Pupils from the society were joined for the drinks reception and three course meal by parents, staff and head teachers from local schools.
Following coffee and petits fours, Mr Gareth Williams, Head of the Octagon Society, kicked off the evening’s speeches recounting his own experiences of being inspired by learning through being in an academic society. The achievement of those in the society was reflected upon, with particular reference to Kingham Hill’s own version of Mastermind, held last term.
Peter Snowdon – author of Cameron at 10 and Blair Unbound, and BBC Radio 4’s Today producer – then took centre stage to inspire the pupils with his stories of education and the workplace.
Reflecting on his time in secondary education, Peter spoke avidly about young people using their time at school to follow subjects that they are passionate about, as he did with politics, leading to his successful career in journalism and in the media.
Current pupils listened intently as Peter talked about his daily routines working for the Today programme, and on Nick Robinson’s podcast.
Gareth Williams said: “What a splendid occasion to celebrate our academic society! Having Peter Snowdon as our guest of honour was an absolute treat: he inspired our pupils to take risks and follow the argument where it leads. We’re already looking forward to next year’s dinner.”