Symondsbury Church of England VA Primary School

The Church of England

Friends of Symondsbury School


Welcome to the 2021-2022 Symondsbury School year! The Friends of Symondsbury School are back and full of energy and excitement to ramp up our activities that bring so much joy – and vital funding – to Symondsbury School.

Who are the Friends of Symondsbury School?

We’re the parent teacher association and we raise essential funds for enrichment activities for the children. We are parents, just like you, who want to take an active role in creating a fantastic school experience for the children.

Helen and Sarah Bolter-Griffin - Co Chairs 

Abby Gordon-Fairleigh - Treasurer

Kate Ockenden - Secretary 

Becky Stork

Amy Vincent 

Erin Dean

Kathy Coward

Jo Clarke

Pip Evans  

Laura Swift

Ruth Wakefield

Andrea Prentice  

A note from some of the friends:

We are Sarah and Helen the Co Chairs, our daughter is in year 2 and she loves us being part of the school community. We value having close contact with the teachers, and seeing the direct benefits the children have from our fundraising efforts. The PTA has had to adapt over the past year, and we are looking forward to blending the new online fundraising events with the old style charm of the School Fetes and socials, which we now hope will take place again!! Everyone is warmly welcomed, no skills required! 

Click here to view a photograph of Sarah and Helen

Hi I'm Kate and I'm currently the Friends Secretary. I have a daughter in Year 5 and one who has just left. Being part of the Friends is lovely as you get to meet lots of other parents and get involved with all sorts of events. It's good to give something back to the school as well. We are champing at the bit to get back to our normal yearly events, Easter just isn't the same without chasing a massive bunny up Colmers Hill! 

Click here to view a photograph of Kate

This is my 6th year as a friend and 3rd as treasurer. We’ve raised a remarkable amount of money through so many creative and fun activities. All of it goes directly to making a better experience for the kids, which is so rewarding. And I’ve made some great “mum friends” that will carry on long after our school years.

Click here to view a photograph of Abby

What role do the Friends play at school?

We organise lots of fun seasonal events for the children and their families (and sometimes the public) like the Christmas Fair and the Colmers Hill Egg Hunt. We also provide refreshments at school events, run cake sales, organise pre-loved uniform sales, and a whole lot of other fun ways to raise money for school.

What is the money raised for?

Our biggest project this year is to update the playground and outdoor learning areas at school. Over the last few years the Friends have raised and saved enough to make some great improvements and additions, but we still need to raise about £3,000 for some final costs. You’ll see the new play spaces come to life this year – we’re super excited!

In addition to the playground, we have committed around £6,000 each year to cover some essentials for every class. Our fundraising efforts fund things like stationary and supplies for the classrooms, special workshops and learning experiences like a visit from Aardman Studios and the ever popular Now Press Play virtual learning, as well as coach trips for the classes to extend their learning away from school. (*Some of these activities haven’t been running because of the pandemic, but we have every intention of bringing them back when we can!)

Why get involved?

Joining the Friends is a fantastic way to get stuck in and get to know the school inside and out. Whether it’s joining as a committee member or volunteering as and when, getting involved guarantees you will meet new parents and families from all years at school.

You’ll also get to know everyone at school. We all learn new skills each year, and it’s a great creative outlet! Being a Friend means that you get to be an integral part of your child’s time at Symondsbury School. Bonus (or maybe most importantly) you get to spend time with a great group of parents and raise essential funding for the school.

How to get involved?

There are lots of events and meetings to get involved throughout the year, and it's totally flexible. We welcome any level of commitment!

  • Pop in to our meetings for planning upcoming events – bring your fresh ideas
  • Come to our social events – we love any excuse to meet at the pub!
  • Volunteer to help with events – the more the merrier
  • Offer your skills or experience that will help with fundraising – we can’t raise our funding targets through selling cakes!

Where to find out more

Announcements for upcoming events will be posted in the school newsletter, on Class Dojo, here on the school website, outside on the school notice board, and on the Symumsbury Facebook page

Here’s a list of events that we’ve run in the past, and some exciting ideas for fundraisers going forward. We always welcome new ideas so please share them with us :) 

All these fund raisers go directly to the Friends and this is then spent in ways to benefit the children directly. 

Refreshments for the Harvest Festival

Pop up uniform sales in the school playground - a great way to buy uniform very cheaply 4 sales throughout the year 

Halloween Pumpkin Trail around and up Colmers Hill this is a really popular event, pay a small entry fee, receive a goody bag and map to find the hidden pumpkins, each has a letter, unscramble the word and drop your entry forms back into school to win a prize. 

Apple fete Sunday Funday for October 2022 exciting ideas for a seasonal event to celebrate the wonderful apple, with pressing, apple juice, music, food and entertainment for the children 


Wreath Making online version and fingers crossed an in person event at the Symondsbury Tythe barn

We have a stall at the Symondsbury Estate Christmas Fair, selling products made by the children, a lovely event where the children also sing carols 

Christmas Fair at the School usually held after school, enjoy Santa’s Grotto, stalls, games, bbq, drinks, and carols 
Christmas Party for the Children held in the school, party games, and gifts given to all children by the (friends) dressed as elves 

Silent Auction fantastic range of offerings to bid on, from dance workshop, meals delivered, babysitting, beekeeping experiences, artwork, spoon carving session, hampers, too many to mention.

Christmas Production we run the raffle and refreshments 

Waissail Sunday for our apple trees and a good crop! Song, stories, dance in the playing field 
Valentines Day Disco

Quiz nights held throughout the year online and in person 


Easter Egg hunt around Colmers Hill with free eggs given to the children, pay a small entry fee, unscramble letters on the hidden eggs to make a word, pop your entry form back into school to win an Easter hamper.

Easter church service we serve refreshments


May Day breakfast celebrate the start of Summer with us


Pop up restaurant evenings under the Pergola new for 2022


School Summer Fair – Symfest festival fun with talent acts from the children, live music, stalls, food, drinks, bouncy castle

Summer Raffle

Summer production we serve refreshments and gifts for the leavers

We are also registered with the following shopping affiliate schemes, so easy to sign up!  

The Shop&Give app allows you to easily generate donations for good causes when shopping online we are registered as a recipients so share with family and friends it all adds up and costs nothing! There are so many stores  

Amazon Smile - Register Symondsbury Primary School as your chosen charity when you purchase through Amazon smile 


We also have Symondsbury Facebook page that we welcome you to use Symumsbury with an attached buy and sell page for the school community.  

Here’s the dates of our scheduled meetings  

28 September 2021

2 November 2021

11 January 2022

1 March 2022

10 May 2022

28 June 2022 

Our next AGM will be 12 October 2021 - all welcome 


The Committee Roles

Chair Person:  The Chair provides leadership, has strong communication skills, sets the agendas for the meetings, manages the meeting effectively and timely, welcomes contributions and views of all committee members, ensures issues are debated properly and fairly and an agreement is reached, remains impartial is empathetic and liaises with the head teacher on current or future ideas.

Vice-Chair Person:  To actively provide support and advice to the Chair.  Able to provide leadership qualities, strong communication skills and confidence when deputising in the absence of the Chair both at meetings or other social/fund raising events.

Secretary:  This is a key role of the committee and it’s responsible for ensuring effective communication links between committee members, the head teacher, parents and governors. Prepare agendas, provide minute-taking at all meetings and distribute all correspondence accordingly, produce written correspondence, arrange meetings and make bookings for social/fund raising events.

Treasurer:  Managing, controlling and maintaining the financial records, record all income and expenditure, provide an update report at meetings, prepare and co-sign cheques as required, count and bank monies, reconcile accounts at the end of year and liaises with the bank.


Friends of Symondsbury School Minutes 3.7.2018

Friends of Symondsbury School Minutes 13.06.2018

Friends of Symondsbury School AGM Minutes 28.9.2017

Friends of Symondsbury School Meeting Minutes 09.10.2017

Friends of Symondsbury School Meeting Minutes 6.11.2017

Friends of Symondsbury School Newsletter Jan 18

Friends of Symondsbury School AGM Minutes 25.09.2018