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The Ashtead Link The Journal of the Old Freemen’s Association

Issue No 27 March 2013

The Old Freemen’s Association List of Officers 2012-13 President

Robin Eve

Chairman & School Liaison

Laura Morrison

Secretary Membership & Editor

Pat Jenkins


David Harn

Development Officer Rob Austen

Bar Chairman

Mike Bailey


Ron Gummer

Minutes Secretary

Fran Raindle

Asst Secretary

Mary King

Asst Treasurer

Russell Cox

Website Manager

Dom Smith

Marketing Manager

Theo van Dort


Irene Gummer, Eleanor Deighton, Richard Turk

Representatives of Affiliated Clubs: Cricket

Bob Davies


James Burns


Nikki Linsell


Fran Raindle

Bar Sub-Committee Paul Slatter (Barman), Fran Raindle, Ronnie and Irene Gummer, Laura Morrison, David Harn, Mark Mitchell

Vice Presidents - with years of service: Tom Shutter 1959-60, Phil Kelly 1967-8, Richard Haydon 1969-70, David Harn 1971-72, Chris Cobb 1973-74, Ashley Mote 1975-76, Chris Fry 1977-79, Judith Mitchell née Alsopp 1982-83, Nigel Barnett 1984-85, Pat Jenkins née Hardy 1986-87, Chris Reynolds 1988-89, Steve Jenkins 1990-91, Alastair Law 1992-2006

Old Freemen’s Clubhouse Ashtead Park Ashtead Surrey KT21 1ET 01372 274356

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR Dear Members, This has been a much easier magazine to produce as I have had the invaluable help of Mary King (1959) who has done all the typing and most of the chasing to ensure the copy came in by the deadline, so I have been able to spend more time on my Membership and Secretarial roles. Thank you very much, Mary. Now what we need to know is how successful was our November “Link”? Was the fact that the majority received it by email acceptable? We had only one recipient who requested a hard copy, so we can only assume that the others were happy with the arrangement, especially as it freed up vital cash for the updating of the Clubhouse. Please send us a line from time to time, telling us about yourself. This will often spur a contemporary to reply and all helps to make the magazine more interesting. We wish you a happy Easter and look forward to receiving some news from you for the June issue of The Ashtead Link No.28 – the deadline is Friday 31st May. Pat Jenkins

DATES FOR YOUR DIARY 20th March 11th April 14th April 17th April 11th May 24th-26th May 22nd June 23rd June 29th June 20th September September

1950s Leavers’ Farmers’ Club Lunch Rugby Club AGM Hockey Club AGM OFA AGM Rugby Club Dinner Dance Boarders’ Reunion Weekend 00s Reunion Old Freemen’s Association Day 1991 / 1993 Leavers’ Reunion Cricket Club Dinner Old Freemen’s Golf Day TBC

The OFA AGM is on Wednesday 17th April at 8pm in the Memorial Clubhouse Please attend this important meeting if you possibly can.


CHAIRMAN’S REPORT We have endured the snow and bad weather and hopefully are now well on our way to the spring; most of the refurbishment works are completed at the Clubhouse and we are now offering a new smarter version of ourselves. We have been working very closely with the School and the FSA on a number of events and there are a great many reunion dinners and other joint events in the pipeline so please keep your eyes peeled for updates on our new website and on our Facebook page. Please send a request as an ex-pupil if you would like to join the Facebook page where you will be kept in the picture with all the latest news as it happens. Also we very much appreciate all your wonderful submissions which we include in our regular Ashtead Link as everyone loves to hear what you are doing and see your photographs. In addition to our own use of the Clubhouse for our regular fixtures and additional sporting activities, the School has extended a huge vote of thanks for the use of our facilities during their rugby tournaments which have been a great success and will become a regular fixture in our diary. The Hockey Club is working hard to promote not only the ladies hockey but also to begin junior girls and boys hockey on a Sunday. The Sports Hall team are still running aerobics, squash and badminton on Tuesdays and 5-a-side football on Wednesdays and now will be trying a Zumba class on Wednesday 27th March. They welcome new members; contact details are on the information page. We hope you will also come and enjoy a swim during our regular Thursday night slot. Your Clubs really need your support to keep running as they do. If you have any thoughts for a club which you would like to set up, please let us know; it does not have to be a sport and we would love to hear from you. More willing volunteers are needed to run Old Freemen’s: there are vacancies on the OFA Committee which we would love to fill. Please contact us if you feel you could offer your services as we have a wide variety of ages and skills on the current committee but could always do with more. We understand that you are all busy but more hands make light work! We look forward to seeing you at the AGM which this year is being held on the 17th April at 8pm in the Clubhouse, and on Old Freemen's Day on 23rd June. We are planning the events for next year (2014) for the School’s 160th Anniversary. Laura Morrison née Tappy (1986)


DEVELOPMENT OFFICER’S UPDATE REPORT There is not a great deal to report at present. Work to the car park extension has been completed although there is a somewhat unsatisfactory situation immediately behind the Clubhouse, which has been left in a very untidy condition. The School is aware of this and has assured us that this situation will be rectified. The lay-by in front of the Clubhouse has been completed, together with some necessary alterations to pedestrian access. We will shortly be applying for the renewal of our existing planning permission. This is for an extension to the existing Clubhouse rather than a new building although, when we are in a position to go ahead, it is more likely to be the latter. At present, however, it is more important to preserve the principle of the presence of a building in this part of the Park, rather than its precise form.

Rob Austen (1959)

Rob with his wife Liz née Norwood (1959)

MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY’S REPORT The Membership Secretary would like to say thank you to the Life Members for their very welcome donations. Unfortunately, way back in1980, it was decided to discontinue offering this facility as the lump sum they were asked to pay was no longer financially viable. Fortunately the majority of those Life Members have proved very generous over the years for which we are very grateful. Welcome back to Laurin MacKie (1956) and Louisa Kassell née West (2000), both of whom I understand hope to be with us on Old Freemen’s Day, so why not come along and reminisce with them? Pat Jenkins


Data Sharing From time to time both the OFA and the School contact alumni on a range of subjects, from reunions and rugby dinners to careers placement requests and development plans. Due to the Data Protection Act the OFA and the School cannot share details of alumni without the necessary permissions being sought (written, emailed or verbal) as we are officially two separate bodies, though our objectives are similar. Would you be willing for us to share limited data: your contact details, date of joining/leaving and university/career information? In practice, this means the OFA and the School will be able to hold the most recent details for alumni and either party could update the other if your circumstances change, for example if you move house or change occupation. We would be grateful if all former pupils would contact both the OFA and the School to confirm that you are happy for us to share data; an email is sufficient. Pat Jenkins (Membership Secretary OFA) Lindsay Brittain (Development Officer) Your privacy and the security of all information are of vital importance to us. Information that you give will be held by the City of London Freemen’s School in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. All security measures to protect your data and privacy are in place and your data will be used ONLY by the OFA and/or the City of London Freemen’s School. No data will be passed to third parties at any time by either the OFA or the School. If you have any questions concerning data protection please contact the School at You may opt out of specific or all communications at any time with the OFA and/or the School by writing to the Membership Secretary of the OFA and the Development Office, City of London Freemen’s School, Ashtead Park, Surrey KT21 1ET.

EMAILING OF THE ASHTEAD LINK Shortly before Christmas, the November edition of The Link was emailed to those members for whom we have email addresses; everyone else received theirs by post as previously. We have had a small number of responses – mostly very favourable – but we do need to know whether you like this and whether you wish to have your copies emailed in the future, or would prefer to have a printed version posted to you. Please email, ring or write to Pat as soon as you can to let her know; address details are heading up her Editor’s letter on page 1; tel: 01372 274356; email:

SCHOOL NEWS Welcome to new staff: A new Bursar has been appointed, Mrs Sue Williams, to replace Yvette Dunne who left at Christmas to join St John’s School, Leatherhead. There is also a new Chaplain, Rev Jon Prior, who is to share his School duties with those as Curate of St Giles Church.


Careers support We are currently considering ways in which we can more effectively harness the potential of Freemen’s alumni and parent community to provide careers, work placements or mentoring opportunities for our younger alumni in support of the early stages of their own careers, as well as to guide and inform our current pupils. This project is in the very early phases of discussion but we would welcome any thoughts on this and/or offers of assistance. Please contact: Rob Austen (1959)

Enrichment Programme - ongoing Comments from four Old Freemen who took part in the session on 23rd November: 1. From David King (Head Boy 1957) - On the afternoon of 23rd November 2012, under the School’s “Enrichment Programme“, seven Old Freemen, with ages ranging approx from 40 to 85, attended an informal meeting at the School with groups of 13year-old pupils (the top year of the Junior School). The objective was to promote two-way exchange of information through conversation. In this way, the children would hear of the experiences of the former pupils both during their time at the School and subsequently in their careers, while the former pupils would learn about current School life. Alan Wood and David King were taken on a comprehensive tour of the School by two charming girls, Ella and Beth. The facilities are truly impressive: for example, the Sports Hall and the artificial hockey/netball field would eclipse many a municipal facility. The classrooms and laboratories are light, modern and fully-equipped - a far cry from those of the 1950s era. At the finish of the tour, tea and cakes were provided in the Sixth Form Centre (the old geography room and adjacent classrooms of the 1950s now combined into an open plan space), giving opportunity for further talking between Old Freemen and the pupils and their teachers. I understand that similar functions will be arranged in due course and would encourage fellow Old Freemen to step forward to participate. 2. From Alan Wood (1955) - Yes, it was good fun on Friday, and the discussions that went on between guides and OFs was quite illuminating. I took my old set of photos down and there must have been about 10-12 gathered round the table as we went through them – all very interested. If we do it again I will have to go into training! Trying to keep up with a crowd of sprightly 13-year-olds was quite hard work. 3. From Sarah Michelotti née Berman (Head Girl 1971) - My suggestion would be to 'sensitise' the pupils a little more about what they might get out of their encounters with alumni. Perhaps suggest the type of questions they might pose, or give them a task to accomplish which they would need to complete with information gleaned from the people with whom they came into contact. As it was, I felt it was rather as if the pupils felt they had to extol the virtues of the school as it is now (we're convinced!) and show us the wonderful facilities from which they benefit. I'm not sure the students actually got a sense of ‘past-and-present’ which I would assume to be an 5

objective of the activity. But then again, I may be completely off the mark and without knowing what the actual aim was, can't assess whether it was achieved or not. But the cakes were delicious – many thanks to the students... and thanks also for their courteous and informative tours. 4. From Bob Voyce (1945) - I was invited to this most interesting event which began with a tour of the new Junior School. The two young ladies who were my escorts were delightful – full of enthusiasm and obviously proud of their School. Leaving the Sixth Form by the old quadrangle, we climbed the steps to the Kemp and Haywood Houses (named after the two former headmasters who had much to do with the design and development of the School). The series of classrooms there, each named according to its subject, were all well-lit and pleasantly furnished with desks and separate storage areas. The music rooms further down the corridor were similarly named according to the instruments studied. Next we visited what I considered to be the highlights of this building: the Domestic Science kitchen (large central table surrounded by ovens, sink units and everything necessary to provide a first-class meal) and the Junior Library (very extensive shelves of books and computers and room for private study). I was assured that this was small compared with the Senior Library which is even more extensive and under the supervision of librarians. In the last room of this block there was a mixed group of pupils doing a ballet routine. Some of the boys realised we were watching and looked a bit sheepish so we moved quickly on!! On the way up to the Main House my attention was drawn to a new development which is to replace Philp House. I remember this site as the land where Farmer Whitlock used to herd the sheep. Entering the Main House, on the right-hand side is a beautifully-appointed waiting room which is unrecognisable today as what used to be our prefects’ “draughty hole”! Pausing to read on the Memorial Plaque the names of Old Freemen killed in the last war, I was reminded of my friend Denis “Winnie” Wager (1942) with whom I used to cycle daily to School. Returning to the Sixth Form, we called in to look at the swimming pool which was opened in 1973 – this, too, due to be demolished and rebuilt on the Philp House site. I must also make mention of the wonderful Ferndale Theatre – we saw a rehearsal in progress. We made our way back to the stable block to talk and reminisce, and to be greeted by tea and cakes baked by the pupils… and very good they were, too!! Before leaving, and thanking my two escorts for a most enjoyable afternoon, I was asked by a senior pupil if I would record an interview to give my impression of the visit: “You cannot fail to be impressed by the planning and design of all the buildings extensive, but not over-crowded; bright classrooms with restricted numbers so that all pupils receive individual attention. Activities, concerts, visits and projects to include topical events were all available.” As I returned to my car, dusk was falling and as I joined the queue of cars making their way down the drive I could see the Rugby pitches ready for the next day’s matches with the Main House in the background, lights on in many of the rooms and looking most picturesque. Something of a contrast to our Memorial Clubhouse, in


urgent need of upgrading and rebuilding – I hope that this gets early approval so that I and my contemporaries may be present at its rededication.

Walled Garden Some of our alumni may remember the School Garden with Victorian greenhouses behind the old Headmaster’s House. The School has plans to resurrect this area and initial work is under way. Eventually we would like to refurbish the orangery and greenhouses but this is a long-term aim. We are looking once again at growing vegetables, fruits and herbs as well as keeping bees to provide honey. The pupils will be involved through the Enrichment Programme. If you are interested in helping out with the garden or can provide advice on its development or history, please let us know.

2012 / 2013 - EVENTS PAST AND PLANNED Decade Drinks – 13th October 2012 On the 13th October last year, the Clubhouse was host to the first of our Decade Drinks reunions. Approximately thirty-five leavers from 2002 made the journey to Ashtead Park (one flying over from Switzerland just for the event!) to reminisce on their years at CLFS and to catch up on what everyone had been up to 10 years since leaving the School. It was a really enjoyable evening - such a pleasure to see some old faces and eat some amazing cakes thanks to Natasha Goul-Wheeker, Carol Bradstow and Emily Sherwin.

This year, it's the turn of the 2003 leavers. The Association is hoping to organise a reunion event in September/October, either at the Clubhouse or, perhaps, something a little bigger, maybe at the Grandstand, or a Turk’s boat? If you left the school in 2003 and would like to be kept in the loop, or make a suggestion on what you would like to do, please feel free to e-mail us on and we will pass on your ideas to your year co-ordinator.


Christmas Party – 22nd December 2012 Another enjoyable Christmas party was held at the Clubhouse on the 22nd December. Over fifty Old Freemen came to join in the festivities and mince pie eating at Ashtead Park despite the wet weather and cancelled Overs-Unders game. With the Hockey Club providing a rather luxurious raffle (prizes including Chanel perfume and digital camera!), continually flowing cups of mulled wine and the Rugby Club hosting a beer-pong tournament, everyone left at the end of the evening with a Christmas smile on their faces. Nikki Linsell OFA / FSA Cheese and Wine Party – 31st January We had a wonderful evening at the Clubhouse on the 31st January which was attended by a great many members of the FSA committee and the Teahouse organisers. In addition we were joined by the new Bursar, Sue Williams, and the new School Chaplain, Jon Prior, and it was fantastic to have the opportunity to have an informal chat with them and welcome them to the School. We took the opportunity to introduce the members of the FSA committee and to let them know about all the clubs and events which we hold. They were all extremely interested in our history of co-operation and how we will continue to work together in the future. There was much discussion from the FSA members regarding the leavers finding employment and work experience placements which we will, with our extensive network, be able to assist with more and more in the future; we will be contacting our members over the coming months for their help. Lastly, I must thank the ladies Lynne Prys-Owen, Pat Jenkins and Eleanor Deighton for the wonderful spread which they put on for the event - it was greatly appreciated by all. This is the second time recently that we have held this event; it used to be a regular fixture in the diary, and we hope to make this an annual event again. Laura Morrison 1971 – 1980 Lunch Following the very successful reunion in 2012, there may be another gathering probably in 2013 if that fits in with the majority. If there is anyone whom I have not managed to find or contact who would like to be included, please let me know. My email is and my mobile is 07775 600459. Della Panton (née Gover)

Old Freemen’s Golf Day – date TBC Contact Mark Stevenson


1940s Lunch – Friday 1st February Lindsay (Brittain) - thank you so much for arranging the lunch on Friday for ‘us oldies'. It really was a memorable occasion and it was obvious you had given so much thought to detail such as organising parking. The choice of food was excellent and wine really was a bonus! It was great to be able to reminisce and quite amazing how much we all remembered. I thought the archives were terrific and Pat has obviously put in a tremendous amount of hard work to achieve such a collection. I am thrilled with the mug etc - none of which I'll use but keep them to show my son, Geoffrey (he was Deputy Head Boy in 1983). It was so flattering that the Headmaster was able to spare time to lunch with us. I still have wonderful memories of my school days and I am so impressed with the progress that has been made. I spoke to my friend in New Zealand, Kathleen Cranston née Kitching (1950) - who was extremely interested to hear all the news and I shall post the mug etc off to her this week. Dorothy (Dot) Lewis née Wadey (1949) Dorothy told Lindsay that she had been reluctant about attending and it was a friend of hers, also an alumnus, living in New Zealand who persuaded her to come. When she arrived and realised she was the only female alumnus she was slightly hesitant but the old boys very quickly welcomed her and included her and clearly she had a lovely day in the end.

Lindsay Brittain CLFS

Derek Lubbock Ian Butcher Brian Little Leonard Trimm Keith Hood 1948



Philip MacDonald Michael Raindle Headmaster CLFS



Robert Voyce Ben Weston



Laura Morrison

Dorothy Lewis

née Tappy 1986 Chairman OFA

née Wadey1949


Pat Jenkins née Hardy 1952 Membership Sec OFA


Boarders’ Reunion Weekend Friday 24th – Sunday 26th May Following the first very successful reunion in 2010, a second one is taking place in May. Since the boarding accommodation is about to be completely reorganised and from 2014 Philp House will no longer exist, this will be absolutely the last chance for anyone who boarded to experience the joys of travelling down memory lane and sleeping for two nights at School. In 2010, many day pupils joined the boarders for the service at St Giles on the Sunday afternoon, which was a memorial service for Pauline Taylor (née Dart). This year, it is hoped very much that as many people as possible, day as well as boarding, will come to the Park on Sunday 26th May to attend the St Giles reunion service and have tea afterwards in the Clubhouse – a really good opportunity to meet up with your contemporaries again. There will be a full programme throughout the weekend, and wives / husbands / partners who were not themselves OFs are welcome to accompany the boarder concerned. If you are not able to stay for the whole weekend, it will be possible to you to be there for some of the time. Full details were sent out with the November Link, but it is not too late to decide that you would like to take part. You must contact Alan Gerring direct: email / tel 01202 694148 / write 1 Wallace Road, Broadstone, Dorset BH18 8NF AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

00s Decade Reunion – Saturday 22nd June This is the date for the reunion for all pupils who left the School between 2000 and 2009. The details are being finalised but we are already crossing fingers for great weather to enable us to have a BBQ in the Italian Gardens! Check the OFA website for more details.

Old Freemen’s Day 2013 is on Sunday 23rd June This is a wonderful chance to arrange to rendezvous with a group of friends and catch up on all that has happened since your last meeting. There will be plenty to see in the Park as you wander around, possibly even a new building being prepared for the boarders. Tea will be provided in the Clubhouse, or the bar will be open if something stronger is required. Why not start contacting your friends and getting them to put 23rd of June in their diaries and see if you can arrange the biggest group of contemporaries on the day!


News of Old Freemen Jennifer Cole née Evans (1997) is to be congratulated on being awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours List: New Year Honours 2013 Diplomatic Service and Overseas List OBE First Secretary, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, for services to kidnap resolution Simon Cowell MBE (1970) – Wildlife Aid Foundation We found an interesting article in one of the local magazines about Simon’s work with WAF; he explains that because of the heavy rain over the past many months the slug population has increased and with it the use of slug pellets. These contain the drug metaldehyde which passes into local water supplies and also can be harmful to pets. Simon urges everyone to try to avoid using pellets and instead to encourage slugs’ natural predators into gardens: ground beetles, birds and hedgehogs. For further information, go to the WAF website: Anthony Davies (1949) wrote to Pat: You may be interested to see a copy of my Life Membership (of the OFA) which was issued just before I was transferred to Kampala, Uganda on 4th July 1953. I was on the staff of the Standard Bank of South Africa (now part of the Standard Chartered Bank). I left after two years and spent six months in Dar-Al-Salam before moving again to Nairobi, where I joined Coops Brothers Chartered Accountants and stayed with them until July 1961 when I returned to England. I continued in the accountancy profession until 1996 when I hung up my quill after twenty-two years of having my own practice. I enjoyed every day of my working life, with the exception of a few occasions, and it is very satisfying to be able to make this statement. My twin brother, Kenneth (1949), died at the age of 52 from cancer in the throat, as I reported at the time. We were the first twins to come to the School and I recall our first meeting with Mr Parkinson. We were interviewed in his study to consider whether we would be allowed to enter his educational establishment. It was very daunting. I play golf on the South Downs at Pyecombe near Brighton, a very hilly course and a good test of stamina. At the present time we have quite a few octogenarians playing here and I have just become one of them! Our congratulations on your 80th birthday and thanks for the donation to the Association.


David Fear (1956) David has recently had an operation; we received the welcome news from David's daughter, Sam, that he came out of intensive care only two days after the procedure and is progressing well. All your good wishes have been passed on to his daughter. We send you our very best wishes, David, for a speedy and full recovery. Benita Fifield née Mayers (1952) Benita, living in Canada, has sent recent news. Unfortunately she is not in very good health, but thankful that at present she is busy and involved and able to enjoy life. She is in the process of setting up a Mayers/Fifield graduate scholarship open to qualifying students in faculties related to health and education at the University of Alberta. This is as a thank you to the institution “which gave me a very good living for 35 years. I was working as an Occupational Therapist at the University Hospital in Edmonton from 1960-63. I heard they were looking for teaching staff in the new program of OT, so I applied. I taught in the Department of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, from 1963-1999! I guess I did okay as I started as a lecturer and ended up a full Professor. I loved teaching and as I have no children to give to I wanted to give back to the institution.” We send you our very best wishes, Benita. Ashley Mote (1952) has published an e-book: A Mote in Brussels’ Eye – the diary of a Member of the European Parliament “A full, frank and controversial account of five years fighting the EU from within the castle walls; the first ever blow-by-blow memoirs of a British MEP.” £5.98 from Kindle Andrew Peters (1981) wrote: I left Freemen’s in 1981 and went on to study osteopathy at the British School of Osteopathy. I live and work in Guildford, where I have my own practice. My youngest son, Tim, is currently at CLFS in the L6, which he loves. I kept in touch with Mark Blanch (1981) after leaving Freemen’s. He went on to Birmingham University, and then worked in the music industry for some time. After a few years of living in France, Mark returned to work in recruitment. We were best men at each other’s weddings and godfathers to our eldest sons. This year I am running the London Marathon in April to support the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice in memory of Mark. In the autumn of 2010, Mark, aged 47, was taken ill. I went with him to the Royal Surrey Hospital where he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. After a few weeks at the hospital it became clear that he wasn't going home. Thankfully, the hospice found him a place there about a week before he died that November, only one month after his diagnosis. A couple of days before Mark was transferred to the hospice, it was confirmed that I had testicular cancer and had to undergo treatment. The Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice made it possible for me to be with him before he died. The care he received in that tranquil setting was fantastic. The expert knowledge of the medical staff ensured that Mark's last days were as calm and dignified as this terrible disease would allow. The wonderful team was always available for support, but never intrusive on the private moments between Mark, his family and friends.


In 2013 I will be 50 and, to celebrate the occasion, I will be running my first marathon! It seems entirely appropriate to raise funds in memory of Mark and at the same time support the amazing work of the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice. Based in Farnham, Surrey it is the only adult hospice serving West Surrey and North East Hampshire. Please visit my page: John Savage (1961) wrote: Greetings from the South Pacific – no, not the musical! Just love the new OFA website and the published newsletter; I have subscribed immediately. Just so frustrating in the past trying to access and get any news of OFAs. Well done! The memories came flooding back and I was particularly touched with the photo of dear Nobby Clark and Violet - what a lovely pair. I was not the best at metalwork and really struggled with the metal dustpan, which in the end he finished off for me; only problem was it was so heavy my dear Mother could not lift it! I can remember the opening of the Tuck Shop and Violet's unending patience and kindness to everyone in the queue as they scrambled to get their pennies together to buy the blackjacks, shrimps, flying saucers and sherbet dips! My name is John Savage and I left Freemen’s in December 1961 and went straight into the hospitality business; I have been in it all the rest of my life. It has taken me all across the States, Hawaii and Canada, down to Bermuda and the Caribbean, throughout Europe, North Africa and the Middle East and then on to the Far East. Not bad for a lad who left school with just two O Levels!! I retired from Hotel General Management five years ago and settled down in Manila to write the three books that were in me - "What they never teach you at Hotel School" etc - but then I met my lovely Filipina wife Cristina and am busier than ever before, running our own Hospitality Finishing School on the paradise island of Boracay in the south of the Philippines and guest lecturing at seven universities in the Philippines. As for the books? Well, they are just going to have to wait! When Cristina and I were back in England two years ago we visited the School and the grounds and yes, once again the 'Flashbacks’ came pouring back!... the really great teachers we had: Pauline Dart; Tom Conway - despite his best efforts never could get a handle on logarithms; Philip Thomas; Froggy Taylor; Johnny Lansdowne; Baz - sorry can't remember the family name (Ed - Rowland) - but a mountain of a man; Wally – sorry, name blank there (Ed - King) who tried his best to drum Latin into me; Mr Rivett – sorry, never got hold of physics either!! and so many more. How can one ever forget the gentle ways and that disarming smile of Mr Fielden the 13

Headmaster. Then there were the classmates: David Tomlinson, Peter Barnes, David Wright, Nick Exeter, Peter Snell, Bryn Thomas, Robin Welland, David Heaton, Tim Connolly, and the girls: Hilary Surman, Rosemary Davies – sorry, running out of memory so advance apologies. Cristina and I shared our Ashtead Park pilgrimage with my cousin Janet Warren, another OF, when we drove to stay with her later in the trip at her home near Bath; we talked long into the night about our times at City Freemen’s. I would love to hear from any of my classmates and contemporaries and any Old Freemen alumni who are working out in the Far East. Thanks and best wishes to everyone that keep the OFA Flag flying..... John Savage email: Ed – We really value hearing from all of you and welcome your interesting stories; it helps other OFs to keep in touch and feel that they are fully part of the Old Freemen network. Also, if you have news of any Old Freemen who have become especially well-known or successful but are too modest themselves to tell us about their achievements, please send us details. We did notice a newspaper column suggesting that we had only two famous names amongst our alumni, viz Simon Cowell and Andrew Garfield, but we know that is not true as there are many more!

Old Freemen’s Memories Having read the article by David Bell in the November 2010 edition of The Ashtead Link regarding the visit to the out-of-bounds ponds, and the subsequent punishment meted out after one member had fallen in - a similar situation occurred in the 1930s when Alan Hunt (1938) and myself, together with two or three other day boys, visited the ponds during the lunch break and noticed two ponds close to each other with one of them slightly higher than the other. We excavated a narrow channel between them into which we inserted a metal pulley wheel from a Meccano set. With the wheel spinning quickly on its axle, we planned to extend this by connecting it to a smaller pulley wheel, but this was not to be because Alan had decided to walk along a large dead tree trunk that had fallen partly into the pond. Alan lost his balance and ended up sitting in the pond! Alan, of course, was sent home which meant a bus ride to Cheam. The conductor pointed out there were plenty of vacant seats available, but when he saw the state of Alan’s trousers he wrongly assumed Alan had had an accident of a more personal nature, much to Alan’s embarrassment! However, on reaching home, Alan dried off and spent the afternoon reading a book in the garden. As for the rest of us, the Master taking the first afternoon class called for all those who had been to the ponds to stand up, whereupon our names were taken and we all received a Wednesday afternoon detention plus ten conduct marks. Alan, however, was not awarded any punishment which, we all felt, was very unfair! Geoffrey Pott (1939) 14

BIRTHS, MARRIAGES AND DEATHS BIRTHS Slaughter Candia and Andrew (1994) Slaughter now have a son - Leonard Saxon Slaughter - born on 23rd September 2012.

MARRIAGES Our congratulations to these happy couples: Bussutil:Felts Kevin Busuttil married Jo Felts (2002) on 25th August 2012 in the New Forest. It was a magical and unique wedding with the catering being a mobile fish and chip van and the evening ending with toasting marshmallows and songs around the campfire. Many guests pitched tents for the night or stayed in the gypsy caravans surrounding the venue, followed by a slightly charcoal-based breakfast cooked on the campfire. Best day of our lives, shared with the people we love!

Bridesmaids (all 2002) - Becky Lascelles, Natasha Wehbe, Louise Brunger and Cara Williams.

Felts family news: Ben Felts (1996) - engaged with second child on the way, due in May; Sam Felts (2000) - first child on the way, also due in May three days before Ben’s!


Kemp: Ed Kemp (1998) married Nicky on September 22nd 2012. Best men were Tom Hines (1998) and Mark Beebe (1999). Ed and Nicky headed for California on their honeymoon whilst Mark boarded a plane for his second tour in Afghanistan. Both Mark and Tom are now fathers to boys, and Ed will be asking for their advice in June when the first Kemp baby arrives. Ed's business Rugbyrocks is now in its fourth year and gaining pace. Tom Hines works for the RFU and is a regular crew member on Rugbyrocks festival days.

Case:Blythe Shelley Blythe (1994) married Dr Timothy Case on 9th February 2013. The marriage and celebrations were held at Lympne Castle, Kent. The bride's brother Timothy (1996) was an usher and also present were their Wadsworth cousins Faye McCormack (1986), Daniel (1991) and Zoe Romer (1993), and Dr Charlotte English nĂŠe Funnell (1994). Shelley wore a red dress, and fancy dress hats and accessories added to the party afterwards.


DEATHS Our condolences to the families and friends of:

Bart Groves (1944) Bart, who was at the School from 1938 to 1944, has recently died; his funeral was held on 9th February. Bart joined the Royal Navy and retired as a Commander; he had been living with his wife, Monica, in Pembrokeshire. If anyone would like to contact Monica, please ask Pat Jenkins for the address.

Len Voller (1922) Len died on Thursday 15th November 2012 at the great age of 106. Len was an active member of the Salvation Army and had lived a very full and active life which included service in World War II, where he served in the army. He was trained for desert combat and expected to go to Africa but was then sent to France as part of the Liberation Army. He landed in Normandy and travelled through France to Brussels where he came across one of his former Boy Scouts, who very kindly sorted out the mail that was waiting for him. He was presented with a silver acorn for his services to Scouting in April 2007. Len had a lovely sense of humour and was always very interested in news of his old School, even if it was no longer in Brixton.

John Pritchard (1939) died suddenly on 24th December 2012 – brother to Peter. We have Lindsay to thank for this sad news as she had been speaking to Peter about the 40s reunion.

Clive Parminter (Head Boy 1969) Clive died suddenly and unexpectedly from a heart attack at home on 30th November 2012. Several OFs were able to go to the funeral service at St Andrew’s Church, Cobham on 11th December; the service was taken by Rev Peter Vickers. Mark Austen wrote: I am very surprised and much saddened. Clive was a very good friend over many years; sadly, of late, he had seemed somewhat lonely. He had had leukaemia for the last few years; I saw him for drinks and he would not have any alcohol while we sorted out the world! He persuaded me (and himself, I would have believed) that it was all under control and was not critical, but who knows what the medics really thought. It is very sad as he was very talented, very good company and no doubt, despite a divorce, a wonderful parent.


Diana Greenhill wrote: Clive sent me an email asking me to join 'LinkedIn' on 28th October, but I didn't have a clue what he was talking about and I was in Australia with very limited computer access. He reminded me by email the other day that I hadn't joined and Liz filled me in, so once I understood I felt flattered, but doesn't seem much point now I'm settling into retirement and my brain is getting sleepier every day. Poor Clive – I remember when I was mad about him at School and he would wait for me outside the Prefects' Room; then when he had his stormy relationship with Jill whilst she was living in my flat. Later we had some great dinner parties in Cobham with Jan and the kids and then his 50th birthday party at the Burford Bridge Hotel, when he invited us a bit late. Lately I have felt sorry for him because he has looked a bit lonely. Laurence Kingswood wrote: I cannot believe this. Clive contacted me only two weeks ago requesting a reference in respect of a new appointment which he was planning to take up next month, and we were hoping to meet for lunch before Christmas. Roger Seymour wrote: A shock to us all - my sympathy to all his family and friends. Mark Stevenson wrote: Very sad news – he was much too young. Ed - Those who wished to make a donation in memory of Clive were invited to give to Leukaemia Research and/or the OFA. We would like to thank very much those who donated to the OFA.

ADDRESS UPDATES Many thanks to Emma McGarry (2006) who has sent us her new address and to Peter Newman (1935) who has moved to Penzance in Cornwall. We send Peter our condolences following the death of his wife.

THE SUPER HUNDRED CLUB The draw results for November 2012 onwards will appear in the June issue of the Link. If you would like to join the Super Hundred Club for your chance to win £50 or £100 monthly and the £2000 grand prize drawn at the Dinner Dance in May each year, then email Theo van Dort - Is your name going to appear on the winner’s list in the near future? It commits you to only £5 a month on a standing order.


THE ARCHIVES As Volunteer Archivist, I have been delighted with the contributions that so many of you have made. I now have items that include personal memories, Bibles, badges, a list of Girl Guides in the 1950s, copies of the Ashteadian and much more, for which I am extremely grateful. However, still no Gresham tie, so please keep searching. The clothes section is expanding as the School has just introduced some new sports kit, so when the Juniors visit the Archive Room they get a short history of the School and end up trying on the caps, hats and blazers etc and taking photos on their mobile phones. All contributions to our Archives are welcomed and duplicates can be really useful. Last year the School opened on Heritage Sunday for the first time and I put on an exhibition of items from the History of the Park and the School. It became clear that the visitors were more interested in the local history rather than our Brixton roots, so for this year the exhibits will be geared in that direction. It is open to all, but Lindsay Brittain, who organises the School side of the day, does ask for a call to say you would like to come. That way she can ensure there is enough cake for the refreshments table! There is also a guided tour round the grounds and buildings, so it is a rewarding visit. I shall expect to see some familiar faces in September. I am also compiling interesting archive material which adds to our knowledge of the achievements of past pupils no longer with us. Recently Robin Eve came across this most interesting photograph taken by Jerry Fray (1936) the morning after the Dambusters’ bombing of the Möhne dam. Jerry had been awarded the DFC and later the Belgian Order of Leopold and the Belgian Croix de Guerre (with palm) for his photographic work helping the Belgian resistance. Squadron Leader Fray had a most distinguished war career in the RAF from which he retired in 1963. Two years before he died on 26th June 2003, he had been interviewed about his photographic contribution to the war effort. He remembered clearly capturing the evocative series of photographs of the dam at first light on that May morning: “The whole valley of the river was inundated with only patches of high ground and the tops of trees and church steeples showing above the flood. I was overcome by the immensity of it.”

Our acknowledgements to Freemasonry Today; article Photography at War.

Pat Jenkins


CITY OF LONDON FREEMEN’S SCHOOL: HONG KONG ALUMNI REUNION 28th November 2012 This is a further report from the Headmaster, Philip MacDonald Hong Kong Old Freemen Reunion In November 2012, the Headmaster joined twenty Old Freemen for the first ever reunion in Hong Kong. A wine and canapés reception at the Excelsior Hotel in Causeway Bay provided the opportunity for ex-students to renew acquaintances with one another, in some cases for the first time since leaving Freemen’s. There were (mainly!) fond memories of life as a boarder at the School along with amusing anecdotes of some of the high jinks. The Old Freemen who attended the reception represented the late 1980s through to 2011. Verna Yu, who left in 1988, was a very talented musician and is now a journalist with the South China Morning Post. She remembers being part of a smaller boarding community with only two or three boarders from Hong Kong. By the 2000s, the number of boarders from Hong Kong had increased. Yvonne Lee (1990), Samuel Yuen (2001), Katie Chan (2003), Shirley So (2003), Fabian Ko (2005), Clement Chui (2006), Kang Min Sun (2006), Venus Tam (2006), Vincent Chan (2008) and Nick Chan (2008) all went on to study at University or College in the UK and are now back working in Hong Kong - from educational consultancy to Medicine, Architecture, Planning and Construction and other professions in Hong Kong’s vibrant business economy. The reunion continued with a smaller group having a delicious meal in a local restaurant (see photograph). It was such a pleasure to meet so many former pupils and everyone agreed that a Hong Kong reunion each year coinciding with the Headmaster’s visit to Hong Kong would be a great way to follow up this year’s event. We are thinking about organising a dinner next year. If there are any other Old Freemen based in Hong Kong, the School and the Old Freemen’s Association would love to hear from you – please get in touch. See you in autumn 2013! Philip MacDonald - Headmaster Following on from the successful inaugural international reunion in Hong Kong last November, there are plans to host a similar event later this year in an equally impressive location in Asia’s World City. A date and venue has yet to be arranged but please register your interest by contacting LindsayBrittain (


REUNION 1991 U5 LEAVERS and1993 U6 LEAVERS – 29th June Theo van Dort (1993) is organising a 20/22 year reunion for 1991 U5 leavers and 1993 U6 leavers at the School on Saturday 29th June. He is trying to get in touch with as many people as possible, but if you are able to help track people down, please drop an email to or ring 07836 343458. Please note that there is now an Old Freemen’s Alumni page on Facebook; there are over 600 members already and it’s growing. Theo is also harnessing his 11 years of experience in Retail Television and has a new web video business called - if any Old Freemen need web video to sell their services, products or ideas, you are welcome to get in touch with Theo through the website and he’ll offer preferential rates! Theo van Dort USA REUNION All Freemen’s alumni living in the USA are invited to an informal get-together in July 2013.This will be a fabulous chance to meet up with fellow Old Freemen living or working in the States; there are more of you than you think! If there are any Canadians (or Brits studying/working in Canada) who would be interested in attending, you would be very welcome in helping to make this a North American Reunion! Details for this after-work-drinks-and-canapés will be posted on the Freemen’s website shortly, but please register your interest by emailing Lindsay Brittain ( We look forward to seeing you!

REPORTS FROM THE AFFILIATED CLUBS Old Freemen’s Cricket Club After our AGM on the 28th February the 2013 season is really starting to take shape - with indoor nets arranged for two Monday evenings on 8th April and 15th April from 7.30pm to 9pm at Epsom College (don't miss them please!). Please contact Bob Davies for more information or 07920 518788 or go to Our first game of the season is at Headley Cricket Ground on Headley Common on 27th April - new players welcome for this trial game. Our league fixtures start on 5th May with home and away games until mid-September for the 1st XI in Division 1 of the Surrey Downs League and the 2nd XI in Division 3 - check out the website for fixtures and venues and results: The Sunday XI start their season on the 6th May with friendlies against a variety of local teams ending with the traditional fixture at Coldharbour on their ‘mountain top' pitch on Leith Hill at the end of September. 21

The Dinner is on 20th September at the Memorial Clubhouse in Ashtead Park - all welcome for dinner, wine and a light-hearted reflection of the season - contact Bob Davies for tickets, please. We have limited tickets available for some Surrey County Cricket home games via the Friends of Surrey at discounted rates, so if a Twenty20 game tickles your fancy and you want to see Ricky Ponting batting in his swansong, let us know! New members wanted - former pupils, parents and CLFS staff all most welcome. Our sponsors are again Jade Recruitment in Dorking and M&G Motors in Carshalton - so many thanks to them both! Bob Davies Hon Secretary OFCC Old Freemen’s Hockey Club The Old Freemen's Hockey Club Ladies squad returned to Division Six in the Surrey League again this season and it's been a rather unpredictable year to say the least. With a strong 4-0 win against top-of-the-table Woking 2As, but losing against Richmond 4s (who sit near the bottom), the team looks like ending the season lying mid-table. Games have been enjoyable nonetheless, and the passion and attitude of the squad has always been positive and enthusiastic, partly due to the excellent captaincy of Katy Lutley and Vice Georgie Vines. Louisa Wiles, goal-keeper extraordinaire, also deserves a special mention for her unbelievable saves; without her, our score-lines would have looked a lot different! It's also been great to have a few new School alumni players join the club this season, including another Vanstone (Sarah), Amy Davies, plus we are very pleased to welcome back our very own (now Major!) Sarah Crabb after returning safely from her tour in Afghanistan. Other developments this year have included our new weekday training venue at St Marks Academy, conveniently located next to Mitcham Eastfields station to make life a little easier for all those living and working up in town. And for those young budding hockey players, the club is continuing to develop its junior coaching for boys and girls from 8-11. Our AGM will be held on Sunday 14th April in the Clubhouse, followed by afternoon tea where it would be great to see as many old School hockey players and sports staff join us for a cupcake and cuppa. Further details can be found on our website (, or don't hesitate to contact us on to find out more. Old Freemen's Hockey Club was founded in 2008 for and by alumni of CLFS and is proud to be sponsored by HDEW Cameras


Old Freemen’s Rugby Club The Old Freemen's Rugby Club returned to Surrey Three after an eventful season in London South West Three last term; the team looks like ending the season lying mid-table. The season did not start as expected with the unfortunate circumstance of the 1st Team captain having to step down due to injury without a tackle made in anger! However, Simon Daniels stepped into the breach and has led the team admirably during the season with the able support of his vice-captain Andy Owens. Notably the 1st XV enjoyed a valuable win at the start of March against Old Walcountians, securing the bonus point victory (38-17) at Ashtead Park, leaving the team 6th in the table with three matches to play. The 2nd XV have struggled to field sides this season and a special mention should be made of Michael Barrett and Malcolm Beech whose tireless efforts to get the team out week after week should be applauded by their team mates. We will be looking for our playing members to continue to support their captains in the effort to field multiple sides to maintain our vibrant club. Our AGM will be held on Thursday 11th April at 8pm at the Memorial Clubhouse. The annual Dinner Dance will take place at the Queen’s Stand on 11th May; please contact any member of the committee to secure your place! James Burns

SPONSORS Readers: please support our sponsors - they are all local - and whilst visiting them, please remember to mention your connection to the Old Freemen’s teams. We will ensure that they get a copy of the magazine so that they can see that their name has been mentioned. The names to remember are: For Rugby VOLKSPEED for garage repairs - the workshop is on the corner of Craddocks Parade, Ashtead and Chris Taylor is also an Old Freeman. WOOLFORD & CO NATTERBOX THE PARROT INN - Forest Green TURK’S LAUNCHES - Kingston WESTCOTT HOUSE – Nursing & Residential Home For Hockey HDEW CAMERAS – Wallington For Cricket JADE RECRUITMENT - Dorking M&G MOTORS is at Wallington and Graham Marshall is also an Old Freeman. THE CLUBHOUSE IS AVAILABLE FOR HIRE: For details of times available and cost, contact Laura Morrison 01737 350882 or

ADVERTISERS - If any of you are interested, we still have advertising space. It is only £50 for a half page and as you know we publish three times a year: March, June and November. 23


The dates on which our annual subscriptions fall due: The Old Freemen’s Association The Old Freemen’s Cricket Club The Old Freemen’s Rugby Football Club The Old Freemen’s Hockey Club The Old Freemen’s Swimming Club

April 1st May 1st Sept 1st Oct 1st Nov 1st

The Association annual subscription is: £25 if you live within 30 miles of Ashtead £20 if you live further away, or are a student under 21 It is mandatory to belong to the Association when joining an affiliated Club The Clubhouse Bar is officially open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7-9pm and Saturdays from 7-10pm. These times will be extended to cater for events. The Cricket Club charges £30 per season. In addition there will be match fees. Contact: David Richardson on 01737 833237 The Hockey Club charges £75 (full membership) or £35 (casual players) per season. In addition there will be match fees. Contact: Nikki Linsell The Rugby Club charges £25 for non-players and £100 for regular players (this is reduced to £50 for those under 23). In addition there will be match fees. Contact: David Harn on 020 8642 2822 Sports Hall - Tuesday 7pm to 9pm for Squash, Badminton and Aerobics The charges for using the Sports Hall are payable per session for Badminton and Squash; for aerobics they are a little more as we have a teacher for that exercise. One payment covers the whole evening and a variety of sports may be undertaken. Contact: Mike Bailey on 07764 936867 Swimming Pool - Thursday 7.45pm to 9pm When we have the use of the School pool, we have a rota of volunteer lifeguards. Families are welcome to attend and we do have a family membership. Swimming is £10 per year or £1 per session. Contact: Tracy Pearson on 07702 300077 NB Sports Hall and Swimming Pool are available in term-time only.


The Ashtead Link, Issue 27  

Old Freemens Association Link magazine, issue 27

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