LAD From One Of Britain's Poorest Areas Wins Eton Scholarship

You've probably heard of Eton College. The elite boarding school's graduates dominate public life in the UK, with its ex-pupils including royals like Princes William and Harry, actors like The Wire's Dominic West, and ex-Prime Minister David Cameron.

So you can imagine how excited one Liverpool teenager would have been when he recently found out he'd won a place to study at the famous college.

Sixteen-year-old Stephen Geddes has won a scholarship to do his A-Levels at the £38,000 ($50,800)-a-year school, studying maths, biology, chemistry and physics.

Stephen Geddes
Stephen Geddes

Credit: Gareth Jones

The son of Tesco worker Stephen and carer Brenda, Stephen previously studied at King's Leadership Academy in the impoverished Liverpool suburb of Dingle.

"When they came to our house to tell me I was in shock. It was hard to take on board," Stephen told the Liverpool Echo. "When I told my teacher, Mr Crosby, who had helped me prepare for the interviews, he took off his glasses and there were tears in his eyes. My mum hasn't stopped crying since."

Credit: PA

Stephen will have to get used to some of Eton's practices, such as the long black tailcoats that students wear as their uniform. Sounds like Hogwarts to me.

However, he'll now have access to the 'unbelievable' facilities at the school in Windsor, Berkshire, including three theatres, and he admitted that the opportunity he's been given is life-changing.

"When I went down to Eton, it was unbelievable," Stephen said. "The facilities were amazing. It had three theatres, two chapels and sports fields that seemed to stretch for miles.

"I know the uniform is a bit strange - they have tailcoats and everything - but I don't mind wearing it because I think it looks quite smart."


Stephen with parents, Brenda and Stephen. Credit: Gareth Jones

Stephen earned his place at Eton with the SpringBoard Bursary Foundation and the Hope Opportunity Trust, which aim to get students from socially and economically deprived parts of the country into top schools.

He successfully braved two interviews, one with the college's head of department and one with its headmaster, before being offered a place at the school.

"King's really prepared me for them because a lot of what they do is about giving you confidence and I was confident when I met them," Stephen admitted.

"Going to a place like Eton is something I'd love to be part of. I know that it will change my life."

Credit: PA

Mark O'Hagan, principal of King's Leadership Academy, explained that the scheme doesn't just benefit the students who win places at top schools, but also the people around them, as he thanked the two organisations involved.

"What is so important about this scheme is not just that some of our pupils will be given life-changing opportunities but that it will affect the people around them," O'Hagan said.

"They may not want to go to Eton but they might see what Stephen has done and tell themselves that they might want to make the best of their education here at King's through good grades or sporting excellence."

Stephen's not only made his mum and dad proud but his teachers too. We're sure he'll do just fine. Well in, LAD!

Featured Image Credit: Gareth Jones / PA

Chris Ogden

Chris Ogden is a journalist at LADbible. He graduated from the University of East Anglia with degrees in English Literature and Creative Writing before completing his NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism. Chris has previously written for the independent culture magazine The Skinny, among other publications.

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