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At Malvern St James Girls’ School each pupil and member of staff is assigned a Ship. In other schools, pupils are often grouped into houses. However, as we have Boarding Houses to save confusion, we use Ships.

The introduction of Ships as School Houses was through Alice Baird, first headmistress of St James’s. Her family had connections with the Navy and the Ships system began in 1938.

Until last week our fleet of Ships were Daring, Dragon, Trenchant and Triumph. Ships are decommissioned from time to time and the names of the Ships for our School Houses therefore change.

Trenchant has been a Ship at Malvern St James since the late 1980s. HMS Trenchant returned to Devonport on 25 March 2020 for the final time which means we need to select a new Ship.

Last week, as Ships Captain, Year 13 pupil Ella, held a Ships assembly to vote for the new Ship name. The shortlisted Ships chosen for the vote were HMS Talent, HMS Vanguard, HMS Victorious, HMS Vigilant, HMS Audacious and HMS Astute.

After a very close vote, we’re delighted to announce that our new Ship is HMS Vanguard. One of the reasons pupils and staff voted for Vanguard was because of the meaning. Vanguard is defined as “a group of people leading the way in new developments and ideas”.