On Sunday 21 July 40 sleepy year 8 and 9 pupils from BRGS, accompanied by 5 adults (Miss Johnson, Mr. Baird and their partners, as well as Mr. Piggot) set off on a 27 hour journey to Hveres, south-France for a full week of watersports. Thanks to the teachers' well thought up sports quiz and the films we brought, the coach journey was as entertaining as possible. Still, we were glad to arrive the next morning, only to be told we had a swim test after breakfast!

This ‘test’ turned out to be a few hours of fooling around in the sea, whilst the staff at the campsite sorted out our cases. We were very grateful for in the heat (it was about 35 degrees C!), and of course we had plenty of fun. That afternoon we started the actual watersports that we would be doing during our stay. These included, long boats - Pat still owes me sweets from that one! -Windsurfing, Sit-on kayaks Catamarans, Sailing and of course the banana boat!

We also went on two day excursions, one to an island, where we went snorkeling, ate ‘the best ice cream in France’ and sunbathed.... and walked! The other was a full day of fun in Aqualand, plus a little shopping in Toys’r’us afterwards.
When it turned dark, well darker, the staff at our site organized things for us to. These activities ranged from quizzes and talent shows to a walk to the nearby town and to an excursion to St Tropez And of course not forgetting our year 9 boys and Judd Bamford dressing up as girls for the night... we think they enjoyed that a little too much!

After the early evening fun we went down to the disco/bar/pizza place on the campsite to relax and get bitten by the mozzies before going to bed for the night.

And so for 7 days we had non-stop fun, in the sunshine and water all day, ‘learning’ how to do things safely with the instructors, though most of the girls were a little too preoccupied with the sailing instructor Harry! We also spent as much time on the beach as we could playing with 'ming dog’ and the bat and ball Mr. Baird bought, the water was rather cold and full of ming (dry seaweed) and whenever we were in the water we had to wear a B.A (buoyancy aid).

Of course every holiday has to have its annoying parts: we had to constantly wear shoes, both in and out of the water, and had to number off every time we went somewhere. Also Miss Johnson was constantly reminding us to wear sun cream, though I remember she got rather burnt!

After all this it’s not surprising we were sorry to leave on the next Sunday. We had all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves with only one or two cases of burns, sunstroke, cut feet from lack of shoes and of course Tom Raveglia and his twisted thumb from a boxing match. We all managed to make new friends on this trip, from our school as well as some boys from an all boys' school down in Gloucester, and of course get some nice suntans.

I’m sure everyone who went to France would like to thank the PE department for organizing the trip. We had a great time!

Article by Kirsty Preston

France Trip 2002