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News > Memories at Hymers > Friendships at School

Friendships at School

We love hearing of friendships that started at school and have continued afterwards

We recently celebrated on our social media channels, National Best Friends Day 2023 and we were delighted to hear stories of friendships that started at school and have lasted over time, even after university and career paths have taken them in different directions.

Portia Bailey Barrow (née Bailey) attended Hymers College from 2002 and became friends with Katie Frankland (née Purcell) when she started in 2007 before they both left in 2009.  Their daughters were born three days apart and are already best friends too!

Penny Broom (née Speight) and Laura Pearce, both OHs 1991-2001, have been best friends since meeting in Junior School aged eight years old and are still the best of friends now.

Susan Clarke (OH 1991-96), Jane Ellison (OH 1989-96), and Victoria Vargas (OH 1989-96) met in the Senior School, playing in the same sports teams at school, and have remained the best of friends ever since.

Lois Jenkinson (née Blakeston), OH 1997-2005, and best friend Rachelle Mays (OH 1997-2005) went from Year 4 to Year 11 together before leaving for different colleges.  Now 34 years old, they are still best friends!  In fact, Rachelle was Lois' maid of honour at her wedding last June (2022), which was also attended by close friends Lydia Rice (OH 1997-2005), Rebecca Holland (OH 2002-07), and Melyssa Bates (OH 2005-07).

Gemma Penny (née Bull) was at Hymers College for 10 years, starting in Junior School in 1990 and completing her A levels in 2000.  She met Sarah Guttman (OH 1998-2000) when she joined the Sixth Form.

We’ve been best mates ever since. She was my bridesmaid and now godmother to my two children Alfie and Layla.  We left school in 2000 so 23 years ago so I guess we met 25 years ago or more gulp!!!!

Gemma Penny

Milly Stabler (OH 2007-14) told us about her friendship with Lucy Oglesby (OH 2004-14):

We were in the same form in school but it wasn’t until Year 9 that we became best friends. We were best friends from then on and all the way through school to Year 13. We also went to the same uni (University of Manchester). We’ve remained best friends even when we’ve lived in different countries miles apart (I travelled and then lived in New Zealand for 18 months during the pandemic).

Lucy is now an aspiring actress who recently had a main role in a short film, as well as completing her teacher training in London. I’m a trainee trade mark attorney in Leeds/Manchester. It can be a lot more difficult to see each other these days with us living in different cities but we remain close friends. I start a course in London in September so that hopefully means we will get to see each other more often.

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