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Alumni Stories > Alumni Stories > Lydia (2007 cohort) Made Best Friends for Life at Tanglin and Wants the Same for her sons!

Lydia (2007 cohort) Made Best Friends for Life at Tanglin and Wants the Same for her sons!

Lydia (2007 cohort) shares her Tanglin story and why she decided to send her sons to her alma mater.


Tell us about your time when you were in Tanglin. 

I went to Tanglin from Reception till Year 13 (there wasn’t an on-campus nursery at that time, but I went to the ‘feeder’ nursery, Winchester!), so I have really seen the school physically transform over the past few decades. However, I do feel that the core values and quality of teaching have stayed the same. The surrounding area was also much greener and jungle-like when I was at school - as was the case with the rest of Singapore!


How is it different from it today?

The size of the school! Everything seems to have grown since I was there, we used to be able to have whole school assemblies! The scale of the campus was a bit intimidating when we first joined as parents, but it’s amazing to see how well the units are laid out so that each whole year still feels connected, even with so many classes. There was always such a strong sense of community within Tanglin when I was a student, and everyone seemed to know everyone. It’s hard to maintain this as numbers get bigger, but I do like that through groups such as Friends of Tanglin, the TTS Foundation and Class Reps, a real focus is put on keeping the whole school connected. The facilities now are also just amazing, my boys both do gymnastics and to see the new gymnastics hall open with all the equipment and space is fantastic. 

What were your most memorable moments back then?

There are so many spanning the 13 years I was there! I have very strong memories of Junior break times playing out by the Banyan Tree in the back field and hunting for grasshoppers. Some other highlights are proudly representing my house, Cameron, during sports days as House Captain, netball and basketball competition trips to KL, hilarious Christmas pantomimes, the Eden Hall and summer fetes, Friday choral in the open-air hall in the old Junior School building (‘You can move a mountain with a song’), the amazing Senior school trips to New Zealand, Perth and Cambodia. Some of the school trips in Junior school are the same as when I went, so I can’t wait for my kids to go on them so we can compare notes!


What was your journey like after Tanglin?

Upon graduating I had a gap year where I did an internship at Ogilvy & Mather’s Redcard subsidiary in Singapore, learning the ins and outs of planning and executing advertising campaigns. This was an amazing opportunity that had been facilitated by another Tanglin parent, and really helped give me a grounding in what life beyond school in the world of work could be. I then did three years as an undergraduate at the University of Leeds, where I studied English & Sociology, as well as a Masters in English Literature at Royal Holloway, University of London. 

Following my postgraduate studies, I got married and had my two gorgeous boys while working in various advertising and marketing agencies. Eventually I moved client-side and worked as Marketing Manager for a global company providing laser and special effects for worldwide concert tours, corporate events, and art exhibitions. Alongside this, I built a successful career as an online content creator and blogger through my channel @lydias_layton_life. Now living in Singapore, I continue to work freelance on content creation, as well as being a consultant Marketing Director in the property and hospitality industry.


Who made the biggest difference in your time at school?

I’ve had some great teachers during my time at Tanglin, but I would say that the person who sticks out the most is Dickon Thomas, my Geography teacher (who is still teaching as Head of Humanities at Tanglin). He made every lesson enjoyable and easy to understand, and his humour, honesty, and advice for life beyond school really bridged that gap between student and teacher to gain a lot of respect from us all. His teaching and the school trips he organised helped me gain a much wider worldview beyond just my privileged upbringing in Singapore. 

Why did you choose to send your children to Tanglin? How are they doing now?

When we moved to Singapore there really wasn’t a question of where our children should go to school - it was always Tanglin! I spent my entire childhood growing up at the school, and I’m just so happy that my kids will be able to have the same amazing schooling and cultural experiences that I did. My husband and I were so impressed with the resources that Tanglin has and its attitude not only to academic learning but also nurturing the children to be well-rounded, independent, and conscientious individuals. My mum has also been working as an English teacher at Tanglin for well over a decade, so to have the boys go to the same school where their Grandma works has been really lovely - and made my life much easier when I need help with pick-ups and drop-offs! I also made my best friends for life at Tanglin, and I really hope the same will be the case for my sons.

The boys absolutely love going to Tanglin - there has not been a single day in the past two years since we moved here that they have said they don’t want to go to school. They are especially thrilled by all the different CCAs available that they have never got to do before, such as coding, rock climbing and archery! My older son, Teddy, missed almost all of Year 1 due to being in UK lockdown and moving overseas, so we were a bit concerned about how he would get on with basic reading and writing when he joined Tanglin in Year 2, however he was given so much extra support from the teachers and within a couple of terms had completely caught up with his peers. Both boys have made lots of wonderful friends here, and now the school is the main reason we want to stay in Singapore as long as possible. 


Thank you, Lydia. We hope that your family continues to make Tanglin your home away from home for generations to come and beyond!



Tanglin Trust School Singapore has a long tradition of providing British-based learning with an international perspective. At Tanglin we strive to make every individual feel valued, happy and successful.

Find us at 95 Portsdown Road, Singapore 139299

Tanglin Trust School Ltd
Registration number : 196100114C
Registration period : 7 June 2023 to 6 June 2029

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