Tickets are now on sale for the 2019 Dinner, to be held on Saturday 19th January 2019. Please go to the 111th OSA Reunion Dinner event page to see full details and to buy your ticket. Online credit card payment is available, or you can pay by bank transfer or cheque.
Once again this year there was an excellent attendance of more than ninety Old Shebbearians at the annual Reunion Dinner held at the RAF Club in London.
Guests Ian Burnett, recently retired history and English teacher, and Claire Cardoo, long serving maths teacher, were there to hear the words of the association’s first female President, Kay Giddy.
Kay thanked the committee for their support throughout her year in office and went on to say how much she had enjoyed attending a number of events back at College, not least Speech Day when she took to the stage with another Old Shebbearian, Paul Lockyer.
The main thrust of her speech however, was to promote and explain the importance of the OSA Scholarship Fund, which is in need of ongoing support and is, at the moment, helping four pupils through the 6 th Form at Shebbear.
Kay finished with a plea for more females to take an active role in the OSA reminding everyone that the College is fully co-ed and has been for a number of years.
Headmaster Simon Weale then responded on behalf of the school, giving an extremely positive report on the numerous successes, both on the sports field and in the classroom and thoroughly endorsing Kay’s comments when referring to the success of the girls’ hockey and netball teams and, of course, for the benefit of a certain OS, a reminder that the 1 st XV had beaten West Buckland for the second year running.
Head boy, Jabez Weale and head girl, Heather Mathews then gave their view of the last twelve months – Jabez wondering whether, given recent results, we might get to play the whole of Buckland this year, rather than just West!
Finally, Lydia Scambler, a relatively recent leaver, responded on behalf of the association, and commented on how lucky she had been to attend the College and the importance of the association in helping her to keep in touch with her contemporaries.
Eighty Old Shebbearians gathered at the RAF Club in London on Saturday 14th January for their annual Reunion Dinner and President Paul Lockyer said he was proud to have served the association, even though he had not attended as many events as he would have liked.
He went on to explain that the annual subscription paid by the members helped to support such diverse activities as Ten Tors, Engineering courses, overseas sports scholarships and the 5th and 6th Form Proms.
Headmaster, Simon Weale, then gave an extremely positive and typically humorous report on the past year, highlighting excellent results for both 1st XV rugby and 1st XI girls’ hockey over West Buckland and then head girl, Lucy Taylor and head boy, Harry Dymond spoke about their new 6th Form Centre and the Music Centre as well as thanking the OSA for the new first team netball kit.
Chris Hale responded on behalf of the OSA, reflecting on his time at the College, before most retired to the bar to share more of their memories of college life.
Finally, the association’s first female President, Kay Giddy, said she was very much looking forward to her year in office.
The 108th Reunion Dinner proved to be a great success as more than 100 Shebbearians attended and enjoyed an evening of good company and entertaining speeches.
Apart from the headmaster, Simon Weale and his wife, Rebecca, the guests included the recently retired Head of Boarding, Lin Quirk, Head of Music, Kevin Parker and a Shebbearian still very much involved in the life of the college, Ted Lott.
Numbers were certainly boosted this year by the attendance of a group of more than twenty Shebbearians who attended the college in the 1970s and, as the pictures show, they certainly seemed to enjoy their evening.
President, Andrew Friend, said that he had very much enjoyed his year in office and felt that much stronger links had been forged between the OSA and school in recent times.
Simon Weale endorsed Andrew’s views and thanked him for his work during his year as President and then went on to give a most favourable report on the school in what had been, at times, a difficult year. He looked forward to developing even more the link between the OSA and college.
The President Andrew Friend requests the pleasure of your company at the 108th Annual Reunion Dinner of the Old Shebbearians’ Association to be held on Saturday 16th January 2016 at the R.A.F Club, 6pm for 7pm.
Special guests this year will be Kevin Parker and Lin Quirk.
There was a smaller turnout for the Annual Dinner this year, with just 74 attending what was still a most enjoyable evening at the R.A.F. Club. The meal and the service provided were of the usual high standard throughout the evening and it was particularly pleasing to see at least half a dozen recent Head Boys in attendance.
The President, Michael Tucker, spoke of his time as a boarder at Shebbear, in what were far more spartan conditions than exist nowadays. He also commented on how much he had enjoyed his time in office, affording him the opportunity to visit the college on a number of occasions which included the Rounsfell Dinner, Speech Day and the OSA cricket match.
Simon Weale then gave a highly entertaining report on the school – mentioning the fact that the college had so far resisted the instalment of wind turbines, but had welcomed the arrival of both the biomass plants and solar panels, which were already helping to cut energy costs considerably. He also commented on the strength and importance of sport at Shebbear, and in particular the girls’ sport – quite appropriately, given that the guest this year was, Serena Ham, the Head of Girls’ Games.
Head Boy, George Daniel, and Head Girl, Katie Trask then spoke eloquently, reiterating the headmaster’s comments about the thriving sport at the college and recognising the importance of occasions such as the Reunion Dinner.
It was then the time for Michael Tucker to hand over the President’s chain of office to Andrew Friend, who received it gladly and said how much he was looking forward to the year ahead, in which he hoped to further develop the links between the OSA and the college.
After dinner, it was good to see so many retiring to the bar to continue their conversations and catch up with old friends.
The 106th Reunion Dinner proved to be a fantastic success as 118 Old Shebbearians and guests enjoyed an evening of good food, excellent speeches and lively conversation.
This was the first dinner attended by the new headmaster, Simon Weale with his wife Rebecca, and his amusing speech, tempered with some serious points about the future role of the OSA, clearly made a favourable impression on all those from a range of Shebbearian generations.
James Hancock, the outgoing President, spoke of the honour he felt at having been able to hold the position and said that he had thoroughly enjoyed his year which had enabled him to return to college on a number of occasions for a variety of events.
Michael Tucker then took the chair as the incoming President and said that he too was looking forward to his time in office.
As well as the head boy, Julius Gemmel, and head girl, Ellen Chamberlain, Matt Newitt (Head of 6th Form) and Karen Purdew were the guests and they said how much they enjoyed the occasion, catching up with some they had taught, as well as meeting others who had attended the college long before they arrived as teachers.
It was particularly pleasing to see so many relatively recent leavers at the dinner and a healthy number of female Shebbearians amongst them.
More than 80 Old Shebbearians attended this year’s dinner at the RAF Club where, as well as being served an excellent meal, they took the opportunity to catch up with old friends.
The President, Lester Bird, spoke of the success of the various events of the year, particularly the Michaelmas Ball in September which saw 350 parents, staff and old Shebbearians gather under canvas for a splendid night of music, food and drink. He then thanked Bob Barnes for his tremendous service to the college and there followed the first of numerous standing ovations for the headmaster.
Bob Barnes then reported on another very successful year for the college, both academically and in extra-curricular activities and said he was grateful for the continued support of the association.
The officers were duly elected and Mark Creedy, a former President, was elected to replace the retiring David Shorney as treasurer of the War Memorial Trust Fund. Mark thanked David for his outstanding work over a number of years in building up the Fund to its present state.
James Hancock, the incoming President, and Mike Tucker, Vice President, spoke briefly of the honour of being elected and assured those present that they would do their job to the best of their ability. James added his thanks to Lester for his hard work on organizing such a successful event and said that he hoped to be able to continue forging stronger links between the college and the association.
Descendants of headmasters who shaped Shebbear were among guests of honour at the Old Shebbearians’ Association Centenary reunion dinner in London on Saturday, January 26, 2008.
They included Professor Jennifer Tann, great granddaughter of Thomas Ruddle (1864-1909) Mrs Julia Howell, great niece of John Rounsefell (1909-1933) and Ms Patricia Johnson, daughter of Leslie Johnson (1933-42).
Also there were Mrs Alice Kingsnorth, widow of George Kingsnorth (1964-83) Russell Buley (1983-1997) and his wife, and Leslie Clark (1997-2002) and his wife. All were given a rousing reception.
Best wishes were received from Mrs Gwenda Wyllie in Western Australia, great, great, great granddaughter of the Rev. William Kelly (1847-1855).
The association was saddened to hear that Brian Thorne, another invited guest and a descendant of the school’s founders, had died at the age of 72 shortly before Christmas.
A record number of almost 150 former pupils, spanning the years from 1936 to the present, and guests attended the event at the RAF Club in Piccadilly. Among four most recent Old Shebbearians present was last year’s head boy, Josef Schmalfuss, who is a student at Cambridge University.
The most disappointed Old Boy was Graham Moore, who left in 1997. He caught a plane from Washington on the day in question – only for it to be diverted to Shannon in Ireland with a technical fault.
Air Commodore Chris Blencowe, President of the OSA and now Bursar of Pembroke College, Cambridge, was in the chair. He was a pupil at Shebbear in the 1960s.
Responding to the President’s toast to Shebbear College, current headmaster Mr Robert Barnes, who attended with his wife Jo, said the school came through two rigorous inspections last year with flying colours and had retained its position as the most successful of all the Methodist residential schools in the United Kingdom.
He congratulated the OSA on reaching its centenary and said the association and the achievements of former pupils were an inspiration to the college’s 338 pupils, the highest number ever.
The toast to the OSA was proposed jointly by Candy Lai, Head Girl, and seconded by Tristan Brown, Head Boy.
Norman Venner was elected President for 2008 and Paul Sanders, vice-President.
A second reunion for Old Shebbearians and partners will be held at Shebbear on Saturday, August 30. Full details will appear on the website.
Footnote: A full report of the Centenary Dinner with pictures and a list of those who attended will appear in the 2009 edition of the Shebbearian.