Beyond Bedstone

We interviewed Old Bedstonian, Anna Bidgood about her life Beyond Bedstone

Name: Anna Bidgood

Age: 25

Years when you were at Bedstone College: 2001 – 2008

Please describe your education and work since leaving Bedstone College:
I did my A levels at Sedbergh school in the Yorkshire Dales in Geology, Chemistry and Maths (three A*s). I worked for a year as a trainee outdoor instructor at East Barnby outdoor education centre near Whitby. In 2011 I started my four year Msci degree in Earth Sciences at Oxford University where I achieved a first class degree and the BP prize for best masters project in earth sciences at Oxford. In 2015 I started my PhD at Oxford, funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council. I am currently in my third year, working on metamorphic petrology in the Indian Himalayas.

Please describe your interests since leaving Bedstone College:
My interests include mountaineering. Since leaving Bedstone, I have worked as assistant leader on three arctic mountaineering expeditions. I have also planned one geological expedition to Greenland for my undergraduate mapping project and two geological expeditions to the Indian Himalayas for my PhD research. I spent three months working in the remote Andes as an intern in exploration geology with a mining company. I also spent a month working with the geological survey of British Columbia.

My other interests include playing rugby. I am part of the Oxford university women’s rugby team. I play flanker and hooker. I have four blues from Oxford, and have played twice at Twickenham in the annual Oxford vs Cambridge varsity match. Our team is currently fourth in the British Universities premiership south.

What was the best part of your education at Bedstone?
Going on a four week mountaineering expedition to East Greenland.
Going on an exchange to the Knox school in America.
Participating in the endurance race (I only know of one other school race like it in Britain).

What was the best thing that you learnt at Bedstone College?
How to take part in everything and yet still manage my time efficiently (I used to play every sport, sing in the choirs, act in the plays, as well as doing my work) – something which is a very valuable life skill, particularly in academia.

What would your autobiography be called?
There and back again: a geologist’s tale

At Bedstone we aim for our school leavers to be curious, robust, adaptable and tolerant. Please could you tell us which of these skills has been most useful to you since leaving Bedstone and why?
Curiosity has been the most useful to me since leaving school as I’ve been able to explore new ideas, learn new things and develop the independence to find things out for myself and explore new things.