JUNE 2008
Debaters Win Scottish Final
One Step Closer to Eco School
Meet the New FP President
Get all the news online at
w w w. s t - c o l u m b a s . o r g
Rector’s Message
Debaters Win Scottish Final
At the time of writing, upper school pupils are in the middle of their SQA examinations and we are
looking forward to the many special activities which have been arranged for the final weeks of the
session. These include Junior School Sports Day which is scheduled for the afternoon of Friday 13th
June in Birkmyre Park and a new format for Senior School Sports which will include the previously very
successful Inter House athletics competition. This will be held on the afternoon of Wednesday 11th June
at Linwood Sports Centre. Other events include the Silver Tablet Concert in which, this year, five
musicians all of whom are at Grade 8 level in their chosen instrument, will perform for us in the
St Columba Church.
Junior 6 will have its annual trip to Newlands and
this will be followed by residential trips for SII to
Ardeonaig, SIII to the Rhineland and Barcelona, SIV
outward bound to Barcaple, Dumfriesshire and SVI
on their final School trip to the Ardeche.
Meanwhile SV will have work experience.
All of this immediately precedes Prizegiving when
our speakers this year will be former pupil and
author Mairi Hedderwick (Junior School) and The
Lord Advocate, The Rt Hon Elish Angiolini, QC
(Senior School).
The Annual Presentation to parents took place on
the evening of Wednesday 7th May. I, together with
Mr David Ward, Chairman of Governors, and Mrs
Cook reported on this session. Most of the time
was devoted to discussion of various issues
surrounding the refusal of our planning appeal. The
presentation was followed by the Parents’
Association Annual General Meeting. It is
heartening to know that a number of parents
have come forward in response to the
Parents’ Association’s committee’s appeal
for new committee members.
A team of School debaters won the Scotland Regional Final of the Institute of Ideas and Pfizer
Debating Matters Competition at the Glasgow Science Centre on 14th March. St Columba’s
was one of four schools competing for a place in the National Final.
Megan Girdwood (SIV), Hannah Reilly (SIV), William Hesselmann (SIII),
Becky Marshall (SV) and Rebecca Meredith (SIV) were delighted with their victory.
They won £1,000 worth of school resources and a year’s subscription to
Encyclopaedia Britannica online.
During March I spent a week in China exploring how the
teaching of Chinese language and culture might be
introduced at St Columba’s. The trip was organised by Hanban,
the Chinese Government agency responsible for developing the teaching of
Chinese culture and language abroad and I was accompanied on my trip by five other Senior School Heads
from leading UK independent schools. I visited Gao Xin No. 1 High School in Xi’an which is a possible
partner school for St Columba’s. Gao Xin has 6,500 students on five campuses and has superb modern
facilities. Interestingly, pupils are taught in classes of between 50 and 70 in number. Classes were silent,
focusing attentively on every word of their teachers. Here the emphasis is
on imparting knowledge and understanding rather than on debate,
discussion and skill development. Gao Xin has partner schools in
many parts of the world and is keen to form links with us and I
hope to be able to take this forward in the coming year.
It was a most informative trip with the added pleasure of visiting
the Forbidden City and walking on the Great Wall. The next step
is to consider how best to recruit a
teacher of Mandarin.
The Rector with the Principal and Vice Principal of
Gao Xin and Patrick Meehan of Brighton College.
In a previous Columban, I informed you that St
Columba’s was offering bursary places to new
applicants into Transitus for the first time. We have
since extended the offer to include applicants into
SV to study Highers and to SVI to study Advanced
Highers, but it is proving difficult to recruit bursary
students. I have advertised extensively in local
papers, but am aware that word of mouth is also an
important means of communication and I should be
grateful if you would spread the news!
Staff Changes
We are pleased to welcome a number of new staff members next Session –
• Ms Tracey Wright, Teacher of Business Studies. Ms Wright is a Dundee graduate. She is an experienced
teacher and is currently Assistant Principal Teacher of Business Studies at George Watson’s College.
• Ms Alison Elkin, part-time (0.5) Teacher of History. Ms Elkin is a graduate of the University of Glasgow
who is currently teaching at St Paul’s High School, Glasgow.
• Ms Suzie McGuiggan, part-time (0.4) Teacher of Geography. Ms McGuiggan is a graduate of the
University of Edinburgh and is currently teaching Geography at Denny High School. She has been
responsible for setting up the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expedition arrangements at Denny.
• Ms Gemma Rose McKelvie, Teacher of Mathematics. Ms McKelvie is a graduate of the University of
Glasgow and is currently completing her probationary year at Notre Dame High School, Glasgow.
• Mrs Moyra Mabe joined as Senior School Receptionist on 25th April. Mrs Mabe brings to the School a
wide range of experience from her previous post at the BBC.
Debating And Public
Speaking Sponsorship
St Columba’s has two debating sections - Junior
Debating (SI-SIII) and Senior Debating (SIV-SVI).
The School competes in more than 20 competitions
during the debating season and hosts its own
invitational competition involving many of the best
schools’ debaters in Scotland.
Opportunities exist to sponsor the team, to help
with the cost of entries and travel to regional and
national finals, and/or sponsor the School’s annual
invitational debating tournament. For further details
please contact Nichola McKay at
[email protected]
Having competed in the competition for three years, teams from
St Columba’s have consistently reached the Regional Final stage, but this
is the first time that they have qualified for the National Final.
Rebecca Meredith was awarded Best Individual
Speaker in the competition and received a number
of prizes for what judges deemed the outstanding
performance on the day. Team member William
Hesselmann was also recognised by judges who
awarded him an honourable mention for his own
contribution to the day’s discussions and
arguments. Speaking on the debates afterwards
William said, “Preparing for and taking part in
Debating Matters debates allow you to go deeper
in to the issues. The topics are also very relevant
to what’s happening in the world.”
Busy Schedule For Debaters
In addition to the Debating Matters competition, debaters have been very busy
in the last few weeks. William Hesselmann and Fiona Ritchie (SII) reached the
Regional Final of the Asda ESU Juniors competition but were unfortunately beaten into
second place.
In The Auld Hoose competition held at Robert Gordon’s College in April Fiona Ritchie was the
Best (SII) Speaker and she finished third overall out of 40 speakers, most of whom were in SIII.
St Columba’s A team finished 6 out of 20 schools. Caitlin Findlay (SII) and Elliot Gemmell (SII), debating in
an impromptu competition for the first time, won one of their debates and finished a very creditable 13th overall.
Hannah Reilly, Rebecca Meredith and Megan Girdwood were in the Scottish Schools’ Development Squad
and gained from this a trial for The Scottish Schools’ Team, which is to compete in Washington in
September at the World Schools’ Competition. They debated very well, but unfortunately did not make
the final team of 5, which is going to Washington.
On Saturday May 10th Hannah Reilly and William Hesselmann competed in the finals of ICYD in Oxford
(The International Competition for Young Debaters) and after 4 debates – all impromptu - William
finished 6th equal out of 152 speakers, Hannah finished 9th and, as a team, they finished 3rd out of 76
schools from England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland and Canada. This meant they qualified for the final, which
was held in the Oxford Union, along with Dulwich College, Leeds Grammar School and Habs Boys: on a
split decision Leeds Grammar won.
The motions debated at ICYD were:
• This House would allow Liberal Democracies to ban extremist political parties
• This House supports making the teaching of endangered languages that are part of their heritage,
compulsory in schools
• This House would ban advertising that treats the female body as a sex object
• This House believes governments should make a commitment not to undertake any aggressive military action
as long as they remain in power
The motion for the Final was:
• This House would allow prisoners sentenced to life imprisonment to choose death instead
The pupils had 15 minutes to prepare before each of these debates and then had to deliver one of eight fiveminute speeches, depending on their place on the table, with reference only to an almanac. Not an easy task
nor one that many adults would relish!
Later this term we have two teams taking part in
the Glasgow Bar Association competition for
pupils aged 15 and under.
STOP PRESS: Fiona Ritchie (SII) and Maxine
Muirhead (SI) have reached the final.
In School, we are having an Inter House
competition for SI-SIII, as well as a Balloon Debate
at which the following villains are speaking to
ensure that one of their number survives.
Voldemort;The Wicked Witch of the West;
Captain Hook and Cruella De Vil.
One Step Closer To Eco School
Duke of Edinburgh
The Walking Boots Get Some Action…
55 pupils and 15 supervisors were out on Gold and Silver practice hikes just before the start of the
summer term. Gold pupils ventured into the Trossachs National Park and visited Loch Fyne, Loch
Lomond and Loch Katrine before finishing at Rowardennan. Silver award pupils were in
Arrochar and Lochgoilhead. The weather was particularly good which helped to make it a
very successful weekend for both groups.
Gold Hike
19 pupils took part in the Gold Hike from the 1st-5th May. In mixed weather conditions
they covered 50 miles of the Argyllshire hills around Glen Etive and Glen Orchy, camping
out for four nights. The same weekend
saw 50 pupils and 10 supervisors
out in Clyde Muirshiel
Regional Park for the Bronze
practice hike.
Senior School was delighted to achieve the bronze award at the beginning of May in recognition of the
work carried out this year. This included an Eco Review conducted by the SII Business Studies class, fundraising by the School Council to raise money to purchase new recycling bins for all classrooms, the
continuation of the recycling rota established by last year’s SII Business Studies class and the setting up of
an Eco-Committee led by Ross Donachie in SIV.
We mentioned in the last issue that Junior School is in the process of applying for the bronze award
too and they hope that the range of new initiatives introduced throughout School will enable them
to achieve this award.
Junior School was one of four local primary schools asked by Gibb Stuart Ironmongers to
come up with a design for their new eco-friendly ‘Bag for Life’. The designs were fantastic
and picking a winner was very difficult for the School’s Eco Committee, so two of the
finalists were selected and the drawings of Oliver Monteith (J6B) and Alaina Taylor (J3D)
were forwarded to Sandy Gibb Stuart to make the final decision.
Walk to School Week began in June which aims to encourage children to walk to
School on a ‘walking bus’. There are three different pick-up points throughout the
village for children to be picked up or dropped off and a number of adults who
‘drive’ the bus!
Beating The Retreat – 23rd June
Joe Steps Down
Joe Knowles, who has been assisting with the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
Scheme for 18 years, on the Silver hikes for 8 years and as lead supervisor on
the Gold for 10 years, stepped down from his duties on 5th May at the end of
the Gold hike.
To mark the occasion Joe and his wife, Linda, were guests at Assembly on the
8th May. The Rector thanked Joe for his outstanding service to the School and
School Heads, Alastair Findlay and Rona Paterson, presented to Joe, as a token of
the School’s appreciation, a painting ‘Icy Morning, The Knapps’ by Helen Beall, Head
of the Design Faculty, and a School decanter to Linda.
Joe then spoke of his Gold hike experiences and the array of personal skills that the Duke of
Edinburgh’s Award Scheme offers individuals. He encouraged pupils to embrace the Award and
“…rise to the Gold challenge - if you are up to it!”
The School’s Pipe Band presents Beating the Retreat on Monday 23rd June - an
evening to enjoy the music of the Pipe Band. This special event bids farewell to
the SVI band members, who have played for a number of years, and is an
opportunity for all parents and former pupils to watch the band.
The event is due to be held outdoors in front of the Shalott building at Junior
School. Gates open at 6.45pm, march-on 7pm, finish 8.30pm. Light refreshments
will be served. The event will be relocated to the main hall in Junior School if poor
weather dictates.
Beating the Retreat is a free event and will be ticketed. Numbers are limited and
tickets will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis. Any former pupils who would
like to attend, please call Reception on 01505 872238.
We hope that you can attend this special summer event.
Charlie Flinders (SVI) has been helping Quarriers United football team for his Service section of the Duke
of Edinburgh’s Award over the past 12 months. He has been involved in coaching the younger players and
attending matches, as well as completing two coaching courses. All the staff and coaches at the club have
appreciated the input from Charlie and will be sorry to see him leave.
The following pupils were presented with their award at Assemblies on 31st March, 21st April and 2nd
June. Several pupils are pictured with the Rector and Runa McNamara.
Silver Awards
John Buchanan, Ria Duthie, Stewart Gray, Paul Haig, Allison Hodgart, Carolyn Lang, Emma Leighton,
Eilidh Rarity, Abigail Beall, Rachel Cannon, David Conn, Scott Dickson and Craig Goodbrand.
Silver Awards, 2nd June
Bronze Awards
Struan Dickie, Hugh Gillies, Eilidh Hart, Rory Henderson, Jennifer Hoad, Hannah Lyth, Beverley
Macpherson, Stephanie McCabe, Lewis Miller, Philip Palmer, Laura Pirrie, Kelly Provan, Hannah
Reilly, Graham Robertson, Hannah Simpson, Iain Boyd, Josie Doherty, Emma MacRitichie,
Jordan McKenzie, Rebecca Meredith, Louise Paterson, Katie Stirrup, Peter Wren,
Jamie Anderson, Beth Docherty, Melanie Lau, Tessa Robins and Angharad Williamson.
The Bronze Standard (International equivalent)
Maxine McKay-Turner and Mercedes McKay-Turner.
Bronze Awards, 2nd June
SIV Work Shadowing And SV Work Experience
Chess Club
On 5th and 6th December, SIV pupils undertook 2 days of Work Shadowing, which gave them the opportunity, among other things, to make links between their
studies and the World of Work. For some careers such as Law, Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Medicine this is the first step towards building a portfolio of
work experience, which the School will assist pupils to develop. Pupils undertake a further week of work experience in SV.
Chess Club was re-introduced to Senior School this session, rising like a phoenix
from the ashes, with its new motto, “Chess Club welcomes all pupils, regardless
of age, experience or ability”.
For most pupils it is the chance to gain a brief insight into a career which interests them; 2 lucky pupils spent a day with Air Traffic Control at Glasgow Airport and
made such an excellent impression during a visit to Loganair that they were invited to accompany the pilot on the flight deck during a short flight! Opportunities
like this are rare but offer an example of how pupils can unlock opportunities during work placements.
Under its new manager Dr Spencer, with able assistance from Mr Boag,
Chess Club has resumed its weekly lunchtime activity. The real Chess Club
figurehead and mentor this year, however, is Calum
MacQueen (SVI), international chess superstar
and qualified chess coach.
Further highlights included a one-day workshop with Price Waterhouse Coopers at their Glasgow office; 2 placements based at the construction site for the new
Hampden Football Stadium with Central Building Contractors; a day on the film set of Rebus and 2 placements with the Location, Location, Location production
team at IWC Media. Local businesses were also very supportive and provided pupils with opportunities to explore interior design with Interiors by Angela Barr,
fashion design with SARK, pharmacy with Alliance Pharmacy and a busy GP clinic at The New Surgery. Lochwinnoch Golf Club also provided a placement, which
gave an aspiring golf course designer the chance to pick the brains of a recent graduate in Golf Course Architecture.
A mailshot to parents earlier in the year uncovered some excellent opportunities and I would like to thank them and all employers I have not already mentioned,
for providing valuable placements.
Attendance has been encouraging,
with pupils from SI-SVI taking part,
with a pleasing balance of girls and
boys. On average sixteen pupils
participate weekly.
We are keen to extend our database for work placements and have plans to develop relationships with business and industry further. I would be delighted to hear
from anyone who would be interested in discussing future opportunities. My email address is [email protected]
As we go to press SV are preparing to embark on a week of work experience from 16-20th June.
Anna Selwood
Work Experience Co-ordinator
2007 Work Shadowing Placements provided by: 3X1 PR; Abbey Veterinary Group; Alliance Pharmacy; Interiors by Angela Barr; Annabel Goldie MSP; CBC; CCA;
Small Media Large; Clyde Space; COPFS, Greenock; Davis Langdon; Doors by Design; Edrington Group; Fifi & Ally; University of Glasgow, Faculty of Biomedical &
Life Sciences; Gordon Matthew, Neilston Road Dental Group; Gordon Ritchie; HAA Design; Hill Brown; Holmes Partnership; HR Consultancy; Hunter Robertson;
Iain Rhodes; IWC Media; Johnstone High School; Keith Tuck; Lochwinnoch Golf Club; McLean Museum, Greenock; Miller Samuel LLP; Morris & Spottiswood; NATS,
Glasgow Airport; Odgers Ray & Berndtson; PACE; Peach Digital; Price Waterhouse Coopers; Royal Alexandra Hospital; Resolution Asset Management; Rivendale
Nursery; SARK; Science Museum; Scottish Enterprise; Scottish Power;Teknek;Thales;The New Surgery; Western Infirmary; WH Malcolm.
In February and March we ran the Club Phase of the UK Land Chess Tournament.Twenty two competitors
played seven rounds in a gruelling schedule. When the dust settled, Calum emerged victorious, recording a
remarkable seven wins out of seven.
Maxine Muirhead, Calum MacQueen and Stuart MacQueen
School Magazine Advertising Evening Classes
The School’s annual magazine is a vibrant full colour
record of news, activities and stories from
St Columba’s throughout the session.
The magazine is produced by pupils and published in
October. It is distributed to all parents of St
Columba’s pupils and many former pupils and friends
of the School purchase it. Copies are also
prominently displayed in Reception at both Junior
and Senior Schools.
If you would like to find out more about advertising
opportunities, please email Mrs Kennedy at
[email protected]
The new session of Evening Classes at St Columba’s
begins on Tuesday 9th September. The School offers
eight-week courses in subjects ranging from art,
bridge, computing, easy entertaining, French and
Spanish/Portuguese, German/Italian to Digital
Photography with desk-top publishing.
Classes are held on a Tuesday evening from
7.30-9.30pm at Senior School.
For more information, please visit or call 01505 872238 when
School returns after the summer break.
Is there an Evening Class that you would like to
run? If so, please email Mrs Munro,
[email protected], to discuss.
Sessions run from mid-September to the end of
November and mid-January to the end of March.
Annual Sports Dinner
FP v School Matches
Diary Dates
Head Girl Rona Paterson, who chaired this year’s
Sports Dinner on 2nd April, was delighted to
welcome guests Dan Turner, James Eddie and Eric
Milligan from Glasgow Warriors.
As a result of the wet weather at the end of
March, the annual Former Pupils v School hockey
and rugby matches were rescheduled to
Friday 4th April. The weather was kind
to us, the pipe band was out in force
and a large crowd turned up to
support both matches.
23 Jun
Pipe Band Beating the Retreat,
Junior School, 19.00
25 Jun
Last day for Prep/Nursery
26 Jun
Junior School Prizegiving,
St Columba Church, 10.30
The School hockey team,
captained by Aimee McDonald,
was triumphant against Lauren
McLeod’s FPs, with the winning goal
from Rachel Cannon: final score 1-0.
David Morrison’s School rugby team had
high hopes of a second successive victory as
they led the match during the initial stages,
however Sam Bell’s team of former pupils was an
extremely strong side and eventually won 23-5.
27 Jun
Senior School Prizegiving,
St Columba Church, 10.30
Aimee MacDonald, 1st XI Captain, and David
Morrison, 1st XV Captain, reviewed the hockey and
rugby seasons and thanked both teams for their hard
work and determination.
Aimee received the
Hockey Captain’s
Trophy, Kirsty
Wilson and Becky
Marshall were
named Players of
the Year and Rona
Paterson received
the Goalkeeper’s
Shield. David received the
Rugby Player of the Year award in
addition to the Captain’s Trophy.
One of the highlights of the evening was a Question
session in which our rugby guests were asked about
their career highlights, memorable moments and
favourite holiday destinations to name just a few of
the topics. All were suitably answered in a very
humorous manner!
Ten pupils in total performed well enough to qualify for the West of Scotland Regional Megafinal. Six pupils
took part in this event, playing six matches in one day. Maxine Muirhead (SI), Calum MacQueen and
Stuart MacQueen (SII) won through to the North UK Gigafinal, to be played in Manchester in July.
The 2008 Chess Champion trophy was awarded to Calum MacQueen at Assembly on 28th April. Thank
you to everyone involved in Chess Club this year and good luck to our three Gigafinal competitors.
School closes for summer holidays
20 Aug
School opens for pupils
9 Sep
Evening Classes commence,
Senior School, 19.30
Players and spectators returned to Junior School
for refreshments and the prizegiving. Mr Girdwood
said a few words and FP President, David Clark,
presented trophies to the winning teams and
Player of the Match awards to former pupil,
Emma Kelly and School rugby player, Kyle Nish.
Associated Board Of The Royal Schools Of Music - Results
Design - Textiles, Fashion And Products
The following pupils have been successfully presented for Associated Board of the Royal
Schools of Music Examinations this session -
This session has seen the largest number of Higher Art candidates for many years.
The class always has some SVI pupils taking ‘crash’ Higher. Many of the pupils are hoping
to go into a career involving Art or Design and the various designs this year reflected
the diversity of their interests.
Heather Brandon (SIII)
Rebecca Anderson (SII)
Emma Leighton (SV)
Jennifer Hoad (SIV)
Katie Rodgers (J5)
Jerome Bailey (SII)
Jennifer Hoad (SIV)
Fraser Quinn (SII)
Fiona Faint (SI)
Stuart Cunning (SII)
Hal La Thangue (SIII)
PJ Rankin (SIII)
Natalie Bascetta (Tran)
Iain Boyd (SIV)
Katie Robins (SII)
Alistair Spragg (SIII)
In the category of “Textiles/Fashion” eight garments were produced and
in “Products” we had four items, including a full-size game for the
Sensory Garden at Countryview in Quarriers:
Abigail Beall Polly Brechin Lynsey Greig Flora La Thangue Fiona McLachlan Conar McLeod Iona Walker Lucia Wylie -
a dress for a merchandise seller at a Muse Concert
a dress made out of recycled material for Peaches Geldof
an outfit for a waitress at a beach bar
an outfit for an architect attending an event at the Savoy
an outfit for Keira Knightly in ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’
a suit for Eddie Izzard at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival
an outfit for a waitress at a bar called ‘Chicago’
an outfit for Madonna’s 50th birthday concert
Jonathan Cawte - a game for the Sensory Garden at Countryview
Gordon Duthie - lockers and a table for the changing rooms at
Kilmacolm Golf Club
Aimee MacDonald - a seating area for the photographer
Annie Liebovitz’s studio
Andrew Mann - a shelter for Kilmacolm golf course
Fraer Quinn, Fiona Faint and Natalie Bascetta passed with Distinction.
The Trinity Guildhall examination results will appear in the next issue.
West Of Scotland Independent Schools Orchestra And Concert Band
Mercedes McKay Turner and Jennifer Hoad, both in SIV, represented St Columba's at a weekend course in
March. The course finished with a very successful concert in the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama.
National Youth Brass Band Of Scotland
SVI pupils Douglas MacKillop and Alex Mitchell will tour Japan during the summer with NYBBS.
BBC Radio 3 Choir Of The Year 2008
Silver Tablet
National Youth Choir Of Scotland
Design In The Community
The Junior Choir, with pupils from SI-SIV,
competed in the Children's Category of this
prestigious competition on 27th April at the
Queen's Hall, Edinburgh. They performed three
songs - Shiru, Winds and Wakati Wa Amani.
The choir was given very positive feedback from
adjudicators Susan Digby and Stuart Barr, but
unfortunately did not make it through to the
National Selection Stage. The pupils were very
excited and nervous about their performance, but
sang beautifully and were a credit to the School.
Paisley Art Institute Competition
On 12th June five talented SVI pupils are
performing in competition for this prestigious
musical award - Alex Mitchell (trumpet), Charlie
Flinders (piano), Douglas McKillop (trombone),
Lauren Matthew (voice) and Rachel Coyne (voice).
The competition will take place in St Columba
Church at 1.45pm. We are pleased to announce
that Mr Tom Walton and Mrs Palma Allan will
adjudicate the competition this year.
Emma Leighton (SV) successfully auditioned for the
NYCoS training choir.
The liaison project between the Art Department
and the Sensory Garden at Countryview,
Quarriers, has involved pupils from three year
groups, SII to SV. This project involves the
production of several garden games and panels
which will decorate the fences around the
Sensory Garden.
A number of budding artists from St Columba’s
School in Kilmacolm entered the Paisley Art
Institute Schools’ Competition 2008 which was
themed around Symbols and Superstitions.
The following pupils were placed as prizewinners
and were invited to attend Paisley Museum and Art
Galleries on the 31st May.
Each pupil has shown considerable enthusiasm
and has had a chance to contribute his or her
own ideas to this pupil-led venture.
The McFarlane Award for Best Entry was
presented to Ila Khan.
11-13 years:
1st Ila Khan,
2nd Maddie Harvey,
3rd Mark McGregor
14-16 years:
1st Claire Skimming,
2nd Andrew Cawte,
3rd Melanie McCarroll
Rotary Club Of Gourock - Young
Musician Of The Year
Emily Jayne Russell (SV) and Jennifer Hoad (SIV)
represented St Columba's in the Senior and Junior
Categories of this competition. The evening took
place in the Chartroom Restaurant at Kip
Marina. The girls performed very well and
were presented with certificates of
achievement following their performances.
Pipe Band
In the last few months the Pipe Band has
supported the Kilmacolm Show and Lilias Day and
performed a number of times at Clydeport. The
band looks forward to Beating the Retreat at the
end of the summer term.
We are very grateful to Gibb Stuart
Ironmongers who have given us a muchappreciated discount on the materials used,
allowing us to produce good quality items which
should be weatherproof for many years.
The project emphasises the work of St Columba’s
pupils both working with, and for, the wider
community. It is an excellent opportunity for young
artists and designers to see their work being used
and appreciated by others outwith the School
Their work, along with
seven other shortlisted entries from
St Columba’s, was on display in the
Museum entrance hall.
The Columban will carry reports of our progress
until we have completed all the garden pieces.
Senior School
SII v Teachers Charity Football Match
Keith Gray Visit
Award-winning author, Keith Gray, visited St Columba's on Friday, 9th May. He spoke to SII pupils
in the library about how he became a writer and gave them ideas for creating their own
stories, mixing their experiences and their imagination.
Pupils were able to purchase copies of his books and have them signed.
Inspired? Get Writing!
Great art galleries inspire people and that was the idea behind the Inspired? Get
Writing! creative writing competition run by the National Galleries of Scotland
(NGS) and the English Speaking Union. The competition, now in its third year,
asks budding writers from all over Scotland to write a poem or a piece of prose
inspired by a work of art in the NGS collection. Entries were invited in five
categories: under-12s, 12-15s, 16-18s, and published and unpublished adults,
resulting in almost 900 entries.
Stuart Wright (SII) was commended for his entry and Fiona Ritchie (SII) won the
12-15 age group with a witty take on the Bonnie Prince Charlie myth ("the
face that launched a thousand tins of shortbread"), inspired by 'Prince
Charles Edward Stuart' by Antonio David.
The full essay will be published in the School Magazine, however
here's an excerpt:
“I KNOW what you're thinking.Which three words just come into your
head as you stand there looking at me.
Bonnie Prince Charlie.
I'm right, aren't I? Only because I lost, you know.
If I'd won, it would have been His Royal Highness, Prince Charles Edward Stewart, and a
lot of bowing and scraping and going out of doors backwards. I don't really mind the Bonnie - I mean, if you look, I
was pretty gorgeous. Bit of a babe magnet in my time. And Prince is accurate enough - it's the Charlie which is
disrespectful. But I just have to stand here and put up with it, and listen to the drivel you lot come up with as you
look at me. All because I lost - and in an odd sort of way you won.You peasants can say what you like and I have to
listen. Believe me if I'd won I wouldn't have been listening to peasants, not at all - unless they were cheering in the
streets I suppose.
It's not as if visitors here say anything original - same old, same old, time after time...”
Fiona's prize is a trip to the National Galleries for her class to participate in a creative writing workshop
on 10th June, which they are very much looking forward to. Every two years the competition winners are
published in a book, Inspired? Get Writing! and Fiona's entry should be published in 2009.
Young Writer Has A Dream
Sarah Coyne (SIV) was awarded first prize for her
poem which featured in 'I Have A Dream', one of a
number of poetry books published by Young
Writers. Over 600 schools and in excess of 21,000
pupils were involved in the competition.
Home Economics
Mathematical Olympiad 2008 - The
UK Mathematics Trust
Success At The Kilmacolm Show
William Hesselmann (SIII) was invited to enter the
2008 Intermediate Mathematical Olympiad in
March this year. The invitation is extended only to
those who have performed exceptionally well and
achieved a high score in the UK Intermediate
Mathematical Challenge. This is a prestigious
national event and for William to be invited is an
honour both for him and for the School. He
received his certificate of merit at Assembly on
1st May.
Following a baking session in their Home Economics
class, ten pupils from SII entered the adult class for
fruit loaves in the show. Joseph Reid was delighted
when his entry won 2nd prize, although he will
probably not let the 75p win change his lifestyle!
First prize in many of the categories went to Mrs
Lyth (nee Cameron), a former pupil of St Columba's.
SII boys challenged teachers to a football match at lunchtime on Tuesday 29th April, organised by Jamie
Satterthwaite and Mr Smith. The teachers won 2-0, with both goals scored by the gazelle-like Mr
Robertson. Over £100 was raised for the Search and Rescue Dogs Association (SARDA).
£700 For Asthma UK
The collection at the Christmas Carol Service
raised £700 for Asthma UK. On 2nd May SVI
pupils Rachel Coyne and Lauren Matthew
presented a cheque to the charity's community
fundraiser, Alison Bertram.
Alison said, "As Community Fundraiser for Asthma
UK Scotland I would like to say thank you very
much to all the parents, pupils and teachers who
helped raise £700 for Asthma UK. St Columba's
School's continued support of Asthma UK is much
appreciated and will help us improve the health and
well-being of over 100,000 children with asthma in
Scotland. The funds raised by the School will be
used to fund our vital services including the
Asthma UK Adviceline, Kick Asthma Holidays,
Alert to Asthma and our valuable
information resources and website.
SII v Teachers Hockey
On 3rd June SII girls played hockey against the
teachers to raise money for charity but despite a
mighty challenge, they were unfortunately beaten 1-0.
"Your support, therefore, is helping us
to achieve our vision of control over
asthma today, freedom from asthma
tomorrow; thank you for helping us."
SI Keep Collecting
SI pupils have been learning about
Antarctica and collected old mobile
phones to raise money for the RSPB's Save
the Albatross campaign.
They are now collecting postage stamps and ask if
you would kindly forward any British or foreign
used stamps to an SI pupil or Mrs McCaffer at
Senior School.
Junior School
Once again the pupils of Junior School have excelled themselves, raising over £3,800 so far this year in
weekly and 'special' collections. The pupils will shortly be choosing their ten favourite charities and each
one will receive a donation from the weekly collections.
Last autumn £60 was donated to the Myasthenia Gravis Association for spring bulbs. Some of the pupils
helped plant the bulbs in tubs outside reception and were rewarded with a colourful display of crocuses
and daffodils this spring.
The last charity collection took place on 23rd May when the pupils and staff paid for the privilege of
wearing something yellow to School. £520 was donated to Ardgowan Hospice.
Junior School staff are holding a Breast Cancer Strawberry Tea on 19th June to raise funds for
the charity.
A number of Senior School pupils helped at the Kilmacolm Show as parking and admissions attendants.
The relatively dry weather thankfully meant that no tractor tows were necessary.
The Sky's The Limit For J3
A Big Thank You
On Wednesday 12th March Junior 3 travelled to Glasgow to visit the Science Centre.
The classes had been learning about Space as their topic and everyone really enjoyed
watching the Space Station 3D film in the Imax Theatre. Everyone thought their 3D specs
had been shattered by the debris thrown out during the rocket take off! The children
were also fascinated by the display in the Planetarium and learned a great deal from
the commentary.
Junior School would like to thank parents for:
• supporting the Travelling Book Fair which was held at School for two weeks during March.
Commission from all sales amounted to £1,200 allowing each class to spend £75 on books. We also
donated just over £200 to Book Aid International
• handing in a staggering amount of Tesco vouchers which has allowed us to buy software and CDs for all
the classes in Junior School
Snow White And The Seven...Ex Jockeys?
On Wednesday 30th April and Thursday 1st May family and friends of Junior 4, 5 and 6
pupils were treated to marvellous performances of Roald Dahl's version of Snow
White. Of course it is typical of Roald Dahl's style that, instead of Seven
Dwarfs, Snow White encountered Seven Ex Jockeys...with a gambling habit!
The show was filled with singing, dancing and lots of acting and mime.
Junior 5 and 6 took on the stage roles and Junior 4 supported with
a wonderful choir.
Junior 3 performed their Space
Assembly to parents and friends on
Friday 28th March. The planets looked
very colourful and the audience seemed
to really enjoy the performance. The children
had a fabulous time participating in the show.
There were two casts who each gave one afternoon and one
evening performance. However Junior 4 sang at every
Everyone took part with enormous enthusiasm
and energy and the rehearsals were lots of fun,
as well as hard work. Many pupils discovered
unknown talents and it was a great
experience to work with others in a team.
The costumes and stage-set were
beautiful. Many people gave up much of
their spare time to assist and a huge
thanks must go to all the staff and parents,
without whom the production would not
have been possible.
Poster Competition
Community police ran a poster competition for pupils from Junior School and Kilmacolm Primary on
internet and mobile phone safety tips. Winner Lyle Quinn (J6) received £50 in gift vouchers for a
computer store courtesy of Kilmacolm Community Council, who sponsored the event. Runner-up, Amy
Bretherton (Transitus) received a signed book from local artist, James Wood, who judged the entries.
J4 paid a visit to the Hunterian Museum as part of
their topic on Romans. Here is a first hand account
of the events that took place:
My favourite part of the outing to the Hunterian
Museum was getting to hold the shield, sword and
helmet. The shield was 3cm lower than the top of my
head and the helmet went over my eyes. I was one of
the last three people to get a turn so Mrs Black took
a picture of Julia, Catriona and me holding our
weapons. I was holding the sword. Roman shields
have patterns on them - some have laurel leaves and
some have zig-zag arrows and wings.
Jamie Eatock J4B
Prep Adventure
Busy Time For Transitus
As part of their 'People Who Help Us' topic, Prep
had visits from Police Constable MacIntyre and
Blue Watch Firefighters from Port Glasgow Fire
The children in Transitus are looking forward to a variety of outings over the summer term which include:
• a trip to the SECC for 'Choices for Life', a multi media presentation designed to help
children of this age resist peer pressure and show them the benefits of choosing
a healthy lifestyle, free of tobacco, alcohol and other harmful substances
They also had fun planting seeds for spring.
• a visit to Stirling Castle and Bannockburn as part of the History course
• a visit to Culzean Castle for a Geography field trip
Toys - Past And Present
Junior 1 went to Scotland Street School in May as part of their topic about toys. The
children had the opportunity to look at and play with toys from the past and present.
We were lucky as it was a beautiful day and the children played outside with girds and
cleeks, hula hoops and diabolos.
Beautiful Butterflies
Junior 2 have been learning all about Mini-Beasts
this term. As part of this study the children 'grew'
their own butterflies in class. Each child was given
a baby caterpillar which they named and kept in a
small container with food inside. The children
observed the caterpillars on a daily basis and were
amazed to see how quickly they developed.
Eventually each caterpillar shed its final skin to
reveal a chrysalis underneath. These were gently
transferred into a butterfly net and the children
waited in anticipation for the adults to emerge.
The butterflies seemed to enjoy the flowers and
fruit that the children brought to School for them
to feed on. J2 designed and distributed invitations
for the 'Grand Release' on Friday 30th May when
they, along with Prep and other staff members,
thoroughly enjoyed watching their insect friends fly
away on a new adventure.
Cycling Proficiency
Junior 6 have been practising their road riding skills in order to pass their cycling assessment. After
making sure their bicycles pass a safety test, Mrs Blackie, Mrs Paterson and Mrs Simpson have been teaching
the children safety at junctions, turning techniques and the all important emergency stop!
Class Visits
Class visits take place to help ease Junior 1 and Transitus pupils into their new environment, prior to the
start of next session.
New Junior 1 pupils have visited the School first in small groups and then all together as a class on 22nd
May. The current Junior 6, along with new pupils joining Transitus in August, visit Senior School on 17th
June to familiarise themselves with the building and find out where the various classrooms are.
At The Time Of Going To Print...
• Junior 6 return from their residential trip to Newlands
• Junior 3 visit Pollok House and Scotland Street School as part of their Victorian Children topic
• Junior School pupils are eagerly anticipating Sports Day at Birkmyre Park
Following four weeks of training Duncan MacNeil, a retired police officer, will come to the School to assess
their cycling. The children's skills should earn them a certificate and badge.
A Final Word From The 1st XI Captain, Aimee MacDonald
Cross Country
Andrew McAlpine, SIV
To say the 1st XI has had a successful season would be an understatement.
The girls have grown as individual players and their continued hard work and
dedication have resulted in many team successes.
After a slow start to the cross country season of 2007/2008, I have been training hard and found some
fitness and form in recent months. On a cold wet 11th December 2008, I ran at the West District Cross
Country Championships at Irvine. Despite the harsh conditions, I came a respectable 12th position and felt
confident going into the more significant races of the season. This run qualified me for the West of Scotland
team to compete at the Scottish Inter-Districts at Holyrood Park. What a fantastic experience! I was able
to see the great Keninese Bekele win the seniors race which spurred me on for future races.
Despite a tough run of matches in late August, the team kept going until the
end of 2007 and into the new year. All the hard work paid off when we won
the South West Cup and qualified for the Scottish Schools' final. My team put
on an outstanding performance, defeating Gordonstoun, and holding our own
against Mary Erskine School. Unfortunately we narrowly missed out on a place
in the semi-finals by a 1-0 loss to Hutchesons'.
At the Renfrewshire Road Championships I was 2nd and my team, Kilbarchan, won putting me in a positive
frame of mind for the Scottish National Cross Country Championships at Callender Park in Falkirk. I ran
well and achieved 15th place - good enough to qualify for the West of Scotland team for the British InterCounty Championships in Nottingham. We also won the U-17 Scottish team gold. All the athletes in our
team are eligible to run next year in U-17 classes, so we will attempt to retain our title at next year's
The season ended on a high for all and winning the FP match was an added bonus.
It has been a pleasure to captain such a talented team.
Scottish U-18 Squad
Support For Hockey
Becky Marshall and Kirsty Wilson were in the
Scottish U-18 Training Squad and have been
selected for the Scottish U-18 Girls Hockey Squad.
This is the first time that two girls from St
Columba's have been selected for the U-18 Squad
at the same time.
The PE Department is delighted so many
parents have supported pupils at
hockey matches this season.
South West District
Kirsty Rarity, Katie Wood, Stephanie
Kirkland, Catriona Dickson from
SIII and Kirstin Bailey from SII
are in the U-15 South West
Squad. They played in the
inter-district tournament at
Peffermill in Edinburgh on
Sunday 25th May.
Nottingham was one of the hardest races of my running career and the jump from Scottish to British
running was tough to cope with, but a fantastic experience none the less. After a disappointing race at
Nottingham I was determined to bounce back in my biggest race of the year; the Scottish Schools' Cross
Country. I knew this would be an important race as there was Scottish team selection available to the top
six runners for the SIAB British Schools' Cross Country at Strathallen. I went for a top six place and
managed to make my way through the field to grab 6th place. I was delighted to be selected for the
Scotland team and more hard work paid off as I came 20th in a strong field at the British Schools' to win
team silver with the Scotland team.
SVI Hockey
To help raise funds for their
Yearbook, SVI boys challenged
SVI girls to a hockey match.
It was a well-fought
game and as the final
whistle blew a 0-0
score determined a 'best
of three' penalty shoot-out.
Boys won 2-0 with goals scored by
Mark Wynne and David Morrison.
Becky – back row, second from left,
Kirsty – back row, far right
My younger sister Katie (SII) also deserves recognition for her fantastic performance at the Scottish
Schools'. She came 11th, just missing out on a reserve place in the Scotland team, and proved her talent in
long-distance running. She aims to gain selection for the Scotland team in future years. This cross country
season has been successful because of considerable hard work and commitment, which is true for every
aspect of sport, music or schoolwork: determination, commitment to your goal and belief in yourself,
means as individuals we can achieve much.
Glasgow Schools' Athletics League
SI-SIII athletes were delighted to join the Glasgow Schools' Athletics League. Kelvinside, Craigholme,
Lomond and Hutchesons' are in our group, with track and field events taking place throughout the summer
A Final Word From The 1st XV Captain, David Morrison
The 1st XV has been relatively successful this season. Throughout the year the
standard of rugby has steadily improved, with players growing in confidence and
strength. Our most notable success this year was in reaching the final of the
Scottish Schools' Bowl where we narrowly lost, but played some of our best
rugby of the season.
As captain of the 1st XV I have been honoured to play with such a great group
of boys and I wish the team all the best next year.
A number of our pupils are participating in trials for Renfrew Rhino U-15 and
Glasgow Giants. We wish them well.
A junior gymnastics competition was held on
Monday 31st March with the following results -
SIV girls have had Street Dance sessions with an
external instructor as part of a new initiative
within the PE curriculum. Feedback has been
excellent and it is hoped that this class will be
offered to SV and SVI pupils next session.
Louise Colville
Scott Mair
Camille Anderson
Swimming Championships
My Tour Of South Africa
Alex Baum, SIII
Matthew McCusker (SVI) won the 18 and Under 200m Butterfly race in the Scottish National Age
Group Championships at Tollcross Pool during the spring break.
Senior Swimming Gala
On 2nd April Senior School held its annual swimming gala at Johnstone Baths with the
following results -
1st Strathgryffe, 2nd Duchal, 3rd Kilallan, 4th Craigmarloch
Senior Champion
1st Mathew McCusker
2nd Calum Rae
3rd David Smith
1st Gayle Biggart
2nd Claire Ramsay
3rd Rona Paterson
I went on tour with the Scotland U-15 squad to South Africa on the 18th
March. We were based in Port Elizabeth, but also visited other cities in the
Eastern Cape (East London, Graaf Reinet and Knysna). We played eight
matches against Academy and Provincial teams and won five of them. The
standard of the opposition teams was very high and it was great to play in such
hot and sunny weather! The matches were in very varied locations, including
some of the townships, the second largest of which Mdantsane in East London
hosted one of our matches. We also visited and trained in the international cricket
venue in Port Elizabeth, St George's Park, which was amazing.
We travelled between matches by minibus and covered about 2,000 kilometres by road, breaking down
three times; once was in the desert and we had to wait for three hours to be picked up.
We visited two game parks and a crocodile sanctuary, as well as sampling a LOT of
Braais (South African BBQs). What really struck me most was the poverty of
people living in the shanty towns compared to the living conditions in rich areas.
1st Jonathon Robb
2nd Euan Rae
3rd Jamie Anderson
1st Hannah Lyth
2nd Rebecca Meredith
3rd Hannah Simpson
1st Jack McCusker
2nd Gregor MacEwen
3rd David Biggart
1st Fiona Bell
2nd Beth Nandwani
3rd Chloe Lyth
1st Josh Nandwani
2nd John Clyde
3rd Greg Cunning
1st Catriona Love
2nd Ellen Aiston
3rd Katie Scott
The visit was a fantastic opportunity to see another very different country and to
play cricket there. I want to thank St Columba's for enabling me to take part in
the tour and also my club, Greenock Cricket Club, for all their support. Finally,
thanks to everyone who sponsored me in the Great Winter Run in Edinburgh, which
helped us all to raise funds for the trip.
Alex was also selected to play for Greenock 1sts in a friendly against the Scottish U-19 team.
Throughout May, 24 boys from Junior 6 and Transitus thoroughly
enjoyed playing in the Inverclyde Qwik Cricket fun tournament held at
Greenock Cricket Club. They were delighted to finish in second place.
The Transitus Tennis Championships were
played on Saturday 10th May at the
Astroturf. Abigail Dodds won the girls'
section with Caitlin Girdwood as
runner-up. In the boys' section
Steven Leighton won with
Marc Smillie as runner-up.
Badminton Club has been well supported again this season involving SI, SII, SIII and Duke of Edinburgh's
Award pupils. The Championships were keenly contested and produced the following winners -
Hannah Edmundson (SIII) had success at indoor
arena-eventing prior to the start of the outdoor
eventing season. These competitions encompass
dressage, show-jumping and cross-country. In April
she completed the Intro classes at Kirriemuir and
Brechin to finish 12th and 2nd. She moved to PreNovice level at Richmond, finishing 2nd, and
completed Floors Castle in 13th place.
On Saturday 9th February, Alexander Afuakwah (Transitus) became the Scottish Junior 11 Indoor Rowing
Champion at the Scottish Championships held in Heriot-Watt University. Alex set a new Scottish record by
rowing 534 metres in a set time of 2 minutes. He not only beat his nearest Junior 11 rival by 86 metres, but
he also beat the winner of the older boys Junior 12 category by 6 metres.
A girls' match was played at
Craigholme on 14th May;
Transistus won 6-0 and
Junior 6 lost 4-3.
Our U-13 girls played against
The High School of Glasgow
and won 4-2.
Junior Cricket Competition
SI/SII Girls singles
Claire Skimming
SI Boys Singles
Euan Hunter
SII Boys Singles
Stuart MacQueen
Girls Doubles
Kirstin Bailey/Claire Skimming
Boys Doubles
Stuart MacQueen/Gregor Wilson
Representing Renfrewshire Riding Club, Hannah was
also a member of the only junior Scottish team to
qualify for the cross country competition at the
Festival of the Hunter National Finals in Northants.
The team came third and individually Hannah was first.
He is currently ranked 2nd in Britain for Junior 11 and 3rd for Junior 12.
Alex and his brother, Chris (SIII), joined forces with two pupils from Johnstone High on 15th March to race
in a Junior 14 racing quad at the Scottish Schools' Head Race. This is a 5km race along the Union Canal at
Dullatur. Their quad came 3rd.
On Saturday 26th April, Alex won another gold at Strathclyde Country Park, racing in a single scull in the
Junior 12 category.
Alexandra Findlay (SIII) has been involved in
tetrathlon, a competition for Pony Club members,
involving shooting, swimming, riding and running.
President’s Update: David Clark
An ever increasing number of FPs have expressed an
interest in a golf event and therefore a couple of
provisional dates have been set for early September.
This event will be open to all FPs, Governors,
Parents’ Association and staff. Numbers will be
restricted, therefore expressions of interest are
welcome. More information will be posted on the
website, so please check regularly to keep up to
date. An entry form will also be available online
shortly. The committee would welcome assistance
from any golfers who can take on some of the
organisation for this event.
Hi everyone and welcome to the new edition of the Columban.
As you will have read in the last edition, I have been elected to take over from Morven
Simpson who, after having her second child, has stepped down from the role of FP
President. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Morven for her
stewardship during her years as President and hope that I can continue her
good work on your behalf.
As with the forthcoming American election, I feel that this is a ‘sign of
the times’. It is my hope that as the first male President of the FP
Association, I am worthy of this honour.
The FP v School matches were a great success as reported earlier
in the Columban. Thank you to Sam Bell and Lauren McLeod for
captaining our FP teams.
Senior Girls Hockey Match
We are organising a senior girls hockey match. The
‘08 FP team has expressed interest in being involved
in such an event and see this as an excellent
opportunity to keep in contact with each other.
Getting enough girls should be fairly easy as many
have already expressed a desire to be involved.
Nearer the time we hope to find sponsors for the
event. However, for the moment, anyone wishing
to help with this event should contact the FP
committee or me directly.
We have an exciting year ahead and many things planned but,
as always, we need your support and commitment to make
them a success. Please help and join in whenever and
wherever you can.
I was asked to provide a short profile of myself for those of
you who don’t know me. This is arguably the hardest part of
my Columban entry, so I will keep it short.
Senior Boys Rugby Match
I currently live in Houston and am married. I left St
Columba’s in 1989 with the first group of SVI boys
at the School. On leaving, I went to university to
study engineering and after graduating, worked for
a number of years in the construction industry in
various managerial roles. Between 1999 and 2004,
I went back to university part-time to study
Business Management and Law.
Just a reminder that a senior boys match is
being organised for next season. This will be
open to all FP boys over 18, of any age,
size or build. Not all of us played the first
time around. Some of us are still playing
for local clubs, university teams or just for
fun, but this is open to all. Please email
me so I can keep you informed.
I own a property investment and
development company of
which I have been the
managing director for a
number of years. The
company looks after
portfolios and investments
for other private individuals
and trust funds. I have
various interests including
sailing, skiing, curling, biking and
cars, to name but a few.
We are still looking for someone to take on the
role of treasurer. This task is not difficult or
onerous and we welcome anyone who wishes to
help us.
Committee Posts
As with any voluntary committee we are always
looking to have more members, either full time or
to help with specific events or functions. If you
think you would like to be involved, please contact
us. It is my intention to list the committee on the
website to make contacting us easier.
As with the other proposed new events
for the calendar, significant interest has
been expressed for this event and once
the curling season starts again in the
autumn, details will be finalised. It is
likely to be near the end of the season,
probably at either Greenacres or
Braehead, and will be open to all who
wish to participate. More information
will be posted on the website.
We have events planned for the forthcoming months - just some of which are detailed, others will
be published in future editions of the Columban. If you wish to suggest any more, please let us know
as we are always happy to have your input.
London House Of Commons Lunch - 15th Nov
We are holding a lunch in the House of Commons on 15th November. This lunch is
always a great success and I hope that many of you will support the event again this
year. To help us guage the potential numbers involved, we would like to hear
from you as soon as possible - please email [email protected]
or write to the FPs’ Association at Senior School.
Further information and a formal booking form will be posted on the
website in due course.
Michael Jamieson, Andrew Lyons,
James Eadie, Fraser Thomson, Ross Miller
and Jamie Macnab were part of the Garnock
team which won the Bowl competition at
the Scottish Rugby Finals Day. Blair Macnab
played for the club in the Plate competition
which his team also won.
Please Keep In Touch
We would love to hear from you about any other events you would like to see, either
held at the School or wherever you are across the country. As we are all spread far and
wide, not everyone can come to Kilmacolm to be part of any FP events held here, but this
should not restrict you from holding a local event. It has been suggested that we should hold more
reunions or local meetings; your opinions and ideas on this are very welcome. Feel free to contact us
or your local area representative - a full list of these is on the FP section of the website.
Please keep us informed of your current details, what you have been up to since leaving school and
anything you wish us to put into the Columban. Everyone loves to read about school friends and as such
we are trying to expand the ‘Where Are They Now?’ section. It’s amazing how many people have been
re-connected to those former pupils they had previously lost contact with.
If you wish to check the details that we currently hold for you, please contact [email protected] or
complete the enclosed ‘News of Self’ form and use the reverse to update us with your news. This form can
also be used to request a copy of this year’s School Magazine.
If you know any FP family members or friends who are not receiving the Columban, please forward their
details to the Assocation and we will gladly add them to our database.
FP Contact Details
FP mailbox - [email protected]
David Clark - [email protected]
Write to the Former Pupils’ Association at Senior School - the address is on the back page.
Local Area Representatives
As always we are looking for people to be a local contact across the country...or world. If you want to be
more involved, please put your name forward. We ask current reps to please make sure that your contact
details are kept up to date.
Read Online?
If you are happy to read the Columban online or download and print locally, please let us know and we will
email you a link to the website for each new issue.
Kimi Bright (2004), who plays for Giffnock, achieved
an U-21 Scottish Cap.
Alison Marr (2007) won the U-23 girls’ singles and
doubles titles at the National Championships held on
12-13th May at Meadowbank Sports Centre.
She was also runner-up in the mixed doubles.
In Memory Of Pamela
Paul Thompson And Zoe Scott, 2001
Everyone within the St Columba’s community was shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Pamela
McCarroll following an accident at the Tutuwau Falls in Guyana. Pamela left School last summer and, before
going to Dundee University to study medicine, was spending her gap year as a volunteer with the education
charity, Project Trust. She was teaching science to underprivileged young people at St Ignatius Secondary
School at Lethem where students loved her warm, friendly approach.
The photo shows myself and another former pupil,
Zoe Scott, taken at our graduation ball. Zoe and I
remain best friends since leaving St Columba's in
2001. We both graduated from Glasgow University
with honours degrees in Law and German and
spent our junior honours years abroad in Germany.
Several extracts from the 2007 SVI Yearbook show how much
she was admired by her peers.
I am qualifying this year as a solicitor, working for a
top 10 Law firm in Edinburgh and Zoe now works
in London in the legal team of an international
pharmaceutical company.
“Pamela is a girl whose bright hair and even brighter
personality has brought colour to our year ever since
she came to St Columba’s from Gateside Primary in J5.”
“...she is considerate, unassuming and, sorry to
break it you to Lamla, is loved by many, many
people. We’ll miss you so keep in touch from
Kathleen Robertson (Kyles), 1990
I am married and have two boys Angus, aged 1, and
Calum, aged 3. I work part-time at my husband’s
vet practice and also sit on the Children’s Panel,
which is very interesting. Life is very busy and
hectic, but I like it like that. I keep in touch with
Linda Fergus and Lyndsay Miller (McDermid).
Prayers were said for Pamela at a special Assembly.
The Rector said, “Pamela was a very popular pupil
who had lots of friends. She was academically gifted,
was involved in the wider life of the School and was a
well-rounded young lady.” Her brother, Fergus, and sister,
Melanie, are pupils at St Columba’s.
Pamela - second row from front, fourth from right
50s - 60s
Eileen Mackie (McNeil), 1956
I live in Australia now and left school in 1956 at
the age of 12. I lived in Kilmacolm and my mother,
then Isabel McGeachy, was a former pupil at St
Columba’s too.
Where Are They Now?
80s - Present
Fraser Simpson, 1988
Jillian Luff (Austin), 1967
I joined St Columba’s in Transitus and left in 1988. I have been a director of the graphic design, advertising and
web agency, Revolve Creative, for over five years and am extremely pleased to be involved with the School’s
marketing material, which includes this newsletter.
After reading Geography (thank you, Miss Campbell) at
Edinburgh and marrying, we spent much of the 70s abroad Norway, Nigeria (VSO) and Jamaica (with Collins).
In July 2007, I married Laura, an English teacher. We recently moved to
Clarkston and are expecting our first ‘little bundle of chaos’ in August.
With my brother, Jamie (1993), also having been married in March of
this year and my sister, Carrie (1996), expecting her third child in
October, it’s really been a fantastic couple of years for my family.
After leaving Collins for the birth of my daughter, Josephine, I
started working as a freelance cartographer. I computerised in
1989 and with the progress of the internet and all things digital I
then developed MAPgrafix.
The Shaw Family, 1990s
Pat left the office at St Columba's in 2002 to return to her native New Zealand, where she and her
husband now run a bed and breakfast in Amberley with an acre and a half of garden to tend and visitors
from all over the world. Her two daughters and son are now settled out there and enjoying life to the full.
Katherine (1993) has just qualified as a midwife, her studying done at the same time as working in 'Special
Care' as a paediatric nurse. She and her husband, Noel, are expecting twins
in October.
Pippa (1995) has two sons, Jamie aged 31/2 and Sam,
born on 22nd March last year. Her husband, Simon,
works in the construction industry.
We frequently spend holidays in the north west of Scotland, walking or sailing, often with my
younger sisters, also ex Columbans and Edinburgh graduates, Marian (MD of Nevis Range) and
Lindy (an engineer and mother of three in California).
41 years on I still consider myself to be a “horsey girl” (we have three) and still ski as often
as possible.
I am still in touch with my bridesmaid Anne Morrison (Marshall) in Fife, and
Margy Bevan (Macaulay) in Skye.
Class Of 1978-79
Our 30-year reunion is on Saturday 4th October
2008 - a tour round Senior School followed by
buffet lunch. Please contact me at 41 Marine
Parade, Millport or email at
[email protected]
Susan Forrest (Patrick)
Class Of Circa 1989
In a years’ time it will have been 20 years since
leaving school and Jen Marshall (Brown) thinks it
would be great to try to organise a reunion. If
anyone is interested, then please let her know at
[email protected] or drop her a line with your
news anyway!
William (1999) is working in property development
and has just got engaged to Charli, who is
completing her Fine Arts Degree at Canterbury Art
College. No date yet for the wedding!
William and Charli
We had moved to Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire in 1982, which is where our three children have spent
most/all of their childhoods. Extraordinarily all have been taught by Sue Maynard (Susan James) who lives
Katherine, William and Pippa
Senior School
Duchal Road Kilmacolm PA13 4AU
T: 01505 872238
F: 01505 873995
E: [email protected]
Rector: David G Girdwood BSc MEd SQH
Head of Junior School: Davida L Cook DCE ITQ DipAdPrSt DipEdMan
Junior School
Knockbuckle Road Kilmacolm PA13 4EQ
T: 01505 872768
F: 01505 874642
E: [email protected]