Five firm friends from the King’s School were calling family in the Buxton and the High Peak after acing their A-levels.
The clever quintet were among a strong cohort of students at the Macclesfield school who took the change in the structure of examination marking in its stride adjusting to the greater emphasis on end of course exams.
Hockey captain William McIlveen, 18, from Whaley Bridge got an A*, two As and a B grade and will now study maths at St. Andrews, while Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award-winner Rhys Bowen, 18, from Buxton got three straight A grades and will study law at Leeds with the aim of becoming a police officer.
Poppy Kirk, 18, from Whaley Bridge, got an A*, an A and a B and is now taking an art foundation course.
Rugby player William Thomson, 18, from Buxton, got an A* and two A grades and will read geography at Durham, and Alexander Welsh, 18, from Whaley Bridge, got three A*s and an A and will read physics at Manchester ultimately wanting to work in research.
Headmaster Dr Simon Hyde said: “Students and staff have worked hard to adapt to the new examination system which the government has introduced after a series of recommendations from many of the country’s leading universities.
“Our continued success in these key exams is down to the detailed preparation by staff and the hard work and determination of our pupils.
“I’m delighted to see so many heading off to their choice of university to study what is a broad range of courses ranging from art to zoology.”
Eighty per cent of all grades were A* - B and a stunning 43 per cent of all grades were at A*/ A.
Three students achieved three A*s or better, with around 40 students achieving three As or better.
In addition, four students will take up places at Oxford or Cambridge, while 26 students achieved the top A* grade in at least one subject.