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Bradford Sixth Form students treated to special visit from Rugby League legend

Students were treated to an exciting appearance from rugby league legend, Jamie Peacock MBE, this Tuesday.


Jamie Peacock’s visit came as part of our Sixth Form’s wider Wellbeing Day, designed to help students manage stress and prepare for their upcoming exams.

Organised by Head of Sixth Form Andrew Ridley-Ellis, assisted by the College Safeguarding & Wellbeing Team, the event ran for a full day and offered various insightful workshops to help students prepare for their A Level exams.

The specific afternoon session led by Jamie Peacock aimed to motivate our students to ‘Be A Champion’.

Speaking more about exactly what he’d delivered to our students, Jamie said: “It’s all about raising students’ own expectations of what they can achieve in their lives.”

Since retiring from a glittering playing career in 2015, Mr Peacock has turned his hand to skills like motivational speaking and passed on his wisdom to an engaged audience.

“There’s no glass ceiling for them and it doesn’t matter what background they’ve come from, they can still achieve success by making good decisions day-to-day”, Jamie continued.

“That’s what worked for me, maximising my talent by being resilient, surrounding myself with the right people, being self-disciplined and being prepared to go the extra mile.

“I break down to the students that success is about making these good day-to-day decisions in a number of areas to maximises your talent, giving you the chance of being successful in whatever field you’re in.”

It was by applying all of these principles, and even choosing to eat broccoli for breakfast while in the peak of his playing days, which saw success and longevity to a career that our students can enormous take inspiration from.

In 2023, Peacock still sits as the most decorated player in UK rugby league history with a CV that includes nine titles, four Challenge Cups, four World Club Challenges and two Man of Steel awards.

But as a man who came from humble beginnings in Bramley, he was keen to stress that he hasn’t always been a 6’5 rugby player and was once just a youngster himself.

With this in mind, Jamie only had positive things to say about the opportunities Bradford College is willing to provide for its students: “I think this is outstanding for the institution as it’s about raising aspirations.

“It’s great having all the academia that you learn at college to underpin your knowledge, but you need life skills to go alongside that as well.

“It’s great that the College understands you need both of these working together to be a champion and to maximise your potential as a person.”

Andrew Ridley-Ellis, the College’s Head of Sixth Form who organised the day, said: “The students of Bradford Sixth Form have today taken part in our first Sixth Form Wellbeing Conference.

“At a time where many students are feeling the anxiety of looming exams, we decided to give our students the opportunity to build and develop their own wellbeing toolkit.

“The Bradford Sixth Form Team, alongside the College Safeguarding & Wellbeing Team, have enabled our students to experience a series of workshops focusing on how to cope not only with exam anxiety, but also visualising and celebrating their successes. Students have stated how useful they found everything they were taught, so hopefully this can really help them as their final exams approach.

“The day finished with our guest speaker, Jamie Peacock MBE, who motivated students through his own personal journey and resilience. One of the best things that students said was that they felt the Wellbeing Conference was all about them.”

It would have been impossible to have a chat with Jamie Peacock and not delve into the feeling of receiving his MBE, an incredible achievement for anyone to strive towards. He said this: “It was amazing receiving an MBE.

“I was lucky enough to be awarded an MBE in 2011 for services to rugby league and it’s a special memory for me.

“My dad, who passed away in 2013, was very sick at the time I was awarded my MBE but he still came and was only 10 metres away from me and the Queen as I received it. It was a special day that sticks long in the memory.

“It was as much an award for me as it is for everyone who supported me throughout my career, so it’s more an award for rugby league and the people who helped me on my journey.”

a bradford sixth form student listening to a motivational presentation

Are you interested in setting off on your own special journey? To find out more about our Sixth Form, please visit https://www.bradfordcollege.ac.uk/16-to-18-school-leavers/a-levels/ or contact [email protected].

Published: 30th March 2023
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