South Africa Sports Tour

July 19, 2023

South Africa was the destination of a group of 26 pupils from Years 10 to 13 and four members of staff on a combined netball and hockey tour that will also include taking in the sights and experiences of Cape Town.

Withington played fixtures against Wynberg Girls’ High School, Springfield Convent School, La Rochelle Girls’ High School and Bloemhof School – a school so renowned in South Africa for its sporting prowess that the England Netball team, in South Africa for the Netball World Cup, had been training at their facilities the previous day.

The 10-day trip included many incredible adventures for the group – exploring Table Mountain, surfing at Muizenburg Beach, an Afrikaans lesson, a game drive and whale watching.

Much to the group’s delight, after missing seeing them at Bloemhof School, they spotted the England Netball co-captains Natalie Metcalf and Layla Guscoth whilst picking up lunch at the V&A Waterfront. Miss Mottershead and some of the girls took the opportunity to have a photo with them.

The group went to Cape Town’s oldest township, Langa, where they split into two groups for a walking tour of the area. They visited a creche and a local artist’s studio. At lunch, they were treated to a buffet of traditional food with the addition of some local music. Everyone joined in with the singing and dancing, including a giant conga.

They also visited the Goedgedacht Trust Farm in Malmesbury. This is a charitable trust that works with the local rural communities providing education, support and aid to people in the surrounding area. They had a tour of the farm and were able to taste many of the different things that they grow including herbs, lemons and olives. Withington pupils played games, danced and sang with the children, and later that afternoon played netball fixtures against local girls who have been supported by the Trust.

Mrs Roberts said: “We received the warmest of welcomes, and everybody was quite emotional when it came to saying goodbye, but we were buoyed by the fact that the girls’ fundraising efforts were going to such a fantastic cause. We also donated some sports equipment to the trust, including balls and bibs, which were very gratefully received. The whole day was such a fantastic experience and one which will surely stay with both girls and staff for a long time to come.”