Everything you should know about LSD

Soniya, a Y13 student here at BHS has been researching the topic of drug addiction and has produced the following blog in preparation for her university interviews. 


Here, let me ease you in…

Ever heard of the song Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds? Well, you will have if you’re a true Beatles fan or maybe you know your drug slang cause this song title is one of many slang terms used for LSD as the song itself was believed to be about this drug (hence Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, LSD). Until Lennon later confirmed that the song was a response to a picture painted by his almost-four-year-old son, Julian. Cute! Also referred to as dot or acid, LSD is one of the most dangerous drugs within the category of not currently having an accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Only tiny amounts of LSD are needed to gain an effect which is why the standard units of drug measurements (milligrams/ grams) are replaced with micrograms (which is 1/100000th of a grain of sand) as less than 70 micrograms can induce an effect on an individual.

Let’s go back to the accidental origin story of LSD…

LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide) is a derivative of ergot, a fungus that infects rye and wheat. Ergot can affect the nervous system, digestive system, or cardiovascular system, constricting the blood vessels. This can lead to gangrene, which is when tissues die due to a lack of oxygen. Small doses of ergot were however used in the past to aid childbirth by quickening the delivery and stopping the bleeding afterwards. This practice was first recorded in 1532 and despite the thousands that it killed in the Middle Ages due to the side effects such as uterine rupture, this practice was continued till 1828.

Albert Hofmann was a Swiss chemist whose most well-known achievement was arguably the discovery of the LSD drug while trying to isolate the alkaloid, ergot, with the motive of establishing medication that doesn’t have death-defying side effects. It was during his work on the ergot fungus that he stumbled on LSD, accidentally ingesting a trace of the compound that remained on his fingertip one Friday afternoon in April 1943. This might be a good time to debunk the myth that the LSD was absorbed through his skin. Lies, I tell you! Soon he experienced an altered state of consciousness like the one he had experienced as a child. His statement reads:

‘Last Friday, April 16, 1943, I was forced to interrupt my work in the laboratory in the middle of the afternoon and proceed home, being affected by a remarkable restlessness, combined with a slight dizziness. At home I lay down and sank into a not unpleasant intoxicated-like condition, characterised by an extremely stimulated condition. In a dreamlike state, with eyes closed, I perceived an uninterrupted stream of fantastic pictures, extraordinary shapes with intense, kaleidoscopic play of colours. After some two hours this condition faded away’.

April 16 is now known as bicycle day, the first recorded LSD trip by good old Albert.

Science time

Studies show that hallucinogens like LSD work on serotonin receptors in the brain called 5-HT2A receptors. The LSD hits the receptor at an unexpected angle causing it to fold over and create a lid. The LSD is trapped making the receptor continuously fire thus causing a hallucination. The body’s response to this rapid firing is sucking the 5-TH2A receptor into the cell in order to degrade the LSD but this can take up to 12+ hours resulting in long-lasting highs. Clare Stanford, a psychopharmacologist at University College London, believes that serotonin helps keep a handle on perception and stops us from hallucinating. This can be explained by the DMN, a network of interacting brain regions that is active when a person is not focused on the outside world.  LSD decreases the blood flow in the default mode network (DMN) correlating in strong changes in consciousness characterised by ego-dissolution a feeling where the boundary that separates you from the rest of the world dissolves.

“The drug can also cause synaesthesia, a condition which happens naturally in a small percentage of the population, where your senses get mixed up and you start smelling colours and tasting sounds,” says Dr Stanford.

LDS is considered a non-addictive drug despite the potential to become dependent on the sights, sounds and revelations that can be experiences while under the influence of a trip. Development of a tolerance or psychological dependence to acid can result from long-term use of this drug. If this drug is taken regular in the span of several days a tolerance can develop within as little as a week and at this point no significant changes occur to an individual’s metal state if additional doses are taken.

One of the potential consequences taking LSD is developing hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD). This long lasting and potentially lifelong syndrome is characterized geometric hallucinations, perceiving movement in peripheral visual fields, macropsia¸ afterimage, reoccurring perceptual disturbances reminiscent of ones generated while subjected to intoxication of hallucinogen. There is no relationship between HDDP, and amount of substance used. There have been documented cases of prolonged, intense use causing negative side effects such as paranoia or psychosis.


Animal testing

The mice depression has been resolved! Yes, you heard me. It started with Hoffman experiments combining lysergic acid with other molecules. The 25th combination was resulted from the reaction between lysergic acid and dimethylamine and the compound was abbreviated to LDS- 25. Hoffman trailed LSD-25 on animals including mice and found it made them highly excited.

Scientists have also trailed drugs based on LSD and concluded its ability to treat depression in mice without the psychedelic trip giving it potential for a role as an antidepressant in modern medicine

Animal testing does of course have its downsides like this one carried out in 1962 at the University of Oklahoma with the intention of discovering whether LSD will induce a condition known as musth in Tusko (a popular name given to elephants in captivity). This condition is naturally occurring in all bull elephants, it is considered a period of heightened testosterone production and high aggression. Tusko collapsed within five minutes under influence and died under 2 hours later.

Macropsia – a neurological condition in which objects within affected section appear larger than normal

Afterimage – visual illusion in which retinal impressions persist after the removal of a stimulus, believed to be caused by the continued activation of the visual system.

Royal Albert Hall Beckons for Boston!

Boston Music Centre’s journey to the Royal Albert Hall.

Young musicians between the ages of 6 and 18 from Boston Music Centre are taking a trip to the Royal Albert Hall in London, to perform an 8-minute Beyonce medley from memory, in-front of an audience of 1300. And it’s been quite a journey to get there.

Their performance in the Albert Hall is the result of a two-stage competition. The first stage being the music for youth regional festival, and the second stage being the national festival in Birmingham in July of this year. The musicians met every Monday for one and a half hours and have practiced every day at home under the tutelage of Lee Hextall.

Boston High alumnus, Vanessa Hobart, will be responsible for conducting the orchestra for their final performance in the Royal Albert Hall and has implemented many changes during their journey, which have included adding dance moves and working with local schools in the area, to create a supersized choir on the back of a suggestion from judges of previous stages of the competition.

We asked a student from the junior choir at Boston high school, how they felt about the performance, and they said, “we know all the songs and it is a good mix of songs. I’m sure it will be a great experience” we also asked the music teacher who leads the junior choir at Boston high school how she felt when she was asked to join the orchestra and she told us “to be part of a huge performance at the royal albert hall which is possibly one of the best venues in the world, is an experience that we couldn’t really pass up. I think it will inspire students to do more music making because the buzz you get at the end of a performance is like nothing people will have experienced.’ She went on to tell us, “it will create an everlasting memory” We asked a musician who will be playing in the Royal Albert Hall what they had found difficult in the lead up to this great achievement and they said, “I am a bit nervous for the performance but I am mostly excited, learning all of the dance moves to the piece was definitely the most difficult part, even more difficult than learning all of the music from memory”.

Boston music centre will be performing their Beyonce medley in the Royal Albert Hall on the 16th of   November 2022, YJA will be following their journey every step of the way. Stay tuned for more.

Sophie and Zofia Yr9





Castle Combe Greenpower Race

On the 10th of September the Greenpower team set out on a long journey to Castle Combe Greenpower Race.  What challenges would they have to face over the course of the day?


They started bright and early with nothing to go on other than team spirit, they needed to move their van to where they would be working on the car. Then the amazing team checked their car and went to a Greenpower crew member to double check the car.


Now the first race is about to begin and in honour of Her Majesty’s passing we had 2 minutes silence before the race began. If I’m honest I find what the Greenpower company did was amazing that they had time to honour the queen as they had had such a busy day.


We left the track and got in our places ready for the first race and the race begins but they have ran into their first problem. The Boston Beagle was driving slowly and eventually came to a complete stop. As Evie (one of the drivers) was getting rescued the team had to figure what was going on and fast. The team concluded that a wire that should have been making a tyre go had been disconnected making the vehicle go slow and after a while making it come to a complete stop. After a quick fix the Beagle was back on the track again but overall, they lost 15 minutes of race time.


After the issue was resolved Evie was amazing taking corners well and overtook so many people. Rebecca was quite a fast driver, and she took corners amazingly. But Macy was a super-fast driver and got us into a such a good place.


Overall, the team came 8th, and it was such an amazing day for us all, thank you Boston beagle team for inviting the Young Journalist Academy on this incredible day.


By Scarlett Year 8 Boston High School

International Women’s Day 2022

‘Girls are capable of everything men are capable of doing. Sometimes they have more imagination than men.’- Katherine Johnson

International Women’s Day, celebrated on 8th of March, commemorates women’s achievements all around the world. The fight for women’s rights and equality between men and women has been going on for decades. An example of a women’s rights movement is the Suffragettes who protested for women’s right to vote in public elections. They fought for this by using peaceful and violent methods, and sadly many died or were arrested during the process.

This year’s International Women’s Day theme is #BreakThe Bias. You can share a video, image or article on social media using #IDW2022 and #BreakTheBias. You can also strike the IDW2022 pose, which is crossing your arms to show solidarity, says the ‘International Women’s Day’ website. They also say that the theme is meant to raise awareness against the bias so we can ‘imagine a gender equal world. A world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination. A world that’s diverse, equitable, and inclusive. A world where difference is valued and celebrated.’ ,announced the International Women’s Day website.

So, are you going to #BreakTheBias?



Boston High School Newsroom

The Origins of World Book Day

The origin of world book day 

 World Book Day is a well-known charity event held every year in the United Kingdom and Ireland on the first Thursday in March. On World Book Day, children in UK schools are given a voucher to be spent on books. 

World Book Day is a registered charity which means It doesn’t raise funds for itself but does support Book Aid International and Readathon as its nominated charities, encouraging schools to hold special fundraising events for less fortunate children. 

World Book Day is not funded by the British Government although the Quick Reads portion does receive support from ACE, DIUS and NIACE. The funding for World Book Day activities comes principally from the major sponsor, National Book Tokens and the UK book trade (publishers and booksellers). 

The event is the local form of the original, global World Book Day organized by UNESCO to encourage reading, publishing, and copyright, and commonly observed on 23 April. Organizers in the UK moved the celebration to avoid it overlapping with Easter school holidays and with St George’s Day. 

The United Kingdom’s own version of World Book Day began in 1998, by Prime Minister Tony Blair at the Globe Theatre in London. Millions of schoolchildren in the UK were given a special £1 World Book Day Book Token (€1.50 in Ireland) which applied a discount to any book in ant UK bookstore. All World Book Day point of sale and the £1 book carried the special World Book Day logo to help combine the project through all outlets. 

Since then, World Book Day UK has followed a similar pattern, progressively rising in fame each year to encompass more initiatives, such as Spread the Word, Quick Reads Initiative and Books for Hospitals. Every year, the number of children receiving a World Book Day Book Token has increased. 

In 2000, instead of a single £1 special collection, four separate £1 books were published, covering a wider age-range. Since then, each year has seen a new set of £1 books published. 

In 2006, World Book Day began its support of and association with the Quick Reads initiative for adult emergent readers. 

In 2007, World Book Day celebrated its 10th anniversary with the publication of 10 £1 books. Since then, every child in education in the UK and Ireland is entitled to receive a £1 World Book Day Book token every year. They can swap their WBD token for one of the specially produced £1 WBD books or they can get £1 off a full-price book or audio book priced £2.99 or more. 


And with that, happy world book day! 🙂 

Sprinting Staff Members

Boston Highschool staff have been taking part in a challenge where they have to either run, walk or cycle 26.2 miles (using an app called Strava) by the end of January to raise awareness and money for prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer is found in the prostate gland (a part of the male reproductive system) and it affects 1 in 8 men in the UK.

Some members of staff have been taking this challenge the challenge one step at a time however, other staff have already completed the challenge and most have only a few miles to go. Mrs Whatton even completed the challenge a few days ago but has kept on walking and she has now reached 40 miles!

After seeing a post about the challenge on her Facebook page, Mrs Fyson organised the staff running team so they could help the cause.

‘I am taking part in this challenge to raise awareness of prostate cancer, to raise funds for prostate cancer UK to support more people diagnosed with it and also undertake more research into treatments.’ Quoted Mrs Whatton when asked why she took part in the challenge.

Mrs Carter said that her personal benefits from this challenge were that she is trying to feel fitter and better within herself. She also feels a sense of achievement.

Mrs Taylor’s motto for the challenge is ‘Do not give up, anything is achievable.’

To conclude, the staff members will have reached their target by the end of January feeling proud as they will have achieved something wonderful that they should be proud of and they will have spread awareness for prostate cancer and raised lots of money for the cause.


By Tabitha, Zofia and Gracie Y8 Boston High School Newsroom

How Long Will They Be Left In Darkness ?

Houses in the North have been left without any light source, besides the sun, since November 26.

According to The Royal Borough Observer, approximately 4,700 houses were wiped out over Northern England and Scotland after the Storm Arwen had occurred.

Companies have been working extremely hard attempting to fix this problem in harsh conditions and a downfall of temperature.

Supplies have not been successfully delivered to the areas that are vulnerable with the amount of snow and having to clear trees on every journey. Chief executive Jonathan Brearley has said “One thing we’ve done already is we’ve said to Network companies, and they’ve agreed, they’ve lifted the cap on the compensation they will give customers and they’ll make sure that those customers do get some compensation for everything they’ve been through.” It has been agreed with firms to lift the £700 cap to decrease the amount spent on compensation given to customers or the company. This lifting of the money will allow those who have been affected by this to receive £70 for each 24-hours they are left without power.

Hopefully this compensation will help decrease stress levels within the affected households and their power will be back and running anytime soon!

Shania Yr 7

Boston High School Newsroom

A Pet is Not Just For Christmas

On Christmas morning, opening a cuddly kitten or perfect puppy is a dream for many people. They vow to love, and care for these animals, however this doesn’t always happen. 

Often people don’t research the care needed for these animals and believe that they are capable of providing what is needed. Although, especially with puppies, the necessary care, is in fact a lot of work and attention, much more than anticipated by most. When dogs become adolescent, the novelty of owning a puppy wears off and many people decide to rehome them, leaving them at rescue centres. In 2017, Mirror.co.uk said that ‘people buying puppies after seeing them on social media is increasing the number of abandoned dogs at Christmas’. The article also stated that ‘an animal campaigner was claiming that 127 dogs were dropped off at The Dogs Trust in the 2 weeks surrounding Christmas’.

However, if a pet is really all you want for Christmas, ensure that you research thoroughly, and are certain that you have the space and time for that animal.

Evie Yr 9
Boston High School Newsroom

From Homeless to Mr Christmas


According to the BBC News website, there is a man in Norwich who is using 16,000 Christmas lights outside his house to raise money for the charity that helped him when he was homeless many years ago.

The charity is called St Martins-In-The-Fields based in Norwich. It helps the homeless people so that they have a safe, secure place to call home. According to their website, they have helped 11,684 people find somewhere to live, away from homelessness.

Mark Abbott, also known as Mr Christmas, is a man living in the Tuckswood area of Norwich. He started raising money just last year for a charity that helps homeless people so that they have a safe place to call ‘home’ and don’t have to live on the streets.

Mark has built a sleigh which can seat up to 4 children and even has a built-in snow machine! That sleigh was the first thing he built for his display outside his home for this year’s Christmas spirit.

Abbott must use 50 plug sockets for this masterpiece outside of his house, but at least he was able to put up more lights than last year before he moved house. When he was interviewed by the BBC, he said that it “upped last year”.

He only had 5,000 less last year than he does this year! He started doing these displays about 8 years ago and whoever attends to see this masterpiece, will be asked for a donation towards the charity.

By Tansy Yr 8

Boston High School Newsroom