The Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, visited Brighton College earlier this month and spoke at our education conference.
TAG: Brighton College
Brighton College Today
On 31st May 2012 Brighton College hosted an important debate about the future redevelopment of the city of Brighton and Hove. Some 100 guests, including Caroline Lucas, MP, Councillor Jason Kitcat, Leader of Brighton and Hove City Council, as well as architects and developers from across London and the South East, packed the Rose Lecture Theatre for the ‘City Plan Question Time’.
Pupils and staff have been tremendously excited this week as structural work on the Diamond Jubilee Pavilion has now begun. With the main framework now in place, the new sports hub is beginning to take shape, set against the beautiful backdrop of the Sussex Downs countryside. Over the coming weeks, contractors will work on creating the changing rooms, referee and first aid rooms, and a large social space with a café-bar, all of which are much-needed at the site.
Former Headmaster William Blackshaw returned to the College on Saturday 28th January 2012, together with family and friends, for the formal opening of the Blackshaw Building, named in his honour. Formerly the classrooms for the Pre-Prep School, which moved over the summer to the old Roedean Junior School, the Blackshaw Building now houses the Maths, PE and EAL departments.
As he approaches his 93rd birthday, Canon Peters said it is “a blessing” to be the last chaplain who served in the Second World War to still be working.
The Sgt. Major Chris O’Connell Memorial took place on a freezing January afternoon, but the warmth of feeling amongst the Old Brightonians who came to celebrate Chris’s life staved off the cold. Two former Headmasters were in attendance, Bill Blackshaw and John Leach, and Brighton College was represented by various staff including Deputy-Head John Weeks, Elizabeth Cody and Common Room President Steve Radojcic.
Old Brightonian Matt Prior (R. 1995-00) England wicketkeeper and two-time Ashes winner, returned to the College on Wednesday 30th November 2011 to open, officially, the new fitness and conditioning suite housed in what was previously the pre-prep school hall.
I enclose a picture of my form in the Junior School, about 1946. Recognisable boys are Acker, Woodthorpe, Seagull, Drayson, Little, Hill I and Hill II, Goldstein.
Richard Thornburgh sent us this wonderful postcard of the Junior School when it was in Lewes Crescent.
Brighton College continues to give us all cause for celebration, gaining this year not only the best results in Sussex but also being named the ‘Sunday Times UK Independent School of the Year 2011-12’. The Head Master Richard Cairns and his staff are to be congratulated upon this achievement and of course all of the pupils and staff, past and present, who have contributed to this accolade. It is an achievement that all Old Brightonians should celebrate, and as President of the Old Brightonians I would like to pass on my congratulations for your efforts. We all have different memories of our time at the College, but it is truly a school that we can all be proud of.
The Sunday Times has announced that the winner of its much coveted Independent School of the Year Award 2011-12 is Brighton College. This is the most prestigious schools award in the United Kingdom.
On Friday 18th November the 4th form and the L5 had the opportunity to hear various professionals talking about their career fields.
Even before the final bars of the first night performance had been played by the quite magnificent 34 piece orchestra, which had been carefully assembled by Mr Carter and inspirationally led by our brilliant Musical Director Mr Chenery, the audience had started to applaud and cheer in response to a production overflowing with talent and exuberant energy.
I am writing with some fantastic news. The Sunday Times has decided to award Brighton College the title of UK Independent Secondary School of the Year 2011 in their highly influential Sunday Times Schools Guide to be published this Sunday and on line.
We are delighted to announce that planning permission was granted last week for the Diamond Jubilee Pavilion to be built on the New Ground in East Brighton Park. The one-storey building will have large changing rooms, a stunning café-bar overlooking the New Ground and an impressive entrance foyer, providing a warm and welcoming environment for pupils, staff and spectators. Other groups are also set to benefit as the new facilities will also be made available to other sporting groups from around the community.
Wednesday 28th September saw all Brighton College pupils and staff engage in over 100 community service projects in and around Brighton, as they set out to help their local area as part of the College's fourth annual "Make a Difference Day." Whether clearing Coldean Woods together with Brighton and Hove Urban Rangers or undertaking maintenance at St Dunstan's centre for blind ex-servicemen and women; marching and collecting in support of Breast Cancer Awareness or clearing scrub with the National Trust Downland Restoration Project at Devil's Dyke; baking cakes for the elderly, sorting stock for the Martlets Hospice charity shops or, indeed, picking litter from the beaches and roads of Kemp Town; more than 800 pupils worked in the community to support a huge range of projects across the city and local area.
Brighton College has seen many generations of families pass through the gates, and following the generous endowment from the Association of Old Brightonians in 2010 we are delighted to announce that the OBA bursary has been awarded to a Sixth Former for the academic years 2011-12 through to 2012-13. The OBA Bursary is awarded to descendants of former pupils of the college.
Chris Terleski (H.1965-71), quoted in The Brightonian of 1971 as the "(in)famous Head of School who will be remembered by everyone - but for entirely different reasons" popped in to see us recently and had a tour of the College on a beautiful sunny August morning.
"I was at Brighton College Junior School 1948-52 and Brighton College 1952-57 (Leconfield House). I qualified in Medicine at Guys Hospital, London University 1963. I then worked in Hospitals in Brighton London and Paris and in 1969 moved to Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa to further train in Internal Medicine and returned to London in 1972. In 1973 I moved to Tokyo to join the Tokyo Medical and Surgical Clinic where I still practice (http://www.tmsc.jp/).
I am writing with very good news regarding our GCSE results which pupils are collecting this morning. The boys and girls should be delighted. They have smashed the college record. Most importantly, every pupil achieved results that they can be proud of – whether that be ten A* grades or a mixture of A and B grades. Every set of results is personal, special and equally valued.
I am writing with news of our A-level results, which the sixth form will receive this morning. It is all very pleasing. This very cheerful group has broken the school record for top grades with 75.9% of all grades at A* or A. These are the best A-level results ever achieved by a co-educational school in England. The college’s previous best was 72.8% in 2010.
I think I was the first OB to be married in the College Chapel, Saturday 30th 1961. I remember I had to spend three weekends in Bristol House to claim residential qualification. In fact our Marriage certificate gives my address as Brighton College. People think my wife Angela married a school boy! We’ve been married now for 50 years, and celebrate our Golden Wedding Anniversary this coming September.
In Evelyn Waugh's Decline and Fall, the young Paul Pennyfeather, sent down from his Oxford college, is interviewed for a teaching post in the offices of Church and Gargoyle, scholastic agents. The proprietor, Mr Levy, explains to Pennyfeather that "in England we class school into four grades: ‘Leading school', ‘First-rate school', ‘Good school' and finally, ‘School". Paul Pennyfeather, of course, ends up in a ‘School'.
Thursday night saw the Graduation Service and Ceremony for Brighton College Upper Sixth Leavers – the formal event to mark their departure from the College, in advance of the informal festivities of the Leavers’ Ball at the Hilton Metropole on Friday evening. Family, friends and staff crowded into the Chapel to celebrate the achievements of each and every member of the Upper Sixth, punctuated with some humorous and engaging reminiscence, provided by Theo Bunce and Emma Langmead.
Conventional seating was dispensed with and instead the audience stood in the middle of the performance space whilst the actors performed the dark fairy-tales around them. The acting was exemplary, with remarkable performances from so many, as Nancy Gladwin and George Oxley, as narrators, led us through this dark world. Congratulations to Dermot Keaney and Harry Ashbee for directing and staging such an original and breathtaking piece of theatre.
Twenty years is quite a long time, especially when the current Y13's at our alma mater were two years of age when we left in 1991. Time is a very odd concept and what it does to you, either through the graceful ageing process or the fact that going back to Brighton last Saturday made us all feel as if it was just yesterday we left... and what a day we had!
Welcome to the Old Brightonians, founded in 1882. We are lucky to have an active network, and we are proud of our long and industrious relationship with Brighton College. I attended Brighton College as a Lyon Scholar in 1952 and left with both wonderful memories and a fine education which I furthered at Pembroke College, Cambridge.
Dance school pupils are celebrating record results in their Modern, Jazz and Tap examinations. Thirty three pupils took exams with twenty four achieving Distinctions and nine achieving Merits. Well done to all. Particular congratulations to College pupils Harriet Vans Agnew, Phoebe Lower, Beth Kelly, Keziah Fish, Zoe Halford and Francesca Douglas who achieved Distinctions for Grade 5 Modern and to the Primary and Grade 1 Tappers who also attained a full set of Distinctions.
They say that in Snowdonia it is possible to see four seasons in one day. Unfortunately for the 25 Gold participants that ventured to North Wales this Easter break they really only encountered the one. Winter. For four days and three nights our two assessed and two practice groups displayed true British stoicism as they battled against torrential rain, flooded rivers and some rather unfortunately flooded tents.
Congratulations to William Emery, L5th, on gaining a place at the Youth Music Theatre UK. This is a National Organisation which mounts several productions each year. Competition for places in the cast is fierce and it is an outstanding achievement for William to be successful in a particularly tough audition process. Well done!
On Sunday 17th April the College 1st XI cricket side took on the Sussex Martlets as their season opener. The College got off to a good start with an opening stand of 188 between Eswar Kalidasan and Yass Bahemou. Excellent running between the wickets from Hugh Richards and a quick fire 20 off 13 balls from Jethro Menzies led to a competitive total of 270 for 4 being set.
The 1st XV have had another excellent year. Beating Daily Mail Champions Whitgift (23-22) along with Epsom, Cranleigh and Dulwich has enabled them to come top of this years Evening Standard League. A huge amount of credit should go to all the players but in particular Joe Beckett and Pahymahn Seyed-Safi who have both been in the 1st XV for the 3 years. The 1st VII also won the Reigate Norton Rose Sevens and the Worth Sevens beating Epsom and Tonbridge in the final respectfully.
An enthralling evening of sporting knowledge and prowess was possibly being held somewhere on Thursday 3rd March, but at the Brighton College Sports Quiz the name of the game was definitely fun and fundraising. Ian Braid kicked off the evening showcasing the fantastic work of SportsAid, joint recipient of the evening’s proceeds, who offer financial support to talented young sportsmen and women at the beginning of their careers. John Inverdale was magnificent as quizmaster, encouraging competitive spirit and berating those underhand or rather under-table tactics being employed by certain teams.
In 1969 the Old Brightonians were invited to take part in the Public Schools knockout competition run by the Cricketer and sponsored by Mercier Champagne. Nobody expected very much from us. We had a good side but not a great one, but we did have self belief and enthusiasm. The first match was against the favourites, the Old Tonbridgians. This was the closest game we played. With the scores equal we won through to the next round, having lost fewer wickets.
Although not a member of the Common Room as such, Chris O’Connell became in his thirty year career at the College a truly legendary figure and, as one previous Headmaster has said, ‘simply the best Housemaster that convention prevented me from appointing’.
I am planning to write a book about the history of Brighton Institution for the Deaf, Eastern Road (1848-1941) which was situated opposite Brighton College. My intention is to draw up the floor plans, and an architectural front & rear elevations of the school buildings.
The recent great successes enjoyed by the College – surely a source of joy to all of us who love the place – have caused the Press to suggest that it was previously a ‘backwater’. So it seems right to refer to the work done in the last fifty years, that work itself laid on earlier foundations. After all, the decade before then produced Lord Alexander, Lord Skidelsky and Bishop Bavin (to say nothing of Sir John Chilcot) among others! And these last fifty years began with a visit from the Queen. Backwater...?!?
It was a pleasure to meet Headmasters Dr Richard Cairns, and Brendan Law as well as other officials at the recent BCAD event at the Fairmont Hotel, Abu Dhabi on the 4th November 2010. A number of Old Brightonians were present and it would be good to keep in touch with those in the GCC region, as well as trying to make contact with colleagues from 1965 to 1969 when I was at the College.