Alumna Flies High with ‘Butterfly Boy’
A former Alice Ottley pupil Toria (née Roberts) Pickering, has recently published a book that aims to help families support children as they cope with a parental serious illness. Toria penned her first book, ‘Butterfly Boy’, after undergoing life-saving cancer treatment during lockdown. Toria explains “I felt the need to write about my experience and penned a blog for my own benefit. To my great surprise, my sisters, Harriet (1993-05) and Natalie (1992-03), both gave me positive reviews which encouraged me to continue writing and to share it with others. This sowed the seed for a book.”
Toria reflects on her time at school, “I should explain that as much as I loved my time at Alice Ottley, I would never have described myself as an academic. I do have very fond memories of Springfield and then the senior school where I especially thrived on the sports pitches (Netball, Lacrosse, Tennis), but found my creativity embraced in the Art department and discovered a fascination with Biology, taught by the fabulous Miss Briggs. I believe it was the interest in Biology, fostered by Miss Briggs, that helped shape my career path towards nursing. I did also explore teaching with young children and actually carried out work experience at The Grange before settling on studying paediatric nursing at Oxford Brookes University.”
Miss Briggs, who is still a Teacher of Biology at RGS Worcester added, “Toria is an inspirational young woman, having been diagnosed with cancer last year, overcoming that and then going on to write a book to help families whose own lives are affected by illness. I am so proud of her; she has shown a huge amount of grit and determination to be where she is today.”
Find out more about Toria’s book here.