This week, A level mathematicians travelled to Cheltenham Ladies’ College to hearDr Vicky Neale of the Maths Institute at Oxford University. Described as “mind blowing”, the lecture focused on Prime Numbers (primes are used to ensure internet security in on line financial transactions) and Riemann Geometry and was truly inspirational, generating many questions from the student group and igniting a great interest in studying Maths at Oxford.

DrNeil had previously spoken to some of Dean Close’s aspiring Oxbridge pupils at a Further Maths talk at Baliol College, Oxford. She is working on what she called real maths, maths problems that have never been solved and consequently will benefit humanity in the future.

Head of Maths, Pete Garner said: “She is a person able to take a seemingly simple topic like Primes, reassure the audience that it is within their comfort zone and like a roller coaster carefully winch them up into the heavens so they can experience a thrilling ride at speed through some tempting but degree level maths, before landing them back on terra firma slightly shaken but inspired. All the time her passion for mathematics shines through. Our pupils wanted a group selfie with her, unknown in my 15 years of such talks!”

There are currently 90 pupils studying A level Maths at Dean Close, of which 37 are doing Further Maths. The three GMA lectures this year have been in Cryptoanalyis, Making sense of Statistics and Prime numbers.