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NEWS > Alumnae News > Welcome from the New Head Mistress

Welcome from the New Head Mistress

New Head Mistress Rowena Cole has taken over the helm at LEH and her first impressions of the school have left her excited for what's to come, as she explains in her inaugural message to alumnae.

Dear alumnae,

This is my second week at LEH, and it’s been with a mixture of excitement and a few butterflies that I’ve finally sat at the Headmistress’s desk. I’ve begun to meet many of our amazing pupils, the teachers and some current parents as well, and now I’m keen to get to know our alumnae too. I hope to meet many of you at the alumnae reunion next month and all the other regular events that follow. I’m looking forward to hearing your stories and finding out where life has taken you since leaving LEH.

I’m pleased to report that it’s been a really enjoyable first couple of weeks. It’s been wonderful to experience LEH coming back to life as pupils have returned from their holidays. There has been a lot of laughter and there is an energy and optimism in the air as we embark on this academic year, the 314th since the school was founded.   

I feel incredibly fortunate to be handed the baton by Mrs Hanbury as I take on the leadership of this exceptional school. In the last few weeks and months, I have been struck by the vibrant range of opportunities available to the pupils, the strength and openness of the relationships, the aspiration, and the sense of fun which pervades a day in the life of a pupil at LEH. As I am already feeling, it really is a wonderful place to come to school/work! 

During our first assembly of the year, our whole school came together, with every single pupil from Form 1 (Year 3) in the Junior School, right up to Upper 6 (Year 13), attending. I reminded them that LEH was founded at a time when girls’ education was not considered a priority, and that this was a brave and bold decision and ahead of its time.

I encouraged them, in turn, to be courageous in what they believe is possible in this year, and the future, and reminded them of the need to take some calculated risks, to manage uncertainty so that they fully explore what is possible – remembering that it is not unusual to feel uncertain, nervous or even a little scared when pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone.  As I said: "It’s impossible to find the edges of your brilliance if you only do the things you can be sure of achieving."

Our school’s early ability to be ahead of the times is also one of the reasons why I was so keen to take on the headship of LEH. I can think of no better platform from which to empower talented pupils to continue to take the school’s motto ‘Hope Favours the Bold’ forward; to optimistically, and with integrity and kindness, advance and enhance themselves and society. 

There is much to look forward to this term. From sports fixtures, starting this weekend for many year groups, to the Senior School joint school musical with Hampton, which this year is Little Shop of Horrors. We’re also delighted to have mime, African drumming and Happy Puzzle workshops in the Junior School, plus Wellbeing Day across the whole of LEH to look forward to.

My priority this term is to get to know and understand LEH as much as I can while meeting as many members of the community as possible – and this, of course, includes our wonderful alumnae. Your involvement with our school today, and your generosity in sharing your experiences and expertise to help and inspire our current pupils, is much appreciated. I look forward to meeting some of you in the weeks and months ahead, and sharing in the excitement of the opportunities and events which will take place during this academic year. 

Rowena Cole
Head Mistress

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Lady Eleanor Holles School
Hanworth Road
Hampton, TW13 3HF

0208 979 1601
alumnae@lehs.org.uk

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