Hattie Herridge from Henley was invited to Buckingham Palace to receive her Gold Duke of Edinburgh award last Thursday (17 May).
Hattie achieved her Silver award whilst studying at Queen Anne’s Caversham and went on to achieve her Gold award whilst she was a student at Sir William Borlase’s Sixth Form, Marlow.
Hattie who had never kayaked before, began with a river journey from Abingdon to Henley one cold and wet Spring weekend. This prepared her for the final challenge of kayaking and trekking in the Fjords and mountains of Norway, the only girl in an otherwise all male team.
Hattie greatly enjoyed her voluntary work with two primary schools, mentoring the young students in various tasks. Other challenges Hattie undertook to achieve her Gold award were passing her Grade 8 cello exam and taking up long distance running and training for the Henley Half Marathon. Her residential course prepared her for healthy eating and cooking on a budget at University.
Hattie who is currently studying for a degree in Zoology at Exeter University, said: “Completing my gold award was such a rewarding experience. I have so many happy memories and I value the opportunities which participating in the D of E award offers. I have learned valuable life skills which I have taken with me to University. I was very proud to be able to attend the presentation at Buckingham Palace last week.”