Tuckwell is a truly wonderful boy’s boarding house! As soon as you enter this fresh and modern boarding environment you are overwhelmed by the sense of brotherhood amongst the boys. The variety of academics, musicians, thespians and sportsmen make the house a vibrant and exciting place to be, and the sense of community we have here is wonderful as is often witnessed when the boys support each other in the many events they take part in across the school. It is a home away from home and the boys really respect that principle.
It is the aim of Tuckwell is to ensure the house is a happy and safe place to live or spend time in, where all feel as though they can express themselves with confidence and strive to be whatever they want to be. There will always be opportunities for individuals to take responsibility and develop leadership skills. In doing so, we hope the boys will adopt the values of aspiration, integrity and respect, creating a work 'hard and play hard' ethos where friends for life are made.
Tuckwell house came into being in 1965, when rapidly increasing numbers meant the school urgently needed another house. It is named after the Reverend William Tuckwell who built the first school on this site. He was a great advocate the teaching of 'the unfashionable cause of science'. In 1977 Tuckwell house was one of three Houses which moved to the old rambling Convent site (now a slick housing development) where other boarding houses were also located. In 2002 the new house was built on the main school site, an impressive building rendered in an earthy pink to reflect the hues of the local soil, with lovely views over the 1st XI cricket outfield.
There are 70 boys in Tuckwell house, spread throughout the year groups. There is a nice balance between boarders and day pupils. There are three Third Form dorms with separate study rooms, next to the housemaster's accommodation (in case prep time becomes too exuberant), most of the Fourth Form and Fifth Form have twin study bedrooms, and Sixth Formers have single study bedrooms. Day pupils have their own designated study area integrated within their year groups, and there are beds available for when they wish to board, often more than once a week. The day boys are very much included in house life and often stay on to do their preps in the evening or for the many house socials we run each week.
There is a Tuckwell house captain from the U6th, and a team of prefects (and trainees), whose job it is to help ensure the smooth day-to-day running of pastoral issues within the house. Most importantly they are there for younger members of the house as a sounding board, to discuss concerns that they may not want to speak to staff members about. For the first three years each pupil is assigned one of the house tutors, who looks after their academic progress primarily, but also takes a close interest in all the outside activities that they are involved in. In the Sixth Form, pupils can choose their own tutor from throughout the school.
The boys in Tuckwell believe themselves to be particularly strong in sport at the moment, although I would like to see a few more of our boys get in to the 1st XV rugby team!! The house can also boast many outstanding musicians with no fewer than eight of our boys currently in the school choir. Tuckwell boys over the years have fared very well at hardy challenges such as Ten Tors and Duke of Edinburgh and we always seem to provide a majority of the Pringle Trophy marine cadets. Most importantly Tuckwell pupils are known to be incredibly supportive of each other and there is a huge sense of community and togetherness in the house.
The Tuckwell Sunday trips are usually very well attended. What better way to get back at your tutor than to shoot him at point-blank range with a paintball gun, or how about a session of go-karting, surfing, bowling or indoor football? Occasionally though the boys would rather just chill out on a Sunday with a back-to-back movie session in our newly refurbished cinema room (complete with surround sound!). Regular evening or weekend barbecues can be long lavish affairs or impromptu do-it-yourselves events. Tuckwell enjoys a few annual events too. The Ottery Tarr Barrels is a firm favourite with the U6th, as is the hog roast at the end of year celebrations, and Tuckwell's very own Children in Need Night in late November, organised by the 6th form a lavish evening of entertainment which usually raises around £1000 for charity.
My name is Brendan Craggs and I am your Tuckwell Housemaster. I live on site, next door to Tuckwell, with my wife Magdalena (Mags), my 2 year old son, Sullivan, and new born son Oskar. And not to forget, Teddy our cat who loves roaming the corridors of Tuckwell. My door is next to your studies on the ground floor.
I’m in charge of your pastoral and academic welfare. If you have a problem or need permission to do something then you should talk to me in the first instance. Basically I am here to look after you!
If I had to sum up the house I would say that it is a huge amount of fun with a caring and supportive atmosphere. It is a home away from home with brilliant staff and Sixth Form pupils who will help you along the way.
When not directing proceedings in the house, I can be found teaching in the PE, and the BTEC Sport department. On top of that I coach the U15A rugby and cricket teams. Sport is my passion – I am an avid Somerset CCC and a Bristol Bears fan. I love playing golf, cricket and have now ventured into the world of playing veteran’s football (YES, a veteran at 36 years old!). I am also getting used to being a dad and love spending time with the Tuckwell family as well as my own.
Brendan will be helped in the running of the house by his assistant Ben Thomas. Ben lives in a flat attached to the boarding house and supervises when I’m is away. Ben is a high level sports coach and is currently one of our sports performance/conditioning coaches. He has played rugby to a high level and is now not only one of our 1st XV coaches, but also Head Coach of Chard Rugby Club 1st XV. Ben also coaches hockey and tennis, as well as helping to run our cricket festivals in the summer. A busy man!
Assistants and House Matron
Val Similien (Cricket and Hockey)
Toby Smith (Head of English) – Third Form tutor
Ben Greedy (Head of Chemistry) – Fifth Form tutor
Sam Florey (biology) – Fourth Form tutor
Kirsty Hector (history) – house tutor
Imogen Pardoe (biology) – Fifth Form tutor
Andrew Perrins (Head of Maths) – Fourth Form tutor
Tuckwell boasts a variety of tutors who each teach a variety of subjects and help with the smooth running of the house. They all help with a duty night per week and it is safe to say their personalities bring a different spice to every evening in Tuckwell!
Lorraine Morton helps with the running of the house during the mornings. She organises the smooth running of the domestic side of the house, making sure that it is 'spick and span', at least while the boys are in class! The boys greatly appreciate that there is always milk, toast and biscuits available for a second breakfast at morning break. Lorraine is a mother figure within the boarding house and is a huge support to all the boys and a friendly face when it is raining, cold and dark in those winter months. She has teenage kids of her own so she is fully trained in the art of dealing with hormonal behaviour!
I have been a pupil at King's since the Third Form and I’m currently studying my A levels in economics, chemistry and geography. I also play almost every sport King's has to offer but golf, cricket and hockey are my favourites. My hobbies include cooking at home, going to the gym for a little workout and attempting to beat Mr Craggs at pool, so hopefully we have at least one thing in common! I'm excited about getting to know you all and look forward to what should be a great year.
My name is Jack Veale and I am the Vice-Captain of Tuckwell. I live in a little village close to Yeovil and used to attend Huish Episcopi Academy in Langport before joining King’s in the Third Form. It has honestly been one of the best decisions of my life as it has matured me to the person I am today. I am studying maths, business and economics at A level and love playing sports like cricket and football throughout the whole year. Tuckwell is my home away from home and I am looking forward to meeting you all in September and returning to some sort of