In the news - Sarah Davies

1st January 2010 at 00:00

Who is she?

Sarah Davies is head of Year 10 at Manchester High School for Girls (MHSG) and teaches French and Spanish. She is a former student of the school and has just returned from an Atlantic sail to raise funds for the school's Bursary Appeal. The race distance was 2,700 nautical miles, from Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, to Rodney Bay in St Lucia.

She's never sailed before. Is she mad?

"I am always up for a challenge. My friend asked me to do this sail with her. We both attended the preparatory department at MHSG together. When this opportunity arose it was at the same time the school launched its Pankhurst Bursary Appeal. This gave me an added incentive - to help raise money for the cause."

What is the Pankhurst Bursary Appeal?

"It is a #163;2 million appeal to raise money for the continued provision of bursary places at MHSG. It will help the school maintain the offer of free places to academically able girls whose parents' financial circumstances would otherwise prevent them from attending. So far I have raised #163;6,750."

So the school really got behind her?

"Some staff might think I am a bit mad to take up the challenge with no real sailing experience. The Preparatory Department, each year group and members of staff have taken part in sponsored sporting events with the aim of clocking up the same number of miles as me (3,100 land miles). I have received updates from some geography students offering their weather predictions - these have been helpful and the skipper has been impressed."

What were the highs and lows?

"The sunsets and sunrises are wonderful and the stars at night simply spectacular. The worst thing has to be trying to get dressed with the boat rocking 45 degrees from one side to the other, surfing waves as big as houses. I have plenty of bruises to prove it."

How did she celebrate in the end?

"A large Mojito! It was lovely to see other crew from some of the boats we met at the start, too."

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