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The Big Leavers' Ball 2021
Sutton Valence School, Maidstone
Saturday 10 Jul 2021
Following the Government’s announcement regarding the anticipated ending of restrictions on 21st June, we now feel optimistic to announce plans for this summer’s Leavers’ Ball, which is due to be held in a marquee at the School, on the evening of Saturday 10th July.
Due to the enforced cancellation of last year’s Leavers’ Ball, this year’s event will take on even greater significance as it will be a chance to bid farewell to two cohorts of Sutton Valence School leavers. Our hope is that many of our 2020 leavers, along with their parents, will return for the event, alongside the current 2021 cohort and their families. With both year groups enduring such challenging conclusions to their time at the School, this promises to be a real celebration and an opportunity for them to say farewell in style.
This year’s black-tie Ball will also mark the departure of the Headmaster, Mr Bruce Grindlay, who leaves us to take up the post of Principal of Rugby School Thailand. We hope that many Old Suttonians, past parents and staff will also come along to celebrate everything that he has achieved over the last 12 years.
The booking process for The Big Leavers’ Ball has now closed. The response to the event has been overwhelming and we are delighted to announce that all 400 guest tickets have now been sold. If any leavers from either 2020 or 2021 are yet to purchase tickets, they should get in touch with the School’s Development Office at their earliest convenience.
Please note the following terms:
All tickets for the Big Leavers' Ball, including leavers’ tickets, are priced at £75.00 per person, which includes a welcome drink, three-course meal and evening entertainment;
All ticket holders should be over 18 on the date of the Ball. The only exemption is for those in the Upper Sixth who are yet to turn 18;
In the eventuality that we are forced to cancel the Ball due to a change in the Government’s roadmap, we will provide full refunds for all tickets purchased;
In the event that you are unable to attend the Ball, we would ask that you inform us by Friday 25th June 2021. We will then issue a full refund. Due to commitments to third party suppliers, we are unable to offer refunds after that date.
What is the dress code?
The event is black tie. For men, we would ask that attendees wear dinner suits and for women, an evening or cocktail dress or gown.
What are the timings for the evening?
The Ball is due to start with welcome drinks outside the marquee (weather permitting) at 7.00pm. Guests will then be called into the marquee shortly before 8.00pm, when dinner will be served. Dancing will follow, with carriages at 1.00am.
Which entrance to the School should we use?
We would ask that all guests arrive via the Cornwallis entrance. If you are driving, please park in the Cornwallis car park. You are welcome to leave your car on site overnight, but please note that the School accepts no liability for any loss or damage incurred.
We have not received any tickets, what should we bring on the evening?
We are not using tickets this year, rather, the security staff will be working from a guest list on the night.
What steps are being taken with regard to Covid-19 guidelines?
We appreciate that the lifting of restrictions on 21st June remains a target rather than a certainty and, as such, plans for the event may need to be amended in due course. In the eventuality that we are forced to cancel the Ball due to a change in the Government’s roadmap, we will provide full refunds for all tickets purchased.
We will ensure that we remain compliant with any Government guidance and recommendations on the safe provision of large events and will keep registrants informed of any necessary changes or requirements accordingly.
Will there be a cash bar?
There are two! Both bars are able to accept cash or contactless card payments. Our main bar will offer a range of beers, cider, wine, prosecco and soft drinks throughout the evening. We will also be hosting a gin bar, which will serve as the evening’s fundraiser, with profits supporting the Tom Lazarides (2018 C) fund.
Can we pre-order wine for our table?
Yes. We will be emailing all guests in due course with a wine list to allow you to pre-order drinks to be on your table when you arrive on the night.
Am I able to help with the event?
The Ball Committee would be delighted to receive help with decorating the marquee on Friday 9th July. As the School’s Sports Day will also be held on site that day, you are more than welcome to dip in and out, whenever you are not spectating at the Athletics track. If you are able to help, please email a member of the Ball Committee so they have a rough idea of numbers.
2021 Ball Committee
We are hugely grateful for all of the work being done by this year's Ball Committee to ensure that the event is a success. The Big Leavers' Ball is by far the biggest on-site event that we have hosted and, as such, has involved a huge amount of work behind the scenes by those listed below.
In addition to the Committee, the Ball is run as a community, non-profit event and, as such, we would welcome any contributions you may be able to provide. Whether it be help with setup, stock for our gin bar, floristry, or any other event services, we would be grateful for your involvement and would invite you to get in touch with the Committee.
Mrs Jackie Browning (Chair of the Friends of SVS) - firstname.lastname@example.org Mrs Sally Barr - email@example.com Mrs Sarah Connell - firstname.lastname@example.org Mrs Alison Fullick - email@example.com Mrs Ann-Katrine Sayers - firstname.lastname@example.org Mrs Kate Yorke - email@example.com
For any ticket booking queries or questions relating to SVS Foundation Connect, please contact Will Radford, SVS Alumni Relations and Development Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.