Daisy Simpson-Talmer & Niamh Ward - Nelson and Colne College

A talented pair of Nelson and Colne College English classmates have both gained the grades required to progress to the University of Oxford where they will study the same degree.

Niamh Ward and Daisy Simpson-Talmer are both progressing to one of the world’s leading universities to study English Language and Literature.

Former Marsden Heights Community College student Niamh, 18, achieved A*AA in English Literature, English Language and Media Studies while Daisy, also 18, and formerly of Ss John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School gained AAAB grades in English Language, English Literature, Spanish and History.

Both students have faced an anxious wait for even longer than usual on news of their grades, after face-to-face learning stopped during March. Both are now delighted to be pursuing their respective passions.

Niamh said: “I’m thrilled with my achievements and I can’t wait to progress to Oxford. I’ve loved my time at College – not only was the teaching and support excellent but the resources and College building itself provided a great environment for both independent and group learning, through varied study zones.

“The extracurricular programme offered provides you with a brilliant opportunity to relieve yourself of some stress and take a break from revision.

I have been part of the Pre-Professional Journalism programme and the Book Club while at College, and I also had the chance to complete an Extended Project Qualification on female representations in literary fairy tales (classic and modern).

“I was also part of the Pendle Elite programme with College from my time at secondary school, which supported me in applying to Oxford. I haven’t chosen my exact career goal, however, I do know that I would like to go into an English based career.”

Daisy said: “I’m so relieved to secure my place and I’m excited to be progressing to Oxford! I found the people at Oxford were friendly, and I felt comfortable and at home there when I visited.

“To keep busy and my mind going during the lockdown period, I have been working through my reading list in preparation for starting, which has been great as I love reading. I also wanted to keep up my Spanish so I have been balancing an online language course with teaching my seven-year-old sister, who is learning from home, which has been an interesting experience!

“I would recommend Nelson and Colne College as my tutors have always been supportive of both my studies and my university application. The extracurricular programme is wide-ranging and I have developed my writing and research skills as well as my critical thinking. You also have the ability to study independently and I feel it has prepared me for the future by allowing me to explore features of the subjects I took in much more detail than is specified on the course.

“In terms of a career, I think I might like to go into the media, although I also love writing creatively, so I'm somewhere between those two at the minute.”