to travel to every country in the world, and although there are 199 of them, he has currently travelled to half. He started by saving up for a one-way ticket to New Zealand and hitchhiking his way to Australia straight after he finished his education.

Throughout the evening we learnt a great deal about perseverance in the face of you worst nightmares, about keeping calm when things don’t go to plan and how to appreciate the world at your own pace, which he often chooses to be from the back of a bicycle. Simon was happy to answer any questions we had in the Q&A session and overall it was a wonderfully illuminating evening.

Written by Anna, Year 13


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