A. R. D. WRIGHT Headmaster 1963-1975 WINTER 2012 ISSUE No. 151

Headmaster 1963-1975
ISSUE No. 151
School News
Richard Hudson
Churchill’s Hall
Shrewsbury School
Tel: 01743 280630
[email protected]
Annabel Warburg
Hugh Ramsbotham
Old salopian club
Alex Baxter (Director)
Miriam Walton (Administrator)
Old Salopian Club
The Schools
Tel: 01743 280891 (Director)
01743 280892 (Administrator)
High the vanes of Shrewsbury gleam
Islanded in Severn stream
With the happy coincidence of the Queen’s
Diamond Jubilee and London Olympics it has
been a momentous year. There will be a
particular sense of relief in the Old Salopian
community that at long last the Queen’s Terrace,
already dank and decaying when I left
Shrewsbury in 1972, has been restored to
pristine glory. The ground staff have done their
usual magnificent job; once again the terrace is
a worthy platform from which to contemplate the
view over the town so memorably described by
A. E. Housman in A Shropshire Lad.
The life of A. R. D. Wright, arguably the 20th
century’s greatest reforming headmaster, is
justly commemorated in historian Laurence Le
Quesne’s appreciation and Roger Sainsbury’s
obituary. Bishop Roger Sainsbury talks of the
huge influence which ‘The Shewsy’ had on
Wright – and vice versa – inaugurating the social
studies courses which continue to this day, an
important reminder, to those privileged to attend
and work at Shrewsbury School, of the reality of
life for so many outside its walls.
For us schoolboys, the Wright reforms, at
least those we were aware of, swept away many
of what we considered the outdated traditions of
traditional public school life: detachable collars;
compulsory daily chapel; compulsory singing of
the school song; and house ‘feeding’ (as it was
inelegantly known). As the late Michael
Charlesworth wrote in his autobiography Behind
the Headlines, Wright in his early years
particularly seemed to possess an instinctive
feel for the spirit of the age. These were
turbulent years of student revolt, filtering down
into schools and memorably satirised in Lindsay
Anderson’s film If which seems so outlandish
now, even if, to our impressionable and
rebellious minds, it didn’t seem so at the time.
Thankfully we have now moved into a different
era of reforms which are less concerned with
dealing with potential revolution than changing
and modernising the school to meet its future
challenges; and the charitable outreach of the
School is burgeoning as never before, as can
be seen in this issue of The Salopian. But if one
thing is certain, it will be that the vanes of
Shrewsbury which have stood proud since the
middle ages, will continue to gleam, islanded in
Severn stream, serene and unruffled.
School News
This was followed by a tour of the Moser Building where the Queen
was presented with a copy of Shrewsbury School Library Bindings,
bound in school colours. The Royal party then visited the Darwin
buildings, where exhibitions of science, art and photography were
on display.
“The Hunt started their run – in future known as the Queen’s
Run – as the Royal party passed. Plenty of boys were playing Fives;
and 1st Game soccer, in which I took part, was also in action, a goal
being scored – not by me, I would like to add! – at the time of the
arrival of royalty. The Royal couple went round one of the boarding
houses [Oldham’s], lunched in School House and ended the day
with a memorable service in the Chapel where, it was noted, ‘... the
singing was all that had been hoped for, and those near Her
Majesty could see that she was deeply moved by the singing of the
National Anthem’.”
Sixty years ago, the School marked its fourth centenary with an
extensive programme of events and celebrations that involved
Salopians both past and current. One major highlight of these
celebrations took place on Friday 24th October 1952, when the
School was honoured by a visit of Her Majesty The Queen and
H.R.H. The Duke of Edinburgh.
The 1952 visit is entertainingly described by Michael Charlesworth
in his book ‘Behind the Headlines’. The royal couple had expressed
a desire to see the School on a normal working day. As Michael
recalls, it took many hours of debate and discussion to organise 'a
normal day' for the visit, which ended up being "a mad scramble as
boys appeared and reappeared, as soldiers, as gymnasts, as fives
players, as runners, in order to be discovered being normal".
“Altogether it was a memorable day ... There was dignity but also
light-heartedness; as the Queen walked down the high staircase of
the School House after lunch, she accurately 'bombed' her
husband, standing in the hall below, with her gloves.”
We are very grateful to David Longrigg (Ch 1949-54),
grandfather of current Salopians Charles Gillow and Arthur Bowen,
who has sent us his recollections of the day:
“I was fortunate enough to be a boy aged sixteen when the
Queen, in the first year of her reign, and the Duke of Edinburgh,
visited the School to celebrate its fourth centenary. It was meant to
be a so-called normal day but, of course, it was anything but that. I
was one of 558 boys in a mass PT display, organised and
rehearsed, daily for weeks, it seemed, by our main PT instructor,
retired Regimental Sergeant Major Joyce. There was a Guard of
Honour; what became known as the Queen’s Terrace was opened;
and the Headmaster, J.M. Peterson, introduced three previous
headmasters, the Governors and officers of the Old Salopian Club.
School News
efficiency of everything which they saw, and particularly perhaps, by
the smartness of the Guard of Honour and the spirited playing of the
Band and the remarkable co-ordination of the mass display of
Physical Training. What impressed Her Majesty most, however, was
the obvious happiness and the naturalness of the boys, shown,
among other things, by their rousing singing in the Chapel; and she
was very glad to be able to meet several of them.
The Queen finally wishes me to thank you personally for the your
hospitality and for a visit to which both Her Majesty and The Duke of
Edinburgh look back with particular pleasure.
Yours sincerely, Edward Ford
The Queen and Duke had spent the previous night on board the
royal train at a cutting near Much Wenlock a few miles from the
School, and as the royal Daimler slowly departed from the School,
two boys at the gates did their best to thumb a lift, much to the
amusement of the Royal party!”
The Headmaster later received the following letter:
My Dear Headmaster,
Both Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh very much enjoyed
their day at the School and were much impressed with the tone and
School News
will shortly be retiring from his position as Governor, having been in
the post since 2006 when he was elected by the Headmaster and
Assistant Masters of the School. Just as the speeches were coming
to an end, a double rainbow appeared behind the speakers,
investing the occasion with cosmic significance!
In celebration of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Year and to mark the
60th anniversary of the Royal Visit to the School, the Queen’s
Terrace has been refurbished. The north-facing lawn had always
been something of a challenge and it has now been replaced with
local Shropshire stone and some formal planting. The original
paving stones have also been taken up and re-laid.
We were delighted to welcome back a number of former
members of staff for the official re-opening on 14th October. Two of
the guests had attended the original opening by the young Queen
Elizabeth in 1952: Old Salopian, Robin Moulsdale (I 1942-46) taught
English here from 1951 to 1981 and was Housemaster of Moser's;
Adrian Struvé was in the Modern Languages faculty from 1950 to
1986, and was Housemaster of Churchill's and Headroom (when it
was half of School House) during this time.
In slight drizzle, the Headmaster stood next to the
commemorational plaque, perched high up above the Severn
(mentions of risk assessments caused much amusement) as he
addressed the hundred or so guests gathered on the newly
refurbished terrace. Guest of honour Lt Col Stephen Caney MBE
(Staff 1983-99; Second Master 1993-99) spoke afterwards. Stephen
The Headmaster and Lt Col Stephen Caney
The plaque records the original inauguration: HANC GESTATIONEM
(Queen Elizabeth was the first to walk upon this terrace constructed
in the 400th year since the foundation of the school on 24th October
There then follows a verse written by D.S. Colman (OS and Master)
with the translation:
(Stranger, you ask whence I, a mere mass of earth derive my
name. Learn that once my mistress's foot and I met. Then she
walked as a true queen. Who will ever despise or steal away my
claim to honour?)
School News
HEADMASTER (1963-1975)
of the twentieth century, and this is true both in terms of bricks ad
mortar and of the changes that he introduced in almost every area
of school life: if Jack Peterson had been halcyon, Donald was a
storm petrel. Of the changes that he introduced, many were
overdue and most have lasted: they included the abolition of first
lesson and after twelves, the end of douling and monitorial
privileges, the radical revision of the school curriculum including the
replacement of the side system in the sixth form with the block
system, the end of the old privileged status of the classics and the
major advance of science, the building of Kingsland Hall and the
introduction of central feeding, the expansion of music and art in the
life of the School, and the removal of the old barrier that kept school
and town so far apart by greater freedoms to go into town, the
easing of clothing regulations, and the multiplication of trips away
from the Site, to dances, to plays, to Talargerwyn, and on half term
It is true that not all these changes were due to Donald; some
had begun under Jack Peterson, others were initiated by the
changing attitudes of sixth formers who would no longer tolerate
pettifogging restrictions on their clothing and the length of their hair,
and many originated with the professional architects and
educational and financial advisers whom Donald was always eager
to consult; and the spirit of the age played a large part in many of
them, for this was the Sixties. The winds of change were blowing
strong, most of them hostile to the authority of the elderly and the
weight of tradition, and favouring greater liberty and opportunity for
the young to do their own thing. But Donald was himself
sympathetic to the spirit of the age and helped to propagate it by
inviting many of its leading figures down to talk to the staff, or to
preach in the chapel pulpit.
Donald’s first reaction to the school was that it was a cramped
and intensely introverted community (and few who remember the
Site in the 50s would challenge that judgement) and all the more so
because social life was confined to the boarding houses and
dominated by the house monitors; privacy was almost entirely
lacking, the provision of music and art and spare time activities in
general was quite inadequate, and although work in specialist
subjects was of high quality, there was no scope for broader
intellectual life, and no proper school library to nourish it. It was
these impressions that were chiefly responsible for shaping his
earliest proposals for change, and they can still be recognised as
major themes of these proposals – most striking in the
transformation of the Moser building and the improvement of
facilities for art and music: indeed, of all the features of present-day
Shrewsbury that can be traced back to ARDW’s reforms, the ones
that most strongly reflect his own ideas are surely the extraordinary
developments in art, music and drama that have taken place,
culminating in the public sphere, at the Edinburgh Festival, the
concerts at St John’s Smith Square, Birmingham and elsewhere.
As time went by, though, these times were to an extent diverted
and overtaken by urgent calls for action in other areas which had not
been foreseen at the time of Donald’s appointment. The first was an
alarming crisis in the School’s finances, which threatened to put a
veto at the outset on any of the major building projects which his
proposed reforms necessitated. The crisis was met, and effectively
overcome, by the appointment of a new Bursar and a new financial
I am not sure if there is such as thing as a common run of
Shrewsbury headmasters; but if there is, Donald Wright was not a
member of it, and this was obvious even before his arrival on the
Site in September 1963. For one thing, all Shrewsbury’s other
twentieth century headmasters have been appointed either from
headmasterships elsewhere, or from housemasterships at Eton (no
doubt implying a rough equivalence between the two categories).
A. R. D. Wright (‘Arthur Ronald Donald’, as he was sometimes
referred to in Common Room when derision was intended) was
neither; he was only (implied, if not expressed) a housemaster at
Marlborough. Nor was this the only departure from the norm of
Shrewsbury headmasters. Unlike all his predecessors, ARDW was
not a classical scholar – indeed he made no pretence of being
either. Nor was he a product of the traditional public school world –
his own school was Bryanston, from the far left liberal fringes of
public schooldom, and his early teaching experience was at
University College School (a day school) and Leighton Park (a
Quaker school).
You did not have to be a very penetrating reader between the
lines to suspect that the governors had decided that Shrewsbury
was due for a shake-up, and it is not very surprising that his advent
on the Site was awaited, especially by the Salopian establishment,
with a mixture of curiosity, alarm and eager expectation. Nor were
they left in any doubt for long about what the new headmaster was
like. He was, for one thing, a tall and imposing figure, in immediate
contrast with his predecessor, Jack Peterson. But it was not his
physical presence that made the biggest impression on the Site,
but his energy. Suddenly, after twelve quiet years of Jack Peterson’s
reign, change was in the air. It was very evident that the new
headmaster was a man of action who believed in making things
happen, and obstacles were apt to be impatiently swept aside. A
notice went up on the Common Room board whose first words
were ‘There will be a hut’ – it turned out to be nothing more than a
brisk list of much-needed reforms of the traditional method of
ordering books, but the tone would not have been out of place in
the first chapter of the book of Genesis. This was a man who, when
he saw something that needed to be done, saw no point in not
doing it immediately; and he soon saw a number of things that
needed to be done. Impatient energy crackled in the air around him
– an energy which might occasionally seem disproportionate and
which some might feel to be misdirected, but which made the
Common Room a vastly more stimulating and exhilarating place to
be in than it had ben in living memory – indeed, since the days of
Alington – and which, if it alarmed some, evoked the enthusiastic
support of many others.
He was an idealist who believed that ancient idols should be
swept aside without much ado if they had outlived their usefulness
and stood in the way of something better. He opened his first
masters’ meeting with a prayer and, addressing the whole school in
the Alington Hall at the end of his first term, started by playing a
piano solo. He drove a fast car, fast. Jack Peterson had always
ridden a bicycle.
This was clearly a man who was going to change things, and in
the twelve years which followed he amply lived up to the
expectations that he had created. There can be no question that he
introduced more changes at the School than any other headmaster
School News
decade of urgent and exciting change at Shrewsbury, as in the
wider public world, and there had been little doubt that its thrust
was optimistic and progressive; but it soon became apparent that
the 1970s were to be a darker decade. On the Site too, although
ARDW’s reforms continued (most notably in the erection of the new
Science Building) he found himself confronted by a series of
problems: soaring inflation following the tripling of oil prices; the
unforeseen necessity of a problematic and expensive
reconstruction of The School House; a series of disciplinary
problems with rebellious sixth formers involving issues such as
drinks, drugs and sex and the right to discuss them in the school
magazine; and the growing demands for the provision of
outboarding arrangements, for bed-sitters, and for the release of
sixth formers from school discipline in general. Donald had the
difficult task of finding the right mixture of resistance and
concessions, the latter notably including the foundation of the Tudor
Court bar, the first official admission of alcohol to the Site; but it was
hard to avoid the impression that the initiative had shifted from
ARDW to the protesters.
It was unfortunate that Donald’s twelve years at Shrewsbury thus
ended in something of a downbeat, and I think it is true that this fact
has tended to colour the image of him in the Salopian memory. This
image is unfair to a remarkable man and implies a serious
misjudgement of his achievement at Shrewsbury. It overlooks the
astonishing dynamism of his early years at the School, based on a
deeply rooted Christian faith and a liberal idealism, together with a
readiness to seek the help and advice of men with more technical
knowledge and professional experience than himself, which
enabled him to transform Shrewsbury from a conservative and oldfashioned school running gently downhill to a school with a
reputation as one of the most liberal and adventurous public
schools in the country. It is true that in doing this, he was only to a
limited extent an innovator – he was spreading his sails to the trade
winds of his time. But he did it with a vigour and a conviction that at
the time took Shrewsbury to the front of the convoy, and in some
fields at least that lead has been lasting. One of these is the field of
cultural and artistic achievement, and this is entirely fitting, for this
was in many ways the central feature of the vision of the new
Shrewsbury that he hoped to create when he set out on his
He was sometimes misunderstood, but he generated admiration
and affection in many of his boys and a great many of his staff,
some of whom remember especially that, in spite of the high pace
he drove himself, his cars, and all those around him, he was
prepared to set aside time and consideration for their personal
problems even if they made life awkward for him. If he never won
acceptance by that strange entity the Salopian Establishment as a
pukka Salopian, he should nevertheless be recognised by them
and by the rest of us as what he was, a good and generous man,
and as the headmaster who changed Shrewsbury more than any
other headmaster of the twentieth century – and moreover – let us
admit it, if with a wry smile – changed it very much for the better.
Lightly lie the turf upon him.
Laurence Le Quesne
director, and a thorough overhaul of the School’s whole financial
system, giving the Bursary complete control over all expenditure.
This was an important change in itself; but in addition, these financial
reforms lay at the root of the introduction of central feeding and the
rapid expansion of Dayboy numbers, since the former made
possible a major reduction in the cost of catering from the old days,
when it was controlled by the eight housemasters separately, and
the latter made possible a substantial increase in fee income without
needing to provide more boarding accommodation.
This is a good example of the way in which reform in one sphere
– in this instance, finance – led on to other reforms in different
areas. It is also a good example of the way ARDW’s reform
programme viewed as a whole, included a number of changes
which had not figured among his original intentions. Nevertheless,
they only took place because ARDW was convinced of their
necessity by able financial advisers whose judgement he
respected; and what was even more important, because they were
in accordance with the changes he did desire to see in the school –
in these instances, the diminution of the boarding houses as
separate identities, the introduction of a wider and stronger sense of
school identity, and the broadening of contacts between the School
and the town.
The pace of change was heady in the first five or six years of
ARDW’s rule, and the urgent spread of it – which was as
characteristic at his desk as behind the wheel of his car – did
involve mistakes which were not always avoided, such as the
destruction of Bishop Butler’s statue. Nevertheless, the spirit of the
time was one of confidence and progress. Under Donald’s
leadership, the news of what was happening at Shrewsbury
attracted much interest and much admiration in the educational
world, and ARDW himself became a well-known figure in that world
– Shrewsbury was even referred to on occasions as ‘Mr Wright’s
School’, not much to its pleasure – and the climax was reached with
his election as Chairman of the Headmasters’ Conference in 1970.
As such one of his main tasks was to lead the HMC’s successful
rearguard action against the fumbling attempts of the labour
government to incorporate the public schools in the state system.
There was a deep irony in this, for Donald, throughout his years at
Shrewsbury, was keenly interested in seeking some means by
which public schools might open their doors to children whose
parents could not afford public school fees, and was commissioned
by the HMC to make an approach to the Education minister of the
new Conservative government and try and secure her support for
an ambitious scheme of state scholarships. Unfortunately the
minister was none other than Margaret Thatcher, who rejected the
proposal because of its formidable financial implications.
Donald had driven himself very hard ever since his arrival at
Shrewsbury and, given the additional burdens of his chairmanship
of HMC, it is no wonder that at the end of his term in the chair, he
was a very tired man indeed, and the governors at Shrewsbury
persuaded him to take a sabbatical before taking the reins into his
own hands again on the Site. Nor was it for ARDW only that the
early 1970s stood out as something of a watershed, for they
marked the point at which the Sixties turned sour. They had been a
School News
Exam success
We congratulate our leavers of 2012 on an excellent set of A level
and Pre-U results. More than 78% of the exams were awarded A*, A
or B grades, and seven pupils achieved A* in all their subjects.
Particular congratulations to Jack Flowers, who not only gained an
A* in both English and Latin but also achieved the highest mark in
the country in the Cambridge French Pre-U Principal Course. Jack
will be continuing his French studies at Brasenose College, Oxford.
The Cambridge Pre-U Board also acknowledged the achievement
of Mark Li, who was awarded the top grade of D1 in Pre-U Physics.
He will be reading Natural Sciences at Caius College, Cambridge.
Honorary Scholarships were awarded to seven pupils (left to right):
Ting Wong, Rory Fraser, Derek Law, Sophia Pelling, Harry Fox, Mark
Huang, Alexander Walker,
Pictured (left to right) are Howard Stringer, Megan Cherrington, Dave
Beeston and Tom Cousins. Tom gained three A*s and Howard
gained three A*s and an A – both are now heading to Medical
School at Birmingham. Megan has accepted a place on KPMG’s sixyear school leavers’ programme, after which she will have a degree
from Birmingham University, as well as her accounting qualifications.
Dave Beeston’s three A*s and one A grade confirmed his place at
London’s Royal Veterinary College.
Cambridge Chemisty Challenge 2012
After a busy AS exam schedule, a group of Lower 6th Formers took
part in the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge 2012. Between them,
they achieved an impressive set of results: gold medals were
awarded to Ratanon Suemanothom, Fiona Lau and Harry Cox
(pictured, left to right); silver medals were awarded to Tom Bland,
Varis Chirayus and Judah Rand; and a further nine pupils won
copper medals
The AS results from our Lower 6th pupils were also extremely
Despite widespread reports in the media of tougher GCSEs and
lower grades this year, our 5th Form pupils achieved the best set of
GCSE results the School has ever recorded. An outstanding 44% of
exams were awarded the top A* grade and 73% were either A* or A
grade. 41 boys achieved either A* or A in all of their subjects. In the
top two English sets 46 out of 48 boys achieved A* grades in
English Literature.
International Young Physicists Tournament
For the eighth time in ten years, Shrewsbury represented the UK in
the International Young Physicists’ Tournament, which this summer
was hosted by Germany. Competing against teams from 27 other
countries, Alex Facey (captain), Ratanon Suemanothom, Ed Elcock,
James Brent and Alistair spent a challenging and inspiring week
presenting and defending solutions to challenging open-ended
research problems that had been set ten months earlier.
School News
Meanwhile, behind the scenes, John Balcombe presented the
UK’s bid to host the 2014 IYPT in Britain. The bid was accepted, so
it is with great excitement that we now look forward to hosting the
world’s foremost annual physics competition – commonly known as
the ‘Physics World Cup’ – at Shrewsbury School.
Classics Prize
Rosie Parr (EDH UVI) was
awarded first prize in the
national Omnibus Gladstone
Competition – the UK’s
premier essay prize in
Classics – for her essay
Country life versus urban living
in ancient Rome. This follows
on from Rosie’s Certificate of
Commendation last term from
Fitzwilliam College,
Cambridge, for her essay on
Women in the Ancient World.
This is the third consecutive
year that a Salopian pupil has
won the first prize in the
Gladstone Competition, and in each of the last six years one of our
pupils has managed either to win the first prize or the runner-up
position. Last year, Salopians won both the first and second prizes.
Rosie will receive £200 prize money and her winning essay will be
published in the next edition of Omnibus.
Max Emmerich
science and mathematics and captained the UK International
Young Physicists’ Team, leading them to a bronze medal place in
the 2009 tournament in China – the UK’s highest ever position.
Max Emmerich arrived in Shrewsbury in 2008 and during his two
years at the School, he won a host of top science and mathematics
prizes. In 2011 he won a place at Trinity College Cambridge to read
Medicine. In part 1A of his Tripos Max was ranked in the top 5% of
his year and in part 1B in the top 2%. He has won a variety of prizes
whilst at university and is now a Senior Scholar of Trinity College. He
is currently researching stem cell technology.
It is noteworthy that collectively all three of these outstanding
academics have been praised for their modesty, quest for
knowledge and pursuit of excellence in their chosen subjects.
Sidney Gold Medal winners
Three OS winners of the prestigious Sidney Gold Medal returned to
the School earlier this term to
receive their awards. The
Gold Medal is given to the
most outstanding academic
pupil in the view of the
School’s Heads of Faculties.
It is not unusual for there to
be no recipient of the award
in some years, while in others
the prize has been shared.
The most recent recipients
include Hugh Williams (Rb
2003-08) for Physics, Philipp
Legner (O 2007-09) for
Mathematics and Max
Emmerich (Rt 2008-10) for
Biology. Philipp and Hugh
received their awards on OS
Day, 22nd September, and Max Philipp Legner (left) and Hugh
was presented with his medal WIlliams
by the Headmaster during the
rededication of the Queen’s Terrace on Saturday 13th October.
As well as being a multiple prize winner in mathematics and
science when he was at Shrewsbury, Hugh Williams also led the
Salopian team to the national final of the Particle Physics
competition at Birmingham University, where the team successfully
explained how the Large Hadron Collider works to young school
pupils. Hugh went on to read Engineering at Magdalene College,
Philipp Legner is currently studying mathematics at St John’s
College Cambridge. Whilst at School he won numerous prizes in
A Short History of the Sidney Gold Medal
The Sidney Gold Medal was instituted in 1838 and was awarded to
the best Classical Scholar going to either Oxford or Cambridge. The
Medal originally came with a purse of fifty sovereigns, but this
payment only lasted for five years! The prize was paid for by
Trustees and individual subscriptions. The Trustees commissioned
Sir Edward Thomason to cut the original die and the image was
based on a miniature painted by George Perfect Harding and
owned by Dr Kennedy (now in the School collection). After
Thomason’s death, the business was continued by G R Collis of
Birmingham who supplied all medals after 1845.
The medal was discontinued in 1855 when the stocks were
exhausted, but was revived again in 1899. In 1980 the Salopian
Club decided that the Medal should be open to all disciplines and
not purely the Classics. Since that time the majority of recipients
have excelled in the sciences.
Steve Adams
School News
Chloé Delpy has been appointed Bordeaux Fellow 2012-13. Chloé
has a degree in Criminal Law from the University of Montesquieu
Bordeaux IV and has recently completed her second year of a
Master’s degree in Legal Disputes. Her interests include French
boxing; gymnastics; French, English and American literature; and
Grace Ansell has been appointed as a teacher of EAL (English as
an Additional Language). Grace has already been helping with
conversational Chinese at the School and has also been teaching
EAL and Chinese at Ellesmere College since 2009. Prior to that, she
spent six years on the staff at Concord College.
Lionel Barré joins the Faculty of Languages as a Teacher of French
and Spanish from Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School in
Blackburn, where he taught languages from 2006. Lionel is a native
of Paris and went to school in Sceaux, famed for its beautiful
château and connections with the French philosopher Voltaire. After
graduating in English from the University of Paris X Nanterre, Lionel
worked as a French assistant at West Kirby Grammar School in
Wirral. He subsequently completed his teacher training at the
University of Manchester and taught French and Spanish for five
years in York.
Lionel is passionate about languages and has loved leading
school trips to France, Belgium and Spain. He is also a keen
gardener and is delighted to have the opportunity of establishing a
sustainability club at Shrewsbury School. Lionel is married to Claire,
who is a teacher of French and English. They have two children,
Thomas, six, and Rosie, who is four.
Caroline Farris has been appointed as Graduate Sports Coach
(Girls’ Games), having been covering for maternity leave, since
January 2012, at Moreton Hall. Prior to that, she spent two years
teaching at Casterton School. Caroline has a degree in Physical
Education and Dance with QTS from John Moores University,
Athol Hundermark has joined the School as the new Director of
Rowing and Teacher of Geography. He has spent the last seven
years as Master in Charge of Rowing at Abingdon School. He has a
BSc and PGCE from Rhodes University, South Africa.
Athol previously taught in South Africa and spent four years as
Master in Charge of Rowing and teaching Geography at Shiplake
College. Athol is married to Nina and they have a son Hayden and
daughter Kara.
Jacob Lloyd has been appointed to the English faculty as
temporary cover for Michael Schutzer-Weissmann. Jacob was
educated at Latymer Upper School in Hammersmith, London,
Jesus College, Oxford and the University of Bristol, where he
completed his MA with a thesis on the poetry of Samuel Taylor
Coleridge. He has previously been providing private tuition to
students ranging in age from 12 to 19 and is now looking forward to
his first classroom experience. His interests include drama and
Sabrina Bottai has been appointed as our first Hispanic Fellow.
Sabrina graduated as a teacher from our exchange partner school,
Colegio San Bartolome in Rosario, Argentina. Her main duties will
be helping the Sixth Form students prepare for their AS and A2 oral
exams, but there will, she hopes, plenty of additional time for
relaxed hispanic chat, as well as regular contact with Lower School
pupils as they start their Spanish careers.
Sabrina has teaching experience ranging from primary school to
adult learners. She is currently studying towards an English degree
from the Universidad Nacional del Litoral in Santa Fe. Her interests
include sport and outdoor pursuits.
Kevin Lloyd has been appointed Head of the Faculty of Design &
Technology. For the last ten years, Kevin has been developing a
successful and thriving department as Head of Design at The
King’s School, Chester. Kevin’s aim is to bring a fresh approach to
D&T at Shrewsbury. Having an interest in all things digital, he is a
computer-aided product modelling and manufacturing specialist,
and a strong advocate of new technologies in product design,
process and education.
Kevin initially graduated with a First Class Industrial Design &
Technology Degree from Loughborough University, before
achieving an MA in Industrial Design at the internationally
prestigious Central St Martin’s College of Art & Design in London.
Before moving into teaching, Kevin ‘designed’ his way around
Australia, working on, amongst other things, the Olympic Torch &
Cauldron for the Sydney 2000 Games. He is married to Sarah and
they have two young daughters, Madeleine and Matilda.
Alongside fatherhood and his conspicuous consumption of the
well-designed product, he is an outdoor enthusiast, and can often
be seen precariously perched on the mountains of North Wales.
Although now at Shrewsbury, he may even be tempted by the more
tame peaks of England.
Dr Matthew Clark has joined the History Faculty. He was formerly a
Fellow and College Lecturer in History at Pembroke College,
Cambridge, and has a PhD in History from King’s College,
Cambridge. He has a deep interest in modern politics and looks
forward to helping pupils hone their debating skills. He is particularly
keen to participate in the school’s cultural life and is also
enthusiastic about food and cooking. Matthew is married with a
young child.
David Cooke has been appointed as Graduate Sports Coach
(Rowing). David has a first class degree in Sport and Exercise
Science from Leeds Metropolitan University and has just completed
his QTS in Secondary PE at Sheffield University.
Tom Corbett has joined the Chemistry Faculty. Tom is an Old
Salopian (Rigg’s 1996-2001) and obtained a BSc in Chemistry from
the University of Bristol. He was a member of the Royal Marines
Reserve for four years, and is keen to undertake CCF duties. Tom
has spent the last two years teaching Chemistry at Moreton Hall. He
is a qualified Mountain Leader and a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
Scheme. His sporting interests include cross-country running and
football. He is a keen Aston Villa and Shrewsbury Town supporter.
Prior to joining Shrewsbury as Director of Drama, Brian Parsons
was Professor of Theatre and Director of Undergraduate Acting at
the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He has held
School News
Anna’s interests include a wide range of sports and she has
coaching experience in many of them. She is also a keen outdoor
enthusiast and has Grade 8 singing and flute. Anna and her partner,
Simon, have two young daughters, Clemmy and Willow.
full-time faculty positions at the Central School of Speech and
Drama and the University of Hull. Adjunct positions include teaching
at New York University, Rose Bruford College, Mountview Academy,
LIPA, Italia Conti, Arden School, Northumbria University, Lincoln
Center Institute (New York) and Carroll College. As a theatre
director, he has worked at the Bristol Old Vic, Royal Court, Royal
National Theatre and for Aquila Theatre Company in New York, for
whom he is a now a board member. Brian has won numerous
national awards for his theatre directing and has published on the
subject of Greek Tragedy. He was external examiner for the
University of Hertfordshire Humanities Division and is a Fellow of the
Higher Education Academy of England. A keen rugby player and
coach, he has played and coached at Hull RFC, Hessle, Old
Alleynians, Hatfield, Marist Rugby, Racal Decca, Gosport and
Fareham, Los Angeles Rugby Club and USC. Brian’s wife Dana is a
film producer and professional photographer.
Rebecca Weatherstone has been appointed to the French faculty.
She was educated at Somerville College, Oxford and then worked
as a Graduate Teacher at Old Swinford Hospital School. Rebecca is
looking forward to supporting pupils in their applications to read
Modern Languages at Oxbridge, drawing upon her recent
experiences there. She is also excited about the opportunity of
organising and participating in trips in the Languages department.
Her interests include going to the theatre, as well as French cinema
and literature.
Colm and Lucy Kealy are delighted to announce the safe
arrival of Ruairi Thomas James on 7th July.
In anticipation of the move towards full co-education at
Shrewsbury, Peter and Jenna Middleton are delighted to
announce that Rigg’s Hall welcomes a ‘new girl’ to join her
sister Isla. Sophia Louise was born on 19th July.
Anna Peak has taken over from Sara Hankin as Housemistress of
Mary Sidney Hall and has also joined the Geography Faculty. Anna
was educated at Gresham’s School, Norfolk and is a graduate of
Exeter University. She was previously Head of Geography and a
House Tutor at Loretto School in Edinburgh. She has also taught at
Garden International School in Thailand, and at Epsom College.
Senior staff leavers (left to right): Dr David Gee (again!), David Nicklaus, Robin Case, Peter Fanning and Matthew Mostyn
School News
Robin Case
passion, and a deep understanding of the School – its richness,
scholarship, individuality, all of which he prized so much – to each
parental encounter. During this final period of his career Robin
made himself a considerable specialist in prep schools and the
overseas students market. With Old Salopians and current and past
parents in Hong Kong, he has built up The Friends of Shrewsbury,
the Articles of Association for which the Headmaster signed in
Throughout his time at Shrewsbury – in the classroom or theatre,
as Housemaster, and as Registrar, Robin’s love for the School lay at
the core of his achievement. We will miss him and Alex, as they
begin their retirement, with Roddy their dog, but a few minutes
away, among the woods and pastures of Annscroft.
Richard Hudson
Robin and Alex came to Shrewsbury with their elder son, Richard –
now an established teacher in the Biology Department - in 1980 to
teach English, as Master in Charge of Drama and to tutor in
Although Robin was a reasonable squash and rugby player
(coaching the 3rd XV with Richard Raven – an unlikely but happy
combination) and a good cricketer, for a while coaching the U16s
with Robin Trimby, the world of drama soon took over, and left very
little time for sports. Robin found the worlds of performing arts and
sports at Shrewsbury a galaxy apart, and the drama scene rather
esoteric. Determined to change things, his first production, involving
over a hundred boys (and girls for the first time) in the draughty
Alington Hall, was a robust and coherent Tamburlaine, to be
followed soon after by the first production outside London or New
York of the RSC’s Nicholas Nickleby, putting the seal on drama as a
community enterprise within the School and also drawing heavily
upon other schools and local dramatic societies.
Those who knew Robin from this period recall the intensity of his
teaching, often aiming to hit the target but starting from a tangent;
perceptive and passionate readings of texts, punctuated by song
and the occasional raid on the classrooms of other and wholly
unsuspecting teachers.
In 1984 Robin was responsible for the launch of the Ashton
Theatre, and with the bursar and architect, for its style and design
which has remained so versatile and effective over the years. There
followed halcyon days for the Ashton Theatre: House and School
plays benefited enormously from the new facility, workshop drama
flourished, and Robin introduced drama into the Third Form
Curriculum on Thursday afternoons. Later, when James Marshall
was Head of English, he added Theatre Studies to the A Level
curriculum, popular then as now.
In 1988 Simon Langdale invited Robin to take over Ingram’s, and
he still recalls the horrified silence and gale of laughter when the
announcement was made in break in the Common Room. But
these were to be the happiest and most productive years for the
Case family. Robin and Alex loved Ingram’s and did their very best
to include the boys as part of their family, and relationships,
conversations, pastoral care and career planning were all
conducted with love.
During this period Ted Maidment asked Robin to travel to
Thailand – the School’s first foray into marketing overseas. Robin
and Alex represented the School together, did the business with the
agents, refreshed old contacts in the Thai Royal Palace, and
established the Vajiravudh Scholarship, which flourishes to
this day.
On Robin’s retirement from Ingram’s in 2001, after 13 hugely
successful years, Jeremy Goulding kept him occupied with the
450th Anniversary History, which still makes good reading today.
But a far greater challenge soon presented itself. In 2003 the
governors at Adcote School asked him to become Headmaster.
Hoping to drive a good school which was losing money onto the
broad sunny uplands of educational value and financial security, he
was disappointed when the governors decided to close the school
within a year. Fighting closure with the parents and a new Chairman,
Adcote fought on, but he returned to Shrewsbury in 2005.
Robin became Shrewsbury’s second ever registrar in 2006, an
office to which he brought the same individual style and energy as
he had brought to housemastering. The office light was on late at
night and most weekends to maintain the Third Form roll at about
120, which he did with enormous success, bringing humour,
Peter Fanning
Another giant of the recent Shrewsbury School hagiography, Peter
Fanning, Senior Master, has retired after 30 years at the Schools.
Arriving at the school in 1982 as Head of English, Peter had
previously taught at Latymer Upper School, and before that been
the founder and director of the Spectrum Theatre Company. At the
time Peter took over the English department, Lower School English
was still largely ‘Form teacher’ based, with all form teachers
teaching English, whatever their specialism. Peter’s period of tenure
began the gradual professionalisation of the department as English
specialists gradually began to be appointed. But to its staff, and
one would hope pupils, it always retained, and still retains, its
reputation as the ‘Faculty of Fun’, in no small measure due to the
presence of energetic and passionate academic humorists such as
Peter Fanning and Robin Case were.
Starting out his Salopian life as a tutor in Moser’s under Peter Cox
and in School House under Hugh Ramsbotham, Peter’s
housemasterly qualities could not long remain unexploited, and
within six years he found himself appointed the founding
housemaster of The Grove, with 30 students, this parvenue
excrescence from the Salopian soil quickly branded as ‘Botany Bay’
by the older established houses, possibly with some initial
Over the next 15 years Peter moulded The Grove into a
spectacularly successful house community, good at all the
conventional public school endeavours, but always retaining a
slightly ‘Left Bank’ feel. Peter had himself narrowly escaped arrest at
the notorious Garden House Riot in Cambridge in 1970, the legal
ramifications of which have found their way into the criminal law
From The Grove there issued fourth a seemingly endless stream
of House Singing triumphs and cutting edge dramatic productions,
and, although the House won its full quota of sporting trophies, it is
for its theatrical prowess – sometimes in the broadest sense – that
this initial period in The Grove’s short history will perhaps be most
remembered, reflecting Peter’s lifelong love affair with the stage and
indeed his first career as a travelling player with his own theatre
Countless plays of every conceivable genre have made it to the
stage under Peter’s unique direction, and many of his former thesps
now have budding professional careers of their own. But for many
the last 20 years of the Fanning era will be chiefly remembered for
one thing above all: the unique director/composer association with
director of music John Moore which brought no fewer than eight
musicals to the Edinburgh Fringe, many of which won top awards. It
says much about the stamina and drive of this lifelong runner that
School News
he was also acting head of marketing and communications during
a period when all schools had to start professionalising their
marketing operation in the great battle to survive and prosper.
By his side throughout his time at Shrewsbury stood the calm,
unruffled, wise presence of his wife Jane, always ready to play the
fullest possible part as housemaster’s wife, brow-mopper at the
Edinburgh Fringe, dinner party hostess to nervous new staff, and
EFL teacher to generations of overseas students.
Peter and Jane’s retirement to Oxfordshire via the sunnier banks
of the Chow Paraya river in Bangkok will rob the Severn of far more
than a friend and colleague.
Richard Hudson
more than half of these productions took place while Peter was
fulfilling his demanding duties as housemaster.
After a brief period running the Foundation, Peter was appointed
Senior Master in 2003. In many ways a thankless role, with duties
ranging from organising speech day to match teas, from chapel
seating arrangements to balancing powerful interest groups, not to
mention egos, in the Fasti committee, a job which involves being
part the ‘Heineken factor’, part fall guy. Fiddly, inevitably
unacknowledged much of the time with little glamour and a great
deal of hard graft, Peter performed this role with incessant good
cheer, energy and an constant sense of the primacy of the school’s
rich heritage and spirit over internal politics. For much of this period
SMT meetings that drone on for hours
Losing my bike, when it’s pouring with showers
Finding no spoons down at lunch isn’t bliss
These are a few of the things I won’t miss
Biking to lessons on grey Monday mornings
Friday pm when the kids are all yawning
Saturday cover for staff coaching sport
Now other people are going to be caught
Common Room fruit that is only green apples
Pupils who text during Wednesdays in Chapel
Coping with students in Quod who are pissed
These are a few of the things I won’t miss
Dark Sunday evenings in middle November
Missing the meetings I ought to remember
Ten drafts of coursework purloined from the Net
These are the things that I’d like to forget
Housemasters whingeing with rancorous emails
Colleagues complaining there’s too many females
Teabags for parents – who take match teas in Quod
These are the things I’m escaping – thank God
A level tables attempting to rank you
Colleagues for dinner who never say thank-you
OFSTED Inspectors with box ticking lists
These are the things I’m delighted to miss
When the sunsets
When we’re homeless
Or we’re feeling sad
We simply remember the things we won’t miss
And then we don’t feel so bad
Though you’ve made here
An Arcadia
If we’re feeling sad
We’ll simply start listing the things we won’t miss
And then we won’t feel too bad
Peter Fanning
Matthew Mostyn
heavenwards, but to the next best thing: to Stoneyhurst College in
Lancashire (‘I want to be nearer Devon’, he had said – luckily he is
not a geography teacher).
Matthew is a veteran now of so many areas of life at Shrewsbury.
Academically he has been an outstanding teacher, with many
excellent exam results, relishing the challenge of lower-middle sets
whose heart is not always utterly committed to French. He
approached his teaching with impressive efficiency, and as
colleagues who taught within a few hundred metres of his room
would testify, massive and loud enthusiasm. As one colleague put
it, ‘he really delivers the goods; lesson after lesson he puts the show
on, it must take a lot out of him.’ Matthew may not be a fan of
faculty meetings, but made up for this with his much-loved fountain
pen, author of many a paper on future plans, or some aspect of
school life. His contribution to the faculty team by leading French
trips, or organising language days for St Richard’s where he is a
governor, won him the respect of MFL colleagues as he was
always supportive and ready with helpful comments. His rapport with
pupils was legendary, allowing Matthew to engage in a few minutes
banter at the start of each lesson, followed by a serious teaching
point (sorry, ‘learning objective’) in the middle, interspersed with
comments regretting the demise of chalk (but not talk), the odd
nostalgic reminiscence of ‘when I was at Downside’ or moment of
panic as he wondered if the dog was left locked in all morning.
In 2000, Matthew joined what was then a young and enterprising
Modern Languages Faculty as a French and German teacher.
Matthew immediately threw himself into Shrewsbury life, teaching
two languages, coaching rowing to J15s, tutoring in Ridgemount
and marching with the CCF.
It was hard to keep Matthew’s talents hidden in the languages
faculty for long, and he was rapidly promoted to become the
youngest ever housemaster – of the oldest boarding house at
Shrewsbury, Rigg’s Hall. Matthew certainly made his mark in Riggs:
though he never did clear out the garage for stabling, he did run
two cars, the four-by-four to get to his rustic dwelling in Devon; the
aubergine ‘love machine’ for attracting attention. I’m not sure the
more recent pose – coaching his J15 A crew from his electric bike
(he moved incongruously fast, though the legs were hardly moving
at all) was the best way to get the weight off; Matthew’s diets were
legendary, and frequent.) He was a consummate musician, notably
as a keyboard player, as was seen in many house singing
competitions, soirées and musical plays. He capped his time in
Rigg’s by finally winning the triple (house football, cricket and
bumpers – “What else matters?”). Rigg’s still survives, no-one died
of the dog bites, the parents survived the many glasses of port;
Matthew survived the many attempts by the mummies to get him
married off - and Matthew has now moved upwards, not yet
School News
then headmaster, who had the foresight to invite Todd to coach and
develop the club; a Henley win, a hatful of national medals, a new
boathouse and four new Empachers later (one boat, appropriately,
named after the Gouldings), his wisdom is self-evident. Success
and investment follow a winning reputation, and RSSBC is deeply
grateful to everyone concerned for all three.
During the 1960s and 70s the East German national squad was
nigh invincible. Undeterred, a young Jesdale set about to study their
methods and, together with a small band of fellow devotees in
America, designed the winning style (yes, it IS a style!) which has
stood the test of time for the last fifty years or so. Its success is
readily apparent from the number of winning coaches in the highperformance programs in the US who were either coached by Todd
and now propagate a close derivative of his method or were not but
have adopted it (and there is a growing band of UK coaches in the
latter category too). A small diversion illustrates this well: while in the
US on tour two years ago and coaching RSSBC on Lake Mercer,
Todd stopped the VIII and invited them to study a local crew and
examine their style. “They row like us” was his comment. It was the
top US National women’s boat, coached then by the same man
who produced their Olympic success this year.
However, coaching the style is not without its difficulties. When
Nick Henderson spent an interim two years at Shrewsbury coaching
the first two boats, he remarked how hard it was to inculcate the
whole method at schoolboy level, successful though he was in
doing so; for it goes far beyond a good training program and a
mechanical response to instructions on posture, vital as those are. It
demands a lifestyle based on an apparently un-necessary pair of
words which, on closer examination, are fundamental, for they
produce the race winners. Integrity and Courage. To train with
integrity is to commit fully with your entire being to the crew unit and
the coach. To race with courage is to face the fear of losing and to
find a positive response in your spirit. Generations of successful,
thinking athletes have emerged from Todd’s program, for whom the
pain of losing is greater than the pain of winning, and the thrust, cut,
parry and riposte of a race is food and drink.
As well as teaching his crews how to race, Todd thoroughly
applied his formidable grasp of the vast technical side of the sport.
Despite keeping the same fundamental rig in terms of TD and
inboard (because he found nothing better, yet) annual discussion
around emerging ideas and materials was standard procedure: oar
length, blade curvature, vortex tips, pitch and shoe inserts all come
in this list. Some progressive ideas were included and others
discarded all in favour of speed, likewise new hull shapes,
methodically tested. As a scientist I, of course, approve, yet
simultaneously perceive that the old empirical methods remain vital
to this dynamic system; to whit, that the same eight crew members
arranged in a different order change the boat speed and the choice
of each particular crew member for his suitability to a particular seat
is fundamental. “He’s a 6 man”, for example. This in part explains
some of the unusual rigging choices over the years: if the 6 man
and 5 man were both, say, bow-siders (sorry, starboard), then what
more natural than to put two riggers on the same side of the boat in
adjacent seats? Todd’s insight in this respect was almost uncanny –
as was his grasp of mood during an outing: lighter moments for the
crew during an otherwise heavy outing were often introduced via a
conversation on passages from Beowulf, although I sometimes had
a little difficulty in discerning which was the leaven and which was
the lump, here. Shakespeare – maybe! Small wonder, given Todd’s
commanding use of language and ideas, his knowledge and
perceptive insight into character, that he is an excellent sometime
teacher of English literature. He also has a wry sense of humour
Matthew is a genuine linguist, who has taken up writing
translations of literary works in all that spare time, most recently on a
sun bed in the south of France. In class, this has been seen in his
love of grammar, surely shared by all his French and German
pupils; and his love of Literature (‘Sack of Bile’ being the favourite –
poor Joffo!). An odd combination of utter seriousness of purpose
and moments creased up with laughter seem to me to characterise
Good luck and keep in touch!
Tim Whitehead
David Nickolaus
David Nickolaus joined the staff in 1982, taking over from the
famous, if not infamous, Ted Barber at a time when CDT lacked the
“C” for computer (or does it stand for ‘craft’?) and was known as
plain DT, an increasingly upmarket version of what we used to
describe as woodwork. During the three decades of his tenure, the
scope and ambit of his operation changed out of all recognition as
six generations of Salopians passed through his hands. During this
time too, Design has become a serious and popular GCSE and A
level option, due in no small measure to the inspirational leadership,
patience and passion for detail which were the hallmarks of David’s
In the school context, CDT staff too easily be seen as living on the
margins of society, left in peace to develop their cutting edge skills
in shrink wrapped technology and four dimensional designs. In a
quiet but determined way, David ensured that this was not the case
at Shrewsbury. Nevertheless, acutely conscious of the many
different directions in which the most talented and active of pupils
can be pulled, many of whom were important customers of his, he
was also the most accommodating of Faculty Heads and a popular
member of the Common Room with whom it was impossible not to
get along.
Perhaps as an antidote to the long hours at the workbench, on
Thursday afternoons David took the skies, mounting the clouds
over the Long Mynd with the Gliding Club, another area in which he
inspired many generations of boys.
David and Pam now plan to divide their time between
Shrewsbury, Wales and France, where no doubt he will spend a
good deal of his time up a ladder embroiled in those useful
activities which most senior citizens pretend to know about, but he
will actually know about, like wiring a house, unblocking the drains
and building extensions.
RIchard Hudson
Todd Jesdale
“One thing you can always
say about Shrewsbury
oarsmen when they join your
club is that they certainly know
how to race”. This recent
accolade from a prominent
coach at a top UK rowing
University must surely be laid
at the feet of one man: Todd
Jesdale. Todd joined
Shrewsbury School in 2005. In
the seven years since then he
built on the solid foundations
he inherited to produce a
sequence of race wins almost
without parallel in the club’s history; in doing so he undoubtedly
raised the bar for other UK schools. It was Jeremy Goulding, the
School News
classes. His enthusiasm for
language (and its social and
cultural importance ) both in
the curriculum, and more
broadly in a life-skill sense,
was nothing short of
inspirational. He was happy
teaching all ages and abilities :
from nurturing new students
as beginners on their
language journey, to working
with the top end of A2 courses
teaching literature with
passion and understated
expertise preparing many for
what lies ahead at university. He would quietly and generously give
extra time and practice for students of all abilities outside the
timetable – and keep smiling even through the occasional pain and
drudgery of GCSE oral preparation !
Richard’s passion for travel and his anecdotes about Latin
America (and India where he works with a children’s charity ) must
surely have planted seeds in the minds of his students that will grow
into future adventures. Indeed Richard has a story for every
occasion … it seems most of them true !
Richard tutored successfully in Ingram’s and participated in
school football and tennis. At a personal level I am greatly indebted
to him for all his efforts and support – it was a genuine pleasure to
work with him for the year. We all wish Richard and his wife Ana well
for the future as they both move to work at Oundle School. I hope to
see them back at Shrewsbury one day. !
and a lively sense of spontaneity!
In typical fashion Todd completely eschewed all public attention
in the run up to his departure, preferring our focus to remain on his
athletes and his, undistracted, to remain on preparation for the
racing. So wherever you are now, may I invite you to raise a toast of
thanks to Todd as you read this? Todd: on behalf of RSSBC and its
Coaches, and on behalf of the Parents of the athletes you have
coached since 2005, and most importantly on behalf of those
Athletes themselves to whom you have dedicated your entire
considerable ability, I offer a profound thank-you. They have been
fortunate indeed to experience such a top quality of coaching and
we have been fortunate to watch you, the artist, at work. We wish
you and Natalie every happiness back home in ‘the fall’ as the
leaves change in your beloved Vermont, and we trust that the
Maltese Cross on its blue background will fly periodically from the
flagstaff you have in your yard as you think back to some great
racing at Shrewsbury.
Philip Lapage
James Brydon
Shortly after Shropshire lad,
James Brydon, arrived at
Shrewsbury from Oxford
University, his doctoral thesis
was recommended for
publication, and Dr James
Brydon emerged to receive
his final honour to cap two
previous firsts from Oxford.
James’ impeccable
academic credentials have
never needed explaining to
his pupils: every pupil in his
classes has immediately
recognised his calibre as a
linguist and a teacher of ambition for his pupils’ success. James
rapidly became involved in our Frogsbridge preparation tutorials,
organising the regular series of Friday Seminars (talks by staff or
pupils on language-related topics), and encouraging several pupils
to a successful Oxbridge application. One might expect that such a
teacher would not be in his comfort zone in the realm of the lower
set, but in fact James has coached two set 4s to record results at
GCSE, which they were very happy about! And his pupils’
Cambridge Pre-U results have been outstanding. James is not
known for praising mediocrity: his pupils soon learn that only when
they have learnt the lesson’s objectives will there be a chance of a
light-hearted conversation. James’ French sets all outperformed
expectation on results days: it is not easy to replace such an
effective teacher.
James kept busy outside the classroom: he helped run two
Montpellier trips, was a fully committed tutor in Severn Hill, refereed
football, ‘coached’ 3rd Form drama and was a willing participant in
numerous week-end trips (wearing a look of resignation).
We wish James and his wife, Danica, all the best for their future
as they have recently become parents to Sophie and move up to
London; James will teach at Highgate School.
Tim Whitehead
Ron Williams (Assistant
Groundsman, Gardener) writes:
‘I came to Shrewsbury School in May
1985 for a period of ten weeks;
previously I had worked for the local
Parks department and was at the
point of going self employed, when a
lady I knew, who worked in the
accounts office at the School, said
there was a short term vacancy and
asked if I would be interested. To be
honest I was not, but thought I would
at least take a look, and that same
week met the then head grounds man Ken Spiby. He explained that
he did not need a gardener but someone to assist in preparing the
playing fields and surrounds ready for games and various events. I
have to say, I had only ever looked up at the School from the Quarry
Park, seeing the main school building, the boat house, the Chapel
and, now as I know it, Ridgemount, little realising the life that went
on up there. I was told there were 110 acres (with two more at the
end of each day, ie my legs... sorry that’s achers)!
There were groundsmen based at Ashton Road and gardeners
based at Severn Hill. After my talk with Ken, I agreed to start the
following Monday and my first introduction to the grounds work was
to go out with Ken on to the main cricket square and help prepare it.
Ken left me with instructions to ‘mow out’ while he went back to the
sheds to fetch a besom. I ran the mower up and then down,
thinking I would now be in trouble for taking all the green growth off,
leaving what looked like bare earth, but Ken seemed quite pleased
with my efforts saying he was more interested in the root for bounce
not the green for appearance (phew)!
Richard Charters
Richard joined us to cover maternity for Paola Wright for one year. In
that short time he had a wonderfully positive influence on the
teaching of Spanish and the learning experience of those in his
School News
equally important because the frame enhances the picture.”
It came time for Ken to retire and Alan Lewis took over. Alan,
knowing I had an interest in the horticultural side, asked me if I
would like to work on Ashton Road, tending the Headmasters,
Ingram’s, Churchill’s, Moser’s, Rigg’s and the Sanatorium gardens
and anything in-between. I accepted and for the next ten years
enjoyed the responsibility under Alan of mowing, edging, weeding,
hedge cutting and – you guessed – blowing, in preparation for
parents, new boys’ teas, leaving parties, occasional special events
and of course Speech Day.
Apart from the odd disagreement, I found that the grounds and
garden departments worked well together and under Ken and Alan
we were encouraged to assist other departments where necessary.
Standards were high and phone calls, letters and word of mouth
proved this. It was our job and I feel we all did our best in assisting
those responsible.
When Alan Lewis left, the responsibility of the department rested
for a short while in the hands of deputy head groundsman Mark
Preece and with Speech Day looming, we wondered how on earth
we were going to be ready. I have to say the day was perfect.
Changes to the department came over the next five years, with
Bursars, Head groundsmen and colleagues leaving. For me,
medical tests and an operation followed and I felt the time for me to
leave had come, not an easy decision.
I have, over the past 26 years, endeavoured to do my job with
good humour and to encourage those alongside me. I have known,
come to know and still have good relationships with, Masters, staff,
boys, girls, parents and visitors and I feel that my life has been
enhanced by my time at the School. It was a great privilege to be
made an Honorary Old Salopian and although a little reluctant to do
so, I accepted the honour.
By the way, have you heard the one about....’
I soon got to know the other groundsmen and gardeners and I
would assist where needed but my orders always came from Ken
or, in his absence, his deputy. One day we were down on the
running track and I was asked to dig, rake and prepare the long
jump. This I considered to be a waste of time but Ken’s reply was
that even if it was for one boy, (their parents, after all, pay our
wages) we should give them the best of any thing and everything
we do. Such was the emphasis in those days.
My first impression of the school was that it seemed well cared
for and managed; the grounds in particular. The pitches were
probably the best I had ever seen and with this in mind, my ten
weeks came to an end. The reason for being asked to assist initially
was that Ken had one of his men off sick and unfortunately he never
returned. I remember the morning when, down at the kicking horse
(now Mary Sidney), while doing something with the cricket covers,
Ken came to me and said he would like me to stay. To be honest I
did not know whether to laugh or cry or if I really wanted grounds
work instead of gardening. I was often asked what was the
difference between a groundsman and a gardener and my reply
was about £4 a week (sorry)! I thought about what Ken had asked
and agreed to stay a little longer, in fact 26 years to November
For the next ten years my duties were to assist Ken and his men,
as well as tidying and edging the site wherever needed – another
thankless task, I thought, until one day when I was helping prepare
for an Old Salopian day I was approached by an elderly gentleman (I
wish I had remembered his name) who told me he had been at the
school in the war years. His masters were all elderly as all the young
masters were at war. What he said next has remained with me and
gave me a real incentive to carry on. He saw that I was edging by the
Chapel and said “Young man,” (which I was then) “you see those
pitches and grounds out there? They are all very nice and well cared
for and it is a credit to all responsible but what you are doing is
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another soul. English is not the
only linguistic method of
experiencing the world. Other
languages, French, Greek,
Chinese, categorise nouns,
adjectives, verbs and feelings
differently. Learning someone
else’s history, you open
yourself to experience that is
not yours. While you learn
about other you also gain the
power of com-passion, of
“feeling with.” Compassion is
another Latin root. The Greek
equivalent is sum-pathein, “to
suffer with”, from which we get
To sympathize with the other whom the New Testament often calls
your “neighbour” and whom the Old Testament often calls the
“foreigner” or “stranger”.
The faiths that created Western civilization made generosity to the
stranger central to their vision of society. Individuals often fell short
of the ideal of course, but the ideal was there in both Athens and
Jerusalem. In archaic Greek, the word xenos (from which we get
xenophobia, “fear of strangers”) meant not only “foreigner” but also
a “guest-friend”: someone you had an obligation to welcome. There
were myths of people being rewarded for their hospitality because
the “strangers” were gods in disguise. Xeniteia was the experience
of exile, of being a stranger in someone else’s land. Everyone knew
how vulnerable that made you. The pre-Socratic philosopher
Empedocles said man was “a wanderer and fugitive, driven by
decrees and laws of gods”.
Mediaeval Christianity saw human life as a journey: we are homo
viator, “man the pilgrim”, strangers in this world, searching for the
spiritual homeland to which we once belonged. We weren’t meant
to be here – we were put in a garden, in Eden. But that went wrong.
So now we are wanderers between two worlds, wayfarers on the
via, the ‘way’, of life.
Judaism too is full of exhortations to help the stranger, ‘If any of
your fellow Israelites become poor and unable to support
themselves,’ orders Leviticus, ‘help them as you would help a
foreigner and stranger.’ ‘I was a father to the needy, I took up the
case of the stranger,’ says Job. ‘No stranger had to spend the night
in the street; my door was always open to the traveller.’ ‘Do not
forget to show hospitality to strangers,’ Paul reminds the Hebrews.
“Help the poor, treat them fair, just as you would a stranger, for you
were a stranger too.” There is always, in Judaism as in Greek myth,
the possibility that the stranger may also be god. “Many have
entertained an angel unaware.”
Learning too is opening your home, the house of yourself, to the
stranger, welcoming the other in – and opening up to wonder.
Central to Darwin’s science was his rampant sense of wonder, and
his sheer delight in the appreciation of all life-forms. “I used to like to
hear him admire the beauty of a flower,” wrote his son Frances, who
helped him in botanic experiments. “It was a kind of gratitude to the
flower itself, and a personal love for its delicate form & colour. I
seem to remember him gently touching a flower he delighted in.
This sounds sentimental but it was the same simple admiration a
The annual service in St Mary’s took place this year on 9th
September. The address was give by Ruth Padel, poet and novelist,
great-great granddaughter of Charles Darwin.
The word “education” come from Latin e-ducere, “to lead out”.
What you will be doing this year is being led out – out of the self to
pay attention to other, the world outside yourself. To other people’s
experience, other people’s history, land, language and thought; to
the other of nature, the physical world and the patterns of
When Charles Darwin was old and distinguished, one evening in
the 1870s, he and his wife entertained his friend George Romanes
at home. Over the fire they talked about what the nineteenth century
called “the sublime:” that sense of a presence greater and outside
yourself. Darwin said he felt it most, during his five year voyage on
the Beagle, on the summits of the Andes, looking at "the
magnificent prospect all around." They went to bed. Romanes fell
comfortably asleep but at one in the morning he heard a tap on his
door and Darwin appeared in his dressing gown and slippers. "I
have been thinking over our conversation," he said. "I was wrong in
telling you I felt most of the sublime on top of the Cordillera. I am
quite sure I felt it even more in the forests of Brazil. I am sure now,
that I felt most sublime in the forests."
Go back forty years and Darwin is 23, writing about having that
feeling in his Journal of the Voyage of the Beagle. “Primeval forests
undefaced by the hand of man,” he says, are “temples filled with
the varied productions of the God of Nature. No one can stand
unmoved in these solitudes without feeling there is more in man
than the mere breath of his body.”
Go back another fifteen years and he is a boy of eight, attending
the funeral of his mother, Susanna Darwin, nee Wedgewood. He
suffered this great loss at an early age and became a solitary little
boy, studying nature on long walks alone. He gave his attention to
botany, zoology, geology. He longed to know the provenance of
every stone in the gravel of his father’s drive. At ten, taken on
holiday to Barmouth where he studied beetles “not found in
Shropshire,” he wondered why every gentleman does “not become
an ornithologist.”
A modern parallel to the way in which the other – nature, the
physical world outside him – sustained that little boy in his grief, is
the British space scientist Maggie Aderin-Pocock. She was a
second generation immigrant: her parents came from Nigeria. They
separated, the little girl went to thirteen different schools, she was
diagnosed as dyslexic. But from the age of three, she was in love
with outer space. She watched Star Trek, was entranced by an
astronaut on the cover of a library book, saved up to buy a
telescope from Argos. It didn’t work so at 15 she went to a
telescope-making class and made her own. She went on to do
science, maths and astronomy at Imperial College. ‘Outer space
saw me through,” she has said. If education is a leading out, you
can’t get “led out” much further than outer space.
At the heart of the ikon of the Resurrection is the image of an
open door. Christ comes down to the underworld to open the gate
of hell, let out the dead, and lead them into new life. Another leading
out; another image of someone who helps you open yourself to the
world. For the oddity of learning, its mystery and alchemy, is that by
attending to other you grow, emotionally and spiritually, yourself.
To possess another language, for example, is to possess
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own growth via that word which lies at the heart of all education or
“leadings out”: understanding.
It is a privilege and honour for me to be associated with the
school, and to address you today, and I’ll finish with a poem by the
poet priest George Herbert, whose climax is that magic word,
understanding. Those among you who are poets will watch how
Herbert homes in on his central concept – the title-word, “Prayer” –
by going out: by leaping into metaphor. This is a sonnet, a string of
metaphors, a necklace of bright images, for what he is talking
about. Prayer becomes a sequence of reachings out to beautiful
things, to the other, which also nourishes the inner, the self.
child might have. It ran through all his relation to natural things — a
most keen feeling of their aliveness.”
In response to that enjoyment of and wonder at the other, comes
the great gifts to the self of imagination and creativity, and Darwin
felt that imagination, too, was crucial to science. “You can
understand the true conditions of life,” he wrote in On the Origin of
Species, “only if you use your imagination to hold on to a sense of
the ruthlessness of the natural forces that could waste the bright
So here is a bit of new zoology to enjoy and wonder, which I think
can also give us an image of what learning does for us We find it in
the eye of a dog. In all mammal eyes, rods and cones make
electrical activity out of light waves by means of changes in pigment
in the cells. This action takes a morsel of a second but while it’s
happening, the cell is busy processing the light and can’t take more
light in. So there are gaps in the process and that’s how we see: we
take in a sequence of snapshots of the world. The rate at which we
do this is our “flicker fusion rate”. Human eyes take in sixty
snapshots, sixty still images, a second. But just as different
languages see and divide the world differently, so different species
have different flicker fusion rates. Dogs have a higher rate than us:
they take in seventy or eighty images a second. This is why many
dogs don’t react to TV: television is geared to the human flicker
fusion rate.
So every second, dogs see a little bit more world than we do. This
is the image I’d like to offer you at the start of this new academic
year: this image – the idea of trying to be open or alive to a little bit
more world every second. And, because self’s growth happens via
attention to the other, of using the extra imagination such openness
can bring, not only to fuel your own creativity, which I am sure it will
do – but to fuel your compassion: your power to feel with the other.
There are now 7 billion people in the world. By the time you are
the age of people teaching you, there will be billions more. That’s an
awful lot to hold yourself open to! But society needs us to try.
Attention to other people’s experience comes to be the basis of our
The Churches banquet, Angels age,
God’s breath in man returning to his birth,
The soul in paraphrase, heart in pilgrimage,
The Christian plummet sounding heav’n and earth ;
Engine against th’ Almightie, sinner’s towre,
Reversed thunder, Christ-side-piercing spear,
The six daies world-transposing in an houre,
A kinde of tune, which all things heare and fear ;
Softnesse, and peace, and joy, and love, and blisse,
Exalted Manna, gladnesse of the best,
Heaven in ordinarie, man well drest,
The milkie way, the bird of Paradise,
Church-bells beyond the stars heard, the soul’s bloud,
The land of spices, something understood.
Ruth Padel’s most recent book is The Mara Crossing, a mix of
prose and poems on the subject of migration – cellular, animal
and human. See www.ruthpadel.com
should note that Dickens singled out this building as the particular
target of his satirical antipathy for the Classical style in architecture:
“… a very hideous church with four towers at four corners, generally
resembling some petrified monster, frightful and gigantic, on its
back with its legs in the air.”(Our Mutual Friend, 1865)
As George Orwell remarked in his famous essay on Dickens
(1940), “he is all fragments, all details – rotten architecture, but
wonderful gargoyles”. So his predilection for the Gothic may
account for his choice of Shrewsbury as a setting for A Christmas
Carol, that gothic fantasy which so affected Robert Louis Stevenson
that he sobbed and said, “I shall do good and lose no time – I want
to go out and comfort someone – I shall give money.”
I beg your pardon, sir (you naturally ask), was not A Christmas
Carol set in London? Did not Scrooge have lodgings hard by his
counting-house in the City and did not his clerk, Bob Cratchit, live in
Camden Town? So it might appear – for London in 1842 was, like
Shrewsbury, a medieval town. No, as I said at the outset, Dickens is
in Shrewsbury to this day. Go to the old churchyard next to St
Chad’s. There you will find it – a little worn and cracked across the
middle, but still clearly legible – the stone that marks the spot where
Charles Dickens came to Shrewsbury in 1858; he is still here today.
Of the Lion Hotel, where he stayed during one of his reading
tours, he wrote to his daughter: “we have the strangest little rooms,
the ceilings of which I can touch with my hand. The windows bulge
out over the street, as if they were little stern windows in a ship and
a door opens out of the sitting room on to a little open gallery with
plants in it where one leans over a queer old rail and looks all down
hill and slantwise at the crookedest old black and yellow houses.”
The irregularity of his lodgings perhaps inspired his description of
Bleak House, the ironically named home of John Jarndyce, the
epitome of childless paternity that marks Dickens’ stock-figure of
middle-aged, philanthropic virtue:
“It was one of those delightfully irregular houses where you go up
and down steps out of one room into another, and where you come
upon more rooms when you think you have seen all there are, and
where there is a bountiful provision of little halls and passages, and
where you find still older cottage rooms in unexpected places with
lattice windows and green growth pressing through them.
Salopians, accustomed to frequenting the Classical regularities of
St John’s Smith Square for the School’s annual orchestral concert,
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particularly when we learn that this patina of indifference conceals
an acute perception and a sensitive heart:
rest the mortal remains of Scrooge. I trust I am no Gradgrind, but
these are hard facts, not the fumes of literary fancy.
Besides, there’s further evidence. Scrooge’s house was on
Belmont: there’s a photograph to prove it. The prize turkey he
bought and sent to Bob Cratchit on Christmas Day hung outside
the poulterers in the Market Square: there’s a photograph that
shows it. The boys made their snow-slide (see “Stave One: Marley’s
Ghost”) on the Parade; there’s a photograph of them at it. And –
yes! I have it somewhere … There! Tiny Tim himself, carried on his
father’s arm, as plain and bright as sixpence! And unmistakably
“Yet, this Mr. Carton took in more of the details of the
scene than he appeared to take in; for now, when
Miss Manette's head dropped upon her father's
breast, he was the first to see it, and to say audibly:
‘Officer! look to that young lady. Help the gentleman
to take her out. Don't you see she will fall!’”
Bohemian in dress and manners, insouciant of his own interest and
advantage, yet ever alert to alleviate the distress of others
(particularly when they are attractive young ladies) – is not Sydney
Carton the archetypical Salopian, both of the past and living among
us today? That mercurial character, source of so many triumphs
and frustrations; that independence of mind and spirit, which is our
boast and occasionally our apology, are strongly marked in Sydney
"The old Sydney Carton of old Shrewsbury School,"
said Stryver, nodding his head over him as he
reviewed him in the present and the past, "the old
seesaw Sydney. Up one minute and down the next;
now in spirits and now in despondency!"
"Ah!" returned the other, sighing: "yes! The same
Sydney, with the same luck. Even then, I did
exercises for other boys, and seldom did my own."
"And why not?"
"God knows. It was my way, I suppose."
He sat, with his hands in his pockets and his legs
stretched out before him, looking at the fire.
"Carton," said his friend, squaring himself at him with
a bullying air, as if the fire-grate had been the
furnace in which sustained endeavour was forged,
and the one delicate thing to be done for the old
Sydney Carton of old Shrewsbury School was to
shoulder him into it, "your way is, and always was, a
lame way. You summon no energy and purpose.
Look at me."
"Oh, botheration!" returned Sydney, with a lighter and
more good-humoured laugh, "don't you be moral! ...
But it's not worth your while to apostrophise me, or
the air, about it; what you want to do, you do. You
were always in the front rank, and I was always
Dickens, whose own education was somewhat informal, sent his
eldest son to Eton. An addict himself of theatrical performance, he
might have done better to send him to Shrewsbury School, the
destination of Anthony Walters who, as a six year-old, played Tiny
Tim in Clive Donner’s 1984 film of A Christmas Carol.
But Dickens did send one of his children to Shrewsbury School.
In 1864, at a dinner to mark the tercentenary of Shakespeare’s birth,
Dickens announced to the company: “We meet on this day to
celebrate the birthday of a vast army of living men and women who
will live forever with an actuality greater than the men and women
whose external forms we see around us ...” He meant, of course,
Hamlet and Prince Hal, Bottom and Falstaff. He meant also, no
doubt, Oliver Twist and the Artful Dodger, Little Nell and Miss
Havisham. And surely, too, this child of his fancy:
In a reversal of the usual relationship between the two beasts, it is
Carton, the Jackal, who serves up “a compact repast” for Stryver,
the Lion; meaning, in this context, that Carton goes through all the
law-books and precedents to provide Stryver with the winning hand
that he will lay out with success and aplomb in court. But doing
“exercises for other boys”, as Carton clearly continues to do in adult
life, is a habit he could easily have learned in other schools. We
have it on authority from Tom Brown, one of Rugby’s most famous
pupils, that cribbing was a way of life among the noblest scions of
“... one man sat leaning back, with his torn gown half
off him, his untidy wig put on just as it had
happened to light on his head after its removal, his
hands in his pockets, and his eyes on the ceiling as
they had been all day. Something especially reckless
in his demeanour, not only gave him a disreputable
look ...”
“... it will not be wondered that the masters gave the
same subjects sometimes over again after a certain
lapse of time. To meet and rebuke this bad habit of
the masters, the schoolboy mind, with its
accustomed ingenuity, had invented an elaborate
Even were we not informed a few pages further on that Sydney
Carton, this young man of “careless, slovenly if not debauched
appearance”, were not a Salopian we should surely guess it –
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reforming headmaster of Rugby, belonged more properly to our
own Samuel Butler (headmaster from 1798 to 1836). It was Butler,
“whose achievements and organisation became models for Eton
and Harrow, as Hawtrey, headmaster of Eton from 1834 to 1853,
generously acknowledged to Butler himself.”1 He initiated the
system whereby a select band of senior boys – “praepostors” (lit.
one who goes before) – aided the headmaster in the organisation
and discipline of the School (although beating the other boys was
not one of their privileges). Butler also instituted Private Study, the
system much beloved by generations of Salopians whereby they
enjoy devoting much of their free time to academic study.
It is highly likely, moreover, that Dickens was well aware of the
opinion that Lord Ashley Cooper (7th Earl of Shaftesbury, the great
social reformer commemorated by the statue in the middle of
Piccadilly Circus known as Eros) confided to his diary on November
21st 1844:
“I fear Eton ... it makes admirable gentlemen and
finished scholars ... fits a man for the dining-room,
the Club, St James’s Street, and all the mysteries of
social elegance; but it does not make the man
required for the coming generation. We must have
nobler, deeper and sterner stuff; less of refinement
and more of truth; more of the inward, not so much
of the outward gentleman.”
The Lion and the Jackal
system of tradition. Almost every boy kept his own
vulgus written out in a book, and these books were
duly handed down from boy to boy.”
We know that Tom’s father did not intend his son to be either a
true or a false scholar, for we have his thoughts as he contemplates
his son’s departure for Rugby:
So it had to be Shrewsbury, best nursery of the inward gentleman.
Look around you on the site. And if you see some who appear on
the outward to be like Sydney Carton, “idlest and most unpromising
of men”, believe of them as Lucy Manette believed of Sydney
Carton, that they are “capable of good things, gentle things, even
magnanimous things.” And believe, too, that there may be one
among them who is capable of the ultimate sacrifice, of giving up
his life for another – who, like Sydney Carton “had wandered and
struggled and got lost, but who at length struck into his road and
saw its end”, that he might justly claim, “It is a far, far better thing
that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to
than I have ever known.”
“Shall I tell him to mind his work, and say he's sent to
school to make himself a good scholar? Well but he
isn't sent to school for that—at any rate, not for that
mainly. I don't care a straw for Greek particles or the
digamma; no more does his mother ... If he'll only
turn out a brave, helpful, truth-telling Englishman and
a gentleman and a Christian, that's all I want.”
Two years after Thomas Hughes sent Tom Brown to Rugby, Dickens
sent Carton to Shrewsbury. He knew what he was doing. Seven
years earlier, he had sent another dissolute character, Richard
Carstone, to Winchester, and he came to a bad end. He must have
known, too, that the fame fastened on to the shoulders of Dr Arnold,
1 J. W. Adamson, Cambridge History of English and American Literature
Michael Schutzer-Weissmann
different fiancées, while trying to connect with his one true love, Liz.
Sir Walter Scott put it so well; ‘Oh what a tangled web we weave
when first we practise to deceive.’ This was never truer than for
William Fisher, whose sobriquet creates the title of the play, as his
world comes crumbling around him over the course of three acts.
This play was ambitious material for juniors to pull off. But they did
just that.
On a remarkably professional set, Joe Bell took on the
responsibility of the lead role. To play Billy just for laughs is to miss
the point. Yes, it was a funny play, with many moments of laughter.
The older audience on the final night certainly appreciated the more
sophisticated humour. But as Billy’s excuses, lies and tall tales turn
on him, we see a young man who’s desperate for something better
in his life; a young man who cannot see what he has already got; a
young man whose dissatisfaction is to be pitied, as well as laughed
For those of a certain vintage, the name ‘Billy Liar’ evokes images of
a young Julie Christie in her black and white, photogenic prime, all
cheek bones, pouting lips, and smoky eye make-up, and an
innocent looking, somewhat bewildered Tom Courtney.
For others too young (or too old) to remember the 1960s John
Schlesinger film which launched the celluloid careers of this magical
pairing, the Junior School Play in July, adapted and directed by Paul
Fitzgerald, afforded the opportunity to see the original stage play on
which the film was based, this time spiced up with the insertion of
black and white video vignettes to represent the daydream
The play spotlights one day in the life of William Fisher, a bored
undertaker’s clerk who escapes the humdrum reality of his drab life
through daydreaming; but more than that, he lies. He lies to his
parents, he lies to his employers, and he lies to his two, very
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at. Joe Bell was both funny and
evoked our pathos. He played the
role with a softly spoken naivety
which complemented his
blustering father who loves yet is
frustrated by his son. Ollie Murray
clearly relished playing this part,
and he did so to perfection, his
flawless Yorkshire accent a
wonderful pastiche which the
audience delighted in.
Theo Simmons played Billy’s
mother, Alice; playing a female
role is not easy, and the pitfalls
are legion. This was in essence a
serious part, but it could so easily
have degenerated into a junior
version of Danny La Rue on a
bad day. I am delighted to report
Theo played the part of the
protective mother with real
sensitivity. If you find yourself
forgetting the character on stage
is really a boy, that must be a sign
that the actor has truly succeeded in suspending your disbelief.
Supporting cast members were all strong. Thomas Barthen as
Billy’s best friend Arthur, finally frustrated by the avalanche of lies,
provided an effective foil to Joe Bell; Jamie Nugent as Billy’s elderly
grandmother, shocked by her grandson’s shocking attitude to ‘free
love’ (it is the 1960s, after all) delivered his flat northern vowels with
the creakily thin voice of an octogenarian convincing the audience
she would not be long for this world. (At a stroke, she wasn’t); and
Liz, Billy’s real love, paced and projected with clarity and
astonishing maturity by Martha Pownall from Shrewsbury High
School; she made us want to believe that the couple would live
‘happily ever after’. The bitter ending, acted out so eloquently with
no dialogue whatsoever, told us it was not to be.
The video inserts were real crowd-pleasers, too. As director, Paul
Fitzgerald’s idea to use a different medium, shot in monochrome
and treated with a crackly, old film quality, as the means for
portraying another world was spot on, and the ‘screen actors’ –
Charlie Duckworth, Will Bayliss, Jack Nelson, Ben Smith and
Dominic Dootson clearly enjoyed the filming process while the
audience lapped up the light relief they provided on screen.
Nobody, I think, stole the show, but two actors came mighty
close. No-one will quickly forget the gloriously surreal catfight
between Billy’s homely fiancée Barbara, wonderfully underplayed
by Guy Cabral, and the force of nature topped with a peroxide
blonde beehive that was Rita, his other fiancée, wonderfully
overplayed by Dan Edwards.
Backstage crew too all delivered on the two night run, Andrew
Humpish and James London behind the scenes, with Greg
Bunting, Rory Dootson and Nick Watkins on sound and lights;
mention must also go to Mrs Bovill and Dr Samworth for costume
and make-up, Alex Davies, Will Allott and team for a set which has
surely raised the bar for future productions, and Miss Woo as the
ever-calm producer.
Kenneth Tynan
Soul weight
In micro chips and memory cards hides no secret life
nor any life at all,
for one cannot imagine weathered leather hands like hers
slipping over touch screens or keys
to type one last message to the world,
Hers was a realm of paper,
inviting blank pulp waiting for hands to form
with mud, blood and ink
what took God six days.
In cold ceramic pots and uniform draws hides no secret life,
nor any life at all,
for one cannot imagine scientists measuring a body like hers,
a body so like before
before dancing strip lights,
sleepless nurses and
one telephone call
Now her soul has become science,
one single gram,
and laboratories bright temples,
and me religious,
me religious while I can.
Theo Simmons (Ch, 4th form)
School News
The expedition team wrote a blog, which gives a vivid account of
their day-to-day activities and their reflections on their experiences.
A few extracts are included here and the full blog can be found on
the School website at
http://www.shrewsburymedicmalawi.blogspot.co.uk/. The photos on
these pages were taken by Andrew Spicer (Lower Sixth).
A mother in Africa is visited by a reporter from the UK. She is
seriously ill, with pulmonary pneumonia. He asks her if she has any
medicine. “Yes,” she replies, “I travelled by ox cart for a day to the
nearest hospital, and they gave me these.”
“But why haven’t you taken any of them?” asks the reporter.
“Because they have to be taken with food,” she explains. “I only
have enough food for my two small children.”
“But what will happen to them without you?” he gently asks. She
turns away.
This is a true story, and several things need to happen to stop it
taking place over and over again in the poorest countries in Africa.
This mother needed a new, nearer hospital. She needed enough
food for herself and her children when there was an emergency,
and she needed to know that if anything happened to her, her
children would be cared for.
In July 2012, eighteen Fifth and Lower Sixth Formers, together
with six members of staff, helped to keep those three essentials
happening in a rural area of Malawi. Malawi is one of the seven
poorest countries in the world, where there are, on average, three
nurses for every 10,000 people (compared to 103 in the UK). The
18 Salopians helped at an orphanage, which keeps 60 children
safe, educated and fed. They also took supplies to a new hospital,
St Andrew’s Hospital, which means 100,000 people have less far to
travel, and they helped out at the Nutrition Centre, which supplies
food in times of crisis. All these are supported by the charity Medic
In the months before they set off, the pupils organised a major
fund-raising campaign and raised £10,000 for the day-to-day
running of the hospital and to put towards a much-needed eye
clinic, which the next generation of Shrewsbury students will be able
to see for themselves on the next visit, in 2014.
Amy Steventon and Grace Pilsbury: After first seeing around 20
children waiting for us, we were astounded to be told that there
were actually 106 pupils who had voluntarily come to the primary
school to be taught by us during their free time, as they are also on
their summer holidays.
We started by singing Kookaburra and after a few attempts
managed to get it into a round with four parts. We then moved
outside into the sun to do the Hokey Kokey and sing Head,
Shoulders, Knees and Toes, which the children loved. This led to us
all dancing into the Macarena and a game which consisted of all of
the children running to various sides of the courtyard while Will
shouted ‘North, South, East or West’. Lastly, we sat in a big circle all
singing songs while Will played his ukulele.
After three incredibly fun but long hours, we took a well deserved
trip to the tuck shop before having a packed lunch back in the
Matt Davies: Our tour of the area surrounding St Andrew’s village
was expertly led by our translator, Brickson, and over twenty sets of
data were collected for the hydrology survey, an important ongoing
project. Flow rates of bore holes, depths of wells, co-ordinates and
names were all recorded from every site we visited, providing a
good set of data to be sent to Chris Leek of Water Aid, our boss in
the UK. We trekked all morning, through the dust and the heat, from
what felt like Land’s End to John O’Groats, but was in reality only
about 7km. Some of the people I’ve met have to journey over 12km
just to get checked out by the doctor. Although some travel by foot,
the ‘bicycle taxi’ is a common sight! You pay according to the
distance, and sit on a padded seat behind the driver, while he
cycles along the pothole-ridden dirt roads to your destination. If the
bicycle breaks down, you could take it to a professional welder, or
for less money and more entertainment, to a man we visited who
has no welding kit yet can fix a bicycle within an hour using only an
old broken wheel, a car radiator embedded in concrete, charcoal
and some lead. I’ll leave you to your own imagination and brilliance
to figure out how that works...
George Fowler: As we worked on the world map, Seb’s iPod
blaring in the background, I was tapped on the shoulder by Felix, a
good friend from the orphanage, clasping a stick of sugarcane in
one hand and a present for me in the other. It was a necklace, a
wooden carving of a fish with ‘Felix’ inscribed on one side, “to
remember me by” he said. It was a touching and generous gift,
even more so because he had made it.
I spent the afternoon giving piano lessons on an out-of-tune
instrument, giving a somewhat unintentional honkey-tonk theme to
Mozart’s ‘Ode to Joy’. Nevertheless, it was challenging and very
rewarding to see that these bright, receptive children pick
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something up so quickly. As I was winding up the lesson with
Doreen (my prodigy), a tall middle-aged gentleman walked through
the church doors.”Beethoven?” he asked. He was charming, as are
most people I have met here, and for that reason, I hope it won’t be
too long before I return.
Will Heyes: I’m getting a reputation for having green fingers but it’s
more like brown feet, as in Malawi we go bare foot in the soil, mud
and slime, as I set to work in the vegetable garden with Fred.
Fortunately today’s gardening was very simple and all I had to do
was watering. Fred invited me to have some tea with him and had
prepared a plate piled high with sweet potatoes. I admire him a lot.
He is a busy volunteer who has been with the orphanage for four
years. Lunch seemed to be a medley of all our meals so far: rice,
chips, chicken, chewy beef and coleslaw. But we all needed the
energy for the afternoon ahead; we had organised to have the
whole orphanage round to Kamuzu Academy for a sports-based
party. Oh and it was hectic!
There was football for the older lads, while the others set up
games such as musical chairs and statues, the sack race and the
three-legged race. At about 3 o’clock the screaming horde
emerged. They loved it! Each game prompted cheering and
laughing. Some of the very small children were a little hesitant, so
Matron had to run around with them to give them a helping hand.
After a solid hour of games, we had an early dinner of: rice, chips,
chicken, chewy beef and coleslaw. With huge smiles and full bellies
they said their goodbyes and left. They had a really good time. Then
we swept, stacked and wiped the hall down.
After an inspirational talk by Mr Conway, we were left by ourselves
to pack (and play poker.) Then retiring to bed, sleeping under a
mosquito net for the last time, my mind started thinking of the long
trip home. It has been a long and emotional trip, full of its highs and
lows, satisfying and definitely worthwhile.
Marking out the position of the new eye clinic
Photos by Andrew Spicer (M LVI)
80% of blindness in Malawi is preventable or curable. The expeditioners in 2012 raised £5,000, which paid for over a month’s running
costs of St Andrew’s Hospital. They raised another £5,000 to put towards an Eye Clinic so that cataracts and trachoma can be treated.
By the time the next expedition visits, in 2014, we are aiming to have raised enough to finish and equip it.
School News
Against all the odds the Young Engineers Group had
their best season in the Greenpower Formula 24
Competition. An offer of a sheet of lightweight alloy
material from a parent gave us the opportunity to build
a new lighter car with a monocoque construction
together with an improved 7 gear drive-train. With the
support of local companies Quest 88 and RMJ
Mouldings, the boys started to learn new skills and
worked to a high level of accuracy to complete the car
by the end of March.
This year the number of teams entering the
Greenpower competition rose to 250 from the north of
Scotland down to Cornwall. The first race of the 2012
season at Silverstone at the end of April saw atrocious
weather conditions and we reluctantly withdrew our
entry. So it was at the test day at Mallory Park in May
that the team had their first opportunity to see how the
new car performed. The car ran all day without a hitch
and the boys started to hone their circuit driving skills.
Back in the workshops minor tweeks were made to the
gear ratios ready for the next race.
Having missed the Midlands Heat in mid July, it was
not until September that we were able to compete in a
full four-hour race in a field of 32 cars from across the
country at the North West Heat at Aintree. For most of
the race the boys maintained a top ten position, but we
eventually slipped to 14th place. During the day all of
the cars were inspected and some of the boys were
Left to right: Edward Jones, George Whitehead, Mischa Manser, Hector Kaye (in
spoken to by a member of ImechE ( Institute of
car) and Johnny Jones
Mechanical Engineering ). At the end of the race
meeting our team were presented with the Award for
the “Best Engineered Car”.
National Finals as one of three wild card entries.”
We had one more race at the Castle Combe circuit in late
The team Edward Jones, George Whitehead, Mischa Manser,
September to qualify for the Goodwood National Finals.
Hector Kaye and Johnny Jones were boosted by this Invitation, but
Unfortunately this clashed with Coach Weekend.
unfortunately we were again unable to accept this offer to race
The following week we were contacted by Jeremy Way, Director
against the best cars in the country. So now it’s back to the
of Greenpower
workshop to improve the car for next season and, we hope, look
“Having won the award for Best Engineered car at Aintree, and
forward to more success.
having witnessed the inspiring enthusiasm of your team of young
John Holloway
engineers, we have great pleasure in inviting you to attend the
Sixth formers, Roger and Donald took leading parts in the building
of the new Shrewsbury House opened in 1974. Donald and Helen
kept in touch with the club and were always delighted that the
Shewsy was still flourishing.
The future will not be easy for the Everton area as the cuts begin
to bite deeply, but the Shewsy is in good heart and the support
from Old Salopians and from such ventures as the School’s
sponsored walk are much appreciated and needed. The
regeneration of Great Homer Street should finally be happening
over the next few years, Notre Dame High School is moving to
Great Homer Street nearer the club, Everton Park is being
developed around its magnificent view across the city, and the
Shewsy will continue to make a vital contribution to Everton’s
Henry Corbett
“A great place... the staff, children and helpers care so much
about the Shewsy... the sessions in the evenings were great...the
music facilities are excellent... keep up the good work...” are all
comments from the feedback sheets from the Social Studies
course visiting the Shewsy in November.
The Social Studies courses were started when Donald Wright
was Headmaster. Bishop Roger Sainsbury, Missioner at the
Shewsy in the 1960s, writes that Donald had first travelled up with
his wife Helen to Liverpool in 1963 “with the thought of closing
down the Shewsy as a hangover from the Victorian era, but when
he saw our engagement in Christian mission in one of the most
socially disadvantaged communities in England, it led to him
becoming an outstanding supporter of our work and he later
described his journey to the Shewsy as his Damascus-road
conversion.” In addition to the Social Studies courses for School
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Taylor (O 5) warmed the crowd up, Will Hargreaves (SH 4) and
Julian Chesshire (SH 3) showed that there is talent to look forward
to in future years, and Daisy McConnell and Sienna Holmes (both
EDH L6) showed how much talent the 2011 Sixth Form intake has.
Ali Webb (S L6) was typically superb, and Charlie Straw (S U6) ‘got
the crowd pulsating’ - according to Mr Bell. A great way to go out!
The evening raised more than £500 for the pupils’ chosen
charity, Motor Neurone Disease Association.
The universal view on summer’s open-air concert was that, despite
the soggy weather, it was one of the best in recent times. The
concert is almost entirely pupil-led - not only are all the performers
students, but so are all the sound/lighting/technical crew. The
programme is put together and publicised by the pupils, and it is
entirely down to them to rehearse and organise themselves for the
As in previous years, performances were from pupils across the
year groups. Sam Morris (G 5), Tom Lloyd (Rt 5) and Ed Shawe-
Third Former Joshua Himsworth, double-bass player and holder of
both a Burney music and a Butler academic scholarship, began his
first term at Shrewsbury fresh from the National Youth Orchestra of
Wales summer tour, where he was thrilled to receive the ‘Most
Promising String Player’ Award. Also taking part in the tour were
cellist Jacob Owen (L6) and new 6th Form Entrant Awen Blandford.
Henry Thomas (4th Form)
had a busy summer playing
trumpet with the National
Children’s Orchestra. His
account of that week is on the
School website, together with
his description of a hectic five
days in June when he not only
played solo trumpet in front of
the Queen, spent three days
rehearsing with the NCO and
performed in his House Soirée,
but also helped the J14A crew
to a tremendous win at the
Henry Thomas
National Schools’ Regatta.
Congratulations to Henry Kennedy
(L6), who has been awarded a place
to play saxophone in the National
Youth Wind Orchestra of Great
Britain. He has also been accepted
into the Youth Orchestra of the City of
Birmingham Symphony Orchestra to
play clarinet and bass clarinet.
Henry Kennedy
Photos by Andrew Spicer (M LVI)
School News
In an exhausting but memorable finale to the first half of the Michaelmas Term, the House Singing Competition took place just hours after the
Tucks. With mud-splattered faces scrubbed clean and running vests hastily swapped for glad-rags, there was no hint of the weariness many
probably felt, as each House took to the stage and sang their hearts out to a large and appreciative audience gathered in the Alington Hall
and – via a live video link – in the Ashton Theatre.
Winners of the Overall Prize in the House Singing Competition 2012 were Severn Hill. Their unison song was a reprise of ‘Deep in the Dark’
from the School musical The Bubble, while their part song was a triple combo of Abba, Take That and Coldplay, ‘Does your mother know
how to fix your shine’ was very entertaining with an array of coloured waistcoats and crafty choreographing.
Back from their Hawaiian training camp, Churchill’s produced a
well-nigh impeccable rendition of the Beach Boys’ ‘Get Around’ and
claimed the Part Song Prize, neatly reversing with Severn Hill last
year's Overall/Part Song result.
School House’s much anticipated ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ turned out to
be Ken Dodd’s ‘Happiness’ with a plethora of tickle dusters and the
customary goofy teeth; not only did this give them fourth place in
the Unison but earned the coveted Entertainment Prize.
Emma Darwin Hall was awarded the Unison Song Prize with their energetic homage to the late Amy Winehouse. ‘Valerie’ had the entire
house bopping to an on stage band, ordered so no member could hide and dilute the enthusiasm.
School News
delivering some excellent speeches. Kim Jong-Un will be delighted
that – in rhetoric at least – his ambassador served him well and
imperialists were well and truly smashed!
At the end of the conference, our Azerbaijani team were awarded
the top prize, the Distinguished Delegation Award (alongside
Haberdashers’ Askes’, Herts and Terenure College, Dublin) and I
was delighted that our Israeli team picked up a Highly Commended
Delegation Award, too. In addition, the following won Distinguished
Delegate awards for their work in their committees: Ben Gould, Sam
Ansloos, Ed Elcock, Alfie Rius, Rory Fraser, Toby Harvey-Scholes
and Guy Cabral (an extraordinary achievement for a Fourth Former).
Following on from his success on the first day, James Humpish won
two Distinguished Delegate awards; one for his work in the Human
Rights committee and one for his contribution to a special Crisis
Committee, which was set up on the second day of the conference
to resolve the fallout of a fictitious terrorist attack on the UN.
In addition, Shrewsbury had three of the 16 entries for the MUN XFactor. Alex Moore sang and played guitar in a complex and moody
Ben Howard number ‘Everything'. Sam Ansloos then delivered a
soaring rendition of Tom Petty’s ‘Free Falling’. However, it was
Shrewsbury’s very own waist-coated boy band, ‘Ed and the Other
People’, who somehow danced and beat-boxed their way to victory
with an original and hilarious, if wobbly, mash-up of Gotye’s
‘Somebody that I Used to Know’ and ‘Gangnam Style’. Speaking to
the MUN Press afterwards, Ed Elcock announced that his band
were donating the £150 X-Factor prize money to the ‘Shewsy’ youth
club in Everton.
Overall, it was a great experience for all, and we are very much
looking forward to the Paris MUN in December.
Huw Peach
On the first day of half term, Miss Burge and Mr Peach, five
Azerbaijanis, five Israelis, five North Koreans, and one budding
journalist, Hugo Wright, set off to Croydon for the 31st Royal Russell
Model United Nations conference.
Perhaps carried by the momentum of the Tucks, or lifted by the
vertiginous highs of the House Singing Competition – or was it that
bacon butty at breakfast from KH? – the team got ‘stuck in’ in true
Salopian style from the outset and returned four days later with a
brace of awards.
As always, it was an intense, dramatic, emotionally-charged, fun
and exhausting few days of internationalism, idealism,
Machiavellianism, and intelligent debate and oratory, with the odd
reference to Harry Potter or Korean YouTube hits thrown in.
What makes the Royal Russell conference stand out is the
friendly and welcoming atmosphere of the school’s staff and pupils,
the high standard of the debates, the international feel (with schools
from Ireland, the USA, Japan, Germany, Italy, Greece and Turkey)
and the sheer range and breadth of the other features of the
weekend like the MUN Press Corps (this year with a Salopian
journalist working in it), MUN-TV, the MUN chapel service, the fancydress discos and this year’s remarkably ambitious, big-screen,
outdoor X-Factor (of which more anon).
James Humpish, the Israeli ambassador, made the first big
impression. His opening address to the General Assembly, which
was loosely based on Blake’s Jerusalem, was chosen as the best
opening speech. And he certainly got the ball rolling for the team.
On the following morning Salopians were in the thick of the debates
in committees, and – as usual – showed their staying power, as the
debate moved to the General Assembly on the last two days. North
Korean ambassador, Daniel Edwards, stood out in General
Assembly, taking the podium more than any other Salopian, and
There must be a metaphor in here somewhere!
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quickly showed off our ammunition loading skills and our well-tuned
stoppage and loading drills. An easy start to warm up the day.
Having speed-marched down, the battle exercise (Battle-Ex) gave
us our first stance of blank firing, and we were ready to make some
noise. Our mission was to find and secure a fallen RAF jet pilot with
a leg injury and bring him out of enemy territory. After the briefing
and loading up, we patrolled off into the common. Within a few
minutes, a white smoke grenade went off, as we were briefed the
fallen captain would do when he spotted our patrol. Unfortunately
this spooked one L Cpl. who started to fire on the casualty, but after
a very loud call of ‘CEASE FIRE!’ the extraction was began. While
‘Charlie’ section prepared the casualty, ‘Delta’ section (including
me) came under fire from a hidden enemy waiting in ambush.
When he gave his position away, thunderous rounds went down as
we covered Cpl Wilson carrying the pilot on his shoulders back to
the extraction point. Mission completed and successful.
By 0930 we had started the First Aid stance. Run by Naval
medics (who will not stand for errors!) there was no room for
mistakes. Patrolling up through an area that 45 Commando troops
had cleared of enemies, it was our detachment’s job to search for
and collect the casualties of the recent ambush. Quickly we found a
man with a chest wound lying in the gorse and hastily got to work
securing his wounds, when from behind us shouting from a bund
line was another marine in a state of shock calling for help. Sgt
Young and I and ‘Delta’ section met this call, only to find the restless
marine going mad in shock, after removing his shirt to try and
extract his friend with a head injury; Sgt Young could only get him in
a head lock and force him to calm down. His friend had a large
gash to his head and was very quickly fading into
unconsciousness. I found myself desperately trying to keep him
talking by having a conversation with him about his favourite kind of
The Pringle Trophy competition is a two-day, gruelling event in which
teams from the nineteen schools across the UK with Royal Marines
CCF Detachments compete at the infamous Commando Training
Centre RM (CTCRM) at Lympstone. The competition pushes the
cadets' stamina, determination and teamwork to the limit, but it is a
unique opportunity for them to experience what commando training
Directed by a team of Royal Marine Instructors, who set a ruthless
pace and look for similar levels of proficiency and purpose to those
of regular Commandos, the first day is spent being assessed on
different military skills including navigation, weapon handling,
camouflage and concealment, sniper stalk, battle skills and combat
medicine. The second day starts with tests on turnout, drill and
knowledge of the history and traditions of the Royal Marines.
The final and most demanding challenge is the infamous
Commando assault course. This test of physical fitness, strength
and sheer grit involves a punishing combination of ropes, ditches,
walls and tunnels. It also includes the notorious ‘regain ropes’
suspended high above an icy tank of water – an ultimate test of
strength and tenacity.
Cpl Will Heyes’ graphic account of the experience of taking part is
on the School website.
The following extract describes the first day of the competition.
“At 0530, while most Shrewsbury School students were still
tucked up in bed, the Pringle teams woke for breakfast in the Galley
at 0600 and after a mad rush to gather webbing, bergens, bag
rations, magazines and rifles, we were deployed onto Woodbury
common by 0700 as the sun was rising. Our first stance of the day
was relaxed as it was simple weapons handling tests; thanks to Lt
Corbett’s intensive weapons training on the previous Thursday, we
“Cam and Com” (Camouflage and Concealment)
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cake (it did the job) and after all marines’ wounds were patched up,
they were carried to the ambulance and extracted for the hospital.
We had high hopes after that stance, a major boost to morale!
Camouflage and concealment was next on the sync matrix. We
were given ten minutes to cut down the local vegetation and shove
it down webbing pouches, in loops in hats and elastics on arms
and webbing. Then we tried to break our human figures and blend
into the surrounding area. None of us were spotted during this
stance, either because of our amazing hiding abilities or our poor
spotting abilities, as it was our own team looking for our hidden
The next stance was the stalk. Still in head-to-toe camouflage,
we were given one single round to take a sniper shot at an enemy
OP (observation point) without being spotted. Ten seconds to get
into a starting position, we split up suddenly into the gorse foliage. I
cannot give any account of the stalk apart from my own. I ran as far
forward as I could to get the best head start. It went very quickly
and I think I recall pushing one of our lance corporals over during
the start in my obsessive sprint to the front line. Finding paths
through the gorse I crawled for ten minutes, eyes fixed on the trees
that labelled the enemy territory. Conscious of telegraphing (the act
of wobbling the base of plants so they shake massively at the top
and hence the main reason snipers would get spotted) I moved
forward as quickly as I could. By the time I reached enemy territory I
was not in any position to be able to fire a shot at the OP, as the
gorse was about three feet off the ground, so I crawled further in.
When I heard the five-minute call go I felt it was my only chance to
score points for my team especially when I hadn’t heard any other
shots from my friends. I plucked up the courage to kneel up, slowly
so as not to shake the grass on my jungle hat too much, and
spotted the OP through the gauze bushes and fired a single shot.
My job was done and all I could do was stay absolutely still and
hope I wouldn’t get spotted. The radio of the YO (young officer)
went mad as the OP tried to direct him to try and find my figure.
They failed, and luckily they stopped looking when three other shots
went off during the last minute, as my friends took their shots at the
enemy. L Cpl Plaut and I both scored points for our team during the
stalk, but it was not enough to secure first place.
After half a day of hard work, cadets start to get tired and make a
few mistakes. On the way to the Leadership stance, I became
navigationally challenged. I led the team speed-marching into a
wood. We recognised it as being part of the RM endurance course...
so we weren’t in the right place at all. We speed-marched for the
whole half-hour of the changeover time and arrived just in time for
the stance. And with our training of leadership tasks, we set to work
and completed as much as we could to the best of our abilities,
despite our exhausted state after yomping the last half hour.
Inspirational words came from Cpl Wilson’s tongue on the way to
section attacks. It had been the section attack demonstration, from
that year’s winning Pringle team, during the Fourth Form recruits’
nitex, which had inspired Willow and myself to join the Marines
section. It was the most important stance to us and we had to win it.
Bombing up two mags each, we were briefed by Sgt Young: we
had trained on many occasions for section attacks and for our
Marines they are now second nature. Patrolling forward through the
thickest Woodbury gorse, Cpl Wilson at the point of our arrow-head
formation, it all happened very quickly;
Cpl Wilson – “CONTACT FRONT!!” (Everyone hits the deck and
starts to fire.)
TIMES ENEMY GUNNERS, RAPID FIRE!!” (The fire increases
Sgt Henry Young attempting a Regain
Sgt Young – “THREE I/C TAKE OVER, TWO I/C ON ME!!” (I leap
to my feet and hurdle over to Henry in the gorse; he briefs me on
the battle plan and I sprint back to my section.)
And with that the plan of attack began, ‘Charlie’ section giving
covering fire while ‘Delta’ moved forward, pivoted and assaulted the
enemy position through the smoke. Struggling with magazine
changes and stoppages, the section fought through the enemy digout and reformed a bound away, where L Cpl Dempsey and I were
sent to check the dead bodies. Jumping into the ditch where the
enemy had concealed themselves, John face-planted into a gorse
bush. He shook it off and covered my descent into the ditch in an
equally uncomfortable manner. Bodies checked, we checked our
men for ammunition and wounds. The end of a very successful
The day in the field ended in much more relaxed style, with easy
Observation stance and map reading stance. Back at CTCRM we
quickly cleaned the rifles and squared them away in the armoury,
got some scoff from the galley, and some last minute drill practice
before getting our heads down to clear our head for the final day of
Cpl Will Heyes RM (Ch UVI)
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Pupils took part in a vast array of different activities on Field Day this October. Will Heyes' account of competing in the Royal Marines Pringle
Trophy is on page 28. The photos on this page give a flavour of what four other groups got up to.
Photos 1 and 2: Third Form boys spent half the day in a very hands-on first aid session, and the other half of the day in a workshop run by
professional actors on the subject of bullying.
Photo 3: Thirty-eight Fourth Formers and six Lower Sixth pupils took part in a paralympic-themed day, including wheelchair basketball
workshop run by an ex-GB basketball player.
Photo 4: Eight writers spent most of the day putting together the second issue of Public Nose.
Photo 5: CCF cadets preparing to march on their stomachs.
Photo 6: Nine senior boys, two recent Old Salopians and a guest rider from Moreton Hall (aspiring professional) all took part in a mountain
bike training day using a notorious track nick-named 'The Wobbler' at Crogen, near Bala.
School News
The annual Quod Fashion Show was hosted this year by TV
personality Carol Smillie. and raised more than £2,000 for the
Teenage Cancer. The event was organised by a group of Sixth Form
girls, who worked with local boutiques to select a collection of
clothes, arranged tickets, publicity, models (Sixth Form girls and
boys), and planned the show itself.
Shrewsbury boutiques who participated included Wysteria Lane,
Hayley J, Carol Grant, Monsoon, Chequers and Rackhams, as well
as Mansers and The Looking Glass – a vintage shop in Bridgnorth.
Participants and organisers of the Summer Open Air Concert and
the Quod Fashion Show presented a cheque for £3,480 to Adam
Johnson from The Teenage Cancer Trust, when he came to give a
talk to the Lower Sixth on Teenage Cancer. Left to right: Tom Lloyd,
Ed Shawe-Taylor, Christie Knight, Sam Morris, Adam Johnson
(from the Teenage Cancer Trust), Cressida Adams
Carol Smillie with two of the organisers, her daughter Christie Knight
(left) and Cressida Adams (right)
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U16 and U15 boys, will hopefully underpin a similar run in 2013.
Mr Greetham ensured that the U15 XI again played well above
expectations. They lost , narrowly and early, in the Lord’s Taverners
Competition to the eventual winners, Denstone College, but gained
revenge in the later rounds of the T20 as they went on to reach the
ESCA/ECB T20 finals day. Here they came unstuck against, the
eventual winners, Bolton School, despite an outstanding first
innings batting display.
As you can see from this table the school did very well overall, if
you consider wins (76%) to be the priority. We are obviously
satisfied with these figures, and feel that they reflect well on all the
squads, but take much more comfort from the continual progress
and development of our players. This is not as easy to measure but
as ‘headline measures’ of the progress I would like to highlight three
important facts.
– Since 2008 we have produced seven professionally contracted
– The Saracens XI, who won the Cricketer Cup this season for
the first time since 1987, contained seven 1st XI players from
teams since 2008 and three 1st XI players from this season.
– We now offer more hours of cricket coaching to Shrewsbury
School boys, of all abilities, than ever before.
1st XI
2nd XI
3rd XI
1st XI
1st XI Results: Played 22, Won, 19 Lost 2, Drew 1,
Abandoned/Cancelled 7
Pre Season: Played 3, Won 2, Lost 1
T20 Matches: Played 8, Won 7, Lost 1
50/over Matches: Played 10, Won 10, Lost 0,
Abandoned/Cancelled 7
Despite the worst summer weather on record, Shrewsbury School
cricket flourished throughout the spring, and summer months, right
up to the U15 ESCA T20 finals at Arundel and the U17 National 40
over final in Oxfordshire in September. In another outstanding year
of achievement Shrewsbury School continued to provide the
sternest opposition for all domestic and overseas teams. The
reputation of our cricket continues to grow, but will be severely
challenged in the season to come following the departure of our
most successful 1st XI ever. Reputations take along time to be
established, but can easily be eroded and undermined therefore; it
goes without saying that our developing players and teams have a
huge challenge ahead in 2013. The forthcoming tour to South Africa
this December marks the exciting beginning of a new cricket era at
school and a great opportunity for all involved.
The 1st XI squad, containing many of the team that won the U15
ESCA/ECB T20 in 2009 & the U18 HMC T20 in 2011, played with
positive intent and maturity throughout the season, but were
eventually frustrated as their time at school drew to a close. Another
T20 semi-final defeat at the hands of Millfield School and a washed
out Silk Trophy was scant reward for a team that has provided the
school with outstanding success, a great number of role models,
excellent standards of play and at least two more professional
cricketers. As an example of the dominance of this departing
squad, here is their playing record since December 2010.
An early April start saw the team once again hard at it in our annual
Pre-season festival. As in the previous year two wins against
Worksop College and Worcestershire Academy still did not provide
the 1st XI with enough confidence to master Millfield School who
would also prove to be too good for us later in the season at
From that loss in April until the beginning of July, the 1st XI
performed excellently well and looked a very good bet to retain their
HMC T20 title and go on to win the Silk Trophy for the third time, but
one poor batting display and some poor weather put paid to their
Henry Lewis captained the team for the second season with real
authority and vision. He once again opened the innings on a regular
basis and this season scored a good number of important runs. His
back foot play was more assured and he often dominated the early
exchanges of matches. His off spin bowling proved less fruitful in
the 50 over matches, but still remained a real threat in our T20
campaign. He has been an outstanding captain and leader during
the past two seasons. He will be a very hard act to follow.
Stephen Leach had another excellent season and scored a
great number of important runs. He was not as prolific as he was
last year, but as a cricketer he has grown up a great deal and has a
real passion for the game that I know will take him a long way
towards fulfilling his dream of becoming a 1st class professional
cricketer. His grand total of 2704 runs (485 (2012) +1,051 (2011) +
Played 55 Won 50 Lost 4 Drew 1 Abandoned 8
In addition our newly formed U17s worked well with their coach Mr
Hughes in progressing to the National Final but eventually lost
narrowly to an excellent Gillingham School. The exposure and
experienced gained by this squad, containing a greater number of
School News
Alistair Pollock returned to service with real desire to bat and
bowl with equal authority. He achieved both comfortably, but I
sense, not to the level of satisfaction he desired. He remains for me
our most competitive all-rounder in recent years and he cannot in
anyway be faulted for his tireless commitment on the field. It was
fitting and pleasing for me to see him play such a major role in the
success of the Saracens winning team this summer. He has been
an excellent player for the past two years.
Jamie Board as our first choice wicketkeeper did much to
sharpen our fielding skills throughout the season. He worked hard
at his concentration and technique during the past two years and
leaves a much better player. As he improved his technique, his
body language and his enthusiasm rubbed off on his team mates
and they became an efficient fielding unit around him. He has been
a key factor in the successes of this team and will now be seeking
to further improve his cricket with a gap year in Western Australia.
Mark Prescott provided the essential grounding for the team this
year. Despite his lack of consistent opportunities he never
complained once but continued to support the team in every way
possible. He not only sustained his position in the squad but grew
in stature as the season wore on. He was a key ingredient
underpinning the multi talented squad. As the season drew on he
remained in contention as a bowler and a batter and finished the
season with the ball as strongly as any in the squad. His
commitment and contributions over his career in the 1st XI singles
him out for praise but more satisfying than this were his good grace,
growing maturity and sensitivity to others.
James Aston to his great credit moved his career forward and
become one of our very best T20 bowlers in 2012. In total he took
some 27 wickets, in all formats of the game, but could easily have
got more if some of our close catching had been better. His
improved ground fielding helped the team out, but it was his everpresent consistency that made him such a valuable team member.
He leaves with a high quality record and an encouragement from
me to continue the work he has done to date.
Edward Pollock had a dynamic and positive impact on the team.
His stroke play is exciting to watch and brought him a harvest of
642 runs in all formats of the game. As he contemplates the
forthcoming tour and next season he will surely wish to better his
record. I think if he reflects, for just a short period, on one or two
of his shot selections throughout the season he will be able to
map his own progress and surely achieve that an improved
record. His bowling did not offer control for the team or himself
but I know that he will be working hard throughout the winter to
bring this skill back in line and make a more significant major
contribution with the ball in the future.
Henry Blofield made a significant impact in the first half of term
but faded a little as the summer drew on. His contribution to the
1st XI and the U17s was still significant but I know full well that he
will be seeking to offer greater control and penetration as the South
African tour and the 2013 season occur. A return of 17 wickets is
encouraging during his first full season. His position in the 1st XI
rarely opened up batting opportunities of real significance but the
grit and discipline he showed against Millfield last April give me
greater encouragement for the future. I know that he desperately
wishes to contribute more with the bat and some winter work on his
technique will greatly help him achieve that goal.
Matthew Gregson, Charlie Farqhuar and Will Mason for
various reasons did not play a full part the squad in 2012 but I wish
to put on record their contribution to the development and standards
achieved. They played their part in the success and the first two
(who will be in the U6) have much more to offer next season.
Henry Lewis
673 (2010) +411(2009) +84(2008)) in five years as a 1st XI player
speaks volumes for his contribution. He has been the backbone of
the team and made real progress throughout his time. He has
worked hard at all aspects of his game and I wish him luck as he
sets out on his road to professionalism with a stint in Australia this
Jack Hudson-Williams, despite offering his bowling to the
captain, rarely dominated with the ball, but took great comfort in
taking on more responsibility with the bat. His batting average of
over 54 in our 50 over matches indicated his greater maturity and
willingness to take on responsibility. He has been a player in the
1st XI for the past three seasons and set the highest standards of
fielding I can remember. His fielding performance in the T20 semi
final loss to Millfield was simply the best I have seen. He is now
living, studying and developing his cricket in Western Australia.
Just over 250 runs in all formats of the game for Jack Bailey this
season hardly seems enough but his willingness to work harder
and occupy the crease often set up winning situations for the team.
His game really progressed and he can be rightly proud of all he
has achieved in the 1st XI. I am confident to say he is one of our
most accomplished batsmen of this century but unsure that he will
continue to play the game despite being blessed with so much
natural talent. I must further congratulate him on his ability in the
field and a number of outstanding catches during his career.
Ruadrhi Smith took his bowling to the highest level and
consistently unsettled our opponents even on the flattest surfaces.
His twenty wickets, most often taken with the new ball, made life
easier for the other bowlers and again enabled him to stand out as
one of the most exciting seam bowlers on our circuit. His dynamic
and athletic fielding greatly improved our team performance time
and again. His batting in 50 over matches was too fragile
throughout the season and this is where he will need to focus his
attention if he is to break into the Glamorgan 1st XI in years to
come. By contrast he proved to be most valuable in scoring over
200 runs in our T20 campaign with his strong stroke play and
athletic running between the wickets.
School News
Stephen Leach and Jack Hudson-Williams
1st XI Results – 50-over matches
11th April
Worksop College (h)
Shrewsbury won by 7 wickets
Worksop 204 for 5, Shrewsbury 207 for 3 (S. G. Leach 106 no)
12th April
Worcester Academy (h)
Shrewsbury won by 77 runs
Shrewsbury 188 for 7 (E. Pollock 53), Worcester Academy 111 for 7
13th April
Millfield (h)
Shrewsbury 121 all out, Millfield 126 for 6
21st April
King Edwards Birmingham (a)
Shrewsbury won by 9 wickets
KES 83 all out ( J. Aston 4 for 17 , H. Blofield 3 for 18) Shrewsbury 87 for 1
25th April
Shropshire U21s (h)
Cancelled Waterlogged Pitches
29th April
MCC (h)
Cancelled Waterlogged Pitches
5th May
Trent College (a)
Shrewsbury won by 118 runs
Shrewsbury 253 for 5 (J. Hudson-Williams 70) Trent 135 all out (R. Smith 4 for 9)
9th May
Wrekin College (40 overs match) (h)
Match Abandoned, Rain
Shrewsbury 246 for 6 (M. Prescott 64, A. Styles 63, R.Smith 63), Wrekin 7 for 1 (2 overs)
12th May
Repton (h)
Shrewsbury won by 9 wickets
Repton 102 all out (R. Smith 5 for 24), Shrewsbury 103 for 1 ( H. Lewis 52 no)
19th May
Sedbergh (h)
Shrewsbury won by 23 runs
Shrewsbury 161 for 9 (S. Leach 51) Sedbergh 138 all out
26th May
Malvern (a)
Shrewsbury won by 8 wickets
Malvern 180 all out Shrewsbury 180 for 2 (S. Leach 71 no, H. Lewis 71)
30th May
Myerscough College (40 overs) (h)
Shrewsbury won by 5 wickets
Myerscough College 143 for 7 Shrewsbury 145 for 5
16th June
Manchester Grammar School (40 overs) (h) Match Abandoned, Rain
Shrewsbury 208 for 5 (H. Lewis 73, E. Pollock 66), Manchester 101 for 5 (30 0vers)( H. Blofield 3 for 16)
23rd June
Warwick (a)
Shrewsbury won by 141 runs
Shrewsbury 327 for 8 ( E. Pollock 73, J. Hudson-Williams 96, A. Pollock 83), Warwick 186 all out
Millfield won by 4 wickets
School News
27th June
Uppingham (a)
Shrewsbury won by 75 runs
Shrewsbury 229 for 6 (H. Lewis 83, J. Hudson-Williams 89), Uppingham 156 all out (A. Pollock 4 for 29)
30th June
Denstone (a)
Cancelled Waterlogged Pitches
2nd July
Oundle (Silk) (h)
Shrewsbury 131 for 1 23 overs
Match Abandoned, Rain
3rd July
Bishops (Silk) (45 overs) (h)
Shrewsbury won by 9 wickets
Bishops 173 for 8, Shrewsbury 174 for 1 (S. Leach 75 no, E.Pollock 85 no)
4th July
Eton College(Silk) (h)
Cancelled Waterlogged Pitches
6th July
Saracens (h)
Cancelled Waterlogged Pitches
1st XI T20 Season Results
6th May
Adams Grammar/Oswestry School & Ellesmere College
Adams 43 all out (18 overs) (E. Pollock 4 for 3, H. Blofield 3 for 5), Shrewsbury 44 for 0 (3 overs)
Shrewsbury won by 10 wickets
Ellesmere 36 all out (18.4 overs) (M. Prescott 2 for 1, R. Smith 2 for 1), Shrewsbury 44 for 2
Shrewsbury won by 8 wickets
Shrewsbury 212 for 8 (J. Bailey 94), Oswestry 69 for 8 (A.Pollock 3 for 10)
Shrewsbury won by 143 runs
20th May
Denstone 97 for 6, Shrewsbury 99 for 4
Shrewsbury won by 6 wickets
20th June
Shifnal CC (Friendly)
Shrewsbury won by 8 wickets
Shifnal CC 99 all out (J. Aston 4 for 10), Shrewsbury 102 for 2
26th June
Felsted (at Bedford) Quarter Final
Shrewsbury won by 5 wickets
Felsted 123 for 8 (H. Lewis 5 for 20), Shrewsbury 127 for 3 (R. Smith 54)
28th June
Millfield (at Arundel) Semi-Final
Shrewsbury lost by 19 runs
Millfield 115 for 7 (M. Prescott 4 for 14), Shrewsbury 96 all out
tight bowling aided by some exceptional fielding ensured that
Millfield never scored a boundary in the final quarter of their innings.
Mark Prescott finished with the exceptional figures of 4-14 off his 4
overs and Shrewsbury were highly satisfied that Millfield had been
restricted to 115-7 off their allotted 20 overs.
Shrewsbury’s reply never really got going; the loss of 4 wickets in
the power play being a blow they never really recovered from. Only
3 batsmen (and extras) got into double figures and although Alistair
Pollock hung around at one end, the big hitters missed out and it
was left to the lower order to try and rescue the innings. Millfield, to
their credit, bowled well and set effective run-saving fields that
strangled Shrewsbury’s supply of runs. Shrewsbury were finally all
out when Alistair Pollock skied one to mid-off with 10 balls
Shrewsbury failed once again to overcome Millfield at this stage
of the competition, though to be fair, on the day they were a better
side and Shrewsbury will go away looking to rebuild with nine of
their side leaving this year (this particular year group were also
Under 15 ESCA National Champions in the T20 format). However,
an Under 17 side composed of mainly 4th and 5th formers have
reached the semi-finals of the National Under 17 competition and
they are optimistic that they can challenge the best schools in the
country once again next year.
Shrewsbury vs Millfield Semi-Final
With an air of confidence, Shrewsbury looked to defend their title
won less than 300 days ago on the same Arundel Castle ground.
After an unbeaten run of 17 games in T20 games spread over 2
seasons and with nine of last year’s victorious side selected to play,
Shrewsbury looked to challenge Millfield on the third occasion that
the two sides had met at this stage of the competition. Glorious
weather greeted us this time in stark contrast to the damp, early
autumn conditions last year. The ground looked a picture, a stage
good enough to host the four best schools in the country in the
shortest format of the game.
After Millfield had won the toss and decided to bat, they set about
the Shrewsbury attack with relish; Smith was often wayward in his
length and though Aston was a little more consistent, he paid the
price for bowling too full at times. The power play yielded 46 runs
and gave Millfield the first advantage. The introduction of Henry
Lewis saw the pace taken off the ball and with it, he took a very
sharp caught and bowled (his 7th of the season) to remove Will
Jenkins with the score on 53.
The introduction of the slow bowlers, Blofield, Prescott and Lewis
put a brake on the Millfield run rate as 8 runs an over quickly fell to
below 6 and Millfield started to lose wickets, Lewis removed Will
Sobzcak, courtesy of a well judged catch in the deep by Steve
Leach and Mark Prescott was chipping away at the Park End. Three
very athletic catches by Jack Hudson-Williams all off Prescott’s
bowling reduced Millfield to 93-5 at the end of the 15th.
The onslaught in the final 5 overs never came about, as some
A full report on the 2012 cricket season is on the School website:
School News
Wisden 1st XI Report and Averages Season 2012
Batting (100+ only)
S. G. Leach
J. G. Hudson-Williams
E. J. Pollock
H. G.Lewis*
A. W. Pollock
J. F. Bailey
M. R. J. Prescott
R. A. J. Smith
R. A. J. Smith
H. G. Lewis*
E. J. Pollock
J. N. Aston
H. C. Blofield
M. R. J. Prescott
A. W. Pollock
Bowling (7+ only)
Presentation of the ESCA Midlands Trophy to U15A XI captain George Lewis
School News
The appalling weather in the Summer of 2012 was not enough to
dampen what for me was a terrific term of tennis. The 1st VI in
particular were the most committed and determined boys I have
coached in my five years at Shrewsbury and I have no doubt that
next year the level will be ratcheted up again. The main highlights
for me were the 1st VI win over Uppingham and the performance of
the 1st IV at the Youll Cup in Eton.
The win over Uppingham was Shrewsbury’s first in 18 years at 1st
VI level. Whilst our 3rd pair of Will Milligan-Manby and Dom Gibbons
fought hard throughout the season and made significant
improvements in their game they were unable to win any sets at 1st
VI level. The second pairing of Jack Hodges and Michael Cheung
(both 5th formers) were inspirational on this day winning all four of
their sets and by winning their final two sets the first pair of Harry
Bromley-Davenport and Will Phillips were able to clinch the victory
5-4. This win injected huge confidence through Shrewsbury tennis. I
had grown fed up with hearing excuses for losing and even
overhearing our opponents make reference to a lack of fight in our
performances in previous years. On this occasion and at the Youll
Cup there was overwhelming evidence of a change in our boys
character shown by a willingness to fight. I would go as far as to say
that if I were picking a composite 1st VI from the last five years at
Shrewsbury then Will Phillips, Harry Bromley-Davenport, Michael
Cheung and Jack Hodges would make the team. At Eton the senior
boys lost in the first round to Warwick after hitting a net cord on
match point. They then battled through to the quarter finals of the
Clark trophy losing to the eventual finalists Epsom once more after
having a match point. In every match I was so proud of the level of
play and the level of commitment and courage shown. In one
match tie break vs Merchant Taylor’s, Michael Cheung and Jack
Hodges found themselves 6-2 down. Michael Cheung then played
the most brilliant tennis winning seven points in a row with clean
winners – fantastic self belief shown to win the match at such a
critical juncture. The junior pairing of Tom Robinson and Lisle
Gannon were inspired by the senior boys and produced some
magic of their own. In the quarters of the plate they played versus
Rugby winning the first set 6-3 before going down 6-1 in the second
to a pair who were more experienced and technically more
proficient. Tom led the pair really well in the deciding tie break and
the Shrewsbury pair walked about the court as if the previous set
had never happened winning the match tie break 10-5. Tom and
Lisle then lost to Reed’s in the semi finals who went on to win the
tournament. Tom and Lisle certainly showed me that they were
made of the right stuff.
All in all there is much to be encouraged about Shrewsbury
Tennis at present. The U15A and U14A teams both had winning
seasons suggesting that there is enough talent coming through to
feed through into the senior teams of the future. The new 3rd form
also look to be a strong bunch. The House tennis matches continue
to be of a much higher standard than in years gone by with
Oldham’s beating The Grove in the Senior House Tournament and
Ridgemount beating Port Hill in the Junior House Competition. At
the annual tennis dinner awards were given to Jack Hodges for
player of the season, Tom Robinson and Henry Clay for U15 players
of the season, Will Schofield for the most improved player and to
Will Milligan-Manby for his outstanding effort and commitment to his
tennis. Next year I have decided to end U16A and U16B matches
so that the school can run four senior teams instead of two with the
top 3 years competing for places in the teams. The main thrust of
this idea is to increase the level of inter year competition and to
accelerate boys progress up the school teams as fast as possible.
Below Top Squad (for 1st VI and future 1st VI players from all year
groups), there will be a new squad for 5th and 6th form team
players. I am confident that the level in this second tier of players will
consequently rise in the future due to the extra inter year
competition. It has certainly been the case with Top Squad. Tennis is
about so much more than nice looking technical shots and by
promoting boys with the necessary character, Shrewsbury Tennis
should be ready to move forward to new heights.
1st Tennis squad 2012 – back row (left to right): M. J. Harding,
J. Hodges, C. Cheung, D. N. Gibbons; front row: W. A. MilliganManby, H. N. Bromley-Davenport, W. A. Phillips, W. A. M. Norman
1st VI Tennis squad 2012 – back row (left to right): I. Z. Atkins,
K. M. E. Williams, R. E. Home; front row: E. N. Murphy, H. V. Harris,
A. R. Paul
School News
track sessions, and individual guidance and encouragement to all
of our runners. All of this was invaluable in terms of experience, and
we are hugely grateful to the Old Salopian former Huntsman who
financed the trip and made it possible.
It was certainly a hectic schedule for Coach, who worked
alongside over a hundred runners including prep school athletes
from Packwood and Birchfield, and some of our talented female
athletes. There was also something of a media frenzy surrounding
Coach’s visit, with a BBC crew hastily making their way to the
School to produce a piece about the Hunt’s experience with Coach,
interviews with Radio Shropshire, press releases in the local papers
and running magazines, and countless photo shoots. No wonder,
of course, given Coach’s credentials; amongst his former charges,
he can include the great Bekele brothers, triple Olympic medallist
Tirunesh Dibaba, and his protégé Derartu Tulu, who became the
very first African female athlete to win Olympic gold. We really were
in the midst of a legend of the sport, and I have no doubt that his
visit will have a lasting impact on all who were a part of the week.
We as coaches have learned a huge amount, and certainly count
ourselves extremely fortunate to have been a part of this once in a
lifetime opportunity. We very much hope that this won’t be the end
of the relationship, however, and indeed, Coach returns to Bekoji
with a suitcase full of running spikes and kit, partly donated by the
Hunt and the running store Up & Running in Shrewsbury, all of
which will benefit Coach’s next generation of athletes, some of
whom may go on to be future Olympians. And who knows, perhaps
the boys and girls who experienced the coaching of Sentayehu
here last week may end up in Bekoji one day for the return visit...
Peter Middleton
Writing this report summarising our very first Coach in Residence
week, it doesn’t quite seem real that we have just experienced the
inspiring coaching and training from one of the world’s leading
coaches - Ethiopia’s Sentayehu Eshetu - who has discovered and
developed multiple Olympic champions and world record holders.
‘Coach’ as he likes to be known, made the long journey from East
Africa, widely regarded as the ‘home’ of distance running, to
Shropshire and to The Hunt, whose history dates back to 1831, and
can therefore also lay claim to being the ‘home’ of running. The
union seemed fitting, and as we welcomed Coach just hours after
touching down from Addis Addiba, we already sensed that we were
in for a very special week.
Having only ever been out of his native Ethiopia once before, no
doubt the bracing cold winds of Shropshire will have been a shock
to Coach, but having had a good look around the School during his
first day here, he felt more than at home once the afternoon Benjies
session got underway on the first Monday and he was given charge
of the sixty or so boys signed up for the run. As we walked down
Central, the heads turned as the boys waited by the Darwin Statue
curious to catch a glimpse of the great man, resplendent in his
yellow, green and red Ethiopian national tracksuit top. I can’t say
such reverence and awe is afforded to us normally as coaches
when we make our way towards the Benjies sessions, but then we
haven’t coached any Olympians (yet!). After a brief introduction,
Coach took charge of the warm-up routine, where he spent 15
minutes preparing the boys in exactly the same way as he would his
own athletes in the small town of Bekoji. The routine was certainly
different, but a very interesting insight into the great man’s methods.
Indeed, much of the week saw such innovative coaching
techniques, not least the unforgettable ‘tree’ session on the Friday
afternoon (a session that four days on I for one am still aching
from!) and the highly technical hill work undertaken on the school
bank midweek. There was the unique experience of early morning
training, with a brave handful rising at 5.30am to undertake a
speedwork session as the sun gently crept over horizon, tough
The week also included a screening of ‘Town of Runners’ in
Quod. Released last year, the film features Coach and two young
girls from Bekoji as they attempt to 'make it' as athletes. Although it
is predominately a film about running, it also gives an interesting
and inspiring insight into Ethiopian life. For more information, visit
On the first Saturday of term, the entire 3rd Form competed in the
annual New Boys’ Race, a tough little 2.3km cross-country route
made all the more challenging this year by the hot conditions. Not
only is this an opportunity for early bragging rights among the boys,
but it’s also very much a team event and the terrific camaraderie on
display by all the new House cohorts was a real treat to witness.
After Ed Mallett, this year’s Huntsman, performed his first
ceremonial duties of the year by starting the event with the traditional
rallying cry and toot on the ancient bugle, 120-odd boys dashed off
across Central chasing the ‘hare’ of the event, Senior Whip Seb
Blake. Both Mr Middleton and Mr Haworth were very excited about
the potential of talent it was believed existed in this new collection of
Salopians, and they were not disappointed. A blistering early pace
was set by Freddie Huxley-Fielding which at one point may have
made our hare wish he’d done a little more pre-season training!
As the leading runners darted round Top Common and down
Oldham’s Gap, it was clear that this was going to be a very fast race
indeed. Tension built over the next five minutes as the boys made
their way round the rest of the course, only for the leader to pop up in
front of Chapel for the finishing straight long before anyone (with the
School News
second place was Port Hill, with a very creditable 102 points, while
Oldham’s – something of a dark horse of a team – clutched third,
with 130 points.
Well done to all who ran, and thanks to everyone who supported
this hugely enjoyable event.
Ian Haworth
possible exception of Mr Middleton, though more on that shortly)
had predicted.
The early pace-setter, Freddie Huxley-Fielding of Rigg’s, had
managed to lengthen his lead and crossed the line in an astonishing
7.59, smashing last year’s record-breaking time set by Oscar
Dickens by a full 17 seconds. To put this into context, the School’s
current fastest runner, Huntsman Ed Mallett, completed the course in
the same race four years ago in a winning time of 9.01. Mr Middleton,
Freddie’s Housemaster, looked slightly less than dignified in
punching the air several times, but then not only had he seen his
charge win the race, but he had correctly predicted his time to the
In second position came Charlie Tait-Harris of Port Hill, in an
extremely strong time of 8.39, closely followed by William Hayward of
Rigg’s in 8.45. Six runners managed to complete the course in under
nine minutes, which is an exceptional athletic achievement at this
early stage in these boys’ running careers. Indeed what was perhaps
most encouraging for the Hunt coaches was not just Freddie’s
incredibly quick time, but the strength in depth on show among this
year group, promising great things in years to come.
The race was not all about the very quick, however; further down
the field there were some impressively gutsy performances from
boys who were not used to running, and who nevertheless gave their
all in the unforgiving late-summer sunshine to do themselves and
their Housemasters extremely proud. Everyone who completed the
course can look back with a real sense of achievement, and the
Headmaster’s words of congratulations after the race were certainly
richly deserved.
To the team event: the first six finishers from each House scored
points for their team, with the lowest points total winning. It was
unsurprising perhaps that Rigg’s, with their Housemaster also
Master in Charge of the Hunt, should take the honours. Their
domination, though, was less predictable; their sixth finisher placed
31st, making a team total of just 70 too strong for anyone else. In
Freddie Huxley-Fielding
School News
Henley 2012
The First VIII
Meeting Monmouth in the first round was not as easy as some
might think, although as it happened this shake down round was
exactly what the crew needed to steady the inevitable nerves.
Monmouth shot off the start, “front-loading the race”, as their coach
commented, “so as to probe any weaknesses in the Shrewsbury
crew. Unfortunately there were none!” Shrewsbury quickly
recovered a canvas deficit and steadily overpowered a tough crew
with a reputation of never giving up. So to face Ridley College, the
Canadian National Champions. Perhaps the memory of a
resounding victory last year on the Thursday against St Joseph’s
(USA) helped, for “Shrewsbury made a Selected crew look like
novices” was the comment of one Member. Shrewsbury’s start was
fast, but so was Ridley’s; then, having settled to race pace, an early,
therefore risky and surprising, strong push saw the Shrewsbury
boat almost lift itself out of the water to take the lead by a length. It
is possible, following a race, to pin it down to within a stroke or two
when a crew member cracks under pressure; one can only
speculate here, but the headwind conditions somehow seemed to
affect Shrewsbury far less than Ridley from about this point of the
race. Shrewsbury romped home in style to a two and a quarter
length victory. Thus was the Shrewsbury-Radley Friday rivalry
propagated for the third consecutive year with the score at one-all
from the previous two. In the event Radley were simply faster. To be
heavier by almost a stone a man into a strong headwind has a
certain ring to it! The crew valiantly raced and, in typical fashion, did
not crack; typical also that the emotion after the race was highly
coloured by the sense of having let down the coach simply through
not winning, but Todd’s post-race talk was cathartic. Most of the
departing U6 from this crew have raced in the first VIII at Henley for
the last three years and under Todd they have never been less than
quarter-finalists. Todd has been an inspirational – and challenging –
coach, and there have been some memorable victories over
talented crews along the way. But this is an annual competition, and
the remaining squad is forward looking and there is a job to do over
the next year or so. We wish Athol Hundermark, the newly
appointed coach, every success as he takes over in September.
Philip Lapage (River Master)
The striking view of the blue and white striped boat tent across the
river, which, for competitors, is that adrenaline-pumping sight as one
rounds the corner in Henley at the first approach, was softened and
colourfully complemented this year by the presence of the newly
built Gloriana, the pageant-leading 18-oared Royal barge. Proudly
adorned from stem to stern with no fewer than ten large National,
Royal and House flags streaming out to their full extent in the wind
(which cruelly blew relentlessly straight down the course against the
crews for the full five days) she graced the Regatta in many ways.
The wind combined with the current this year to slow all the crews
down considerably, a fact which drew comment from the Regatta
Chairman in his address at the presentation ceremony: the winning
time in the Grand this year was about 50 seconds slower than that of
last year. Think of what that means next time you try a 2k ergo: put
the brakes on the flywheel and draw the effort out by nearly a minute!
But then, the Henley course is even longer, at
2112m (or, for the traditionalists, 1 mile 550 yards –
the longest straight course attainable when the
regatta started in 1839). It was, as the Chairman
also commented, a tough regatta.
Olympic medallist Matt Langridge was one of the
guests of honour at the Boathouse Opening. He is
pictured opposite with Salopian rowers (left to
right): Bridget Lapage (Girls’ Captain of Boats),
Isobel Diment, Peter Gadsden with Matt’s Beijing
2008 silver medal, Max Kimpton-Smith (Captain of
Boats), Cesca Molyneux with Matt's London 2012
bronze medal, and Charlotte Harris.
School News
Junior World Rowing Championships,
Plovdiv, Bulgaria, August 2012
Tom Marshall (SH) and Harry Lonergan (O) looked as if they
would have a chance at being selected for the Junior GB
Worlds team from the beginning of 2012: at all the long
distance trials they were always in the top five crews in the UK.
However, things are never sealed until after the exhausting fiveday trial in July at Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham. Harry had a
reasonably easy time of it by producing a great pair of seat
races on the first day. These placed him in the top group of
athletes immediately and his place in the top World IV was
sealed. However, Tom’s experience was at the other end of the
scale, race after race every day. However, success on the last
morning and huge relief that Tom had secured a place in the
Worlds VIII!
The championships were
late in August this year,
meaning a long training
camp for both Salopians at
the GB training facility at
Caversham, where they were able
to rub shoulders with athletes
preparing for the Olympics. Tom
was now stroking the GB VIII – not
bad for a boy who had once
stroked the RSSBC J15 B VIII!
So off to Plovdiv, Bulgaria
where on Sunday 19th August, in
30-degree heat, Tom stroked
the Junior VIII to a bronze medal
Tom Marshall
GB Junior VIII – Tom Marshall is in the back row, second from right
in the final, just being pipped by Germany by a canvas. Italy won
the gold. Later in the day, Harry rowed in the junior men’s coxless
four, but finished just outside the medals in fourth position.
Junior Home Internationals, Cardiff, July 2012
Bridget Lapage was selected to represent Wales in the girls’ junior
quad. Rowing at 2 on a beautifully sunny day in Cardiff, the crew
was last off the start, having had unexpected contact with a buoy.
However, from the halfway mark they surged forward with an
immense effort and came through to the silver position, only
narrowly missing the gold.
The new ergo room in the Yale Boathouse
School News
Thomas Telford recently only nine went on tour at the start of the
The remaining squads are working hard in training and having
mixed results in their school matches. The inter-house League
programme is drawing to a close as the House knock-out
competition is about to start.
At the time of writing, there are only two weeks of the term left and
over 200 school matches have been played. I must thank Andy
Richards and his team of groundsmen who have provided excellent
pitches for all our footballing needs.
Steve Biggins
Master-in-Charge of Football
The School Football programme began in Portugal at the end of
August. The Under 15 and 1st XI squads travelled to Lisbon for a
week in the sun to begin a warm weather pre-season programme at
the Jamor National Sports Centre. Each squad trained for seven
days and played three matches against highly talented Portuguese
teams. This was an ideal start to the busy term ahead.
At the time of going to press, both the Under 15s and the 1st XIs
are still in their Cup competitions. The Under 15s have beaten
Wolverhampton Grammar and Bolton School in earlier rounds and
now proceed to round 4 in the ISFA Investec Cup, travelling to St
Bede's Manchester.
The 1st XI have progressed well in the ESFA Schools Trophy,
beating St Thomas More School, Walsall and Idsall School, Shifnal
to set up the annual 5th round tie away at Thomas Telford School.
In the ISFA Boodles Cup they have a 4th round tie at home to
Bolton School. In the previous rounds they beat Highgate, Royal
Russell School and Latymer Upper School, which involved matches
with three tough London schools. The Latymer Upper School game
was a tense affair as the opponents took a 2-1 lead with three
minutes to play. Ben Gould, the 1st XI goalkeeper went into the
opponents’ penalty area for a last minute corner and scored! He
then saved three penalties in the resulting shoot-out. It was a
remarkable end to a very hard fought contest.
The 2nd XI are having much success in their Shropshire League
matches and these are perfect preparation for 2nd XI players to be
promoted into the 1st team when needed. In recent weeks, no
fewer than five players have been moved up to the 1st XI squad
incurring a few problems following injuries, illness and suspensions.
From the squad of 14 players who were due to play against
1st XI captain Ed Lloyd (left) and Tim Atkins (right)
1st XI Squad
School News
1st XI goalkeeper Ben Gould on the offensive in the dying seconds of ISFA cup tie versus Latymer Upper
U15A Squad
Old salopian News
volunteered to support
careers talks at the
School, we have grown
the “Headlines” (careers
assistance) group by
over one third (now just
under 400-strong). We
also received notifications
of interest in assisting
with the administration of
professional bodies and
serving on the careers
Nevertheless, we believe
there is still much to do in
developing an effective
careers offering, and
putting the right structure
in place. (One of our major considerations is to avoid oversaturation of some of the professions represented within the
“Headlines” population). We are extremely keen to enlist the
services of as many parents as we can, as research reveals that
similar, successful careers support programmes at other schools
enjoy a much higher proportion of parental support.
Over the past year we have received over 70 requests for help
(careers advice, work experience and gap year assistance) from
young Old Salopians and current pupils. Those seeking help tend
to be realistic on the whole, and understand that the service is not
intended as a “job placement programme”. Initial responses to a
recent users’ feedback questionnaire reveal that we are making a
difference. We have received some very positive replies, including
some good suggestions for improving the service. If you are able to
help in any way, please write to me, Alex Baxter, Director of the
Salopian Club, via email at [email protected] I look
forward to hearing from you
In recent months our sports clubs have enjoyed significant success.
The Saracens won the Cricketer Cup competition during the
summer and the Yacht Club secured the Charterhouse Bowl, whilst
participating in the Arrow Trophy Regatta in October. During late
September we held a successful Old Salopian Day, featuring
football, fives and cross-country sporting fixtures against School
teams as well as the opening of the Yale Boat-house. At this event,
two Old Salopians collected Sidney Gold medals (Shrewsbury’s
highest academic award) and another OId Salopian received the
award during the rededication of the Queen’s Terrace in October.
The Michaelmas term has been very busy for us socially, with
events in Yorkshire and Somerset, the traditional “City Drinks” in
London and various Christmas drinks parties in Birmingham and
Having fired the opening salvo of the careers initiative in the
summer edition of the magazine, I feel a short update is in order.
The Club was delighted to welcome David Chance (0 1970-75) as
the Chair of the careers committee in August and following a
meeting with him various targets have been set, including:
establishing a School Careers Fair in the Lent term (now
confirmed for 14 March 2013)
continuing the series of Club-sponsored careers talks and
dinners with current pupils
establishing professional networks comprising OS and parents
growing the membership of the current “Headlines” group
forming university networks to promote the careers services to
young Old Salopians.
Our biggest challenge is to develop an effective network of
professional groups comprising individuals willing to guide young
Old Salopians who are trying to kick-start their working lives. We
emailed over 4000 Old Salopians and parents in mid-September,
seeking help with this initiative, and received just over 100 replies.
By combining these responses with people who had previously
Philip Phillips (DB, 1951-56) has been awarded a Jubilee Medal
by British Rowing. To mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Year, sixty
medals were awarded to people who, through their dedication,
have helped to lay down a legacy for future generations of rowers.
Phil Phillips was a member of the 1955 crew that won the
Princess Elizabeth Cup – the first major win the RSSBC had had in
many years. He went on to win numerous other trophies as an
oarsman and rowed in a well-known four from Derby Rowing Club
(including Mike Sweeney, current Chairman of the Henley Royal
Regatta), who achieved the requirements to qualify for the
Olympics,. He later became a GB selector and a highly successful
coach and was an active multi-lane umpire until his retirement. In
his medal citation, Phillip is described as a major catalyst at Derby
Rowing Club: “His enthusiasm, dedication and sheer hard work as
a club official and coach over the last 50 years leaves a legacy
clearly identified. Without his input, the Club would not be what it is
Professor Michael Proctor (O 1963-67) has been pre-elected as
Provost of King’s College, Cambridge. He will take up office in the
next academic year.
Adrian Morris (O 1977-1982) has been appointed as Prep School
Leader at Harrow’s new International School in Hong Kong, which
opened in September 2012.
Max Kinnings (PH 1979-84), novelist and screenwriter, has
recently been appointed Head of Creative Writing at Brunel
University, working alongside novelists such as Fay Weldon and Will
Self. Max’s new novel, Baptism, is published by Quercus (see
Publications, page 60). Further details of Max’s work can be found
at www.maxkinnings.com
Patrick Ellwood (O 1980-85) writes: “After living in Turkey for seven
years, my wife and I decided it was time to move on to somewhere
Old salopian News
new. In March 2012, we purchased 35,000m2 (8+ acres) of land in
Portugal and then set about selling the house, the house contents,
the car, the motorbike and the business we had in Turkey. In May we
flew to Portugal and bought a Land Rover and caravan and drove
them back to Turkey – 4,000 km (six days of travelling). Then on 4th
August, we loaded up all of our possessions and animals and set
off for Portugal.
world, including the North Ridge of Everest in 2004, Richard now
runs his own architecture practice, studioEAST, based in Perth
In total, the journey took us 16 days, travelling for up to 12 hours a
day and sleeping in the caravan with all the animals every night.
Along the way, we saw the Greek Army on manoeuvres, tasted
some great wine in Italy, and paid a fortune in tolls to get across
France. The police in Cannes moved us on one night telling to be
careful because of ‘robbers’ in the area. Spain was straight roads
and finally in Portugal we had a great BBQ chicken meal (frango)
with a small drop of port. What an adventure!
We are now in the process of turning our smallholding near
Carroqueiro, Monsanto in Portugal into a tourist ‘glamping’
(glamorous camping) retreat.”
Jack Travers (I 2000-05) recently completed the Berlin Marathon
after cycling to Berlin from Amsterdam - all in a week! Jack says:
‘On the face of it - a big challenge. In reality it was exactly that,
although it was far more enjoyable than I could have imagined. It
was wonderful to complete personally but more important was to
raise money for the Alex Wilson Appeal, which is such a wonderful
cause.” They have raised almost £2,000 in aid of the Alex Wilson
Appeal. If anyone would like to sponsor them retrospectively, please
go to http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JackTravers
Michael North (M 1989-94) married Anita Leirvik in Oslo in January
Andrew Zino (M 1989-94) married Joana in 2004. They live in
Madeira and now have three children aged five, three and two.
Andrew has purchased a travel agency www.naturemeetings.com,
a specialist in guided walking on Madeira.
James Crellin (Ch 1990-95) and Victoria are delighted to
announce the birth of their son, Oscar Louis, born in February 2012.
Daniel Simon (G 1991-96) and his wife, Melora and two-year-old
son Nathaniel have moved to Palo Alto. Daniel has joined Onyx
Pharmaceuticals as Director, Corporate Strategy & Innovation.
James Nichols (S 1994-99) and his wife Jennifer are delighted to
announce the birth of their son, Jack Louis Charles, born on 3rd
October 2012, a brother for Jessica.
Alastair McKeever (PH 1999-2003) married Megan Shute in
March 2012 in St Petersburg, Florida. They are currently living in
New York.
In August 2012, Will Loxton (R 2001-06) and his friend Christian
Layton-Hannam set off to cycle from the north to the south of
America, then from the west coast to the east coast – a total of over
4,600 miles. Their aim was to raise £10,000 for the Soldiers, Sailors,
Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) and Livestrong charities
Richard Taylor (O 1994-99) married Inge Husselbee at Dunkeld
Cathedral, Perthshire in May 2011. Their son, Riley Richard, was
born in February 2012. After years of climbing trips across the
Old salopian News
Graham White Organ Prize. He was a Praepostor and an active
participant in numerous societies. He was also founder and editor
of The Falopian, which no doubt was useful experience for him
when he co-founded and edited the online magazine The Alligator,
which was shortlisted for the Guardian Student Publication of the
Year in 2010.
Michael is now pursuing postgraduate studies in politics and
economics at MIT.
and to try and set a new Guinness World Record, by completing the
journey in under 44 days, 1 minute and 26 seconds.
James (‘Jimmy’) Taylor (R 2003-08) (pictured below) made a very
good start to his Test career in the 2nd Investec Test match against
South Africa at Headingly on 2 - 6 August, scoring 34 runs against
fierce South African bowling in a strong partnership with Kevin
Petersen and contributing well to the England fielding. He also
played in the Lord’s Test Match on 16 – 30 August
We were delighted that Jimmy found the time to return in July to
play for the Saracens in the Third Round of the Cricketer Cup, and
to help them on their way to the Final. Jimmy has also been working
hard to raise support and funds for the new Sixth Form scholarship
award, in memory of his great friend Alex Wilson (Rb 2003-08).
Will Loxton and Christian Layton-Hannam at the Grand Canyon
Will writes: “On our final day, ten miles outside New York, I was
having some big issues with my bike. That day we rang Guinness
World Records enquiring about the specifications for the person to
witness us finishing at the New York City Hall (the official finishing
point). After telling us that we were allowed to use any resident of
the city, they told us that someone had already beaten the record
we had set out to beat, having completing the ride in 39 days. As
we were on our 38th day, we had to finish that night – which we did.
We have sent off all the evidence to be verified and hope to be
featured in the 2014 Guinness Book of Records.”
Fergus Macleod (Rt 2001-06) has won the coveted Conducting
Fellowship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Fergus was a
violinist in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain during his
time at Shrewsbury. He went on to Cambridge to study music and
made his professional conducting debut in 2009 with the Tokyo
Philharmonic Orchestra.
Will Hedley (Rt 2003-08) has been awarded the David McLintock
prize in Germanic Philology. Will read German at St Hilda’s College,
Oxford. This prize is awarded, if there is a candidate of sufficient
merit, to the candidate whose final papers in Old High German the
examiners judge to be the best.
Warwick Brennand (O 2005-08) has just started Law School in
London, having graduated from LSE this summer. He won School
or Departmental Prizes in each of his three years of study. In his
first/second year 2009-11 he won the LSE100 Prize for best
performance in the examination, and he followed this by winning the
Goodwin Prize in 2010-11 for best Year 2 examination performance.
In 2011-12 he won the BSc IR Year 3 Examination Prize.
Michael Webb (S 2003-08) was awarded the top First in
Economics in his final exams in PPE this year at the University of
Oxford, where he was at Balliol College. Michael was also awarded
the Hicks and Webb Medley Prize for best overall performance in
Economics Finals, and the John Hicks Foundation Prize for best
performance in Quantitative Economics.
During his undergraduate years, Michael spent time in
Afghanistan and Pakistan as a freelance correspondent, having
previously learnt one of the local languages, Dari. His three-part
series on the region was published by The Economist in March
2010, and he has since advised British Military Intelligence. Michael
has held several other advisory and intern positions, mainly for MPs
and the UK Government.
Michael was a distinguished Salopian, and during his five years
at the School he was awarded the Quinn History Prize, the Moss
Prize for Classics, the Bentley Elocution Prize, the McEachran Prize,
a Miles Clark Scholarship and the Marshall Travel Prize, the Senior
Debating Prize, the Burney Prize, the Senior Piano Prize and the
Joseph Allan (R 2005-10) has been made a Scholar at University
College, Oxford after achieving a distinction at the end of his first
year exams in English. He has been heavily involved in drama and
has appeared in a number of productions, including two at the
Oxford Playhouse. During the summer, he also went to the
Edinburgh Fringe Festival with the OUDS production of Machinal.
Calum Harvey Scholes (R 2005-10), who was awarded a
scholarship to Magdalene College Cambridge, has now also been
awarded a prize for his first year achievements in Linguistics. In his
second term at Cambridge, Calum set up and captained the
Cambridge dodgeball team in the inaugural Dodgeball Varsity
Old salopian News
Christopher Hardman (SH 2007-12) has been accepted into the
Hallé Youth Orchestra to play clarinet.
Match. Taking on a well-established Oxford side, Calum’s fledgling
Cambridge team (whose training consisted of a couple of
screenings of the 2004 film Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story) put
up a remarkable fight and eventually lost the match by 3 games to 4.
Howard Stringer (PH 2010-2012) (pictured below) competed in
the English Schools’ National Decathlon Championship Finals in
September at Bedford International Athletics Stadium (Paula
Radcliffe’s home track). He was competing against the country’s
best young men all-rounders, many of whom already compete
regularly at international level.
Howard achieved many new personal best achievements and
came 23rd out of 34 athletes after two hard days of competition.
Howard is currently studying Medicine at Birmingham University.
Tom Elliott (I 2006-11), currently studying French and English and
Trinity College, Oxford, got the top marks in his first year French
Literature exams, for which he was awarded a prize and £150.
During the summer, Tom had a very successful run directing The
Trinity Players in Noël Coward’s Tonight at 8.30 at the Edinburgh
Fringe, having carried on the Salopian tradition of a one-night-only
performance at the Ashton Theatre just before heading north to the
Festival. His production earned several 4* reviews:
“Production values, classy accents, music, costumes, drawing
room set, sound effects, (especially the ringing telephone), it’s all
directed by Tom Elliot with farcical pace and timing. The whole cast
is terrific, especially Lucinda as Piggie, and Lucy [Rands, (MSH
2008-2010)] as Clare. Absolutely spiffing!” – Vivien Devlin,
In the 2011 edition of The Ingramite, Ollie Nolan (then in the Third
Form) said of Tom ‘Surely he will go on to great things at Oxford.’
Even Ollie might not have expected to have been proved right quite
so quickly.
grow at such a quick rate, has a hugely diverse group of
client groups, suppliers and partners and of course the
world’s biggest immovable deadline is going to provide an
experience which will be hard to match. When I joined I was
employee number seven hundred and something; by the
time we reached July 2012 there were 200,000 people
working on London 2012.
Of course I’m biased – after two years of hard work – but I
think the Games went rather well! As an organising
committee you can’t make the Olympics the best ever – but
you can put all the pieces in place and create the right
environment for the spectators and the athletes to give you
the greatest Games. And in London, as I had hoped, the
spectators and athletes delivered. We are blessed to have
some of the greatest ever Olympians competing at the
moment. From Usain Bolt to Michael Phelps, Chris Hoy,
Jessica Ennis, Katherine Grainger and Ben Ainslie the
athletes turned in star performances that left mouths hanging
open. But it was the spectators that were the true stars of
London 2012. As the Australians had done in Sydney 2000,
the British public truly embraced the Games! Yes we cheered
loudest for Team GB, but we cheered for everybody else too.
The stadiums were packed, the streets of London thronged
with crowds, and the atmosphere created at those venues
was beamed into the television sets of the country, and of
course the whole world. If the Olympics are to stay relevant
today they must inspire young people to take up sport. I
believe that the London Olympic and Paralympic Games
cannot have failed to have done just that.
So if Athens was historic, Torino passionate, Beijing huge
and Vancouver a great big party I think we can safely say that
London was all of those things and more. For me, London
was a truly Great Games and I feel humbled and privileged
to have been a very small part of it.”
Tom Hill (S 1997-2002) has been working for the London
Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympics
Games Ltd (LOCOG) for the last two years.
He writes: “After completing my A Levels at Shrewsbury in
2002 I volunteered to be a volunteer at the Manchester
Commonwealth Games that summer. It was one of the best
experiences of my life. Being part of such a large event was
an amazing experience. Seeing the city looking so
impressive, the excitement on the spectators’ faces, the
friendliness of the volunteers and the performances of the
athletes was inspiring. As the Games came to a close I
thought that if London was going to bid for the Olympics,
then they would have a great chance of winning – and that if
they won, I would want be involved again.
Spool forward a decade, and I am writing this at the close
of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London – and my
fifth Olympics. Manchester inspired me to visit Athens in
2004, Torino in 2006, Beijing in 2008 and Vancouver in 2010.
There is something intoxicating about being in the place the
world is looking at – and for those two weeks of the Olympics
the world is looking at the host city. All those Games were
memorable: Athens was historic, Torino passionate, Beijing
enormous and Vancouver – well Vancouver just partied! I
had enjoyed being a spectator – and in Beijing even a Radio
reporter – but in Vancouver I was starting to get a tiny bit
jealous. Jealous of all the guys in uniform who were wearing
accreditation – they were involved in running this enormous
event. I was more determined than ever that I would be
helping London in 2012.
So it was that in August 2010 I found my way to the
Headquarters of the London Organising Committee for the
Olympic and Paralympic Games to start a new job. And what
a two years it has been. I don’t think I will ever again work in
such a unique company. Any organisation which needs to
Old salopian News
Nearly one hundred Old Churchillians, wives and partners, drawn of all vintages, gathered at Shrewsbury on Saturday 30th June for a
reception and dinner to celebrate the first 137 years of the House’s existence – the foundation of which by the Revd C J S Churchill predates
by seven years the construction of the current building in 1882. Since that time, of course, Churchill’s Hall has been repeatedly extended and
modernised, but the essentials of the building remain the same.
The latest enhancement is the new porch and stained glass window designed by James Wade of Arrol & Snell, and the evening began
with a champagne reception in Churchill’s to dedicate the window to, and toast the memory of, the late legendary Michael ‘Fred’ Hall, wellknown to so many Churchillians as a beloved and eccentric tutor, brilliant mathematician and head of the loved or loathed Basic Year. A
plaque commemorating this unique man was unveiled in the presence of Headmaster Mark Turner, Old Churchillian Chairman of Governors
Richard Burbidge, and current Housemaster Richard Hudson whose speech of dedication included many personal reminiscences of
Michael Hall. (In his previous career as a publisher, Richard published Michael Hall’s autobiography Around the World in Forty Years.)
The company then moved on to Kingsland Hall for an excellent four-course dinner. Musical entertainment was provided by current
Churchillians, including their Housemaster. Former housemasters Peter Owen (1977-83) and Philip Lapage (1994-2005) were also of the
company. The older guests dutifully climbed into their carriages at 11(ish). The younger contingent partied far into the night, and indeed the
next day.
Floreant Churchilliana!
Housemaster Richard Hudson with Old Churchillian Chairman of
Governors Richard Burbidge
Old salopian News
As President of the Salopian Club you may think it a little strange
that I am writing this on behalf of Shrewsbury School Foundation.
However, I have been involved with the Foundation for many years
and, I have recently been re-elected as its Chairman.
The Foundation has rarely communicated with its Alumni through
The Salopian so I thought I would take this opportunity to bring you
news of what has been happening and, in particular, of the great
strides it is taking to raise much needed funds for the School. I am
sure that many of you are already familiar with the Foundation,
having generously supported its work over the years. However, for
the benefit of those of you who might not be, allow me to fill you in
on a little of its history.
The Foundation is a separately run charity. It was established in
1965 to raise money to support bursaries and scholarships for
exceptional pupils (who might not otherwise have been able to
afford a Shrewsbury School education) and to fund a number of
other prioritised projects, thus ensuring it remains one of the top
schools in the UK.
It is a fact that, with the cost of education increasing, the need for
bursarial support is growing and independent schools like
Shrewsbury are having to rely more and more on parents and
alumni for philanthropic support. In the last year alone, the School
has provided over 50 bursaries, towards which the Foundation has
raised well over £500,000. This is thanks to the many Old Salopians
and parents who gave through its Annual Programme.
In addition to providing bursarial support, the Foundation has
also been working with the School to raise £850,000 for the new
boathouse which was officially opened in September during Old
Salopians’ Day. Thanks to the generosity of Old Salopians Mark
Yale and Peter Bowring, current parents Rupert and Elizabeth
Lywood and many other Old Salopians and Sabrina Club members,
the School now boasts one of the best rowing facilities in the
country, far surpassing those of its rivals.
My role as Chairman comes at a very exciting time for both the
Foundation and the School. Over the coming months, the
Foundation will be reviewing a number of opportunities to enhance
the School’s teaching programme whilst, at the same time,
ensuring it continues with its bursarial support, as this is the
bedrock of the Foundation – and the School. All this, I hope to bring
further news of in the next edition of the The Salopian.
Being an Old Salopian myself, I look back with great fondness at
the time I had here in the 1960s and the wonderful education it
afforded me. Therefore, I want to give something back to my alma
mater and help future generations of boys – and girls – to similarly
benefit from, and enjoy, all that it has to offer. I hope you feel the
same and, if you have not already done so, I encourage you to join
me in supporting our school, and its aims, through the Annual
As we draw close to Advent, on behalf of everyone at the
Foundation, may I take this opportunity to wish you a very happy
and joyous Christmas and a good 2013.
Peter Worth
Chairman, Shrewsbury School Foundation
For further information about the Foundation contact:
Shrewsbury School Foundation
The Schools, Shrewsbury SY3 7BA
Telephone: 01743 280890
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.shrewsbury.org.uk
Richard Barber (SH 1955-60), President of the Eton Fives Association and immediate Past President of the
Salopian Club, has written the foreword to the first ever history of Eton Fives, published in November: “As
President of the Eton Fives Association I have been a tremendous advocate of the history of this remarkable
game being written, because its origins are of great interest and known to few and today it has grown into a
major sport in schools all over the country and indeed around the world.”
The book has been written by two of the most knowledgeable and literary Fives players in the land, Dale
Vargas being a former President of the EFA and Second Master at Harrow for many years. Thoroughly
researched, pleasingly recounted and attractively presented with over 200 illustrations, the book is published in
colour throughout. An appendix lists the names, with short notes, of the champion players and many coaches
and administrators.
Published by Quiller Press; ISBN 978-1-899163-98-4
Copies available from: JJG Publishing, Sparrow Hall, Hindringham, Fakenham, Norfolk NR21 0DP Tel: 01328 878198 or order by
email to [email protected]
Old salopian News
There was just time to squeeze in the Club’s AGM before a full
sports programme got underway. Old Salopian sportsmen were in
action on football pitches, the fives courts and on a “benjy” circuit. It
was a fantastic day for the Old Salopian footballers who were
undefeated in all five fixtures. The Old Salopian 1st XI won a thrilling
contest 4-2, the 2nds overcame their opponents by a huge 12-1
margin and the 3rd XI drew 1-1.
A big draw for those with a penchant for rowing was the opening
of the Yale Boathouse (see report on page 51).
Away from the sports theme, the School opened its doors to all
Old Salopians affording them the opportunity to visit Houses, tour
the Ancient Library and visit the Arts Centre. “It seemed to be a day
with something for everyone and a thoroughly good time has been
had by all,” as one Old Salopian put it.
Alex Baxter
Glorious sunshine greeted the three hundred or so Old Salopians
and guests who participated in this year’s memorable Old Salopian
Day on 22nd September. Proceedings started with a thanksgiving
service in the Chapel for the life of Richard Raven (M 1945-50),
featuring a moving and often humorous eulogy to RNER by his son
Hugh (S 1985-90).
Following the service a sandwich lunch was served in the
Alington Hall during which the School awarded two Sidney Gold
Medals to Old Salopians Philipp Legner (O 2007-09) and Hugh
Williams (Rb 2003-08). The citations were read out by Mr Martin
Cropper, Director of Studies and the medals were awarded by Mr
Peter Worth (M 1965-70), President of the Salopian Club. The
medals were instituted in 1838 and are awarded to the top
academic student in a given year.
just before the final whistle, by Jack Brydon (O 1999-04) sealed the
result for the OS side and the second Alex Wilson Memorial Match
was over for another year.
Afterwards a drinks reception was held in the Alington Hall,
supported by Shrewsbury School Foundation, during which Henry
Wilson announced that the Alex Wilson Scholarship Fund had
reached the £60,000 milestone, which has allowed the Scholarship
to be officially launched.
Alex Wilson Squad: George Barker, Michael Barnard, Mike
Williams, Ben Williams, James Franklin, Mark Tomley, Matt
McKeever, Toyin Mustapha, Tom Kelly, Henry Wilson, Adam Parker,
Ed Taylor, Raoul Alexis, Rhys Bevan, James Tucker, George WadeSmith, Steve Johanson, Ali Lloyd, Freddie Pragnell.
OS Squad: Rich McGarry, Oli Harrison, Ben
Freeman, Harry Fildes, Rob Hawkin, George
Blakemore, Ben Alderson, Olly Heywood,
Hamish McKenzie, Jack Brydon, Ben Cooke,
Sam Roberston, Dave Cookson.
Despite the chilly conditions, a large crowd of 180 supporters
enjoyed an enthralling Alex Wilson Memorial match on 23rd
September, which ended in a 3-1 win for the Old Salopian XI.
Despite many of the players having played the previous day in the
annual Old Salopian Day fixtures and a few nursing hangovers after
a heavy night in Shrewsbury, the standard of play was exceptionally
good. The action was thick and fast with both sides creating scoring
chances. It was perhaps fitting that Henry Wilson scored the first
goal of the match towards the end of the first half.
Somehow the OS XI managed to get back into the game and
against the run of play scored two goals in quick succession. The
Alex Wilson XI pressed hard for most of the second half, dominating
possession and very nearly getting the equalising goal. A late goal,
Launch of Alex
Wilson Scholarship
We are delighted to announce that the Alex
Wilson Scholarship was launched this summer.
It aims to give a local boy the chance to benefit
from the outstanding educational and sporting
facilities in the School’s Sixth Form.
Candidates are required to be state educated
and to have achieved three A and three B
grades at GCSE. They should be able to attain
first team standard in two sports, preferably
football, rugby or cricket, and to excel in one of
these. We can no longer accept any
applications for September 2013, but anyone
interested in finding out more information about
the Scholarship should contact the Director of
Sport, Paul Greetham on 01743 280697 or email
[email protected]
Old salopian News
22nd September 2012
simultaneously with adjacent rooms with the expert technical
assistance of Paul Manser (DB 1974-79, 1st VIII 1979). The new
kitchen facilities are deliberately included to encourage Sabrina
members to organise crew reunions and perhaps practise in a
rowing eight or sculling boat.
Other notable attendees to the day’s event included Gerry
Lander, son of JGH Lander. JGHL stroked the 1st VIII to their first
Ladies' Challenge Plate win at Henley Royal Regatta in 1924 (see
The Salopian Summer 2012 edition). During the Sabrina Club AGM
held later in a packed newly refurbished clubroom, Gerry presented
his father’s miniature of the Ladies’ Challenge Plate vase, presented
to him by the Club after their historic Henley win.
Members of the Pugh family who attended were delighted to
witness the opening of the Yale Boathouse and view the refurbished
upper rooms of the Pugh Boathouse. Many coaches from previous
years were among those attending and included Nick Bevan, Alan
Laurie, David Gee and Bill Sayer. Jan Blomfield represented her late
husband Roger who sadly died earlier this year. Roger had been
the driving force behind the new Rowing Tank completed in 2002
and had given considerable encouragement to the new Yale
Boathouse Project.
The guest of honour at the Boathouse Opening was Matt
Langridge, Olympic bronze medalist in the Men's Eight in London
2012 (and silver medalist in Beijing 2008) and gold medalist in past
Junior and Senior World Rowing Championships. Matt generously
spent time with many of the current pupils, talking to them about
their training and his experiences of competing at the highest level,
also allowing them to handle his Olympic Medals and try them on
for size.
Nick Randall
After a week of indifferent weather culminating in torrential rain on
Friday 21st September, Saturday dawned to bright sunshine, clear
blue skies and a few fluffy white clouds – the sun really does shine
on the righteous!
Nick Randall, Captain of Sabrina Club, introduced the guest of
honour, Matt Langridge. The Headmaster began by thanking
providence for the fine weather and praising the successful appeal
by the School Foundation Office, expressing his gratitude to all the
generous donors including Sabrina Club members, Old Salopians
and parents, who had made the project possible.
The existing large Pugh Boathouse (opened in 1921)
accommodates over forty racks in four bays for all sizes of boats.
The new adjacent Yale Boathouse, which replaces the original small
boathouse, built in 1860, can accommodate up to 20 eights in two
bays. The cavernous room above is purpose-built to hold over 40
ergos. The two boathouses are linked by a bridge to the first floor
providing a wonderful view for spectators watching Bumpers and
other events throughout the year.
There were three distinct parts to the project, all named after or in
memory of the major benefactors – the Yale Boathouse; the Gifford
Room (the ergo room on the first floor of the new boathouse),
named by the Lywood family; and the Bowring Room (the
Clubroom and associated facilities) in the Pugh Boathouse, named
by the Bowring family.
In his opening speech to over four hundred attendees, Mark Yale
(SH 1976-81, 1st VIII 1980 and 1981) challenged today’s oarsmen
to achieve the maximum potential possible, aided by the new
facilities and the coaching staff. The ability to meet and overcome
the challenges encountered in high level competitive rowing would
form the basis of their ability to survive in the harsh world of industry
and commerce awaiting them when they left school or university,
and the companionship of rowing together as part of an
interdependent team would stay with them for ever.
After many decades of being utilised as a gym and ergo room
and recent further fundraising spearheaded by the new Sabrina
Club President Martin Slocock (Rt 1948-53), the original clubroom in
the Pugh Boathouse has now been majestically restored
Headmaster and Mark Yale
Old salopian News
Henley Royal Regatta
Using a professional caterer for the
second year and holding the event
over lunchtime, we also moved
from Butler’s Field to the Henley
Cricket Club ground.
Overall, both the Wednesday
and Saturday lunchtime drinks
events were well supported and
deemed to be a huge success.
Ten Old Salopians were
competing at Henley. It is a long
and distinguished list and we
apologise for any omissions or
errors. Richard Hawley-Jones
entered the Britannia Cup with
Agecroft. Competitors in the Prince
Albert Challenge Cup included
Newly refurbished Clubroom of the Pugh Boathouse made possible by kind donations
Camilla Aylwin coxing Edinburgh
from Sabrina Club members
University, Jack Lowrie for Durham
University and Ben Spencer
Sabrina AGM
Jones for Imperial College. Ben, Captain of Boats at Imperial this
The AGM was held on Saturday 22nd September on a gloriously
year, reached the semi-finals. The Temple Challenge Cup saw Chris
sunny autumn afternoon shortly after the opening of the new Yale
Blake in a combined Pembroke College/Lady Margaret Hall crew
Boathouse (see separate report). Martin Slocock, President of
while the Thames Challenge Cup saw three Salopians: Will Gray
Sabrina Club, presided over the meeting which was held in the
rowed for Upper Thames RC, Tim Perera for City of Bristol, and
newly refurbished Clubroom of the Pugh Boathouse. The President
Will Robins for Thames RC. Will Robins was a finalist.
welcomed the packed attendance and started with the retirement
Medal winners included Fred Gill, of Cambridge Blue Boatand election of a new Honorary Secretary. The Club thanked
winning fame, rowing at stroke for Molesey and Oxford Brookes in
Malcolm Davies (R 1951-56), the retiring Honorary Secretary, for
the Visitor’s Cup and Patrick Lapage of Harvard-Yale winning fame
many years’ assiduous work for the Club. Rod Spiby (DB 1979-84)
at stroke for the third consecutive year for Harvard University in the
was elected as new Honorary Secretary. During his time at the
Ladies’ Plate. Gill’s crew were not seriously pushed, their smallest
School, Rod had held the position as Treasurer of the Boat Club,
margin of win being two and a quarter lengths and their final won
Head of Dayboys (also the first Head of Porthill when Dayboys split
into Porthill & Radbrook) and a member of the 1st VIII that won the
The same cannot be said of Lapage and it is of some note that
Special Race for Schools in 1984.
this was his second hard-fought Henley medal won with a margin of
Athol Hundermark, the new Head Coach, was invited to speak
only one foot. Harvard came from over a length down at the mileand inform Sabrina Club of his plans for the School Boat Club. Athol
post to storm through the enclosures at a rating of 40, rising to 42
is fresh from success at Abingdon School where he has developed
for the last 20 strokes (yet still somehow covering) to snatch the
a hugely successful boat club, which culminated in winning the
smallest of margins in the nick of time for a win over Leander. It was
Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta in 2011
the fastest time of the day by three seconds. The crew unity under
and 2012.
stress was fabulous. “Thank goodness he’s got two feet now,” was
Guest of honour to the AGM was Gerry Lander, who presented as
the text from a family friend, one of his races having been won on
a gift to Sabrina Club his father’s silver miniature of the 1924 Ladies
Bucks station and the other on Berks!
Challenge Plate. J. G. H. Lander stroked the School eight to win the
event (please see 2012 Summer issue of the Salopian, pages 53Shrewsbury Room Leander Club available
54). Sabrina Club intends to encourage crew reunions in the newly
during Henley Royal Regatta 2013
refurbished Clubroom, which includes facilities for dining to a high
As usual, the Shrewsbury Room at Leander (room 11) will be
standard. Although the Secretary will be contacting members in due
available to Sabrina members for the duration of the Royal Regatta
course, please feel free to contact him at [email protected] if
in 2013.
you wish to organise a reunion for your crew. Paul Manser will also
Interested parties should contact Nick Randall on
assist with the provision of boats for those who feel energetic,
[email protected] and a draw will take place sufficiently early in
nostalgic and able.
2013 for the unlucky losers to book other accommodation.
Report compiled by: Nick Randall (Captain) tel: 01824 707953 or
The winners of the draw will be expected to take the room for five
[email protected]
nights (Tuesday to Saturday) at a cost of approximately £200 per
Spiby (Honorary Secretary) tel: 07970 283704 or email
night (B&B for two people).
[email protected]
Old salopian News
was there for all to see, the unquestionable evidence in the flesh
that the Sarries’ tour to Devon is in fact good for you!
The end of innings boost had morale very much on the up as we
had a sumptuous lunch before taking the field to defend what many
in the crowd thought was only a par score. The intent from the
Harrovian opening pair was clear from the off, as they went about
trying to dismantle the Barnard brothers. The irony of this was that it
was our very own version of the 'Mitchell Brothers' who had tried to
dismantle themselves when squabbling over which end they were
going to bowl from. Luckily it was resolved by over 2, when the one
slightly more partial to sunburn was too quick for a Harrovian trying
his second pull of the over. This wicket didn't stop the attacking
nature of the batsmen, as a couple of shots and plenty of fresh air
swipes followed.
The next 6 overs proved to be the period in which the Saracens
stamped their foot on the game and got one hand on the trophy.
From one end Mike Barnard bowled with control and accuracy,
Steve Barnard steamed in from the other with extreme pace and
aggression. Mike took 1 and Steve took 5, and the Harrow top six
were back in the pavilion before 10 overs had been completed; the
game was as good as over. It was a supreme spell of bowling from
Steve who deserved all the plaudits he received, but the role of his
elder brother should not be forgotten.
It was a while before the next wicket fell, as Harrow attempted to
gain some level of respectability after the early collapse. The late
night duo of Corbett and Blofield twirled away from either end,
making it obvious why the batsmen had decided to try to score as
many off the seamers as possible in the early stages. As it was, and
had been in so many matches, it was the holding back of James
Kidson which made the difference; he immediately got the wicket of
the final dangerous Harrow batsman, as Jack Brydon continued his
fine competition form with a tidy stumping. The following over saw
an LBW swiftly followed by a fine low catch from Brydon off Blofield,
to leave the Saracens only one wicket away from glory.
Victory came in the very next over as a sharp chance at slip was
taken by Chapman - to cue mass celebration on the pitch and huge
cheers from the large band of Salopian supporters. The fans had
been tremendous all day and their support
was hugely appreciated by all the players. It
was particularly fitting to see members of the
1987 winning side at the forefront of those
passing congratulations on to the new
Cricketer Cup champions.
2012 will go down in history for the
Saracens and will be remembered by many
for a long time to come. The squad for this
year (including Linley Portsmouth, Matt
McKeever, Joe Leach, Jimmy Taylor and Ben
Williams) built up great camaraderie and
respect for each other over five rounds, and
this undoubtedly had a huge impact on the
success that they achieved. There was great
and deserved partying on the final evening.
However, that is now forgotten, and the
challenge is to repeat the feat next year,
beginning away from home against the
Marlborough Blues.
Ben Chapman
After a fine victory in the quarter-final of the Cricketer Cup over the
Old Malvernians - winners of the trophy for the last two years - the
Saracens were brimming with confidence for their semi-final against
the Bradfield Waifs. This proved to be a tense and exciting match
and Saracens' supporters were kept in suspense until the last over,
when Tom Cox (Captain) hit the winning 4, taking the Saracens
through to the final for the first time in 23 years. We would be facing
our old foes, Harrow Wanderers.
We arrived early at the beautiful Shenley ground, smartly kitted
out by our generous sponsors, STC Packers. The regulation warmup took place before a ridiculous situation occurred when we had to
have a photo with the trophy before the match had even started the superstitious in the side were not happy! The toss was won by
the skipper and he chose to have a bat; though it should be noted
that for the previous three hours he had reached a state of near
delirium over the bat/bowl dilemma he faced. Thankfully he listened
to the wise old heads in the team and the Sarries opened with Lewis
and Leach fresh from receiving their A level results three days
Both the youngsters got the Sarries off to a great start, showing
caution and patience whilst compiling a useful 50 partnership
before Lewis fell. Some dubious umpiring and poor shot selection
meant that wickets were soon being lost at alarmingly regular
intervals. There was even the regulation run-out involving a Leach
(clearly runs in the family), ending a very impressive innings of 44
from Steve. The Sarries looked in a great deal of trouble at 105-5
with fewer than 20 overs remaining, when debutant Alastair Pollock
joined the skipper at the crease. It should be noted that Pollock's
late call-up to the side was entirely down to him coming on the
Devon Tour the week before; had he avoided it, as he probably
wished he had done after the Monday night, we would have been
looking for alternative replacements.
These two batted us back into the game and when the skipper
was out with 5 overs to go, the platform was set for the Sarries to do
what they do best and 'go big' at the end. GO BIG was exactly what
Pollock did and projected us up to 199-7 with some mighty blows
before falling to the final ball of the innings for a magnificent 49. It
Old salopian News
Next year’s event will be held on the weekend of 12/13 October
2013 and we are keen to hear from any Salopian sailors who would
like to join us, especially more recent leavers. Email
[email protected] for more details or to register
David RIchards
In the dark and a cold drizzle, with a falling tide in a narrow, patchilylit channel on the first Friday in October, two crews from the Old
Salopian Yacht Club once again took to the water for the annual
Arrow Trophy regatta at Cowes. Though facing the night with
customary Salopian stoicism, few had high hopes for the weekend.
But a few beers and a tasty on-board supper soon raised spirits on
the cruise down the Solent, with landfall in the Pier View pub
completing the transformation.
What a difference the next morning: we awoke to glorious
weather and the prospects of a hard day’s racing with twenty of
Sunsail’s Benetteau 40s thrown around short inshore courses with
the competitive fury of a dinghy race. Sadly for the adrenalin
junkies, but happily for the insurance bill, the sunshine came with a
down-side – light winds that made much of this year’s racing a
more peaceful experience than previously, but one that favoured
those with light-air sailing skills. Saturday evening once again saw
an excellent dinner at the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, leaving
several crew members glad that the following day brought more
sunshine and equally little wind.
Despite the frustrations of low wind conditions, all on board
enjoyed a great weekend. Whilst the Shrewsbury White crew did not
quite have last year’s striking success, our Blue crew upheld the
Club’s honour by once again winning the Charterhouse Bowl in the
fleet racing. Once more being the only school to enter two crews,
we were able to offer places to sailors of all abilities and ages and
were delighted to have had three 18-year-old crew members on
James Heaven looking optimistic
Shrewsbury Blue making the most of the wind
Old salopian News
Thanks go to Bob Parker (Hon OS) for his encouragement and
also to Tim Morgan-Owen (I 1974-79), who kindly presented a
wonderful collection of his grandfather's 19th century Hunt
memorabilia to the History of the Hunt display in the new Hunt Gym
(within the Stott Pavillion).
Mark Mortimer once said that members of the Old Salopian Hunt
are not members for life, but members for ever, dead or alive!
There are some 200 of those members who have provided email
addresses, which enables them to receive updates and news from
the OSH. So, if any of you have never received an email from the
OSH, then please get in touch with Peter Birch ([email protected]) ,
who will add you to the mailing list.
Some of you will have been around the School site on Salopian
Day recently, where the OSH also made an
The Salopian Day event, on Saturday
22nd September, was blessed with warm
sunny weather and a small select band of
"old hounds", for the celebration of the Benjy,
along with the New Huntsman, Ed Mallett
(UVI S), Master-in-Charge, Peter Middleton
and Athletics Master, Ian Haworth, as well as
a group of able Hunt Members.
Former Benjy Record Holder, Tim Bedell
(S 1974-78), tested the course with
determination and The Hon. Treasurer, David
Thomas (Rt 1971-75), relished the run as
training for his next Triathlon competition.
The Chairman, Peter Birch (DB 1966-71,
decided it was prudent to be “Whipper-in” at the rear!
After the Benjy, it was felt that there was still enough energy to run
to the English Bridge, on to Port Hill Bridge and back to the Drum,
which certainly made the perspiration flow from the brow!
On Saturday, 15th December, The OSH will be entering a team in
The Alumni Race, run over Wimbledon
Common and organised by The Thames
Hare & Hounds. Any age group is welcome
to join in, but do get in touch with David
Thomas (email
[email protected] ) well before
that date, to get your name down for entering
the race.
The OSH original tie and The OSH running
vest are available from Peter Birch.
The OSH website pages can be found at
www.shrewsbury.org.uk/page/os-hunt, where
more information and past reports and
photos can be found.
If anyone reading this has any photos of
past Huntsmen taken in a group shot, do get
in touch. It could be a photo taken at a dinner or some other
gathering or occasion, where two or more Huntsmen happen to be
snapped together.
Peter Birch ([email protected])
the trophy since 2002. Current Huntsman Ed Mallett was third, with
RSSH coach and last year's winner Ian Haworth in third, impressive
given he is returning from injury.
The staff just managed to field a team again this year with help
from the Headmaster who again showed fine form in running neck
and neck with Severn Hill's DAGN, who whilst an Old Salopian
himself, was claimed as a member of the staff team this year to
make up the numbers. Slightly more dubious was our claim to
David Blake as a staff team member. In reality, David came to take
part in a unique day with four members of the Blake family taking
part. David brought his sons Alex and Kris to give Senior Whip
some competition. The four Blakes all looked strong with the three
Blake sons all posting top ten placings, with their father David not
far behind in 17th.
The presentations were held after the race in the Stott Pavilion
where there was an opportunity amidst the Hunt regalia and
memorabilia to reminisce about past glories and fond memories.
Those with stamina stayed on into the evening for the OS Dinner
(following a gin-soaked Committee meeting!), where Dr David Gee
was named as an honorary member of the OS Hunt and presented
with his tie to go along with the 1st VIII tie he was presented two
years ago to become an honorary member of The Hunt. David this
year completed the Tucks for the 53rd year – an astonishing
As ever, this was a terrific occasion, and one we always look
forward to. This year didn't disappoint, and we already look ahead
to next year's race with eager anticipation!
Peter Middleton
On Saturday 24th November as the deluge of rain transformed the
school campus into a mudbath and swelled the Rea Brook to a
raging torrent, a group of hardy enthusiastic runners congregated at
the Darwin Statue for the annual Old Salopian Race where the
RSSH are pitted against the OS Hunt. It always proves an enjoyable
occasion, and we were particularly looking forward to what looked
like a grueling test in such dreadful conditions (though perfect for
cross-country running!). Whilst the Hunt have won this race for the
past four years running, last year the race was much closer with a
number of more recent Old Salopians returning (including former
GB Universities runner Oli Mott, who placed 2nd last year). This
year, too, saw the OS Hunt field a strong team, and although the
Hunt retained the trophy, the gap was only 16 points, and looks to
be very tight in future years!
In the early stages of the race, a lead pack was formed with
current Huntsman Ed Mallett at the helm, with Senior Whip Seb
Blake, Rory Fraser, Ian Haworth, Peter Middleton and Old Salopian
Oli Laws all grouping together and keeping the pace relatively
steady. It was only with the more technical elements of the course
coming into play (particularly the crossing of the waist-high Rea
Brook river!) that the field began to string out and Mallett and
Haworth pushed the pace on. Oli Laws looked to be struggling on
the slippery downhills, but in the closing stages gave an impressive
kick going up the hilly Ridgemount Lane, demonstrating some fine
form that this year has seen him run the Great North Run halfmarathon in 69 minutes. Laws - who has in the past represented
GB at cross-country - killed in the race, the first time he has taken
Old salopian News
It is worth noting that in the semi-final, Peter Worth and Andy
Pollock were 5 down after 5 holes and won 1up. Shrewsbury’s
cheerleader, Anthony Parsons, Hon Secretary to the G L Mellin
Tournament, witnessed this heroic retrieval. This is the second
victory in the G L Mellin for Shrewsbury in the first three years of the
captaincy of Peter Worth, emulating the record of his distinguished
predecessor, Christopher Wallace.
In the Peter Burles Salver, (for over 65s) Shrewsbury lost 2-1 to
Bradfield. Our team was: Peter Jeffrey and Robin Humble and
Stephen Shaw and Robert Sentance, who made a promising debut.
A second Salopian victory came in the Bunny Millard Salver (for
over 75s). In the Final, Shrewsbury, represented by Robert Lanyon
and John Smith, beat Lancing. Shrewsbury last won the Bunny
Millard Salver in 2004, represented by Robert Walker and Robin
In the OSGS National Matchplay Championship for the 2012
Campion Trophy, amongst those who have reached the 5th round
stand, Will Campion, arguably in pole position, Mark Ferguson,
Gerald Smith, Lee Jones (the impertinent winner against the
President), Malcom McMullan (with the scalps of Richard Barber,
Jonty Campion and Ben Chesters under his belt) and Ben Alderson
(with the scalps of Andy Pollock, Dan Graham and Mark Summers):
impressive headhunting!
The 16th Grand Scottish Tour attracted 24 members with glorious
hospitality dispensed yet again by Robert and Andrew Lister at their
home overlooking the 16th at North Berwick.
The winners of meetings may be listed as follows:
North Berwick: Gerald Woods (38 points)
Muirfield: Robert Lister and Stephen Shaw retained the
Lewis/Bell Quaich
Gullane No 2: Hilary Ward and Fraser Higson (41 points)
Sabrina Club at Huntercombe: Rob Hillman (former School
Captain of Cricket) (37 points)
New Zealand: John Bolton (34 points)
Huntercombe: Winner of the Tony Duerr Salver: Nicky Renton (38
Worfield: Winner of the Todwick Tankard: Charles Hill (40 points)
Trentham: Winner of the Tommy Hall Cup: Julian Mitchell (37
The first Triangular Schools Challenge comprising Shrewsbury,
Tonbridge and Dulwich – the brainchild of Stephen Shaw – was
played at Tandridge on 4th May. The OSGS team was:
Malcom McMullan and Michael Smart (36 points)
Richard Barber and Gerald Woods (36 points)
William Hawksley and Nick Renton (40 points)
John Bolton and Stephen Shaw (33points) (oops).
The Old Alleynians were the victors with an aggregate of 148 pts,
the Tonbridgians were runners-up with 147pts and OSGS were tailenders with 145 pts: some very creditable scoring.
In the Public Schools Midlands meeting at Little Aston,
Shrewsbury were joint runners-up with Harrow on 101 points to
Wrekin (107 points).
The scores were:
James Mainwaring and Stefan Hindmarsh (37 points)
Richard Bevan and Neil Crawford (33 points)
Jonathan Hope and Tom Price (31 points)
Martin Cars and Andy Pollock (30 points)
Jonathon Mawdsley and Richard Jones (25 points).
Our new President Anthony Smith (I 54-59) has had a purple start to
his Presidency. At Blackwell Golf Club in June, he won the Eustace
Storey Putter to become our Scratch Champion, not for the first
time. At Royal Birkdale Golf Club on 1st August, he won the 2011
Campion Trophy to become our Matchplay Champion, defeating
James Shaw (R 64-68) 4x3. In July, our President played in the
OSGS team that won the G L Mellin Salver (for over 55s) at West Hill
Golf Club.
The results were as follows:
Round 1: Shrewsbury beat Cranleigh 3-0
Peter Worth (Captain) and Andy Pollock won 2up
Anthony Smith and Michael Brabner won 2x1
Will Painter and James Shaw won 2x1
Round 2: Shrewsbury beat Bradfield 2-1
Peter Worth and Andy Pollock won 4x2
Anthony Smith and Michael Brabner lost 2x1
Will Painter and James Shaw won 4x2
Semi-Final: Shrewsbury beat Sherborne 2½x½
Peter Worth and Andy Pollock won 1up
Anthony Smith and Michael Brabner halved All Square
Will Painter and James Shaw won 3x2
Final: Shrewsbury beat Oundle 2-1
Peter Worth and Andy Pollock lost 1down
Anthony Smith and Michael Brabner won 3x2
Will Painter and James Shaw won 1up
OSGS President Anthony Smith, winner of the Campion Trophy, with
runner-up James Shaw (right) and Will Campion (centre) who
refereed the match and presented the Campion Trophy, which his
father Ian Campion donated to the Society to mark his years as
President and the contribution of the Campion family over many
years at the highest levels to Old Salopian golf
Old salopian News
Three Salopian proprietors of golf clubs have generously offered
to hold OSGS meetings in 2013 at Christian prices.
At Worfield, near Bridgnorth in September, Oliver Eaton (Rt
1985-91) arranged a delightful visit for us – a challenging course,
speedy greens, immaculate condition and delicious food. This
attracted 28 players on the eve of the Salopian Day at The Schools.
It is pleasing to report that 15 leavers joined OSGS in July 2012.
OSGS membership stands at a record number of 373. I thank all
members for their support and encouragement.
The draft Fasti is taking shape as outlined below: those dates in
italics have yet to be confirmed.
Tim Lewis
In the finals of the Grafton Morrish, OSGS beat Repton 2-1 but
lost to Birkenhead, the holders, in the third round. OSGS was
represented by Jonty Campion (Captain), Mark Ferguson, Michael
Nettleton, William Painter, Simon Shepherd and Mike ThelwallJones.
In the Queen Elizabeth Coronation Schools Trophy, played at
Barnton, Edinburgh, Shrewsbury met Merchiston, midst shades of
Bannockburn. The Salopian brave hearts included Mark Ferguson
(Captain), Ben Chapman, Max Lilley, Stefan Hindmarsh, Ben
Chesters and Ed Foster. It is unlikely that we will venture over the
border again in the foreseeable future.
Wed 9
Sat 16
Wed 20
Halford Hewitt AGM & Draw
Halford Hewitt Get-Together
Spring Meeting (South)
East India Club
Fri pm 5
Thurs 11-Sun 14
Thurs 18
Fri pm 26
Grand National Meeting
Halford Hewitt Cup*
University Challenge
Triangular Match
Thurs 2
Wed 8
Thurs 9
Fri 10
Sat 11
Match v The Schools
Scottish Tour
Scottish Tour
Scottish Tour
Grafton Morrish Qualifying*
Hawkstone Park
North Berwick
Gullane 2
Olton (Solihull)
Mon 3-Thur 6
Fri 14
Fri 21 June
Wed 26
Fri 28
Schools Putting Tournament
Match v Old Cholmeleians
Summer Meeting
Public Schools Midlands Meeting
Pre-Speech Day Meeting
Royal Wimbledon
Hadley Wood
Little Aston
Tues pm 2
Thurs 11-Sat 13
Thurs 11-Sat 13
Fri 12-Sat 13
Henley Regatta Meeting
Peter Burles Salver (65 and over)*
Bunny Millard Salver (75 and over)*
G.L.Mellin Salver (55 and over)*
West Hill
West Hill
West Hill
Sun pm 11
Mon am 12
Tues am 13
Sat 17
Mon 19
West Country Tour
West Country Tour
West Country Tour
Match v. Old Reptonians (South)
Old Schools' Competition
Westward Ho!
Thurs 12
Fri pm 20
Fri 27-Sat 28
University Challenge
Shropshire Meeting
Grafton Morrish Finals*
Sun 6
Sun 13
Sun 27
President’s Meeting & AGM
Match v. Old Malvernians
OSGS Scratch Championship
Fri 1
Sat am 9
Winter Fourball
Saturday Morning Foursomes
New Zealand
Key: Italics mean to be confirmed
Members are asked to contact the Organiser for any event in which they may wish to play
Old salopian News
visiting Machynlleth in mid-Wales to give concerts at The
Tabernacle, an extraordinarily fine arts centre which has become
renowned for attracting the finest musicians to perform in the
auditorium – once a Wesleyan Chapel.
Hugh Ramsbotham, ex-master, Housemaster of The School
House, Secretary of the Salopian Club, and the 2010 President
became involved in The Tabernacle when he retired from
Shrewsbury. He was Chairman of the Machynlleth Tabernacle Trust
for some years and continues as a Trustee. He invited John Moore
to bring some musicians at the end of one term, and the
Shrewsbury Musicians Concert has now become an annual event
much enjoyed by an audience accustomed to hearing national and
international musicians play, particularly during its annual Festival,
directed by Julius Drake and held every August.
The Tabernacle Arts Centre also includes MOMAWALES, a
leading art gallery, which held an exhibition of John Alford's
paintings of the Shropshire Hills during the A E Housman centenary
in 1996. The late Sir Kyffin Williams (CWM 1932-35) was President
of the Friends of the Tabernacle and his legacy to the Trust enabled
it to start the creation of a new gallery, now almost completed.
The School Music Scholars will perform in this remarkable venue
once again on Thursday 7 February 2013 at 7.30pm. Salopians of
every sort who can get there will be most welcome. The ticket price
of £5 includes wine. For more details, check the Salopian Club
website: http://www.shrewsbury.org.uk/page/os-events-0
For generations the Salopian Club has encouraged the continued
involvement in sport that often started on the playing fields of
Kingsland. The various Old Salopian sports clubs continue to
flourish and Old Salopians have been key figures in keeping the
sports facilities at the School up to a first-class standard.
The Salopian Club has come to see that the same involvement in
School and Club sport should be happening in the creative arts.
Old Salopians are able to support both School arts activities and
other Old Salopians active in the Arts. To that end the Salopian Arts
and Activities Society has recently been formed under the
Chairmanship of Nigel Davies (R 1983-88) with three specific aims:
To promote interest, support and participation in a wide range
of activities among Old Salopians (both at the School and
To encourage Old Salopians to continue such activities after
School and to maintain links with the School in them.
In particular, to promote and support all Old Salopian activity in
Art, Music and Theatre (including advice with careers
development) and to support the School Art, Music and Drama
The first Arts and Activities trip took place on 8 November – to see
Yes, Prime Minister at the Trafalgar Studios, London featuring Clive
Hayward (SH 1978-83) playing the part of Bernard Woolley.
There are many examples of how all three aims are being
addressed, but one in particular is aimed at the first – to support
arts activities by attending School events both at Kingsland and
elsewhere. For some years now, the School musicians have been
The Tabernacle Auditorium, Machynlleth
Other forthcoming music events of particular interest to Old Salopians
Saturday 12 January:
Ali Webb (UVI, S) and friends, perform original and cover songs , Ashton Theatre
Saturday 19 January:
Shrewsbury School Music Scholars at Emmanuel Church, Didsbury
Sunday 3 February:
Shrewsbury School musicians in concert at the Warehouse, London followed by a reception
Thursday 7 February:
Music Scholars Recital at The Tabernacle, Machynlleth
Sunday 24 February:
Instrumental and Choral Concert, St Alkmund's Church, Shrewsbury
Friday 1 March:
School Big Band at The Edge, Wenlock Edge
Wednesday 6 March:
Chapel Choir sings Choral Evensong in Hereford Cathedral
Saturday 20 April:
Galin Ganchev, Music Scholar – piano recital, Shrewsbury School
Saturday 27 – Sunday 28 April:
Concert performance of Bizet’s ‘Carmen’, Shrewsbury School
Wednesday 5, 12, 19 June:
Organ recitals by Chapel Choirmaster Alex Mason and guests
Old salopian News
Robin Brooke-Smith, (S 1961-66, staff 1986-95,
and stepson of Michael Charlesworth)
‘Horton’s work is subtle as well as beautiful and should be allowed to
seep gradually into the well-springs of the soul. It derives much of its
power from a commemoration of the unexpectedly ordinary – such
as the rocks in an estuary, the winter skeleton of a tree or the
foreground frieze of wildflowers overlooking a secluded river or
harbour.’ Andrew Lambirth (Art Critic for The Spectator).
Brian Horton (I 1947-52) is a landscape painter who can trace
his roots back through the history of English art. In his new and
Storm Warning: Riding the Crosswinds in the PakistanAfghan Borderlands
Radcliffe Press/I.B. Tauris
ISBN 978-1-780764085
Robin Brooke-Smith’s fascinating book provides a new
perspective on Northwest Pakistan. In this first-hand account of his
years as Principal of Edwardes College, Peshawar,
from 1995 -2000, he traces the build-up to 9/11
and the upheavals that have followed. This is a
compelling behind-the-scenes look into the
heartlands of global jihad. The story begins and
ends at Shrewsbury School and takes us on an
intriguing adventure, with occasional echoes of
Michael Charlesworth’s book on Shrewsbury
School, Behind the Headlines.
We are invited on a journey that will sometimes
charm and sometimes horrify. We feel the tensions
of the daily struggle in a difficult and often
dangerous place. We relish many simple and
amusing incidents and delightful encounters
among the ordinary folk of the region. We are taken
from Shrewsbury into the eye of the rising storm of
global jihad in one of the most dangerous and
fascinating cities on Earth. We see a new
perspective on life and daily realities in Northwest
Pakistan and the troubled borderlands between
Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The Afghan-Pakistan Borderlands are critical to
international security. They are often dangerous
and little explored by outsiders. Recounting his
experiences as Principal of the prestigious
Edwardes College in Peshawar (founded as a Church Mission
College in 1900), Robin explores the creation and growing influence
of the Taliban, and provides a unique and close-up view into this
fascinating area. The College provides a cast of colourful characters
and a long and illustrious history. Its alumni have included former
Presidents, Ministers, Generals, and a host of remarkable
individuals including Mohammed Najibullah, the last Soviet-era
President of Afghanistan.
Behind it all is the sinister drumbeat of a country and region
lurching into a crisis and the dangerous conspiracies surrounding
the author. Finally we are swept up into the global disaster of 9/11
and the troubled years that have followed.
The story ends where it began, on the Queen’s Terrace back at
Shrewsbury School following the Michael Charlesworth Memorial
luncheon hosted at the School in March 2011 by the former Chief
Secretary of the North West Frontier Province Government. A
distinctive analysis of the state of the borderlands – and its possible
future – this book is illuminating reading for all who are interested in
Pakistan, Afghanistan and the turbulent recent history of the ‘Af-Pak’
region, and the strange and enduring links with Shrewsbury.
Snowfall near Cockham, courtest of Messum’s
revealing book on the artist, published to coincide with an exhibition
of his work at Messum’s Gallery in London, Andrew Lambirth
explores the great tradition of Romantic landscape painting in this
country and the particular influences that have enabled Horton to
progress from slightly awkward beginnings to develop an
independent style and vision that mark him out as one of England’s
most imaginative landscape painters.
Like the artist himself, Brian Horton’s landscapes radiate a quiet
power. His gouaches and oils present many-sided reflections of the
British landscape, whether he is painting Scotland, Cornwall, the
shores and hills of the Lake District, or the Cotswolds. Of his own
work Horton says, “I like to try and engage with a hint of paradise
that lurks in the back of the mind and, though based on reality, my
pictures are not painted to imitate a photographic image, but from
my own thoughts and feelings; perhaps a private vision, but one
which I hope others might recognise.”
After leaving Shrewsbury, Horton went on to Exeter College,
Oxford. Following National Service, he enrolled at Cheltenham
College of Art, where he met Sheila, his future wife. They married in
1957 and have three creative daughters: a sculptor, ceramicist and
painter. Following a spell working for Lloyds in the City of London,
and then taking over an interior design company with a friend on
Lower Sloane Street, Horton returned to paintings in 1967. He
worked as a painting restorer, finding time for his own paintings only
Andrew Lambirth
Brian Horton: Blue Remembered Hills
Studio Publications, 2012
ISBN 978-1-908486-24-0
Old salopian News
Max Kinnings (PH 1979-84)
occasionally. These gradually took over, however, and he became a
professional painter. Horton has exhibited at the Royal Academy,
the Royal Watercolour Society and has had a regular series of solo
shows with David Messum for more than two decades.
Quercus, 2012
This is the first of a series of crime novels featuring blind hostage
negotiator, Ed Mallory. When Christian fundamentalists hijack a
Tube train on the Northern Line, the stage is set for a terrifying
hostage situation...
On July 22nd 2005, with London on high alert after the recent
terrorist attacks and attempted bombings, Max Kinnings was
trapped on a tube train just outside Stockwell Station unaware of
what was taking place on the next train down the line.
Inspired by the nerve-shredding psychological impact of this
experience, Baptism explores the worst nightmares of the London
Tube traveller.
“A tense blockbuster with worryingly credible characters.”
The Times
Christopher Gill (Rt 1950-54)
Cracking the Whip
Bretwalda Books Ltd, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-780871813)
ISBN: 978-1909099067
Review by Hugh Ramsbotham:
It is perhaps fitting that as the relationship with Europe once again
seems to bring alarm to the Conservative Party, Christopher Gill
should publish the second volume of his memoirs, Cracking the
Whip. After two years in the Navy, Christopher spent 30 years as a
farmer and businessman before winning the Ludlow seat in the
1987 General Election. With that agricultural and business
background, his arrival at Westminster coincided with issues that
immediately brought him into conflict with the Tory policy - the poll
tax, the fishing policy, the common agricultural policy, and more.
The story of the Tory rebels is well known and is told in great detail in
his first volume, Whips’ Nightmare.
The second volume covers the years in opposition and
Christopher’s increasing despair over policies affected by Europe,
his involvement in the Freedom Association, and his discomfort in
the official Tory Party, making his retirement from Parliament in 2001,
and perhaps his eventual move to UKIP, inevitable.
His account of political life in the last 25 years – through his own
diaries and opinions – is fascinating, even if the role and behaviour
of the Whips as described can only make the literal meaning of the
name very apt. Presumably on the bookshelves of political students
and historians for many years to come, it might also be wise
reading for any aspiring member who thinks of taking the more
traditional route into politics via experience of the real world first.
And as the demands for a referendum and the question of EU
membership once again fill the air, perhaps a faint sound of ‘I
warned you’ might understandably be heard from the Ludlow hills.
Martin Downer (DB 1944-49)
The Tank Room
Mardi Books (2012)
ISBN 978-0-9571316-4-4
Matt, an undergraduate in 1950s Liverpool, moonlights in jazz
bands for beer money and to meet girls. He becomes intimately
involved with Yvette, sexy young city girl, and Harry, wayward
daughter of landed gentry. The girls, Matt and their friends enter
tangled relationships. Yvette or Harry? Eventually Matt must decide.
Martin Downer with Admiral Nimitz’s telephone on the USS Missouri
at Pearl Harbor
In the summer issue of The Salopian, we included one of Eric Arthur Barber’s Latin translations of English poems and asked readers if
anyone could identify the original. Hearty congratulations to Paul Taylor (Rt 1976-81) for his swift and correct reply. It is Tennyson’s The
Miller’s Daughter:
Yet fill my glass: give me one kiss:
My own sweet Alice, we must die.
There’s somewhat in this world amiss
Shall be unriddled by and by.
There’s somewhat flows to us in life,
But more is taken quite away.
Pray, Alice, pray, my darling wife,
That we may die the self-same day.
Sed mihi da calicem plenum, semel oscula iunge:
Nos quoque mors, coniunx o mea cata, manet.
Parte aliqua claudet rerum natura, sed olim
Expediet causas, quae lafuere, deus.
Non nihil in vita mortalibus adfluit; isdem
Plura datis penitus demere fata solent.
Tu memor assidue, coniunx dilecta, precare,
Nos simul exstinctos auferat una dies.
Old salopian News
C. H. A. Appleton
(R 1939-43)
C. N. Aspden
(S 1966-71)
The Hon Mr Justice E. de B. Bewley
(Rt 1944-49)
A. W. R. Brook
(S (CWM) 1930-35)
M. P. Birley
(Staff 1947-50)
R. H. Crawford*
(Rt 1938-43)
W. R. Cullimore
(Ch 1932-37)
R. B. Draper
(Ch 1930-34)
J. A. O. Evans
(O 1941-45)
Professor M. R. P. Hall
(Rt 1935-40)
E. Hancox
(R 1945-50)
Dr J. M. D. Hooper
(M 1939-44)
T. E. W. Jones
(O 1952-57)
J. Kemp
(Rt 1958-63)
J. M. Kirk
(SH 1949-51)
C. L. Mason
(O 1947-51)
Reverend A. R. McGlashan (R 1946-51)
P. O’Connell*
(M 1924-28)
R. Parkin
(DB 1967-71)
S. W. Payne
(I 1959-64)
A. G. B. Randall
(O 1940-43)
G. L. Ridgway
(DB 1943-47)
F. D. Robinson*
(O 1941-45)
D. H. Shaw
(M 1938-42)
M. R. T. Sills
(O 1950-54)
D.M. Stewart
(S 1963-67)
P. B. D. Sutherland
(SH 1938-43)
C. G. N. Whittingham
(Ch 1962-67)
P. S. Willcocks*
(I 1955-60)
J. P. Williams
(O 1941-43)
M. B. Wedgwood*
(R 1922-27)
M. R. N. Wood
(M 1940-44)
L. P. Woodcock
(DB 1972-76)
A. R. D. Wright (Headmaster 1963-75)
*an obituary will appear in the next edition
E. de B Bewley (Rt 1944-49)
Edward Bewley entered Ridgemount in
1944 after a childhood rather different from
that of his contemporaries. Born in London
while his parents were home on leave from
the Colonial Service in Nigeria, he was
brought up in his grandparents’ home in
County Armagh essentially by Simpson the
family retainer, as Nigeria was not
considered a suitable place for children.
When he was six his parents returned to
Ireland and after a succession of boarding
schools, he reached Ridgemount. It may
be there that he became Tim – he was after
all Irish – but certainly from then he was
always Tim. He much enjoyed his five years
on Kingsland, especially all the sport in
which he excelled at House level, and it
was natural that he then entered Trinity
College Dublin to read Law. In the next five
years he gained his BA, LL.B, Bar exams
and was called at Gray’s Inn in 1956
Concern that income from the bar would
not sustain him, the newly married Tim
followed his father into the Colonial Service
and was posted to Northern Rhodesia. This
was a life he much enjoyed, but sadly his
marriage did not survive it and he returned
to practise at the Bar for two years, after
which he was able to return to Africa as a
Magistrate in Nyasaland. In 1964 he went to
Hong Kong as Magistrate; 43 years later he
moved from being the Senior Criminal
Judge on the Supreme Court Bench to
becoming a Commissioner on the Supreme
Court of Brunei, from where he retired, now
as The Hon Mr Justice Bewley, in 1996.
Tim had met and married Mary in Hong
Kong. She was a passionately Welsh
teacher who had defied her family
expectations of a quiet, rural domestic life
in Caernarfon, and with their three
daughters they lived a full and happy life in
Hong Kong (where Mary founded the
Welsh Society and later represented the
Cymry ar Wasgar, the gathering of Welsh
people from across the world, at the
National Eisteddfod in her home town of
During his 22 years as a Judge in Hong
Kong, Tim was involved in many legal
dramas, including drug cartels, police
corruption, people smuggling, Omega
watch forgery, in fact the whole range of
international crime. He loved it, and was a
highly respected Judge, often having to
decide on draconian laws, usually without a
jury, but always with great fairness and
wisdom. His hearing difficulties prevented
him from accepting a seat on the Court of
It was perhaps inevitable therefore that
the Bewleys retired to Anglesey, where
Mary could rejoin her family and friends,
where Tim’s friends in Ireland were within
easy reach, where there were fine golf
courses, and from where he could easily
reach Old Salopian gatherings which he
much enjoyed, especially on Aberdovey
Golf Course. He never lost his passion for
sport, although non-Salopian activities in
hockey (he played for Trinity College and
for the next 42 seasons) and rugby existed
alongside cricket, golf and racing. He is
survived by Mary and his children and
much missed by his very many friends.
A. W. R. (Bill) Brook (CWM 1931-35)
Bill Brook was a Yorkshireman through and
through and apart from five years at
Shrewsbury and the war years in the Duke
of Wellington’s Regiment, he lived and
worked in West Yorkshire. His father (Arthur
Kenneth, SH 1906-07) was serving in the
same regiment when Bill was born in 1917.
At Shrewsbury he moved successfully
through the School, though without any aim
of going to university. He enjoyed rowing,
was a Lance Corporal in the OTC and a
very keen member of the Rovers, an
association that kept him in contact with the
School and the OS Club throughout his life.
On leaving school, he became an
apprentice wool sorter in Bradford and after
two years moved to Jarmains, Wool
Scourers, where he was in charge of wool
sorting until the outbreak of war, when he
joined the Royal Artillery in a Searchlight
In 1946, after service in France, he was
demobilised. The wool trade was still under
the wartime ‘wool control’ and he could not
obtain a license to deal in wool until 1950.
In the interim period he traded as a
merchant with a former apprentice sorter
and then with a license he formed his own
company, Brook Wools Ltd in Milnsbridge,
Huddersfield, which traded successfully
until his retirement in 1980 when the
business was wound up.
Bill was an enthusiastic member of the
TA as Lieutenant Colonel, in the
Honourable Artillery Company and a loyal
Secretary of the MacMillan Club for twenty
years. He and his wife Bessie were
enthusiastic gardeners and competitive
bridge players, and devoted parents,
grandparents and great-grandparents.
W. R. (Rae) Cullimore (Ch 1932-37)
W. R. Cullimore was in Churchills from 1932
to 1937 prior to going up to Gonville and
Caius College, Cambridge. Always known
as Rae, he was born in Fleet, Hampshire,
where his father was in the Army working at
the Royal Aircraft Establishment, the initials
of which gave rise to the name Rae.
Old salopian News
Winner of the Bentley Elocution Prize and
the Maths Prize, the law and business
seemed inevitable; his Housemaster also
described him early in his school career as
“a sound gentleman to whom we should
like to give an official post of responsibility”
and described his last report as one that
“makes an excellent ending to an
increasing satisfactory record by a sound,
sterling member who has contributed his
share unostentatiously”. A report that was
somehow prophetic.
After qualifying as a solicitor, he joined
the family firm in Chester which his
grandfather had joined, followed by his
son, Rae's father. The firm became Birch
Cullimore and there were also three
generations of the Birch family in the firm.
Rae's practice was based largely in
agriculture and agricultural estates, serving
two and sometimes three generations of
the same family as a genuine family
However, there was another side to his
practice, which was of great value to his
firm. Having inherited three businesses in
Chester, he had the businessman's attitude
to the law, often seeing a problem from that
point of view as well as the strictly legal
one. He was therefore in demand as a local
company chairman, being at various times
Chairman of the Chester Water Company,
the Wrexham and East Denbighshire Water
Company and the Blossoms Hotel, Chester
and was on the board of the Cheshire
Observer newspaper until taken over.
Outside his strict legal practice, Rae was
for over 30 years Legal Advisor to the Dean
and Chapter of Chester Cathedral and for
over 2O years served as Chapter Clerk,
serving under three Deans latterly at a time
of many changes in Cathedral
administration. He was also, for many
years, a deputy Under-Sheriff for Cheshire.
Outside his practice, Rae was a past
chairman of the Cheshire branch of the
Country Landowners Association (as it then
was). His father's family had originally come
from Thornbury near Bristol and he took
great interest in the family farm there, which
is still in the family.
After retiring, he and Stella moved to
Sherston near Malmesbury to be near their
daughter, Vivienne. Rae leaves Stella, who
was the greatest support throughout his
professional and other careers, daughter
Vivienne and son John, six grandchildren
and two great-grandchildren. His funeral
took place at Sherston Parish Church and
was attended by a large congregation
representing the many interests in Rae's life.
With thanks to Randal Hibbert
R. B. Draper (Ch 1930-34)
Bryan Draper came to Shrewsbury from
Etonhurst Prep School. His school reports
talk of a highly accomplished and
enthusiastic violinist who did not shine
academically but who reached the rank of
Lance Corporal in the OTC before leaving
school early, clearly to the disappointment
of his Housemaster.
His father and uncle had started a
business, but when Bryan reached the
Sixth Form they fell out and his uncle took
all the patents with him to start a similar
business on the other side of the road thus nearly causing the business to go
under. Bryan had to leave, not going into
the Forestry Commission as he had
intended, but joining his father to try and
rescue the family firm.
This they did very successfully and by the
start of the war they were supplying brake
and clutch linings and woven asbestos
materials to the military; this meant that he
was in a reserved occupation and was not
called up until quite late in the war. He
joined the Royal Corps of Signals and
served in France and then Germany before
being demobbed. His proudest moment
was probably when, as L/Cpl Draper,
Chairman and Managing Director, he
showed Queen Mary around the factory in
August 1943.
After the war the business continued to
flourish and was floated on the Stock
Exchange. Some years later, father and son
acquired his uncle’s business, thus
reuniting two branches of the family a
generation after the original split, H. P. Trist
Ltd becoming Trist, Draper Ltd. He retired in
L/Cpl R. B. Draper, Chairman and Managing
Director of English Asbestos Co. Ltd.,
explaining the carding of asbestos to Her
Majesty Queen Mary, 16th August 1943
After the death of his wife Ina in 1984, he
married Winifred and had 17 happy years
enjoying the company of his two sons, two
grandsons and two great grand-daughters
as well as two step children, six step
grandchildren and several step great
Bryan’s passion for music and the violin,
encouraged at Shrewsbury, continued
throughout his life. He was one of the
founding members of the Bath Symphony
Orchestra, playing both violin and viola at
different times. He also played in the
Trowbridge Symphony Orchestra and in
many orchestras and groups for concerts
and operas around Bath and Wells.
He continued to play in the Trowbridge
Symphony Orchestra until he was almost
ninety, before his dementia meant he no
longer had the concentration to keep his
place in the music. He had maintained the
love of music for so long, and always
showed interest in its development at
Shrewsbury, especially when his son
Christopher followed him to Churchill’s in
Dr J. M. B. Hooper (M 1939-44)
John Hooper was the first of three brothers
who were in Moser’s and he had an
extremely successful School career. Clearly
an excellent Praeposter, he also developed
a love of – and skill in – rowing that was to
last long. The VIII at Henley was followed by
a place in his College VIII and in the
winning Isis crew of 1945. His interest in
science and in all that was going on around
him made medicine a natural choice; his
Housemaster’s last report talked of “an
exceptionally full and successful climax to
his School career having shown all the
signs of doing good service to the
community. He will be the right sort of
John qualified at Guy’s Hospital in 1950
and spent two years as a hospital resident,
at the same time meeting and marrying Jill,
who was nursing and working with a
research team at St Mary’s Paddington
Old salopian News
studying new born babies (as they
welcomed their first child Susan). Then
came his deferred National Service and he
was posted to Northern Ireland as Senior
Physician. After two years there (and the
arrival of their second child Jonathan), the
Hoopers returned to England and John
spent some time working as locum and
looking for an opportunity to work in rural
practice – something being sought after by
very many applicants. The family was
delighted when in 1957 he was the
successful applicant in Cranbrook, Kent
and after a few months in a caravan at the
surgery, eventually the family home/surgery
was created, two more children James and
Elizabeth arrived, and a very happy and
long career began.
John was a totally committed family
doctor and with Jill alongside as nurse and
secretary, the Cranbrook practice was
superbly served, and loved. He acted at
Benenden School as Medical Officer, was
very involved with the parish church and on
the Parish Council; the little available
recreation time was spent sailing or on
wonderful camping and sailing holidays
with his family. There was enough land
round their home/surgery for smallholding
activity and trees were planted and animals
raised. John also much enjoyed his
association in the City of London through
the Coachmakers Livery Company and
was so proud when at the Queen’s
Diamond Jubilee she chose to travel on the
state landau built by the Hooper Carriage
Retirement saw the surgery converted
into a popular holiday let and John
appointed as Churchwarden - and the
occasional employment as Cruise Doctor
with Swan Hellenic to provide annual trips
to sea. Then illness intervened and his last
years were not easy - but this did not stop
him being totally absorbed in everything
around him, watched over devotedly by Jill
and Elizabeth. It seemed that the entire
population of Cranbrook gathered for his
funeral - and the words “kindness”,
“dignity” and “grace” were much heard,
and “it is no exaggeration to say that John
has been one of those local saints in his
own generation, that richly encourage and
inspire all of us, all whose lives he
His Housemaster had clearly got it right.
John Hooper was “the right sort of doctor”.
T. E. W. Jones (O 1952-57)
Tim Jones was almost bound to be
successful at Shrewsbury. Brought up on
Merseyside by his Welsh parents, imbued
from very early days with a love of sport
and of the Welsh mountains and sea – it
was as though Kingsland beckoned from
the beginning. When he showed ability in
the Classics as well, his cup was filled.
Distinctions in Greek, Latin and Ancient
History gained him a Scholarship and a
place at Balliol College, Oxford. As
Huntsman he joined his love of sport with
his love of the countryside; his passion for
football led him to captaining Oldham’s and
gaining second XI colours – his
Housemaster commented that he was
perhaps rather small and too easily
knocked off the ball for a secure place in
the 1st XI. He was a much respected and
liked House Monitor and Corporal in the
CCF – his only sadness was that he was in
his own mind probably the only Welshman
who couldn’t sing and so, although he
gained a love of music at School, his
activity was limited to attending concerts
rather than performing.
A brief spell working in a factory in Rouen
after School took him to Oxford proficient in
French and Spanish and with an interest in
languages that never left him. He captained
the Balliol football side, continued crosscountry running and played cricket – whilst
also gaining his degree in Law and the
award of a Keasbey Bursary from the
Keasbey Memorial Foundation. On
graduation, he became articled to Robert
Davies and Co in Warrington – allowing him
to play football for the Liverpool Ramblers,
to continue his dedicated support at Old
Trafford and to walk the Welsh hills. But
once qualified, in 1965, he moved to
London and a year later married Ursula,
whom he had met at the College of Law.
He spent three years with Woodruffes and
then for nearly 20 years he was Principal
Solicitor at the British Waterways Board – a
time that enabled him to explore with his
family (now including two sons and a
daughter) the canals throughout Britain.
Tim’s career ended with eight years as
Group Solicitor with a local building
company in his home town of Harpenden
and five years carrying out property and
parliamentary work for Luton Borough
In a full working life, Tim found time for
his many interests, most of which he
shared with his family. He loved travel,
immersing himself in the literature and
language of the places he visited; his love
of sport and support for Welsh rugby,
Manchester United and Cardiff City took up
much time and energy – even when
severely handicapped by Parkinson’s
disease, he got to Wembley for the 2008
Cup Final with Cardiff. And at one match he
received loud cheers from the Welsh
supporters when he returned the ball to the
pitch with a surprisingly strong kick from the
disabled section. He was an enthusiastic
gardener, an imaginative cook, a conqueror
of the daily Times Crossword (once
reaching the final) – and essentially a man
who loved life and lived it to the full. He held
a deep affection for Shrewsbury; and his
life – full of scholarship, of energy, of
responsibility, of sport, of the countryside,
of his care for those around him, and of fun
– clearly mirrored his five years as a
schoolboy. He was much loved, and he will
be much missed by his family and his very
many friends.
J. M. Kirk (SH 1949-51)
John Kirk came to Shrewsbury from
Pocklington School and Oaklands Prep
School, both in Yorkshire, and soon
discovered that sport was very much more
interesting and enjoyable than the more
classical education he found. So three
years of sport, especially rugby and boxing,
led to a decision to move on to a more
technical education and experience.
Aged 16, he gained an apprenticeship at
Blackburn Aircraft in Hull and aged 20 he
started three years’ military service with the
Royal Engineers. This included a posting to
Old salopian News
the South Pacific to support the British
Scientific team conducting Britain’s first
Hydrogen Bomb tests on Malden island,
Bikini Atoll. In 1958 John joined W&T Avery,
the world’s largest weighing machine
company, as a trainee salesman; he retired
as a Director 33 years later, having worked
in various parts of the UK, with
Worcestershire being his final home.
He married Moya in 1963 and his family –
three children and five grandchildren – were
a great source of pride and joy. His love of
sport, developed at Shrewsbury, continued
throughout his life; he boxed for his
Regiment and he played rugby for
Combined Services and numerous clubs
as he moved round the country. When
playing days were over, he found great joy
watching his children and grandchildren
follow in his sporting footsteps. His other
interest was in the British Legion and he
was privileged to be Treasurer and then
President of his branch in Worcestershire.
John discovered at the age of 72 that he
was in fact only an Old Boy of Shrewsbury
School rather than an Old Salopian, having
left School early. This was immediately
rectified and John continued to be a keen
supporter of the School of which he was so
A. R. McGlashan (R 1946-51)
Tim Lewis writes: Alastair Robin McGlashan
was born in Plymouth on 16th March 1933,
the son of Lieutenant Commander (E)
Alexander Davidson McGlashan, RN, and
Irene Margaret McGlashan (née Cooke)
later of Midford, near Bath. He was to write
later that, at the Annual Inspection of the
CCF in 1947, he saw his father for the first
time since 1942.
In Michaelmas Term 1950, Rigg’s had four
Praeposters - K A Masser, (Captain of
Boats), P C Heal (Huntsman), J R Holt (later
Head of School) and A R McGlashan,
(School Captain of Boxing). A fifth House
Monitor was T R Bell, an American from
Choate, who propelled the rugby ball in
torpedo style, to considerable advantage.
The nickname for the Head of House
was ‘Happy Holt’. The atmosphere in
Rigg’s was untroubled and light-hearted.
His cricketing friends remembered the
Housemaster as ‘Batty’ Brooke. His
eccentricities caught the imagination of
most of us. Robin McGlashan, in all of this,
was serious. He had been Head Boy at his
preparatory school Carn Brae, winning the
top scholarship to Shrewsbury in 1946.
Robin would later admit that his academic
reputation came mostly through dint of
strenuous application. This was largely
expended in slaving over homework in the
evenings, to make sure that he handed in
the very best work that he could turn out.
For the classical scholars like him,
homework took the form of translating bits
of classical English prose and verse into
corresponding forms of Greek and Latin,
for example an extract from a speech of
Edmund Burke into Greek rhetorical prose
in the style of Demosthenes, or Herrick into
Ovidian elegiac couplets.
This required a deep knowledge of and
sensitivity to the particular styles of Cicero,
Sophocles and the rest of the classical
authors, and to the nuances of metre and
language. His compositions were handed
in and marked, and the aim was to get as
high a mark as he could, somewhere in the
alpha bracket was usually attainable, with
as few minuses as possible. As a House
Monitor, he was a listener, who could fix you
with the beadiest of stares: he was always
fair and reasoned. He knew the value of
At the time, the Classical Upper Sixth
was choc-a-block with scholars of
formidable erudition, under the strict rule
and teaching of Stacy Colman (Balliol,
where else?). P.J. Ingrams (Ch 1949-54)
called him ‘Colmanus igitur’.
Butler, Kennedy, Moss beamed down
upon them all. Within such company,
McGlashan won an Open Exhibition to
Christ Church, later to be awarded an
Honorary Scholarship on account of his 1st
Class Honours in Classical Moderations
and taking a 2nd in Literae Humaniores.
Robin was also a Boxing Blue at
bantamweight. Small of stature, he packed
a ferocious punch.
After Oxford, he did his National Service
in Cyprus, forgoing the rank of officer.
At Ridley Hall, Cambridge, he read the
New Testament section (Part 3) of the
Theological Tripos at St John’s College,
where he was an Honorary Scholar, taking
1st Class Honours.
In 1959-60, Robin was ‘Archdeacon’ at
Ridley Hall. This is the term used at Ridley
to denote the Senior Student of his year,
who is elected by his fellow students as
their representative and is the go-between
the student body and the staff of the
college. While at Ridley, he was also one of
three Anglican students from the UK
selected to attend a five-month graduate
course at the World Council of Churches
Conference Centre in Switzerland, at
Bossey, near Geneva. His Principal of
Ridley described Robin as “one of the
ablest men both academically and
practically that we have had in living
memory”. While at Bossey, he met the
Revd C. Selvamony, who was Principal of
one of the South India Theological Colleges
and who initiated an interest in India that
was to become such a major strand in his
Ordained in 1960, he was curate at St
Helen’s Parish Church and at Ormskirk
Parish Church.
In 1963, the Church Missionary Society
accepted Robin for a post in the Tamil
medium theological college in Southern
India. After an initial period studying Tamil,
he insisted on living in a village to
accommodate himself to non-academic
Tamil, and in tune with a dictum of the then
General Secretary of CMS Max Warren, to
“sit where they sit” so as to understand the
milieu of those with whom he would share
his days.
He taught New Testament Greek, and
wrote a Greek grammar in Tamil that is still
in use. He remained for 11 years with the
Church Missionary Society, as a College
Lecturer and as an Adviser in Religious
From 1974-75, he worked as Chaplain
Intern, University of Chicago Hospitals in
USA. He returned to UK as Curate at the
Church of the Holy Redeemer in Lamorbey
near in Sidcup. From 1977, he served for
eight years as Chaplain to the West Park
Hospital in Epsom. He began a new career
as an Analytical Psychologist in private
practice in 1987.
As a Tamil scholar, Robin wrote a number
of books in Tamil on New Testament books,
under the name of Alastair McGlashan. His
translation of the Periya Puranam (The
History of the Holy Servants of the Lord
Siva) – one of the great books of Saivite
religious literature, published by Trafford
Publishing in 2006 – received critical
He is survived by his wife, Margaret,
whom he married in 1977, and by a
daughter, Vivienne.
C. L. Mason (O 1947-51)
Christopher was identified at Shrewsbury
as someone who would give everything to
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any chosen career and that it was likely to
involve service to others. He was seen as
an excellent House Monitor and Captain of
Rugby, generally good at all games, and a
doer rather than a typical ‘academic’. Seale
Hayne Agricultural College was apparently
inevitable since the age of eight, when he
had read his first book abut farming.
His first farming experience was in
Scotland and was much affected by an 11week harvest stint as a student at Torrorie
Farm, Dumfries. He soon became manager
first of Southwick and then of Torrorie. After
some years he was able to take over the
tenancy and he spent 30 happy years there
with his wife Jean and three children.
He ‘gave everything’ to his farming but
equally to the community, as Chairman of
the Rugby Club, of the Young Farmers
Club, of the Agricultural Show, of the
Dumfries Academy School Board. and of
the Young Offenders Prison Visiting
Committee. He also served as a JP for 17
In 1998 he and his wife retired to the
Glenkens where, whilst enjoying building
their garden and exploring new technology
of sources of energy, he again became
involved in local affairs, especially as local
Chairman of the Duke of Edinburgh’s
Award Scheme and Director of the
Glenkens Community and Arts Trust, which
transformed the disused primary school
into a Community Arts Centre.
Clearly Christopher was someone who
gave so much to those around him, giving
an example in his work and in his service
that inspired and encouraged all, especially
the many young people whose lives he
R. A. C. Miller (I 1960-61)
Andrew Miller passed through Shrewsbury
perhaps without realising it. He entered
Ingram’s in January 1960 “very much larger
and more mature than his colleagues”, and
he found the restrictions of boarding school
life not easy. His size and speed helped in
football where he was a good, fast and
lively member of 1st House in his first
Michaelmas term, and he was a very
promising oarsman (though described by
his Housemaster as “likeable, and a good
keen and clumsy games player”). An
appendix operation making him off
changes for the Lent Term of 1961 did not
help; and he was in love. On the second
day of the Michaelmas Term 1961 he took
himself home, and decided to take his ‘O’
levels at the Technical College in
After College he travelled to America and
worked in the music world in Texas until the
possibility of the Vietnam draft brought him
back to England, where he joined the
International Entertainment Agency. Clearly
a brilliant music promoter, he launched
Andrew Miller Promotions in 1976 and
never looked back as he promoted tours by
Mike Oldfield, Gallaher and Lyle,
Supertramp, Twiggy and Joan Armatrading.
In 1976 he showed his customary
dedication and commitment to the job
when he called on Joan Armatrading, on
the day she headlined the Royal Albert Hall,
between his wedding reception and his
departure on honeymoon, with his new wife
Anna (who had also worked with
International Entertainment Agency), still in
her wedding dress.
Andrew Miller was known as a gentleman
operating in what can be a cut-throat world,
often relying on a handshake as a contract.
This was the case with Barry Manilow,
whom he promoted for thirty years, and
many others. He staged a memorable
Manilow concert attended by 50,000 at
Blenheim Palace and returned there with
Van Morrison and Joan Armatrading in
2004 and Rod Stewart and Diana Ross in
Held in high regard by his business
peers and his long standing clients, Andrew
was also greatly admired for his charity
work on behalf of Nordoff-Robbins Music
Therapy. Together with Willie Robertson,
who pioneered the introduction of
insurance cover for performers, they raised
funds to build a therapy centre in London,
and inspired other countries to develop
their own facilities. They went on to enable
the building of a BRIT School of Performing
Arts in Croydon. In 1990 he staged
‘Knebworth 90’ where Pink Floyd and
Genesis featured, alongside Paul
McCartney, Eric Clapton, Elton John,
Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, Cliff Richard
and the Shadows, Dire Straits, Status Quo
and Tears for Fears. The stars appeared for
free in front of 120,000 fans and millions
watching on TV; and there are many stars
of today - including Katie Melua, Adele,
Imogen Heap, and Jessie J - who are
undoubtedly indebted to him for their
training at the BRIT school. In 1994 he and
Robertson received the Music Industry
Trust Award.
Andrew married twice and had two
daughters. “He was a very, very good man,
very principled and good-hearted. The
huge amounts of money he raised for
Nordoff Robbins and BRIT was a wonderful
thing, a terrific legacy.”
A. G. B. Randall (O 1940-43)
Photo taken at The Schools in 1941: Brian
Randall (left) and his brother Bernard
(right) are both wearing Oldham’s boaters.
Bernard was killed in the War. Seated in
the car are their mother, Mrs E. Randall
and their surviving brother, C. L. Randall
(now aged 84)
Brian Randall followed his brother Bernard
into Oldham’s in 1940 from Merchant
Taylors, Crosby, and immediately entered
into all that Shrewsbury offered an
enthusiastic sportsman, particularly on the
river. There was not much in the traditional
area of classics that attracted him but he
flourished in the sciences; and with a touch
of magisterial snobbery he was reported as
being “more interested in his sport and his
future career than in academics”.
Be that as it may, Brian was
disappointed when his father withdrew
him and moved him into the family
tanning business for two years before he
was called up for National Service in
1945. He had always wanted to join the
Fleet Air Arm but having lost his brother
Bernard and a first cousin in the war, both
of whom were flying, he agreed to do his
service in the coalmines as a Bevin Boy though as he was involved in moving
explosives around he was hardly out of
In 1948 he returned to the family Bootle
Tanning Company, which comprised a
number of tanneries in Liverpool
manufacturing sole leather for shoes and
boots. However, due to the advent of
synthetic materials for footwear, the
industry was in decline and in 1955 after
70 years manufacturing. the family made
the decision to close the tanneries. After a
brief spell with British Enka, Brian
established a card and gift shop
“Carolinas” (named after his three
Old salopian News
children) in Formby, where he loved being
totally involved in village life, of which his
shop soon became a centre. He
managed his shop until well into his midseventies. He was a founder member of
the Formby Rotary Club and became a
life member after 40 years service.
Brian’s two passions were sailing and
travel. He was first Commodore and
finally President of the West Lancashire
Sailing Club and very many hours were
spent in his beloved GP 14 or talking
about it in the Clubhouse. Offshore
sailing and overseas travel to less well
known destinations were annual events,
at first with his family and, as they grew
older, with an old friend. Together, for
example, they drove through Russia and
the Eastern Block (before the Berlin Wall
came down), travelled on the Siberian
Express to Outer Mongolia, and were with
the students in Tianamen Square.
Proud of his family, it was a joy for him
to see his son Nick follow him to
Oldham’s (1972-76) and see him go
further by being in the winning crew at
Henley and the National Schools’ Regatta
and going on to give sterling service to
the Sabrina Club and as Chairman of the
Old Salopian Club; and then his
grandsons Philip (O 1999-2002) and
Christian (O 2007-12). And he loved being
with his daughters Carol and Linda;
though never persuading them to join him
sailing, many hours were spent with their
horses when they were young; and then
with all his six grandchildren. His beloved
wife Beryl died in 1994 and his daughter
Carol devoted her life to his care through
a long illness, which he fought bravely
and without complaint.
D. H. Shaw (M 1938-42)
It is perhaps extraordinary that one of the
most outstanding amateur sportsmen of
his time passed through Shrewsbury and
left no record of any sporting involvement
during his five years at School. In fact
Darrell Shaw’s reports merely talk of a
very quiet School career, showing little
initiative or zeal, except perhaps for
playing the cornet (without any lessons).
His final report simply states that he was
going into the army – as all his colleagues
were – and it seems almost as though he
was not expected to do anything
noteworthy in his life.
It is not so extraordinary that boys who
do not perhaps shine in their teens,
blossom once they have reached
adulthood. On leaving Moser’s, Darrell did
indeed join the army and served in India.
After he returned in 1948, he joined the
Shiloh Group of textile companies as a
management trainee. He learned the
basics of carding, spinning and winding
on the mill floor, studied textile technology
at Salford Technical College, and was
appointed General Manager of Shiloh’s
condenser spinning plant in 1955. He
joined the board of the company in 1961
and modernised its spinning capacity to
produce a unique range of yarns for
customers, such as the Ladybird
children’s clothing brand. But while
spinning was his business passion, he
saw the writing on the wall for the
Lancashire industry and gradually shifted
Shiloh into the more promising health
care market. He became Chairman in
1970 of a newly formed subsidiary which
manufactured incontinence products and
work wear, and later specialised in
sterilisation and de-contamination
services. He retired from the Board of
Shiloh in 2003 aged 79, a man much
respected by his workforce and by his
customers. The spinning business was
sold off, and failed, but the health care
prospered under a new owner, Synergy
However, it was in his sport that Darrell
made a considerable mark. He was a
gifted all-round sportsman but it was at
tennis that he excelled. He represented
Lancashire from 1949 to 1964, winning
three county singles trophies. In 1959,
partnering Alan Mills (later the longest
serving Wimbledon referee) he won all
three rubbers – 15 matches – in group 1
of the inter-county championships at
Eastbourne, an achievement that has
rarely been matched. As a result of this he
was selected to play for England.
Many of his sporting triumphs were
achieved while he pursued his day job
running the cotton mill. When he qualified
for Wimbledon (1951-54), his father was
reluctant to give him time off; so on the
first Monday he went to Manchester
Piccadilly Station, bought a newspaper,
checked to see if he was playing that day
and, as he wasn’t, he went back to the
mill. As manager he was only allowed two
weeks’ holiday a year, so the Wimbledon
rounds could only be managed as day
trips. He once took on the New Zealander
Mark Otway in the Northern Tournament in
his lunch hour. Officials were generally
sympathetic, one Yorkshire referee
announcing, “We’ll give young Darrell a
20-minute break between finals, he’s
probably had a hard night at t’mill.” The
essence of his playing style was captured
in a photograph of him mid-dive,
horizontal, during a Wimbledon encounter
with Herbie Flam in 1953; he was
particularly thrilled when his uncle spotted
the picture in a Rome railway bookstall on
the cover of an Italian magazine.
Besides his tennis, he played in goal for
the Liverpool Ramblers and later enjoyed
squash at a very high level. When age
forced him off the squash court, he took
to golf and played regularly, and well, until
he reached 80. He then joined a small
group who played pool at the Northern
Club in Manchester. His other hobby was
owning second-hand sports cars; he
changed his car half a dozen times a
year, and in one year 24 times – attracting
the attention of the Inland Revenue, which
assessed him as a car dealer despite his
assurance that he lost money on every
trade. He was eventually advised to see
psychiatrists about what had become an
obsession. The first two failed to help
him, but he declared his third consultation
to have been a complete success –
because the psychiatrist went straight out
and bought a second-hand car.
Malcolm Gracie, a close friend who
played tennis, squash and golf with him
for very many years, writes, ”Darrell Shaw
was a lovely character, if slightly eccentric,
an excellent family man who was unlucky
to lose his wife at an early time in life, a
good father to his two daughters, and a
first class all-round sportsman. His
behaviour on the sports field as well as
the social scene was exemplary and I
have never met a single person who had
anything other than good things to say
about him. What was rather surprising
was the modesty and indeed shyness that
characterised him – when it was his time
as Vice President to become President of
the Lancashire County Tennis Association,
he resigned rather than accept the office.
I am proud to have known him.”
Perhaps that modesty and shyness
appeared, when he was at school, as the
‘lack of zeal or initiative’. The world of
sport, and of business, is much relieved
that neither of those was apparent in his
long and full life.
J. P. Williams (O 1941-43)
At the beginning of the War, John Williams
moved with his parents and brother Hugh
from his bomb-damaged home in
Blackheath to his grandfather’s country
house in Shropshire. He arrived in
Oldham’s in his fourth term of secondary
education, having started at Dulwich
College, whilst his brother Hugh started
Old salopian News
passions. He was an articulate writer – his
auto-biography is a delight – and a story
teller and conversationalist. He and
Dierdre, together for 42 years, had very
many friends who miss him tremendously.
his first term at the same time. The late
start at Shrewsbury proved to be a bit of a
handicap at the beginning, but he was
clearly flourishing by the end of his school
career. Perhaps the ceasing of Latin to be
replaced by Art was of importance;
perhaps it was position of House Captain
of Agriculture, a crucial role during those
war years.
Service with the Royal Marines
followed, spent mainly in the Pacific,
where he developed a love of the sea
which was always with him; as a young
man he would spend his summer
weekends crewing with friends and taking
part in ocean races. His interest in art led
him to a degree at the London
Polytechnic School of Architecture, but it
was towards books and publishing that
he moved and soon, with his wife Deirdre,
he owned a printing and publishing
company in Ludlow, specialising in Fine
Art books, until in 1973 a disastrous
explosion and fire destroyed all that they
had, and very nearly their lives. Only
John’s quick thinking and courage saved
them both, but they were badly injured.
After that he owned and ran a stationery
and second-hand bookshop in
Framlingham, of which he was very
proud, printing for Time-Life magazine. In
the early 1980s he became good friends
with Sir Hugh Casson and, working
together, they set up a watercolour
facsimiles business, which eventually
became the Watercolour Foundation,
launched at the Royal Academy, of which
he became Chairman.
John’s interests and passions were
wide – travel, music, especially the piano,
all forms of transport including steam
power, painting, political and military
history, and philosophy – with engineering
and architecture being particular
Arthur Robert Donald Wright
(Headmaster 1963-75)
The Rt Revd Roger Sainsbury writes:
Donald Wright, who died on 19 July, aged
89, had already made his mark as soldier
and educator, most recently as a
housemaster at Marlborough, when I first
met him in November 1963. He had driven
from Shrewsbury School to Liverpool with
Helen, his wife, during his first term as
Headmaster, to see the work of Shrewsbury
House, the school’s Mission, founded in
I had been appointed Missioner by the
previous Headmaster, Jack Peterson,
earlier in the year. We were told that Donald
had come to Shrewsbury School “with fresh
eyes and without traditional
preconceptions”, and that he might
suggest that Shrewsbury House should be
closed, as it was a hangover from the
Victorian era, like other public school
missions. But, when he saw our
engagement in Christian mission in one of
the most socially disadvantaged
communities in England, it led to his
becoming an outstanding supporter of our
work and that of the Beacon Group
Ministry, of which Shrewsbury House was a
He later described this journey to
Liverpool as his “Damascus-road
conversion”. Together, we started social
studies courses, based at Shrewsbury
House, for boys from the school, which
opened many eyes to the challenge of the
inner city; and a number of those boys
have since become important pioneers in
various forms of work in urban areas.
He took a leading part with the diocese
of Liverpool in building a new Shrewsbury
House, in partnership with a new St Peter’s
Church, opened in July 1974 by Princess
One of my abiding memories of Donald
is at the gate of Shrewsbury School, at the
end of a sponsored walk with boys from the
school and boys and girls from the club. He
asked one of the club boys as he
approached the gate, “Are you last?” He
received the angry reply: “I'm not last. I am
just at the back,” as in Scouse “last” means
“useless”. In fact, the club boy was at the
back because he was helping a struggling
schoolboy to finish the walk.
Eddie Cartwright, a former club boy and
voluntary helper in the 1960s, who became
a professionally qualified youth worker,
Field Officer for the Merseyside Youth
Association, and Reader in the diocese of
Liverpool, commented: “Donald Wright
always looked stern, but his heart was in
the right place, and he loved Shrewsbury
House and West Everton.”
Henry Corbett, the present Warden of
Shrewsbury House, says that the social
studies courses are still going, and nearly
50 sixth formers from the school visit
Everton over three days each year.
Donald’s conversion to “the Shewsy”, and
his vital support of the new Shewsy, are well
Donald was the youngest boy of a
Wolverhampton family described as
“Church of England, but still touched by a
Methodist past”. I also believe that he was
touched by the Quaker tradition; for, as a
boy, he went to a Quaker school, where he
was taught by the young W. H. Auden; later,
when he was a teacher, one of his first
posts was at Leighton Park, a well-known
Quaker school in Reading.
Perhaps, however, his experience in the
Second World War, when he was a captain
in the Royal Artillery, involved in the landing
in Normandy, and later stationed near the
Russian line in the East, where he saw at
first hand some of the horrors of modern
warfare, also helped to shape the
compassionate Christianity that so many in
Shrewsbury School, Liverpool, and, during
his retirement, Wiltshire appreciated.
In a family tribute at the funeral, his son
Patrick said: “Early in life, my father
developed a sense of what education could
and should be. His was a Christian idea,
and also a liberal one. He was convinced
that education was about finding and
releasing potential in people, opening
doors in minds, equipping people to make
their own decisions in the future.”
This understanding of education was to
be very important in his time as
Headmaster of Shrewsbury School, and in
1971 as Chairman of the Headmasters'
One of his staff at the school
emphasised that his primary concern was
to revitalise the religious life of the school,
and he invited a range of distinguished
speakers to preach in the chapel, including
Henry Chadwick, David Edwards, David
Jenkins, Dennis Nineham, Harry Williams,
Stuart Blanch, and Donald Coggan.
Coggan later invited him to be
Archbishop’s Patronage Secretary, and
Secretary to the Crown Appointments
Old salopian News
When Coggan retired, according to
Henry Carpenter’s biography of Robert
Runcie, Donald played an important part in
“consulting a wide range of people about
the type of person who should be chosen
as the next Archbishop of Canterbury”.
He still held that position when, in 1983,
Runcie appointed the Commission on
Urban Priority Areas to “look into ways in
which churches can more effectively help
those who live and work in our inner cities”,
a Commission that was to produce one of
the most significant church reports of the
past 50 years, Faith in the City. I believe that
Donald, because of his experience at
Shrewsbury House, may have had some
involvement in the Archbishop’s very
important initiative.
During his time at Lambeth Palace,
Donald also chaired the William Temple
Foundation, and he shared Temple’s
concern about the impact of
unemployment: “The gravest evil and the
bitterest injury of the unemployed is the
spiritual grievance of being allowed no
opportunity of contributing to the general
life and welfare of the community.”
Helen, whom he married in 1948, was a
great supporter of his work, both at
Shrewsbury School and Lambeth Palace.
They enjoyed 20 years of retirement in
Coulston, in Wiltshire, where he was a very
active member of his parish church, and a
campaigner for defending the local
He is survived by Helen and their
This obituary was published in The
Church Times in November 2012.
Thursday 7th February:
Curry supper at ASHA’s, Newhall Street, Central Birmingham.
Thursday 14th March:
Careers Fair (U6th & OS students) at Shrewsbury School.
Sunday 12th May:
Sporting lunch for UVI pupils, Masters in Charge, Coaches and representatives from the Old
Salopian Sports Committee; Guest Speaker, Tim Lamb (1966-71), Chief Executive of the Sport
and Recreation Alliance.
Friday 7 June:
Old Salopian Birmingham and Midlands Branch Summer Reception at The Lord Leycester
Hospital, Warwick.
Wednesday 3rd-Sunday 7th July:
Henley Royal Regatta (School reception on Wednesday 3rd July and Sabrina reception on
Saturday 6th July).
For more details, please visit: www.shrewsbury.org.uk/page/osevents
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