Five Coleg Llandrillo students with additional learning needs were presented with their Duke of Edinburgh’s Bronze awards by the college’s principal, after completing several challenging tasks over a period of months.

The adventurous quintet were “absolutely thrilled” after receiving their official certificates from Lawrence Wood, principal of Coleg Llandrillo. Tasks accomplished ranged from beach cleans through planning an outdoor expedition to learning a musical instrument. All five have now progressed onto the silver award scheme.

The Independent Living Skills students awarded were: Stephen Harrison and Lee Tarmey, both from Dyserth, near Rhyl; Arron Walsh, Denbigh; Conor Fitzgerald, Old Colwyn; and Reece Ellison, Rhyl. All of them study at the college’s Rhos-on-Sea campus.

Reece Ellison – who has a 100% attendance record - said: “It was a brilliant experience. My favourite part was making a camp fire and sleeping in a tent.”

Jane Myatt, programme area manager for the Independent Living Skills department, added: “The students have had to overcome so many obstacles and issues and we are extremely proud of their considerable achievements.

The benefits of outdoor learning are immeasurable. It is such a difficult award to obtain without any learning difficulties.

“It was literally a life-changing experience for them. They had an opportunity to discover new interests and talents as well as developing essential skills for life and work. The award is a recognised mark of achievement,

respected by employers.” Coleg Llandrillo’s Independent Living Skills department now has a dedicated Duke of Edinburgh’s awards’ day each week.

Coleg Llandrillo principal Lawrence Wood said: “I am proud to present you with these awards. It has been an excellent effort by all those involved; you are a credit to the college. The assessor said that he wished all groups were like yours. Good luck with your silver awards and I hope to join some of you at Buckingham Palace in the future to see you presented with your gold awards.”

Set criteria for the Bronze award include volunteering - with the students taking part in several beach cleans, working in charity shops and helping staff at the local RSPB; developing a skill - which included learning

chess, photography skills and a musical instrument; physical improvement - which involved taking part in a variety of sports, and last but certainly not least, planning and completing an expedition.

Concerning the latter, the students took part in a practice event to begin with, where they had to deal with adverse weather conditions, before the real event, which consisted of a two-day camping expedition at Llyn Brenig, in the heart of Denbigh Moors.

They had to carry all their provisions (tents, food, drinks) to the lakeside area, before setting up camp and cooking an evening meal. They walked over 20kms during the trip. Official assessors turned up on the night, much to the excitement of the intrepid youngsters.

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award is the world's leading youth achievement award, with over 438,000 young people currently doing their DofE in the UK. Founded the Duke himself over 60 years ago, it was designed to encourage

anyone aged 14 to 24 to take on a range of activities that develop skills such as leadership, perseverance, team work and communication.

For more information about Independent Living Skills courses at Coleg Llandrillo, go to

or call the college’s Learner Services team on 01492 542 338.



Andrew Martin


Coastal Titles

Newsquest North Wales

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Rhyl Journal

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Denbighshire Free Press

From: Nick Hill

Sent: 06 December 2019 09:56

To: NWN-Coastal-News ; Shaun Davies

Subject: Fwd: FAO Editorial - "Students with Additional Needs Presented with Duke of Edinburgh's Awards"

Press release and photo attached,



Photo Caption

College Llandrillo principal Lawrence Wood (on left), with Coleg Llandrillo assistant principal Kevin Potts (on right) and students and staff.


Nick Hill

Press Officer - Marketing & Communications

Swyddog y Wasg - Marchnata a Chyfathrebu

Grŵp Llandrillo Menai

Ffordd Llandudno /

Llandudno Road

Llandrillo-yn-Rhos / Rhos-on-Sea

Bae Colwyn /

Colwyn Bay

LL28 4HZ

Tel: 01492 546 666 ext. 1484


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