OWs & Supporting Us

From Sudan to BBC’s The One Show

Interviewed on the BBC’s early evening programme, The One Show, on 1 May 2018, Hamza Yassin (04-08 G)  now a successful “long lens” wildlife photographer, and a new recruit to the show’s wildlife team, recalled his early years in the Sudan surrounded by wildlife he didn’t really appreciate. He also recalled that he had a monkey as a pet and he had assumed that kids in the UK would have the same.

He noted that his degree in zoology, with conservation, had helped him to anticipate animals’ behaviour patterns which, in turn, had led to some stunning photographs since he took up his fascinating career. On the show, his cctv film of a pine martin living up in his loft generated considerable interest from co-hosts, Matt Baker and Alex Jones

Honours even in OW battles against the School

On Saturday 24th March over 40 OWs gathered to challenge themselves in three football matches and one netball match against school teams.

Starting proceedings in the Sports Hall, the OW Netballers, after a nip and tuck start, settled into a convincing rhythm and ran out 37-18 winners. Representing the team were Anna Cannon, Charlotte Cattell, Emily Cattell, Yasmin Dhaliwal, Harriet Knight, Rebecca Smith, Charlotte Stevens, and team supporter, Hannah Edmunds.

Lacking a regular goalkeeper, the 1st XI footballers were blown away by a good school side. Tom Buller scored a consolation goal in a 1-7 drubbing. The team consisted of Rob McArdle, Jamie Bates, Noah Kennedy, Drew Brierley, Ollie Furniss, Nick Dutton, Chris Clayson, Ed Smith, Murray McMillan, Marcus Harper, Sean Mulvey, Tom Buller and Oli Chapman.

The 2nd Football XI had much more success in controlling their game and goals from Scott Stronach, Will Cantrell and two from the evergreen Ben Buckler without reply yielded a 4-0 victory. Joining them in the team were Andy Bambrough, James Rowse, Ben Dhaliwal, Charlie Wheeler, Rob Kelly, Jarrod Staughton, Peter Kelly, and George Wheeler.

Pleased to have a playing squad of 12 players this year, the 3rd XI had the closest contest of all the OW teams and suffered a narrow 2-3 defeat. The two goals were scored by Simon Minchinton and Seb Smart and the other members of the team were Joe Ramsden, Joe Smith, Tom Southern, Karun Patel, Rob Taylor, James Wassiliauskas, Jack Wassiliauskas, Jack Perkins, Richard Campbell and Simon Smart.

All the players were delighted to receive the support of OW Club President, David Clifton, who had driven up from London to enjoy the games. He was particularly impressed with the standard of netball on show in the Sports Hall.





84 OWs and guests play away at Charterhouse

President, David Clifton (63-74 St), welcomed the above to this year’s London Dinner, which, courtesy of the sponsorship of ‘Brother’ Duncan Ellison (Staff 73-04), was held in the ancient surroundings of The London Charterhouse in the City of London; Smithfield market in one direction and St Paul’s Cathedral in the opposite direction two notable local landmarks.

Charles Linfield (Staff 73-00) provided some fascinating insights into the origins of the buildings as a 14th century Carthusian monastery, which flourished during the later medieval and early Tudor period. Following the dissolution of the monasteries, the Charterhouse became a mansion for wealthy noblemen before, in 1611, Thomas Sutton bought the Charterhouse and established the foundation bearing his name. Provision was made for up to 80 Brothers, as well as Charterhouse school. The school, known to many OWs for encounters in Arthur Dunn cup matches or Halford Hewitt meetings, moved to its present site in Godalming, Surrey in 1872, but the Brothers remained.

Following an excellent meal, and school updates from new Headmaster, Andrew Holman, and his senior prefects, as many as ¾ of the gathering retired to the nearby ‘Vestry’, a public house once owned by the Charterhouse, for further carousing until….. Regulars were delighted to see a considerable number of new faces to the occasion, the result of the President’s tireless work in helping the Club to expand and update its database.

OW At Sea

We were pleased to receive the following missive from Commander Andrew Canale MVO RN (83-92 G) passed to us by immediate Past President, Clive Westley (59-64 F).

‘Since we last spoke, much has changed and I am delighted to bring you up-to-date with events.  You may have noticed that the Secretary of State for Defence came on board in November and announced that HMS SUTHERLAND would deploy to the Asia-Pacific region in the New Year.  After some speedy planning, a further period of sea training (never pleasant!), short maintenance period and Christmas leave, the Ship deployed on 9th January for seven months, tasked with supporting the Government’s prosperity agenda in Australia, deepening our military relationships on the Korean Peninsula and supporting our enduring commitments in the Middle East.   

Operationally, SUTHERLAND has made significant contributions already from the Mediterranean, to the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and in the protected waters around Diego Garcia.  A transit through one of the most strategically important choke points, the Bab-Al-Mandeb Strait, is not quite as routine as it once was.  The conflict in Yemen shows no signs of resolution and SUTHERLAND put herself at a suitable state of readiness, as one might expect, in order to pass safely through an area so blighted by civil war.  The Ship integrated quickly into the counter piracy task force off Somalia and established new acquaintances with our US allies with a timely replenishment of fuel at sea with USNS PACOS and a reciprocal visit of respective Ships’ Companies with USNS LEWIS B PULLER.   

Despite the significant periods at sea, there have been moments of recreation.  The visit to Gibraltar was long enough to indoctrinate fifty members of the Ship’s Company into a Royal Navy tradition, namely “The Rock Run”, which takes participants from the Ship to the summit of the Rock in a gruelling ascent.  I even managed a personal best.  The Warrant Officers and Chief Petty Officers’ Mess hosted a memorable ‘crossing the line’ ceremony, a first for most, including the Commanding Officer who had waited over twenty years to cross the Equator!     

The Ship now looks forward to strengthening its ties with one of our oldest allies, the Royal Australian Navy.  HMS SUTHERLAND will support Defence Industry and conduct exercises with our Australian partners.  Four port visits await and with it the opportunity to experience another part of the world one might never visit again! 

Postscript: The Daily Telegraph of 14th February 2018 reported that HMS Sutherland would be making its return voyage through the South China Sea.

New Head given old college welcome by OWs 

Thirteen former members of Oxford and Cambridge colleges, and their six guests, gathered in The Parlour of Cambridge University's, Magdalene College, on Friday 2nd February to welcome the school's new Headmaster, Mr Andrew Holman, himself a Mathematics graduate of Magdalene. 

Guest, Neil Lyon (80-85 W), acted as toastmaster, Sudanshu Swaroop QC, (81-91 C) a former member of College, read the Magdalene Grace, while Julian Harris (63-73 C), also a former member of College, delivered the toast to The School and formally welcomed the Headmaster. 

Andrew Holman
Neil Lyon
(80-85 W)
Julian Harris
(63-73 C)

Also in attendance were:- Mike Askham (Foundation Director); Susan Barnhurst (Staff); James Browne (79–86 W); Alice Chan (03-17 W); David Clifton, Club President (63-74 S); Jonathan Cox (79-86 C); Rupert Higgins (76-87 S); Alison Holley (staff); Sara Holman; Abbey Jones (00-05 N); Bill Reed (63-70 Pa); Saim Saeed (07-16 G); Rev Martin Walker (Staff); David Waller (77-81 S); Alex Wardle-Solano (12-16 C).

Lydia Macdonell (05-15 W) wins bronze medal on full England debut

University of Birmingham third year student, Lydia Macdonell, on a first call-up to a Senior England squad, not only scored one of England's goals in their 3-5 defeat to Austria at the European Indoor Championships in Belgium over the week-end of 19-22 January, but she also came away with a bronze medal. A late addition to the squad, Lydia impressively seized her chance to add to her tally of caps at U21 and U23 levels.

Supporting England at EurosBronze @ EurosFirst England Senior cap

OWs re-unite in SE Asia

A roundabout, electronic, conversation with one of the last boarders in Garne's,  Prisdha Jumsai (89-94 G), a successful architect in Thailand, informed your correspondent that he was about to be having a reunion meal with two of his contemporaries, Simon Griggs (84-94 Pl) and Mark Vinton (84-94 Pl).

The Foundation Office had received a visit from Mark and his family in the autumn of 2013, but neither Prisdha, nor Simon, have been since their days at School.

Prisdha reported that all were in rude health and sent the above picture to prove his assertion. Mark now lives and works in Bali, and travelled up to Bangkok from Singapore with the Griggs family.

OWs go back in time

The Bishop's Room of Ye Old Mitre, Hatton Garden, built in 1546, was this year's venue for the Christmas Drinks Party at which 30+ Old Wellingburians, all of whom, but for three gentlemen, had left the school during Headmaster, Garry Bowe's seventeen years, mingled with ten former members of staff.


Breaking with tradition, the many regulars plus new blood from the dominant 2013 leavers' cohort, heard Mr Bowe tell them what a privilege it was for their teachers to have the opportunity to catch up with such a varied and successful group of young people. Mr Bowe, in turn, was thanked for his years of service to the school and for his support of this most popular of Wellingburian occasions.

Runners-up in the attendance stakes were the leavers of 2007 and 2009, with Parker Steyne's the strongest represented House.

Visitor from Merseyside

The Foundation Office was delighted to receive an unexpected visit from Richard Hall-Turner (67-72 W) towards the end of November.

A tour of Weymouth House, the School Hall, the Archives collection and the Classroom block threw up a number of fond recollections of late night escapes to the Dog and Duck from the Weymouth annexe, of the "Bear's" deadly accuracy with a piece of chalk and of an infamous late-night visit to Overstone School with best mate, G.P. Rood.

Early involvement in the motor trade, which had been developed courtesy of night school attendance in Kettering during his final year at school (!), led eventually to investment in Care Homes and a career which he found immensely fulfilling, that is until Social Services red tape became intolerable.

A series of remarkable coincidences, which involved shared experiences in Liverpool with your scribe, left a very warm glow and the promise of a return call in rather fewer years than the 45 since Richard "passed out" of Wellingborough School.

OWs succumb to superior OKs

v Old Kimboltonians, Saturday 18th November 2017, Lost 0-6

Under pressure from the kick-off, the Wellingburians' defence was breached four times before the interval. With six former 1st XI captains in their ranks, the Old Kimboltonians moved the ball with much greater confidence than their hosts. Allied to quality movement off the ball, the final outcome was never in doubt.

The OWs were pleased to be able to field a squad of fifteen players, the experienced Tom Buller and Tom Betts working tirelessly to try and prompt a response from their teammates. There were chances created during the second period, though the home defence continued to struggle to keep a lively Kimboltonians' attack at bay.


Team: Sam Marriot (13 PS) - Captain; Tom Betts (04 Pl); Tom Bewers (04 C); Tom Blason (15 G); Fred Braithwaite (04 C); Tom Buller (10 PS); Chris Dutton (13 F); Marcus Harper (14 F); Noah Kennedy (13 PS); Rob McArdle (13 Pl); Murray McMillan (15 C); Ben Skinner (04 PS); Joe Skinner (07 PS); Ed Smith (05 PS); Harry Warwick (05 F)

OWs Young and Old Support School's 2017 Careers Convention

Tuesday 14th November

More than 20 of this year's 100 stands at the School's 2nd Careers Convention were manned by OWs, some of whom had travelled considerable distances to be present.


They were also joined by their recently appointed President, David Clifton, who was delighted to be able to appreciate first-hand the tremendous response made by OWs of different generations, willing to offer advice to members of the school's Sixth Form and Year 11 about their particular occupations. Particular support from the OW community was provided by the obvious professions, such as architecture, law, medicine, dentistry, clinical psychology and veterinary medicine as well as engineers, surveyors, marketeers, web designers, representatives from the financial services industry, environmental sciences, conference management, photography, and train driving.

As an outreach exercise, pupils from nearby Wrenn Academy and Wollaston School were also among those thirsty for a steer in a hitherto unexplored direction.

Assistant Clinical Psychologist, Gracie McLaven OW, lectures students

The School's Psychology Department was able to take advantage on Tuesday of Gracie's involvement in the School's Careers Convention by inviting her to talk to the current Sixth Form Psychology students. She addressed both Upper and Lower sixth groups about how she uses her high A level grade in the subject, a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree in Clinical, Social and Cognitive Neoroscience to assist her in clinical practice.

She referred to different therapies that she could apply, making it clear that one size does not fit all and, along with the skill of listening, she felt it important to be flexible in the way that her knowledge should be used. Her passion for working with patients of very varied backgrounds and suffering from many different disorders shone through clearly and many questions were put to her during her stimulating talk.

That the subject, courtesy of much research, moves very fast is clearly an inspiration to her and to the Department's teachers. It was acknowledged, and stressed, that much systematic learning had to take place in order for successes to follow. Asked about her work / life balance, she was adamant, applying her knowledge, that she should work no more than Monday to Friday and from 9 to 5, leaving appropriate time for other "refreshing" activities!

Remembrance week-end, 11th -12th November 2017

For Old Wellingburians, the week-end’s programme of events began in Chapel with the Saturday afternoon Service of Prayers for the thirteen OWs, whose deaths had been notified to the Foundation Office, and who were remembered via slides and personal observations from members of the congregation. Photographs of Martin Croft, Nigel Thompson, Leo Eadon, Geoffrey Till, and Douglas Austin particularly provoked the contribution of several poignant memories.

All those present then retired to the Spencer Room (formerly School House Dining Room and, more recently the Staff Common Room) for the Club’s Annual General Meeting at which David Clifton (74 S) was elected President for the 2017-18 and Garth Halestrap (60 S) the Club’s President Elect.


This year's Annual Dinner was notable for its marking of The Headmaster, Garry Bowe's, final official OW function. Making it clear that he remains just as passionate about his responsibilities as an educator as he did when he entered the profession in 1980. The heartfelt thanks of the Club for all Garry and Ruth's support during their seventeen years at the School were expressed by the President who also made presentations to them both. OWs in attendance to entertain their guests were:- President Clive Westley (64 F), Toastmaster Jerry Higgins (66 S), David Clifton (74 S), Garth Halestrap (60 S), Charles Linfield (00 Staff), Richard Jackson (81 S), Richard Peck (55 G), David Pilgrim (64 F), Neil Lyon (85 W), David Waller (81 S), Mike Askham (13 Staff), Peter Phillips (65 Pa), John Marriott (65 S), Peter Lock (65 Pa), Julian Amey (67 G), Andrew Wingate (58 F), Paul Blunt (59 Pa), Michael Gent (58 Pa), Brian Leadsom (58 F), John Heeley (58 F), Michael Scott (62 G), Michael Pearson (56 G), Richard Dicks (56 Pa), Richard Swindall (48 Pa),Hilary Poole née Jackson (72), Robert Poole (70 G), Aron Brar (13 G), Xavier Parkhouse-Parker (13 PS), Hilary Arimoro née Askham (04 W), Martin Whatton (82 W), Sue Whatton née Evans (83 M), Andrew Tompson (85 G), Paul Hooton (81 C), John Eady (77 C), Philip Humphrey (78 Pa), William Kellock (01 PS), Philip Warr (01 PS), Matthew Warr (03 PS), Robert Batley (13 Staff).

To round-off the week-end, OWs joined the School’s Sunday morning Service of Remembrance in Chapel.

In accordance with tradition, incoming President, David Clifton, read the second lesson, while Immediate Past President, Clive Westley, laid one of the wreaths on Chapel’s west wall.



OW Golf Club Autumn Meeting, September 2017 

Richard Jackson (81 S) reports that we had a very successful Autumn Meeting at Collingtree Park on 8th September. Despite the heavens opening when we arrived for coffee and bacon rolls at 11am, the weather abated and was generally kind to us when we were out on the course. 

Chris Billson (81 C) won the Old Wellingburian Cup with 32 points and also the Wright Cup for the highest aggregate total of the Spring and Autumn Meetings with 67 points. Chris, having won all three trophies thus far during 2017, could win the “Grand Slam” were he to prevail in the Long Johns at Kettering GC on October 13th. 

The longest drive was won by Richard Jackson and nearest the pin by Tim Poole (85 Pa). Twelve OW’s played: the three already mentioned, plus Nick Sanders (94 Pa), Peter Hooton (74 C), John Beales (00 Staff), Alan Harlow (81 Pa), Eddie Clark (69 F), Gerald Timmans (57 G), Paul Woodley (61 G), Philip Saxby (82 JS) and Dominic Holden (65 G). 

 John Saxby (52 JS) and John Ward (52 F) also supported the day and stayed for supper. 








Royal 425 Cycle Challenge


On 10th September school friends, Angus Elsby (00-14 C) and Sam Nicholls (02-14 C) and other friend, Richard, were dropped off in Edinburgh for the beginning of a serious charity bike ride south to London, the expectation being that at least 80 miles would be covered each day over six days. By the end of day two, Angus was showing alarming signs of discomfort when it became apparent that he couldn’t unclip his saddle bag or hold pen; a hospital visit later and he was out of the challenge with “handlebar palsy” diagnosed.

In his post-event blog, Sam explained to his audience that the condition can be surprisingly serious with one in five cases producing permanent nerve damage. A serious headwind the following day produced a ‘police yellow warning’ for the remaining two adventurers and the decision was taken to return to Wellingborough by train from Leeds before taking to the roads again on day six in order to cycle into London.

Sam wrote that cycling past Buckingham Palace was bittersweet; bitter because, ultimately, we had failed to achieve our objective, but sweet because we have raised nearly £1000 for the charity, Imagine Scholar.


OWs & Supporting Us