Stonyhurst College, founded in 1593 in France, is a Catholic school that accepts pupils from other Christian traditions. Many who board at the school, which has more than 300 boys and 130 girls, come from overseas.Two sixth-form lovers have jetted off to the Caribbean after sneaking out of their public school in the middle of the night dailymail.co.uk reports.
The 16-year-olds told friends they were sick of the rain and cold after returning to their £30,000-a-year school after the Christmas holidays.
As fellow pupils and staff at Stonyhurst College in Clitheroe, Lancashire, slept, they took a taxi to Manchester airport and were last seen in the terminal before flying to the Dominican Republic.
Now the pair – who are understood to have been dating each other at the school – are being sought by their parents and police on the island.
It is understood the pupils booked tickets online, then told close friends they were going to leave late on Sunday night for a romantic break in the Caribbean.
They waited until staff on night duty had gone to bed and fellow pupils were asleep in their dorms before grabbing their bags and sneaking out.
Edward Bunyan and Indira Gainiyeva, both aged 16, disappeared from Stonyhurst College in Clitheroe, Lancashire, in the early hours of Monday morningThey are believed to have walked out of the school gates and down the road before ordering a taxi to the airport, where they boarded an indirect flight to Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic.
Sources said their parents were sick with worry, but were trying to resolve the drama with minimal police involvement.
They are said to be trying to contact the runaway pair and may fly out to bring them back to school.
Lancashire Police said last night: ‘We are making inquiries with the authorities to trace the two missing pupils.
Efforts are being made to establish they are safe and well, though at this stage an international hunt has not been launched.’
Andrew Johnson, headmaster of Stonyhurst, said: ‘Two of our sixth formers left the college during the course of Monday morning. We have been working with their families and the police, who believe they may now have traced their location. We await further news from the police.’
Stonyhurst College, originally founded in 1593 in France, is a Catholic school that accepts pupils from other Christian traditions. Many who board at the school, which has more than 300 boys and 130 girls, come from overseas.
Past pupils include Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and actor Charles Laughton.
Last night a source said: ‘It’s the talk of the school. It’s astonishing that, although they are only 16, they could afford to splash out on flights to the Caribbean, but a lot of the pupils at Stonyhurst come from very wealthy families.
‘Many are from overseas and their parents give them credit cards with unlimited credit.’
Traditionalists were outraged when girls were admitted to the school for the first time in 1999.
In 2009 a girl and a boy, aged 16 and 17, were expelled after they were caught in bed together.
Later that year, head of English Terence Bell, 46, was jailed over a seven-month affair with a 17-year-old pupil at the school. He was caught after another pupil found him and the girl in a passionate clinch in a classroom.
Bell later confessed to police, saying: ‘The game’s up, isn’t it? Love is a powerful thing.’
He was jailed for 20 weeks on a charge of being in a position of trust and intentionally causing or inciting a girl of 17 to engage in sexual activity.
Later today the two Stonyhurst College students who fled to the Caribbean last Monday has been found safe and well. Edward Bunyan, 16 and his girlfriend Indira Gainiyeva, 17, were found at a hotel in the Punta Cana area of the Dominican Republic by local police at 11pm last night.
Lancashire Police have said that plans are currently being made for the pair to return to the UK.