We Lay


We live in an age where time is money, where price is more important than value, where the ‘tick in the box’ is a proxy for a job complete, and a job complete is considered a job well done.

Service, quality, satisfaction are all eroded as a result. We can, and do, put up with this to an extent. We now shrug our shoulders where once we might have taken issue. We don’t even bother to complain because that would take hours more on a hotline which happens to be ‘experiencing a high number of calls’.  Or a ‘chatbot’, powered by artificial intelligence, tries to grapple with our nuanced human ire and indignation by asking us to say ‘in a few words’ what is troubling us and then attempts to resolve the matter with binary answers and artificial sympathy while we shout obscenities because we realise that individually we don’t matter, and actually no one is listening anyway.

But when it comes to our children, things are different. We no longer want to shrug our shoulders, we are no longer prepared to tolerate a paucity of service. Our threshold of acceptance of the status quo comes into question.

When we consider why this is, the natural response is that our children are very dear to us, of course they are. But, look deeper, and we start to understand that while we protect them while they’re young, there will come a time when we cannot be there for them, when they must continue their life’s journey on there own.

What we can do, in answer to this, is to give them a grounding such that they are as prepared as can be for their life ahead; that they can take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves in the good times, and to be resilient and strong in the bad.

That’s what Sedbergh does. It creates a framework, it embeds its values, and it provides a strong foundation upon which the Sedberghian can build their life. So, when, at the Leaver’s Service I say, ‘know this, Sedbergh made you strong, upon those granite foundations build your life, rise, grow tall, and take your place upon the skyline of success’, I mean it.

At Sedbergh, foundations are built with care and dedication. The fact that it has been doing so for nearly 500 years is testament enough that Sedbergh provides value, immeasurably so.

Jan van der Velde

Director of Development