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2019 Edition Two

IN THIS ISSUE 4  Message from the Chair of Council 5 Accolades for PLC 6 Open Garden Day 2019 8 Innovation @ PLC 9 Farewell to Murray Saunders 10 Introducing the 2020 Student Prefecture 12 Introducing Junior School Semester Two Leaders 13 A brave new era with Cate Begbie’s commissioning 14 Arts Day 2019 15 Kick off your dancing shoes with Footloose 16 Founder’s Day Service 17 Celebrating 100 years of the OCA 18 Thanks for the memories 20 Recognising PLC’s first Black Diamond Chrissie Nisbet Dods 22 OCA Bursaries over the years 24 Design photography an ATAR first for PLC 25 PLC crowned national poetry prize winner 26 Another rowing title at Head of the River 27 PLC Parents news 29 Reunions 32 OCA news 34 From the Archives 36 PLC Foundation Report 38 Tartan News 42 Obituaries


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Cover Image 2018 Head Prefect and one of our newest Old Collegians, Eliza Donaldson, reflects on PLC history with one of our oldest Old Collegians, 99-year-old Coral Thomas (Pascoe 1937).

Message from the Principal Nearly 15,000 women and men have had the privilege of a PLC education, according to the latest register of students kept diligently by the School each year. Our graduates fill boardrooms, seats of Parliament and science labs. They head up mining companies; operate on, and care for, the sick and injured; preside over court rooms; excel on the sporting field; perform on stage, run their own businesses and many do the most important job – care for their own sons and daughters. PLC Old Collegians are active contributors to our local and global community. It is important that we continue to support and celebrate the endeavours and successes of our past students. Thanks to our Old Collegians’ Association our graduates remain indelibly connected to PLC Perth through reunions, annual networking events and regular communications which reach out to members to ensure they are kept updated about life at PLC. The OCA is a significant contributor to PLC through both its friend-raising and fundraising efforts – most recently

with the purchase of a quad scull for our champion rowers, bursaries and sourcing mentors and speakers to inspire our current students. The OCA Art Exhibition is a much-loved annual event on the PLC calendar and has grown significantly in stature in the decade since it began. It is therefore with great excitement that in 2020 we celebrate the centenary of the formation of the OCA. Formed at the tail end of 1919, the fledging Old Girls’ Association, as it was then referred, had just a handful of inaugural members. By 1921, 40 PLC graduates comprised what would become an association whose many members now reside in every corner of the globe.

Our OCA members have been working tirelessly to mark this significant milestone in their long-history and I encourage all former students to join next year’s celebrations, particularly at the Centenary Soiree on Saturday 4 April 2020. Many plans are underway to ensure every decade of the OCA is recognised and I have no doubt our Old Collegians will revel in the memories and memorabilia. I particularly love the concept of celebrating our OCA ‘Black Diamonds’ – our Old Collegians whose contributions, while very significant, have gone largely unrecognised. This edition of Blackwatch is largely dedicated to our OCA and I hope all of our graduates and members of the extended PLC community enjoy it, as I have. Cate Begbie Principal

“It is important that we continue to support and celebrate the endeavours and successes of our past students.”  3


Celebrating our Old Collegians


When the going gets tough… In 1952, Florence Chadwick attempted to swim the 26 miles between Catalina Island and the California coast. After swimming 15 hours, with thick fog setting in, she asked to be pulled from the water as she was emotionally and physically exhausted. She was just one mile from her destination, but unable to see the coastline because of the fog. If Florence had to make her attempt today, the support crew would have been able to encourage her by informing her that she was very close to achieving her goal – the GPS coordinates would have enabled them to know their relative position. We might set out to achieve something, but quite often we give up along the way when the going gets tough and we can’t see the finish line. History reminds us that most successful people have numerous failures for any successful attempt. Why should we be the exception to the rule? When trying to achieve a goal, it is helpful to have trusted advisors who could encourage us when needed, but also inform us when an adjustment in our course might be needed. Florence Chadwick did make another attempt to swim the Catalina channel two months later and once again the fog set in, but this time she was successful. She kept a mental image of the shoreline in her mind while she swam. She obviously reflected and learned from her previous attempt. Rev. Manie Strydom Chaplain

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PLC has prized its community of present and past students, parents, staff and the surrounding community for over 100 years. It is this community that underpins PLC’s position as one of the top independent girls’ schools in Australia. Indeed, the Gonski report delivered last year recognised community engagement as one of the most important characteristics of successful independent schools. The PLC Council has valued the engagement of its community of Old Collegians around the board table during its long history. One of the main tasks of Council is to provide governance and strategic oversight to support the provision of rich educational opportunities for our students. The diverse range of expertise and professional skills brought to Council by our Old Collegians is testament to the educational opportunities provided by PLC. Currently, there are four Old Collegians on Council: Kathy Bonus and Michelle Barrett (both boarders), Linda Kenyon and Morgen Lewis (both day girls); in addition to four Independent members of Committees (Nyree Correia, Adrienne Dukes, Fiona Hogg and Fiona Morgan); and a further four Council and three Committee members whose wives, mothers, sisters and daughters are Old Collegians. In addition to bringing skills ranging from strategy, finance, law, risk management, education, architecture, planning and marketing, these Old Collegians bring a deep understanding of PLC’s history, traditions and culture. With this edition of Blackwatch dedicated to the Centenary of the Old Collegian’s Association (OCA), I would like to take the opportunity to recognise the contributions and importance of our Old Collegians. The members of the OCA Committee and the many other volunteers behind-the-scenes at PLC make contributions that are vital to our wonderful community. You are all role models espousing the importance of service and giving many hours of your time voluntarily to our school. Your stewardship, leadership and respect for PLC’s culture and history are greatly appreciated. To everyone involved in organising the OCA Centenary events next year, I wish you well and I look forward to joining you in celebrating everything about PLC and our Old Collegians. Claire Poll Chair of Council

Inaugural Girls’ Leadership Forum attracts hundreds to PLC Perth More than 650 girls in Years 5 and 6 from 13 independent and public primary schools attended PLC Perth in October for the inaugural Girls’ Leadership Forum. Organised by PLC’s Head of Junior School, Richard Wright, the event aimed to provide young girls with the opportunity to hear the inspiring stories of successful women.

Accolades for PLC PLC Perth has been recognised as an educational leader in two major awards. In September, the School was named a finalist in the Governor’s School STEM Awards, recognising PLC’s excellence in delivering an innovative, engaging and wholeof-school approach to science, technology, engineering and maths education. Governor of Western Australian, the Hon. Kim Beazley said the awards celebrated excellence among school leadership teams in delivering outcomes critical to next generational industry development. Education Minister Sue Ellery said: “The finalists in this year’s awards show that STEM learning does not need to be limited to a single class subject; teaching students to be inquisitive, critical thinkers and problem solvers occurs in a range of settings. “Inspired principals and talented teachers play a vital role in getting students excited about STEM subjects, and I thank educators across the State who are delivering innovative programs for WA students.”

The winners will be announced later this year. PLC was also named one of The Educator Innovative Schools 2019 for the PLC Lighthouse and its innovative wellbeing programme. The Educator Magazine is Australia’s only magazine and news website for the most senior educational professionals and decision makers. The PLC Lighthouse was recognised for the development of the Lighthouse curriculum, which was been built on the pillars of feeling good, functioning well and doing good for others. It encourages a multidisciplinary mind body approach to wellbeing incorporating the physical, psychological, social, expressive and spiritual needs to flourish. Principal Cate Begbie said she was thrilled with the recognition received by the School. “It is testament to the extraordinarily hard work of our staff. Both of these awards recognise that our teachers go above and beyond to engage and challenge our girls.”

“We often provide these motivational experiences to older students, however, it’s really important that younger girls in their formative years also have the chance to listen to the life stories of potential role models,” Mr Wright said. The speakers included social enterprise entrepreneur Elizabeth Knight, Dr Cate Willis from Perth Children’s Hospital, tech optimiser Jia Keatnuxsuo , mining leader Sharon Warburton and research ambassador Renae Sayers. “I don’t think we need to wait until Senior School to start introducing girls to people who can inspire them to pursue different careers, activities and fields of study. “We cannot underestimate the extent to which the young minds of our girls are constantly seeking stimulus and ideas as they embark on their education journey. Anything we, as educators, can do to enhance their learning experience is important.” Mr Wright said he had been overwhelmed by the response of other junior schools to take part in the Forum. “I was initially thinking that perhaps three or four schools and about 250 students would take up the offer. To have so many schools and students keen to take part in the event is proof there is a strong demand to introduce young girls to inspirational leaders.”  5

Watch the video in Digital Blackwatch

Open Garden Day 2019 More than 2000 people enjoyed the mix of heritagestyle and modern gardens at the 22nd annual PLC Open Garden in October. Eight generous Peppermint Grove homeowners opened their amazing gardens, with five of the gardens being open for the first time.

OGD Co-ordinator Susannah Evans said the day had such a wonderful feel with so many of the PLC community involved.

Scattered amongst the gardens were displays of artwork from the PLC community and the beautiful sounds of music from PLC students. In the café the guests were treated to performances by PLC Old Collegian singers, Cate Tweedie and Georgina Thorpe.

“This event requires a huge volunteer effort and we are so lucky at PLC that we have such an engaged group of parents who volunteer on the day and in the lead up to Open Garden Day.”

Florist and PLC Parent Rebecca Grace also hosted two wonderful floral demonstrations at the café. We were also very lucky to have gardening guru Sabrina Hahn as a special guest and she conducted a walking tour of the Forrest Street houses.

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This year, View Street was closed to traffic to create a vibrant marketplace, which was a hive of activity with more than 45 local companies and 10 PLC stall holders, selling products from clothes, linen and bags, to jewelry and food.

“This event requires a huge volunteer effort and we are so lucky at PLC that we have such an engaged group of parents who volunteer on the day and in the lead up to Open Garden Day.”  7

Tuning into Innovation@PLC The airwaves are humming with a brand-new sound thanks in part to funds raised by PLC Parents. Radio PLC is pushing out the latest School news, interviews and music with the venture the latest addition to PLC’s innovative learning experiences.

and teachers analyse students results and help them to implement personal learning plans to continually strive for improvement.

Based in a purpose-built, soundproof studio facing the Quad, Radio PLC is part of the School’s Integrated Learning Technologies curriculum. It is complemented by a Recording Studio in the Junior School where the younger students are also able to benefit from the technology.

PLC has also forged partnerships with a range of external providers to guarantee the delivery of cuttingedge curriculum. Partners include Curtin University, UCLA, UWA, Apple, Woodside, CSIRO and the Perkins Institute.

Students, staff and parents can tune in by visiting and searching for Radio PLC. Director of Library, Innovation and Learning Technologies, Doug de Kock said Radio PLC was just one way PLC was doing things differently when it came to innovation. “We have developed a comprehensive Innovation@PLC programme built on four key pillars,” Mr de Kock said. Pedagogy – the elective timetable for students in Years 7-10 has been revamped to facilitate more innovative pedagogy. Focusing on developing students’ skills for the 21st Century including greater collaborative work, more creativity and STEM, the newlook electives aim to help students determine their pathways into Year 11 and 12. People – Innovation@PLC uses data to personalise learning for every girl. This means Learning Co-ordinators

Programmes – Staff have developed programmes to foster innovative learning experiences. This includes the introduction of Radio PLC, science festivals in Junior School, digital technology classes in Years 7 and 8 and a new-look Innovation Project in Year 9 based on the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Places – All of the Innovation@PLC programmes are delivered in flexible environments that all connect. PLC is rethinking traditional classrooms and building spaces which encourage creativity and collaboration. Principal Cate Begbie said PLC was aiming to create learning areas which inspired girls to be learn and grow in a modern world. “In doing this we are enhancing student engagement, increasing academic achievement and strengthening ties between different subjects. It is a very exciting time to be in education and to watch students flourish as they use innovation and technology to learn.”

Junior School girls get their lab coats on Over the course of 2019, our Years 4 to 6 girls have been getting a feel for what science looks like in the Senior School. As part of their curriculum and in an effort to demonstrate just how fun and exciting science can be, the girls have been walking across the road to take their science classes in the Senior School laboratories. In their specialised, hands-on lessons, the girls explore science topics in much greater detail and using correct scientific method of observation and experimentation.  Head of Junior School, Richard Wright believes this approach is the way to improve results in science later in a student’s academic career. “Research by the University of Queensland has highlighted that practical and experiential science learning in Junior School years creates confident STEM learning in the Senior School years.” Mr Wright also said PLC teachers had contributed greatly to the girls’ love of science by making sure the learning had a reallife focus.

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Always move forward, but not before you beat McNeil Known affectionately as ‘Saunders’, for his political incorrectness and his undying love for ‘Fergo’, English teacher Murray Saunders was given a rousing farewell at his final assembly in April before retiring after 29 years at PLC Perth. With the extraordinary record of having delivered 35,000 English lessons and overseen 560 Ferguson House meetings as Ferguson House Advisor for 28 of his 29 years’ service, Mr Saunders said he was overwhelmed by the number of current and former students, staff and parents who reached out to him on his retirement.

Mr Saunders’ most precious memory from his three decades at PLC is also one of his more recent – Ferguson’s 2018 victory at the Inter-school Athletics Carnival claiming the number one title from McNeil for the first time in 15 years. “I used to tell the Fergo girls that the inter-school carnivals were all about participation….and beating McNeil!”

“It reminded me of going to a funeral where you do not recognise the person being eulogised because the comments are so nice,” he said.

He also recalls a former Deputy Head, Gwen Bull, retiring and being replaced by nine staff her workload was so immense.

Among the plaudits delivered via Facebook – “Thank you Murray. Your patient, calm and supportive approach has been enormously appreciated. My four Fergo girls, and I the older Fergo girl, think you’re amazing”; “Still the biggest legend we know”; “This man is an absolute gem”; “Such an engaging and entertaining teacher. You will be missed.”; Wonderful man, teacher, colleague and friend. Congratulations Murray.”; and “He was my favourite teacher.”

He broke his ankle while playing a staff-student game of Chasey in the Quad and being taken to the doctor by then Head of Senior School Sharon Anderson, waving ‘royally’ to the crowd as he was driven away. And he was bold enough to wear a Borat-style mankini (over his shorts) at a free dress day. Asked if he felt he could claim credit for any successful PLC graduates, his response was quick: “No! They blame me for not succeeding! They all say,

‘I could have been good at English, but I had this terrible teacher at PLC’.” The sheer volume of messages from current and former students upon his retirement prove this to be anything but true.

Mr Saunders said he was overwhelmed by the number of current and former students, staff and parents who reached out to him on his retirement. As with the Fergo motto ‘Toujours tout droit’ – Always move forward – Mr Saunders is enjoying golf, visits to the cinema, long lunches and being a house husband during his first year of retirement. Although his links to PLC are not completely severed – he has already returned on several occasions as a relief teacher.  9


Student Prefecture

Ella Miels

Ingrid Ledger

Head Prefect

Deputy Head Prefect

Being elected as Head Prefect is the most exciting privilege I’ve ever had. I hope to grow my confidence as a leader by learning from the experiences of those who are guiding me, and inspire others to do the same.

Being selected as Deputy Head Girl is one of the most exciting and humbling experiences of my life. I am so grateful to have this amazing opportunity, but I am also incredibly lucky to have 136 inspiring young leaders in my year group, supporting me, and each other, every step of the way.

When I first started at PLC, I was surprised by how different it was to other schools I had attended; girls across all year groups have a strong passion for what they do at school. This difference was something I had heard about from my grandmother and mother, who both attended PLC, showing me that the passion and sense of belonging created by the girls are values PLC has fostered over many decades. With the goal to foster a community of independent learners, in which girls are eager to take as many opportunities as possible, without worrying about failure, because they are in a supportive environment where learning is the primary goal. I hope the experiences we share at PLC will build our resilience and tenacity; values we can carry for the rest of our lives.

Emma van Schouwen Arts Captain

Being selected as Arts Captain is an incredible honour. PLC is a remarkable school and has taught me so many lessons and qualities that have shaped me to be the person I am today. I have been given endless opportunities at PLC. Art is the magic that weaves itself gently between the personal, emotional, academic excellence hearts of us all. As Arts Captain 2020 my aim will be to tap into the creative joy within each of us, by acknowledging all forms of arts more thoroughly. I would love to give all girls the ability to find their special inner-artist.

I hope to encourage every girl to celebrate her unique talents and potential in all aspects of life. By the end of 2020 I hope to see all students doing things they might not usually do, like a new sport or instrument, or just giving something a go. I also encourage everyone to contribute to the School, where our differences are always celebrated.

Evi Bell

Academic Captain I am thrilled and privileged to be selected to a leadership position at PLC, and feel incredibly fortunate and humble to have this responsibility. The opportunity to work alongside a group of committed students, to learn together and to serve our peers and the school, is an experience that I will draw on for many years. I love that PLC has encouraged and challenged me to seek to be my very best, by providing an amazing place where I feel safe, supported and challenged to learn and grow. In my role as Academic Captain, I hope to build on that environment by promoting accessible resources, activities and mentorship that encourages girls’ developing their own skills and strategies and their individual confidence and progress in academics. What’s most important is making sure we celebrate each girls own personal progress and achievements.

Cassidy Emmott Senior Boarder

Isabella Poll

Service Captain I am humbled to be selected as PLC’s service captain for 2020. I believe that this opportunity will enable me to inspire and empower girls, whilst working alongside them to achieve common goals. Service is an important part of the PLC community. It brings us together, gives us purpose and fulfils the PLC values. Service is essential for our personal and communal wellbeing. It also encourages girls to develop leadership, interpersonal and other skills. In 2020, one of my goals is to motivate more girls to do service by making it easier for them to volunteer and giving them greater recognition.

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Being selected as Senior Boarder for 2020 has been the most exciting and humbling experience in my time at PLC. I see this role as an opportunity to make the Boarding House a nest for support and, most importantly, a home for our girls. The Boarding House is a special place for me and has played a big role in my life at PLC, and I am grateful for this opportunity to give back to it. Since arriving at PLC in Year 10, I have been given countless opportunities to develop and grow into a better person and strive for different goals. I have grown in confidence and have been encouraged to leave my comfort zone. In 2020 one of my main goals is to create an inclusive environment that embraces diversity amongst year groups. By the end of the year I hope all the girls are able to call the Boarding House their home and the other boarders their family.

Abby Weber

Junior School / Senior School Captain I am extraordinarily grateful and humbled to have been given the role of JS/SS prefect for 2020. As a young PLC student, I always looked up to the Year 12s, especially the leaders, so being afforded the opportunity to be a role model for our younger students is not only an honour, but also personally important to me. I hope to build on the existing sense of community within our school. I want every girl to feel comfortable and as though their peers are their sisters. By continuing Big Sister, I hope to establish new, meaningful relationships between year groups, providing all girls, including those in the Junior School with a network of friendships across the school.


Georgiana Mirams Baird

Matilda McManus Carmichael

Philippa Joyce Ferguson

Ashley Maddern McNeil

Elizabeth Crawford Ross

Isabella Ahern Stewart

Scarlett O’Grady Summers

Millicent McCarthy Sports Captain

I am super excited to have the privilege of being Sports Captain for 2020. Sport has always been a big part of my life and PLC has given me every opportunity to better myself as an athlete and as a person. I hope my enthusiasm and positive energy can motivate all the girls to participate in the wide variety of sports that PLC offers, so that they too can get the most out of their schooling journey. My goal for next year is to maintain the team attitude we have here at PLC and to encourage every girl to be a part of TEAM PLC so they can feel like they belong within our sporting community, because there is no better team than ours! As Sports Captain I really want to lead by example through participating in everything and showing the younger girls that there is nothing to be afraid of. I’m so pumped for 2020, it’s going to be big!

SCHOOL OFFICIALS Dance Captain Georgia Keamy Kookaburra Editors Bella Liddelow and Harper Shephard International Student Captain Stella Chan Civil and Social Justice Captain Maddy Grist Drama Captain Juliette Hansen-Knarhoi

Erin Marstrand

Wellbeing Captain I’m beyond excited and grateful to be given an opportunity to be part of PLC’s 2020 student leadership team. I’m so excited to share what it means to truly bring wellbeing into one’s life and what an amazing impact this can have on every aspect of life. Raising awareness around mental health and trying to breakdown the stigma is also a mission for this coming year within the PLC community. I believe that leading by example is one of the best things a leader can do, and I will therefore continue to maintain a positive mindset, a balanced lifestyle, and practice wellness daily, which will hopefully inspire others to do the same.

Environmental Captain Claudia Tedjasaputra Reconciliation Captains Abbey Noble and Sophia Short Creative Arts Captain Laura Quinlivan Pipe Major Stephanie Hair Drum Major Nisha Whittome Orchestra Captain Lily Arbuckle Chorale Captain Alex Kirkwood Vocal Ensemble Captain Tahlia Hanikeri Wind Ensemble Captain Natasha Psaltis Stage Band Captain Georgia Rieck Debating and Public Speaking Cpt Stella Vanderzanden Deputy Senior Boarder: Wellbeing Issy McGinniss BH Prefect: Arts and Activities Maddi Waters BH Prefect: Service and Environment Amy Screaigh BH Prefect: Sport and Fitness Sahara Clarke  11


Kaitlyn Sin Head Prefect

Maisy Brookes Head Prefect

Jessica Fernando Service Leader

Sophia McIntosh Service Leader

Amelia Burke Chapel Leader

Emily Hair Chapel Leader

Saffron Barrie Arts Leader

Molly Johnson Arts Leader


Violet Liddelow Ferguson House

Jessica Sewell Ferguson House

Ella Baldwin Baird House

Natasha Whittome Baird House

Ruby Bell Stewart House

Ella Ausbruch Stewart House

Giavanna Franchina Summers House

Annika Pereira Summers House

Isla Everingham McNeil House

Mijke van der Horst McNeil House

Leila Bird Carmichael House

Katie Stevens Carmichael House

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A brave new era for PLC Perth PLC Perth’s tenth Principal has told students it is her hope and aspiration to lead a school that is collectively brave.

Speaking at her Commissioning Service in front of former PLC Principal Beth Blackwood, current and past Chairs of Council, Council Members, Old Collegians, local Members of Parliament and Shire Councillors and invited guests, Cate Begbie said it was her ambition that every student would be brave enough to pursue personal growth and overcome obstacles that stand in their way. “I also hope that you will have the bravery to grow not just for yourself, but for others. That you will harbour ambitions to be a better sister, a better daughter, a better student, a better friend,” Ms Begbie said. “I know that if we all share this ambition it will help us grow organically as an entire community - as Presbyterian Ladies’ College and as part of the wider community.” More than 1000 students and guests attended the service, which was held in August in the Hugh Baird Sports Centre. They were treated to rousing performances by the Chorale and Young Voices of the School Hymn, Land of Our Birth, the Centenary Song, Labore et Honore and a very special rendition of Brave – a song fitting the theme of the day written by Sara Bareilles and Jack Antonoff and which was sung by Year 12 student Tabitha Galluccio, the Chorale and Young Voices. They were supported

by students Lucy Jarrett on the piano, Georgia Tovich and Cinta Charlton Meyrick on the guitar, Lizzy Marsh, bass guitar and Georgia Rieck on the drums. An academic gown, ceremonial key to the school and House flags were presented to Ms Begbie as symbols of her commitment to lead PLC Perth. Promising to facilitate better learning and growth, offering pastoral care for the entire School community and to strive to develop a respectful and caring ethos within the School, Ms Begbie was formally committed as Principal. She had thought her address to students in December 2010 when she was departing as Deputy Head of Junior School to become Head of Junior School at Wesley College, South Perth, would be her last at PLC. It was her privilege and utter delight that she now has the opportunity to return to the School in this senior role. Ms Begbie said the most recent register of students showed 14,857 girls and boys have had the privilege of a PLC education. “Although we are separated by decades, countless hours and days spent in classrooms and in the world beyond, we are all deeply connected to all of the staff and students who have come before us.

“Bravery is not the absence of fear, we know this; instead it is to act in spite of fear. Fear is a necessary component of bravery.” “We share that history – a history that those girls and those staff began all of those decades ago and that we are continuing and are contributing to, right now. “What an opportunity we have to leave our own mark on the history of the school and to define our own point in time.”  13

The Best Day of the Year This year’s Arts Day did not disappoint with its colourful mix of fun and festivity, where we see the fusion of creative arts, dance, drama and music.

Watch the video in Digital Blackwatch

The staff act started the day on a high with special guest, Elton John (aka Deputy Principal, Dr Cousins) opening the show with an incredible rendition of ‘A Circle of Life’. The House Dance competition followed with Carmichael House taking out the top prize for their colourcoded, co-ordinated and creative performance which featured Principal, Cate Begbie! Many Old Collegians, parents and grandparents stayed throughout the day to watch the amazing array of music, drama and dance performances and view the visual arts submissions, which included some fabulous cakes and exceptional woodwork. Seven incredible House Choir performances finished off the day, with Stewart taking out first place for their 60’s inspired performance. Stewart’s winning streak continued as they took out the Arts Day cup for a fantastic day of performances overall. Arts Captain, Gabby McDonald was thrilled with the day’s success. “I’m so proud of the effort and commitment of all the girls to make this the best day of the year,” she said.

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PLC and Scotch College Students Kick Off Their Sunday Shoes Footloose the Musical burst on to the Hazel Day Drama Centre stage in a show that got the audiences’ toes tapping. The explosive rock ‘n’ roll musical sensation, based on the 1980s hit film that took the world by storm, Footloose the Musical sizzled with the same spirit of youth, rebellion and romance. PLC’s Head of Drama, Bauke Snyman, said that the themes highlighted in Footloose were extremely relative to the lives of high school students. “I spoke to the cast about the theme of creative expression and censorship, and how our behaviour as human beings is shaped according to our perceptions of people and situations,” Mr Snyman explained. Mr Snyman also said that he chose the musical because of its whole-family appeal. “This year I really wanted to do a light-hearted, funny production that would appeal to the whole family,” he said. The opening show saw an explosion of denim waist coats, fluorescent accessories and leg warmers, in the audience, as guests of all ages supported the students by wearing their best 80’s-inspired outfits.  15

Founders’ Day Service and Luncheon We were delighted more than 100 Old Collegians who left the School over 50 years ago returned to PLC for the annual Founders’ Day Service and Luncheon this year. Celebrating 80 years since leaving school, Noreen Craig (Beatty 1939), our oldest Old Collegian to attend the service, cut the cake with Principal Cate Begbie and student Beth Playford. We were joined by the incredible Dr Kate Stannage (1989), a paediatric Surgeon working at the Perth Children’s Hospital. Dr Stannage spoke about her challenging journey as a woman in a male dominated profession. Dr Stannage is the President of the Australian Orthopaedic Society, the first female

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President of an arthopaedic subspecialty organisation, and only one in three female orthopaedic surgeons in WA. This celebratory service was followed by a luncheon at the PLC Boarding dining room. Once inside, the room was abuzz with warm conversations as everyone found their peer group tables and settled into a lovely two course-meal and enjoyed the opportunity to catch up with old friends, as well as keep in touch with the college.



OF THE OCA In the Beginning … Paraphrasing Isabel Piper (McConaghy 1919) At the end of 1919, with PLC then nearly three-and-a-half years old, a group of senior students and young Old Girls decided they numbered enough to form an Old Collegians’ Association. With support from Miss Agnes Scorgie (Principal 1916-1921), a meeting was held at School in April 1920, during which the Old Collegians’ Association was officially formed for the girls who had left PLC - in any year - but who had not since attended any other school. Marion Cooke, a Boarder from Grass Valley since third term 1917 and Head Prefect of 1919, was appointed inaugural Secretary and Treasurer. They decided, since most of the new members lived in the country, they would meet twice a year - a tennis party in summer and a dance in winter, when country friends would most likely be in town. On 31 July 1920 Miss Scorgie hosted the OCA’s inaugural event – a dance. The new members cheerfully cleared and decorated two large adjoining rooms, which could only be current Deputy Principal Andrew Cousins’ office and the room behind Reception in Scorgie House, and served a dainty supper in the newly-built dining room (now the Boardroom). Afterwards, the girls were giddy with the evening’s stunning success, and the OCA Dinner Dance gradually evolved into an annual ball which continued on ‘Show Saturday’ until 1973. On 28 October they held an impromptu gathering at School and presented Miss Scorgie with a travelling rug for her upcoming trip to Scotland (from which no one then knew she would not return). At that meeting they decided members of the OCA should wear either a brooch or specially designed and embroidered sports coat pocket,

Top: The first Old Collegians’ Association badge, donated to PLC Archives by Jean Yelland (Tassie 1922). This is the only example in the Collection. Left: The first Old Collegians’ Association blazer pocket, owned by Jessie Isbister (1919) and donated to PLC Archives by her daughter, Pam Smith (1948).

to recognise other members and wear to events. Declaring the School colours of brown, gold and pale blue were “not sufficiently beautiful to decorate our newly-established association,” they chose royal blue, maroon and gold for their first badge in 1920, cheekily suggesting the School might also like to choose new colours in the near future. The pocket depicted a thistle, the national emblem of Scotland, with a pink and purple flower. This was surrounded in a gold shield, outlined with purple, and the letters P.L.C.O.C.A. underneath. (In 1934 the OCA launched a new navy blue blazer with green, white and blue check binding with the embroidered ‘OCA’ on the pocket. Uptake of this new blazer is unknown, but by 1960 it was no longer worn.) The new Association closed its first year with around 25 members, and they were optimistic their numbers would swell with the girls leaving at the end of that, and every year to follow. By 1921 they had 40 members. Miss Frances Dumaresq (Acting Principal 1921) was appointed inaugural President of the Association and Miss Marjorie Battye, inaugural Vice-President. “By 1925 the membership had increased … to 135 and four additional office-bearers were elected. The activities were increased and card and film evenings were held at regular intervals throughout the year. It was

also decided that the Old Girls should raise money yearly, the sum total to be handed to the school fund for the Cot in the Children’s Hospital.” “During the years 1939 to 1945 the Association’s activities were cut to a minimum, with many Old Girls fully occupied with war service, but by 1946, with the war over, our activities started to become a little more frequent.” “Since 1949 a steady increase has been received in membership and it is hoped that a still greater interest will be shown in this association in the years to come. Each year a ball, dinner, tennis afternoon and golf day are held, and … always regarded as a great success by those who attend.” 1968 Blackwatch

“We regret that, so far, there are no engagements or marriages to gossip about, but we may have better luck for next Kookaburra.” Isabel MccConaghy (1919), 1920 Kookaburra Snippets about Old Girls’ engagements, weddings, births of babies, travel, sporting, educational and career victories proliferated the next 40 odd years of OCA Reports within the Kookaburra and, from the early 1970s, in the Blackwatch magazine, where it is today.  17














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11 13 14



“Leaving school does not mean, saying good-bye to your old companions. If you join the Old Collegians (called by the impolite ‘Old Girls’), you will keep in touch with school and school friends long after your studying days are over.” ISABEL MCCONAGHY (1919), INAUGURAL OCA REPORT, 1920 KOOKABURRA



1. Class of 1983, pictured in Year 7, 1978 2. 1987 Leavers 3. Year 12 girls at lunchtime, 1956 4. Girls relaxing on the lawn, 1947 5. Year 12 girls at lunchtime, 1956 6. Girls with their panamas,1920 7. Alice Trotter, Mary Wittenoom and Gwen Tozer, 1927 8. Year 12s, Di Lukin and Di Stewart, 1966 9. Year 12 student, Airlie Love, 1956 10. Inter-House Swimming Carnival, c1970 11. Relaxing at PLC Cottesloe, c1917 12. 1969 Prefects 13. Form II, 1931 14. Class of 1981, pictured in Year 4, 1973 15. Dressed for Church c1920 Mollie Davis, Maisie Mitchell, Edna Slee, Jean Loton, Dot Davis 16. Down at the River, 10 Oct 1928 17. Nan Roberts and Mary Montgomery, 1927 18. Year 11 Boarders in front of the new Boarding House wing under construction, 1965  19



OF THE OCA Recognising PLC’s first ‘Black Diamond’ Black diamonds are tougher than any other form of natural diamond. They don’t shine in the traditional sense because they absorb, rather than reflect light. Largely unrecognised, they are the less obvious choice; the quiet achievers. Our Black Diamonds are being recognised for the first time, for their extraordinary contribution to the Old Collegians’ Association.

Christina ‘Chrissie’ Nisbet Dods (1920)

Founding student 1915-1920

Chrissie was the oldest child and only daughter of Rev George Nisbet Dods, Moderator and Minister of St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, who called the meeting at which PLC was founded on 19 August 1915. Chrissie was then 12-years-old and, while Chrissie’s younger brothers John and George would attend Scotch College, there was nowhere for Chrissie to receive a Presbyterian lady’s education. The Presbyterian Church soon purchased Ormiston College in Palmerston Street, North Perth, and Chrissie transferred there. Her name appears on the first page of our Student Register.

In retrospect by Chrissie Nisbet Dods

It was at Palmerston Street that I first learned to play tennis - on a concrete court - and many a skinned knee and torn stocking did I have in the process. When the School was transferred to its present site in View Street, there were two grass courts (Carmichael Hall

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stands on them now) and many of my happiest hours were spent on them or other courts in the neighbourhood. Nearly every house in Peppermint Grove had its own court, so there were plenty of opportunities for PLC girls to practise. In 1920 we won the Slazenger Cup for the first time, beating a University team in the final, and Mr Plaistowe was so delighted that he presented each of us in the team with a gorgeous box of chocolates! As a day girl in those early years, one had the privilege of having in winter the midday meal with the boarders. I can never forget certain distasteful items appearing regularly on the menu - tapioca or sago pudding in glutinous masses unrelieved by any dab of custard, and watery, boiled pumpkin!

Certain villainies perpetrated in and out of class came readily to mind. There was the occasion when Annabella Plaistowe took a photograph of the unsuspecting History mistress in the course of a lesson! The same Annabella had a certain distaste for Scripture examinations and, on one occasion, deliberately put herself ‘hors de combat’ [out of action due to injury or damage] by jamming the index finger of her right hand in the hinged top of the old desks we had! When I left at the end of 1920 to prepare for entrance to University, I had unconsciously amassed a store of unforgettable memories, made many good and lasting friendships, and have every reason to feel gratitude to and affection for the school which has given thousands like me so much since 1915.” BLACKWATCH MAGAZINE, DECEMBER 1968

Chrissie went on to study at The University of Western Australia in 1921. In June that year her father committed suicide by cyanide, likely due to stress over severe financial difficulties. Chrissie was just 18 years old.

the Senior School we use today. She appears in the prospectus holding the February 1969 issue of The Bulletin magazine; the front page, pointedly visible, posing the question of equal pay between the sexes.

She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in 1924, the third PLC Old Girl to do so, and began teaching at Princess May’s Girls’ School in Fremantle. She was a gifted teacher of English literature and referred to as the best-known teacher in the Fremantle district. Strangely she never taught at PLC, as some say she would have liked.

She wrote: “Since its inception in August 1915, the PLC has developed into one of the leading Independent Girls’ Schools in the State. It has fostered fine traditions of service to the community, can look back with pride on its many achievements in the academic and sporting fields, has survived many challenges to its existence in the past fifty years and faces now a turning point in its history: either to take a great step forward or fight a losing battle in trying to cope with the imperative demands of modern education without making radical changes in the buildings themselves.

In 1930 Chrissie (27) became engaged to Reg Marfleet (25), a young pastoralist from Peppermint Grove and Kuringup Park, East Katanning, but Chrissie’s widowed mother Isabella, a strong character, didn’t want Chrissie moving so far away. She determined to break them up and, sadly, succeeded. In 1935 Chrissie was President of the OCA and, in 1945, she and Margaret Stewart (1922), daughter of PLC benefactor John Stewart who sadly took his own life in 1927, were the second and third females appointed to PLC Council. Chrissie remained teaching at Princess May’s, which became what is now John Curtin School of the Arts in 1956 and served on PLC Council until 1959. By the time she retired from John Curtin in 1968 she had been deputy principal for many decades. A close friend to both Dr Vera Summers OBE (Principal 1934-1961) and Miss Heather Barr (Principal 1968-1989), in 1969 Chrissie was nominated president of our appeal which raised the finances to build the south and west arms of

The Commonwealth Government has subsidised the building of a Science Block which will replace units built before 1950. If the latter rooms are considered inadequate by modern standards, what can one say of the classrooms built in 1917? What was then avant-garde is rather sadly substandard in 1969 and has been so for years. Scattered groups of outworn class rooms are not conducive to the smooth and efficient following of a timetable. Time and energy are consumed unnecessarily in movement from one area to another and in wet weather staff and girls are doubly inconvenienced. The project of removing the scattered relics of antiquity and replacing them by a two or three storey block of classrooms would be one of the best

things that could happen to the School (after the D J Carmichael Hall and Baird Gymnasium) and I affirm this as a teacher of many years’ experience. The appeal for $150,000 then, is to enable the School to take on a new lease of life, to help it meet adequately the ever-increasing challenges of the present and the future, and allow it to continue its policy of providing the best in education for its students.

“When I left at the end of 1920 to prepare for entrance to University, I had unconsciously amassed a store of unforgettable memories...” The organisers of this appeal and I hope and believe that all Old Collegians, Parents and Friends of the School will contribute according to their means. No gift is too small, none too large. Let us, everyone, do what we can now to preserve the ideals of its foundation and meet this crisis gloriously.” And they did. Over decades of determined campaigning Chrissie fought to have the library named for her father and her efforts finally came to fruition with the naming of the Rev George Nisbet Dods Memorial Library on 22 September 1972, when the new buildings for which she’d led the 1969 appeal were proudly opened. Chrissie neither married nor had children, but lived with, and cared for, her mother and George (who was not able to live independently) at their home in Renown Avenue, Claremont. Neither brother had children; end of the line for Rev George. John died in 1955, Isabella in 1966, and George in 1972, four weeks after the opening of the new Senior School buildings. After a lifetime dedicated to her family, education and PLC, Chrissie died from a heart attack at home in Renown Avenue on 19 February 1987, aged 83. In 2014 Dods, in honour of Chrissie and Rev George, was top of the list of potential new House names. The girls, given the choice, decided Dods sounded too much like ‘duds’ and sadly, Dods House was not established at that time.

Left: Chrissie Dods as president of the 1969 building appeal, aged 66. Above: Christina ‘Chrissie’ Nisbet Dods (1920) at PLC in 1919, aged 16.  21

OCA Bursaries Dr Vera Summers (Principal 1934-1961, on staff from 1920) died on 3 May 1983, aged 85, on her way to visit her colleague and dear friend Mrs Olive Cusack (Deputy Principal 1941-1962), who died on the School’s 70th birthday in 1985, aged 85.

Dr Vera Summers Bursary

1986 Alison Andrew 1986 Heidi Stimson 1987 Narelle Manser 1987 Melissa Murray 1987 Sophie Owen 1988 Julianne Olsen 1988 Bronte Somes 1988 Neroli Tostevin 1988 Susannah Vaughan 1989 Rebecca Martin 1989 Jody Munckton 1990 Anna Ladyman 1990 Kirsten Sadler 1991 Natasha Poynton 1992 Felicity Bush 1992 Marie Gardiner 1993 Melissa Piowczyk-Kruk 1993 Emma Prowse 1994 Lisa Garrity 1995 Jenifer Leys 1995 Eliza Pickard 1996 Jaime Hall 1997 Kate Jenour 1998 Jenni Anderson 1999 Ashley Lyon 2000 Bryony Parker 2000 Merome Wright 2001 Sarah Heather 2002 Alison Barnes 2003 Pia Humphry 2004 Tara Newton-Wordsworth 2005 Pippin Holmes 2006 Evelyn Froend 2007 Rosie Burton 2008 Frances Foulkes-Taylor 2009 Rachel Bonus 2010 Natasha Gay 2011 Emily Mackay 2012 Kate Mannolini 2013 Kathryn Froend 2014 Katarina Welborn 2015 Annabel Wilson 2016 Madeline Olson 2017 Letitia Martin 2018 Saffron Fairweather 2019 Charlotte Ball 2020 Ellie Fry

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Beginning in 1986 the OCA has awarded two annual bursaries – the Dr Vera Summers Bursary, which is now awarded to a Year 11 student who is a daughter or granddaughter of an Old Collegian; and the Olive Cusack Bursary, initially awarded to a girl entering Year 9 but, since 1990, awarded to a girl entering Year 10 who is a boarding daughter or granddaughter of an Old Collegian.

Olive Cusack Bursary 1986 1986 1987 1987 1988 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1996 1997 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

Cathy Reimer Bronte Somes Karen Hantke Melanie Roberts Amelia McLarty Catherine Murray Devika Hovell Robyn Amey Helen Fitzpatrick Tiffany Camac Matija Franetovich Linley Wright Madelin Pow Carly Cazzolli Olivia Ruello Claire Biggs Sophie Fuhrmann Yuki Kobayashi Joanna Moullin Phoebe McLarty Alexandra Lyon Katelyn Reid Tara Newton-Wordsworth Pippin Holmes Abby Wallace Not Awarded Isabella Stewart Prue Batchelor Emily Miller Olivia Swan Mia Egerton-Warburton Isobel Camerer Amy Manton Maddison Reid Asha Manton Claire Wilson Alexandra Ayers Isabelle McGinnis Elizabeth Dyke Olivia Morton

Left to right: Olive Cusack, Heather Barr and Dr Vera Summers.

After Miss Heather Barr (1949, Principal 1968-1989) died on 9 July 1989, aged just 56, the OCA introduced the Heather Barr Memorial Bursary in 1990. This bursary recognises participation in, and contribution to PLC, and is open to all students entering Year 12 who display qualities which reflect the principles espoused by Miss Barr.

Heather Barr Memorial Bursary 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

Heather Fox Elizabeth Easton Jane Humphrys Anna Walden Emma Prowse Lisa Garrity Jenifer Leys Lynley Wright Courtney Sampson Lauren Butchart Alice Duzevich Joanna Butchart Carolyn Wood Dale Seaby Emily Lang Shannon Seaby Tamsin Moran Jenna Evans Krystal Cotterill Annalise Nielsen Georgia MacKay Greta Carroll Georgia Westbrook Kimberley Warrand Annie Cormack Caitlin O’Shea Annabel Watts Sophie Bevan Maddison Georgiades Olivia Grabowski Natalie Everett Samantha Deykin Elizabeth Crawford

OCA Bursary Recipients We are very pleased to announce that the 2020 bursary recipients are:  The Olive Cusack Bursary – Olivia Morton, Year 9 The Dr Vera Summers Busary – Ellie Fry, Year 10 The Heather Barr Memorial Bursary – Elizabeth Crawford, Year 11 Congratulations to these three recipients and to all of the girls who applied.

Winners photo (left to right): Olivia Morton (Year 9), Ellie Fry (Year 10), Elizabeth Crawford (Year 11), President of the PLC Old Collegians’ Association, Jennie Deykin (Eastwood, 1982).

Pictured left with the 2020 Bursary recipients, OCA President, Jennie Deykin said: “Once again it was an extremely difficult task for the interview panel, as always, the applicants were of an extremely high calibre, they are truly inspiring girls and a credit to PLC and their families.”

100 Years of Memories from Old Collegians These then are some of our memories of our years at PLC, so long ago now. We look back on them with gratitude and affection for all they gave us of learning, friendship and fun. “The days that make us happy make us wise.” JOAN HALE (BLACKALL 1922) AND EVELYN CAREY (ANDREWS 1922) In 1942 the Relief Fund was started sometimes referred to as the War Fund. The mother of one of the small ones astonished me one time by asking what the school did with the enormous quantities of cottonwool it was buying, and when I said it was not buying any, she said “But both my children ask me every Monday morning for money for the Cottonwool Fund”. “Cot and War” can easily become “Cottonwool” for a small tongue. DR VERA SUMMERS, PRINCIPAL 1934-1961 I like you to know that our mother spent some of the happiest years of her girlhood at your PLC, ‘Place for Lost Cats’ as she used to call it. She was a boarder from 1941 to 1946 with her sister Marie, while their brother Philip was at Scotch College. Their parents were prisoners of the Japanese in Indonesia during those years and they had no news of them ‘til their return at the end of the war. Jopie had the time of her life at your PLC.  RONALD VAN TUYL, SON OF JOPIE VAN BAAREN (1946) Lots of memories of days at school. Having lunch and recess on the wood heap, canvas shutters – very hot in summer and cold in winter. SUE CAREW-REID (COPLEY 1947)

On weekends there was a pervert who used to put his ‘appendage’ through a hole in the picket fence at the back or side of PLC, down by the lane where we used to play. We would line up to have a good look, then scream, which was probably what he wanted, and race off to tell Mrs Cu that he was there. Her answer? “I want three able bodied girls with hockey sticks and we will knock it off!” Off we would all march, hockey sticks over shoulders like soldiers with guns, of course by the time we got there he had already departed. How things have changed. In this day and age there would be a terrible to-do! SUSIE GLASFURD OAM (1955) Hiding in an alcove near Dr Summers’ office when sent to her, and going back to classroom saying she wasn’t there. JENNY FAIRWEATHER (YEO 1958) Being a hungry Boarder! We loved sneaking down the lanes during unsupervised prep to get icecreams for everyone (this was during the Edgar Cooke era!!) We didn’t ever get caught! CAROL HARDIE (ANDERSON 1963) My memories of Dr Summers. As a little girl at PLC I so wanted to grow my hair and wear plaits rolled over my ears like Dr Summers. Before her time as “Star Wars” copied the look. JENNIFER COLLINS (SIMPSON 1965)

Loved “my” PLC time!! PLC was the only school in all the seven or more I attended, which I was most genuinely sad to leave. And frankly, had wanted - very much - to stay on … PLC is much honoured in my memory, with considerable affection! AUDREY MCCORMACK (TROTTER 1948)

My first day when Mrs Cusack, Doc, and Matron came around and I was eight, sitting on the bed crying. They asked me why did I think my parents sent me here? I said, “to make a lady out of me!!!” They never did succeed. HEATHER WRIGHT (FORRESTER 1968)

Going reluctantly to air raid shelters for fear of spiders when siren sounded. Digging a tunnel from shelter on Nov 5th to blow up Staff Room! PAT BUNNY (CROSSING 1951)

Midnight. Raiding the kitchen and setting FIRE to my girlfriend’s synthetic dressing gown by accident with the candle. Had to throw a bucket of milk on her to stop the flames. Outcome – girlfriend survived,

Top: Craig Royston girls 1922. Above: 1966 Leavers at Wagin 1965.

kitchen a mess (we went back to bed) and we were gated. BARBARA YOUNG (1968) Year 1, 1962, Easter. We were all in class when Eastie (the teacher) shouted “I just saw the Easter bunny go over the hill to the river.” We all ran out and no Easter bunny! But we returned to hunt on the hill down to the tennis courts and the Easter bunny had left us lots of Easter eggs. (I loved Year 1 with Eastie and Nunnie.) JENNIFER MOORE (1973) Knicker checks in Carmichael Hall. Length of skirts check 3 inches above the knee when kneeling. Throwing a flour bomb at Mrs Day on the last day of Leaving and getting her. Being told to leave so the whole year walked out and we went swimming in the river and then went back to Jackie Gilmour’s and went swimming in her pool. ANNA EARNSHAW (WHITE 1973) Throwing my friend’s bedding out the window when she was swimming. She got back at me at our 25th reunion, and threw my bedding over the balcony at the hotel where we were staying. SHARON RAYSON (YANDLE 1977)  23

Year 7 Students learn about the Wadandi and Bibbulman country through the eyes of the traditional owners

Design Photography an ATAR first for PLC We’ve all heard the saying ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. A still image can have the remarkable ability to convey complex ideas and meanings with far greater affect than the written word. Photographs can evoke more than just feelings, but communication and discussion. They can send a message or make a point. They can be thought-provoking and powerful. This, as well as the technical and editorial aspects of photography, forms the basis of Design Photography – a new ATAR subject introduced at PLC this year. The Year 11 Design Photography students recently showcased their work at the Creative Arts & Technology Exhibition and will be the first group to take the ATAR subject in Year 12.

The Year 7 ‘Bush Adventure’, based at Wharncliffe Mill (north of Margaret River) is run over four days and three nights, with students spending every night in a tent. Outdoor Education teacher, Chris Bondini said the Year 7 programme was designed to create awareness of culture, the country and the environment. “Through interactive and hands on learning experiences, students learnt about the Wadandi and Bibbulman country through the eyes of the traditional owners,” he explained. Students attended an educational cultural experience called ‘Koomal Dreaming’, where they discovered native foods, learnt about bush medicine and met the animals, plants and Dreaming spirits that have enriched the lives of Wadandi and Bibbulman people since time began. Wadandi custodian Josh “Koomal” Whiteland introduced the girls to the world’s oldest living culture with his authentic, personal interpretation. Students learnt about the Aboriginal six Seasons and how they influence what is foraged, hunted and eaten, as well as the interconnectedness between Aboriginal people, plants, animals and landscape

Media and Design Teacher, Bianca Venturi, is excited about the future of Design Photography at PLC.

Mr Bondini also said that the Year 7 Outdoor Education programme helped the girls to build resilience and independence as first year Senior School students.

“It’s fantastic to have another Media subject for the girls to choose from. Most schools teach either Media, which is film and television based, or Design Photography, so the fact we’re offering both subjects is really cool.”

“As students engage with the challenges of bush walking, camping and cooking using a Trangia Stove, they discover a great deal about their perceived limitations, capabilities and independence.”

With photography experiencing a resurgence, thanks in part to the popularity of Instagram, and photo editing Apps, there’s never been a better time to introduce ATAR Design Photography. “In previous years, the girls have gone to Scotch College to study Photography. Last year, enough girls picked the subject for it to be offered at PLC, so we brought it back here. The numbers for next year are really strong, so it looks to be a permanent fixture within the Media Department now. In 2020, it will also be offered as a General subject, which is great.” This year’s Design Photography students learnt much more than just how to take a great photo. One project required the girls to imagine they were freelance photographers who had been approached by STM Magazine to photograph a series called ‘Local Focus’.

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PLC crowned national winner of Dorothea MacKellar Poetry Awards It was with great pride that we announced in September that PLC had been named the national Secondary Schools’ Award winner of the coveted Dorothea MacKellar Australian Poetry Awards. The prestigious awards are a unique national project, giving Australia’s youth a voice and an opportunity to strive for excellence in literature. It recognises students’ works which ‘stand out from the rest because the subject matter is individual or different’. Judges look for skillfully constructed poems, with memorable lines and poetic devices such as alliteration, rhythm and internal rhyme. PLC gained the national title thanks to many of our students’ poetry submissions, but particularly a number of students whose work was considered exemplary by the judges. They include Emily Pruiti (Year 12) who was awarded Runner-Up in the Senior Secondary division, for her poem ‘boys i love’. Fellow Year 12 student, Alexandra Ayers, was shortlisted for her submissions ‘Acres of Fenceline’ and ‘Speaking Yolngu’.​  Paris Kay (Year 12), Eloisa Malet (Year 11), Eliza Murray (Year 11), Ilsa Mannolini (Year 6) and Olivia Bell (Year 3) received Highly Commended awards for their entries.  We would like to congratulate our award winners and all the girls who participated in this highly regarded poetry competition. Above: Four of the poetry award winners, left to right, Alexandra Ayers (Year 12), Olivia Bell (Year 3), Emily Pruiti (Year 12), Eliza Murray (Year 11).

boys i love by Emily Pruiti he is small and soft and his dark eyes search for the most beautiful parts of you. he longs for trust and safety. my eyes in his eyes in my eyes and his hand in mine. when i show him magic he believes me. he speaks softly and clumsily; always gently. he does not have the voice of a boy but of a dandelion making a wish. he is tall and swells with watery strength. he smiles shyly. he is small inside and is always trying to grow. he occupies space he doesn’t understand yet. he hides memories of dancing and high-pitched giggles behind strength; make-believe. he tries to be a man but shaves his body hair in discomfort. he does not have the heart of a boy but of a sapling stretching toward the sun. he is gangly and his hugs are gentle and long. he makes me feel safe with his apologies and the way he tells me it’s not my fault. his anger swirls around that shadow i’m not sure is real. he is reckless and clumsy and beautiful. he is surrounded by girls but

shoved amongst boys. he hates the harsh world we gave him. he does not have the arms of a boy but of the ocean. he is stifled and silent. he muffles everything he can to hide from their ultraviolet eyes. his despair echoes in his body. he feels alone and mistranslated. he is sweet and sends kisses. he is shy but when he trusts he is as strong as the boys he longs to be. he holds his body, confused. he does not have the body of a boy, but of a light green caterpillar. he is sweet and his eyes spill into the way he stops to watch and listen and love. he orders his mind as best he can; he doesn’t know the mess is entrancing. he thinks in twists and turns insisting on black and white. he thinks until he is exhausted from trying to stem what pushes at his order. he does not have the mind of a boy but of a tall pine tree. they fall from slanted trees, i catch them one by one and cocoon them in my hands. when i unfurl them they glint with speckled sunlight. when i fall they sit with me and when i stand they stay.

Judge’s Comment: This highly original and well-observed poem was a joy to read. I felt privileged to meet each of the boys in turn, from the shy and gently trusting to the reckless and clumsy, ‘surrounded by girls but shoved amongst boys.’ A quiet gem.  25

PLC were hot favourites going into the final regatta of the season after an almost flawless run...

Watch the video in Digital Blackwatch

PLC’s Perfect Day at Head of the River   We might have to suggest they rename Champion Lakes ‘PLC Lakes’ after the 2019 IGSSA Head of the River, where PLC took home all of the major trophies. A cloudy, wintery June morning did nothing to rain on our girls’ parade, as they powered to victory in both the First and Second Eight events and won the Head of the River Regatta Trophy and Overall Champion School Trophy. PLC were hot favourites going into the final regatta of the season after an almost flawless run in the First VIII races, winning six of the past seven events, and nine of the last

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Wendy Zuideveld Perpetual Trophies for Champion School. After a strong start in the final race of the day, the First VIII crew were ahead at the 250-metre mark and had pulled a boat length clear of their nearest competitors by the 1000 metre mark. The girls powered to a convincing win in 7 minutes 31.67 seconds, ahead of Perth College, MLC, St Hilda’s and Penrhos. PLC also took home the Second VIII trophy and won the IGSSA Old Girls race.  

Our dedicated rowers had an outstanding year across the board. PLC won 12 of the 30 races contested at Head of the River and a remarkable 19 PLC crews or sculls won their event’s Consistency Pennant - an achievement that validates the enormous commitment from every single one of our girls, and their brilliant coaches – led by David Milne and Annette Pearce, across the entire rowing season.


PARENTS Fathers’ Day Breakfast More than 180 dads and their daughters attended our annual Fathers’ Day Breakfast at PLC on Friday 29 August. A number of students from both the Junior School and Senior School regaled the crowd with funny stories about their dads and Principal Cate Begbie, shared some kind words about the origin of Father’s Day and asked the students to thank their dads for all the hard work they do.

PLC Parents funds have been used to beautify the entry to the Early Learning Centre.

PLC/Scotch Parents Sundowner The first ever PLC Scotch Parents Sundowner was held on Saturday 21 September with over 300 parents from both schools attending. The event was held at sunset at the Cottesloe Golf Club and guests enjoyed a champagne on arrival and canapes over the evening, with beautiful background music provided by duo, Estella and Mitch. All in all, it was a fabulous atmosphere and guests had a wonderful time.


During the months of July through to October hundreds of volunteers have been preparing for one of the largest days on the PLC calendar, PLC Open Garden Day. The job of organising an event like this is no simple task, yet there are those who willingly take this on because they have seen the amazing benefits that events like this bring to the PLC community. The magic of these events lies behind the scenes where community members work together as a team, developing friendships, supporting one another and all working together for a common goal. Far beyond a fundraising exercise, these events are what bolt our school community together. The funds raised from events such as Open Garden Day have funded areas of the school which add to the experience of the students at PLC.

Items such as fans for the Junior School Swim and Recreation Centre, snare drums for the Pipe Band, a contribution towards a new rowing boat, Laundry facilities for Outdoor Education, and the improvement of the Welcome corridor for the Junior School, are just some of the items that have been funded through the PLC Parents Fund (Open Garden Day fundraising) and funds raised via the Term Fee Draw. A huge thank you to our volunteers and donors who have contributed both time and financial support over the years. Thank you for supporting our PLC Community and playing such an important role.  27

Year 12 Boarders Give Tree a ‘Blue Lease on Life’ Headed for fresh air, adventure and bonding, our Year 12 boarders were eager to begin their Year 12 Boarders Retreat at fellow boarder, Lucy’s family farm in Grass Valley. Director of Boarding Liz Langdon said the retreat was a great way for the girls to spend time together before graduating School. “The Year 12 Retreat allows the girls to relax and spend time together before going their separate ways.” Students camped on a hill, overlooking the valley of Northam and enjoyed bonding around the large bonfire. Awoken by the fresh crisp air and the sounds of birds chirping, the girls ate breakfast together and spoke about their exciting day ahead; painting a large tree blue in recognition of the Blue Tree Project – a project driven by PLC Old Collegian and Western Australian of the Year nominee, Kendall Whyte (2010). The Blue Tree Project encourages people to choose a dead tree that needs a “blue lease on life” and paint to help spark difficult conversations

and encourage people to speak up when battling mental health concerns. “The Blue Tree Project is very close to the hearts of the PLC boarders and the Year 12s were very keen to show their support”, said Director of Boarding, Liz Langdon. Boarding Captain Georgie Kopke was thrilled that her fellow boarders were keen to participate in this project. “I am a strong advocate for good mental health, and I believe that the Blue Tree Project is such a great way to send a message,” Georgie said. Trees have been painted across the country, including in remote locations in the Northern Territory and New South Wales, and now at Lucy’s family farm in Grass Valley! For more information on the Blue Tree Project, go to

Softball coaching role for PLC staffer Director of Wellbeing and former Head of Physical Education, Chonny James, has been appointed Head Coach of the Australian U18 women’s softball team, the Junior Spirit. Ms James said she was honoured to have been tasked with the role to lead the girls into the 2020 U18 women’s World Cup, aiming to steer the Junior Spirit to a sixth medal in international competition to add to Australia’s swag of five bronze medals. Principal Cate Begbie said she was thrilled with Ms James’ achievement, which she could undertake while maintaining her role at PLC. “It is a fantastic honour for Chonny and I think it is very important the school supports our staff to pursue excellence in fields they are passionate about,” Ms Begbie said. Ms James already has a wealth of experience in the international softball scene having filled numerous coaching positions with the Junior Spirit over the last decade, most recently battery coach during the U19 Women’s World Cup in the United States where Australia finished fourth. She has coached at the International Friendship Series over the last nine years and previously held the position of Head Coach with the Western Australia Open Women’s Team. “We’re confident Chonny will make a seamless transition into the Head Coach role and have our emerging Aussie Spirit stars at the peak of their powers for the upcoming WBSC U18 Women’s World Cup in 2020,” Chet Gray, Chief Operating Officer at Softball Australia, said.

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13 Year Brunch

30 Year Reunion (Class of 1989)  29


40 Year Reunion (Class of 1979) Once upon a time, 120 young ladies, dressed in Blackwatch tartan skirts, pristine white shirts, ties, shiny new black lace ups, white panamas in immaculate condition, school bags slumped on one shoulder, sports bloomers in bags, arrived at PLC to begin their high school education. No thought was given for what was to happen over the next five years as they embraced their learning journey, made new friends, faced exams for the first time, wore the beret with pride, up on the left and down on the right, and prepared themselves for entering the world away from the formalities of school. Now here we are 40 years later, with no major changes to the uniform. There’s just more of it! The memories will never leave us. Once a PLC girl, always a PLC girl! Leanne Ikin (Hatton)

60 Year Reunion (Class of 1959)

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65 Year Reunion (Class of 1954)

70 Year Reunion (Class of 1949)  31



With more than 10,000 members worldwide, the PLC Old Collegians’ Association is a community of past students who give back to PLC and its current students by supporting and inspiring students, through mentoring programmes, bursaries and other financial support. This year has been another great year for the OCA. The committee has worked to engage with the OCA and PLC Community which has resulted in an increased awareness of the OCA’s purpose, objectives and fostered a spirit of community between past and present collegians and the college.

Art Exhibition 2019

The annual PLC OCA Art Exhibition was held at the end of May and was once again an extremely successful event. 69 artists from the PLC community, including Old Collegians, their relatives, parents, staff and former staff members, took the opportunity to exhibit their works. The Senior School foyer was transformed into a beautiful gallery, displaying more than 424 artworks including a wonderful display of self-portraits by our PLC Year 5 students.

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More than 300 guests attended the OCA Art Exhibition Opening Night Cocktail Party and enjoyed the entertainment, artworks and Q&A session with PLC Old Collegian and Archibald Packing Room Prize winner, Tessa Mackay (McOnie 2008). It was wonderful to see so many Old Collegians taking the opportunity to visit the Exhibition. The Art Exhibition is the OCA’s premier event. It has grown over the years from making a few thousand dollars to over $27 000 in 2019. This is due to the hard-working Art Exhibition Committee, special thanks are extended to Carolyn Shephard, Jess Mahony, Justine Cerini, Maureen White and our OCA Coordinator, Sascha Hill.

Congratulations to the winner of the People’s Choice Award; Genevieve Montgomerie for her amazing art piece, The Local. Congratulations also to the winners of the Francesca Nelson Awards. All prize winners are listed below: The first prize: Jacinda Bayne -Viewpoint.  First Highly Commended:  Omar Sanchez Mejia - Nobility Highly Commended: Annabel Cribb -Darling Harbour Anne-Marie Darcy -PLC leads Alice Ford -River Coral Year 5 Miniatures: Jaimee Lively Artist Miniature: Samantha de Sillery

This Exhibition continues to be a very successful fundraiser for the OCA, with all funds raised going towards bursaries and donations for current PLC students. It also has much broader benefits in terms of supporting and showcasing the talent of PLC Artists, connecting people with the school and being a dynamic community event, that PLC can be very proud of. Watch the video in Digital Blackwatch

The Old Girl Donation

The latest contribution from the Old Collegians’ Association to the School, is a new Quadruple Scull Boat. We are very proud to have given this new boat, named ‘The Old Girl’, to PLC to be used by current and future rowing students. A Christening was held in May to celebrate this new addition to the fleet. It was wonderful to watch our senior rowers and other OCA representatives view the Christening by myself and rowing coach, David Milne, complete with a ceremonial champagne bottle smashed across the hull and canons of streamers. The Old Girl has been very successful in this year’s IGSSA Rowing Regattas with a number of wins and a second place. The Argyle club are very appreciative of our support and have made special mentions of the OCA at many of their events.

The Tartan Lawyers Breakfast

The Old Scotch Collegians (OSC) and PLC Old Collegians’ Associations hosted the fourth annual Tartan Lawyers’ Breakfast. Over 40 members of the PLC/ Scotch community who are aspiring, current or retired members of the legal profession, attended this event at Clayton Utz, overlooking the Perth CBD.

like to welcome Natusha Wenn (1995) as Secretary, and Alma Jovanovic (2013) as a Committee member. I look forward to working with them and the committee in 2020. Office bearers, elected at the AGM: President - Jennie Deykin Vice President - Jessamy Mahony Secretary - Natusha Wenn Treasurer - Justine Cerini If you would like to become involved with the Committee or would like more information about any of our events or initiatives, please contact Sascha Hill at

PLC Old Collegians Win Schools’ Golf Day

The 54th Combined Independent Girls’ Schools Golf Day was hosted by PLC at the Cottesloe Golf Club on Monday 23 September. Principal, Cate Begbie joined the girls for the lunch and presented the prizes to the winners. The competition involved 136 players from 8 schools competing and PLC were the resounding winners by 7 points, with second placed going to Perth College.

With the theme ‘Work Life Balance’, Aaron McDonald (OSC 2001), Director at Pragma Lawyers, fielded questions to Liz Humphry (1998), Partner at Clayton Utz, and Nicholas van Hattem (OSC 2002), Barrister at Burt Chambers and Senior Vice President of The Law Society of Western Australia. It was inspiring to hear perspectives from these role models about work flexibility within the legal industry and no doubt the students who attended gained invaluable insight from the guest speakers and the esteemed audience.

Leonie Cooke and Jane Atkinson came in with the best score of the day - 35 points, and Jane Kingsnorth and Jane McNamara came in with second best score of the day - 32 points. The top two scores for each team determine the results.

Annual General Meeting

Open Garden Day was on the 25 October and the OCA sold beautiful succulent pots and Clivias. Thank you to Old Collegian, Jane Metcalf (1988) who made the succulent pots to sell on the day and to Rachel Thomas who donated the Clivias.

The AGM took place on Sunday 8 September, Katrina Burton resigned as Secretary, but I am happy to report that she is staying on as a Committee member. I would like to thank Katrina for her hard work and commitment as Secretary the last two years. I would also

Congratulations to everyone who participated. Next year the competition will be held at Lake Karrinyup on Monday October 19 and is hosted by St Hilda’s, so put it in your diary.

Open Garden Day

Valedictory Dinner

In Term 4, the Valedictory Dinner was held to honour the Year 12 girls as they embark on their very exciting journey after leaving school. The OCA awarded an engraved silver bracelet and a certificate to welcome the Year 12’s to the Old Collegians’ Association.

Year 13 Lunch

The OCA Committee attended a Year 13 Brunch in October which was very successful, and I am sure we will see many of the girls involved with the OCA, in future years. The OCA promoted the mentoring programme at the lunch and hopefully the girls we be involved in mentoring other Old Collegians and current students in the future.

Events for 2020

Next year is the PLC Old Collegians Centenary. It is a year to remember and we are currently planning a wonderful Afternoon Soiree to commemorate this special year. To celebrate this centenary milestone and the lifelong friendships forged at PLC, we are hosting an event to bring together Old Collegians across the years and generations. Our afternoon to evening, Centenary Celebration Soiree, will be hosted at PLC on Saturday 4 April 2020. There will be lovely food, wine and entertainment on offer. We look forward to sharing more about this event in coming months. Information about this event is available on the PLC OCA Website.  I look forward to your support and attendance at the Old Collegians’ Association events in our centenary year, 2020. Jennie Deykin (Eastwood 1982) PLC Old Collegians’ Association President  33



A sad, yet poignant reconnection One of the most poignant tales to come from Archives stands as testament to the enduring strength of friendships forged at PLC. To tell the tale we take you back to 25 May 2007. That’s when Eleanor Saber*, one of our beautiful Old Girls who attended from 1922 through to 1930, asked me to let her know if we ever found out what happened to Veronica Ireland, her very best friend from their days at PLC. “Her parents were farmers from Meckering, where I spent my school holidays,” Eleanor told us. “We were great friends, but something happened at the beginning of the war and we lost touch. I’d like to find out what happened to her.” Eleanor (28) had married in 1942 and she said she thought Veronica had married much later, down in Pingelly. I made a note in both Eleanor and Veronica’s records, and put it aside for the time being.

PLC girls, November 1927.

Fast forward to 4 July 2008, when Bob Briton, a very gruffly spoken man, called and said, rapid-fire, that his mother had been an Old Girl and she’d received several books as music prizes. “Righto! Do you want them?” he asked. We did! And so he promised to bring them around that afternoon. He was up from Bunbury, he explained, but he thought he could find his way. Before he rang off I quickly asked his mother’s name. “Ireland. Veronica Ireland. She had me and adopted me out because she didn’t like children. She died in January at the ripe old age of about 96.” I asked if she’d married, “Yes, Simons,” and whether she’d had any children with her husband, “No. She never wanted children. She really hated children.” He hung up and, after reading my earlier notes in his mother’s entry, I called Eleanor. After we’d chatted for a while I said I’d made a note that she’d always wondered what had happened to Veronica. I said I was very sorry to tell her Veronica had died in January. Eleanor was grateful to finally know that, but so very, very sad…

Bob had been so open about his background, I said “Well… it seems Veronica had a little boy she adopted out…” and she knocked my socks off with “Yes! I helped her all through the pregnancy and saw her through his birth! My mother was very good to her. We helped her hide her pregnancy from her parents and all that went afterwards. It broke her heart to give him away – she was really heartbroken, full of regret. But having a baby out of wedlock back then wasn’t the same as it is today.” She continued, “Afterwards she went to stay with friends in Jarrad Street, Cottesloe. I then married and moved away, and we lost touch. I even thought of putting notices in the Can You Help section of The West Australian asking for anyone who had news of her.” I gently said, “he’s coming to see me this afternoon, with Veronica’s book prizes…” and she interrupted with, “Oh! I’d so love to meet him! Is he musical? Veronica was very musical! Oh, that would be wonderful to meet him! Thank you so much for thinking of me and remembering.” Dear Eleanor sounded like she was having a quiet cry, so while she snuffled away, I told her what Veronica’s son, Bob, had told me, that he had found his mother 15 years before, and that they’d formed their own, fairly good relationship, but that his existence had been an enormous shock to her family. I hung up, having confirmed I’d give him her contact details when he came, along with the invitation to go and see her. At 4pm there were a couple of very loud bangs on the door and there was Bob, Veronica’s son! I could see just the whisper of resemblance between them.

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He handed me her book prizes and spouted several risque jokes which were sometimes very difficult to understand - possibly because every time he spoke he rubbed his mouth and turned away! His mannerisms were quite quirky. He shrugged his shoulders a lot and had many exaggerated facial tics. His arms flailed out, punctuating his words; he was never still! He said, again and again, that Veronica hadn’t liked children and that’s why he’d been given away, adding that she wouldn’t even talk to her grandchildren. He emphatically believed his mother had hated children. Earlier, I had typed out Eleanor’s contact details because even without knowing he’d be like trying to halt a freight train at full speed, I wasn’t sure I could say what needed to be said without becoming a bit emotional - the fact that Eleanor had been such a close friend of his mother’s, and that she knew all about him. Underneath were Eleanor’s words - that she was so keen to meet him, and that she had looked all over for his mother, and always wondered what had become of him. ...And lastly, that it had broken Veronica’s heart to give him away, and that she had been “filled with regret” at having to do so. During his (brief!) pause for breath I handed him the note. He started again, “Have you heard the one about...”, but I just tapped the paper in front of him, and he began to read. Always, always moving, he went very still. Luckily there was a chair behind him, as he almost collapsed into it. And then a great, fat tear splodged down onto the paper. He looked up at me, his eyes filled with tears (mine, too). It took a few moments for him to clear his throat enough to speak before he shook his head and whispered, “So many of my mother’s friends denied they knew anything about me. I’ll give her a call tomorrow.”

Senior students, 1930.

I walked him out because he wanted to show me his beautiful old dog, Janey, who had a bed in the back of his 4WD. He reached in, gave her a pat and a big hug, then buried his face in her ruff and sobbed. He called Eleanor that night, and they spoke for a good few hours. He then spent all of the next morning with her. At the start he told her when he finally met Veronica, she had greeted him with “I hate children.” But Eleanor told him, straight out, that had not been true when Veronica had had him, and reiterated the fact it had broken his mother’s heart to give him away. “I know,” she said, “I was there.” Bob came back to Archives a few days later, with some more of his mother’s music awards and a photo of her on her wedding day in 1951, aged 39. He’d just come from Eleanor’s, having spent another lovely few hours with her. He was different. He didn’t have the nervous tics and flailing mannerisms he’d displayed just a week before. He didn’t try to tell any risque jokes. His face was more open and his eyes were steady and light. He stood up straight, faced me when he spoke, smiled front on, and actually made eye contact! Eleanor had made this difference. Over the next few years the two of them saw each other every time Bob came to Perth. Eleanor, who was so grateful to have him in her life, also noted and remarked on the enormous change in him.

“He handed me her book prizes and spouted several risque jokes which were sometimes very difficult to understand possibly because every time he spoke he rubbed his mouth and turned away! ”

It was a very sad day when dear Eleanor died on 7 September 2015, aged 101. I called Bob to let him know. At first, ever gruff and busy doing something else, he said “Who?” then, not a split-second later, he groaned “Oh no…!!” The line was quiet but I knew he was still there; I could hear him swallowing. After a long, choked silence he asked me to pass his condolences onto her family. I rang again the next day to give him Eleanor’s son’s contact details, but Bob’s wife answered. She told me Bob had a blood disorder and was going into hospital that afternoon. Sixteen days after Eleanor died, Bob died too, aged 72. Such is the magic of our Archives; able to bring these two together, so each could hear the other end of the story, after all those lost years. *We gained permission from both Eleanor and Bob, who were both happy for us to tell their story, but we have changed their names.

“He’s found himself,” she said.  35



Summers Hardship Bursary In ‘Blackwatch Summer 2017’ we advised receiving a Bequest from the Estate of the Late John Philip Bernard Summers. It was Mr Summers’ wish that his Bequest be used for Hardship Bursaries. To date, Mr Summers has supported and enabled four students to complete their studies at PLC. Please see the beautiful thank you letter from the mother of a worthy student.

Welcome New Board members The PLC Foundation Board would like to welcome two new members: Kristin Kestel and Yasmin Broughton. Kristin is a partner at Black Brewing Co, Margaret River; much of her career was spent as a Global Contracts/Project Manager for telecommunications and infrastructure companies. Kristin has three daughters who currently attend PLC, Georgia (Year 11), Jasmine (Year 9) and Sophie (Year 8).

Yasmin is a highly credentialed lawyer with significant experience working as both a director and an executive in a diverse range of industries, she has a deep understanding of corporate governance and managing complex legal issues. Yasmin has two daughters who currently attend PLC, Jadira (Year 7) and Samara (Year 5).

Farewell Cathy Donaldson The PLC Foundation would like to sincerely thank Cathy Donaldson who retired as Foundation Secretary at the 2019 AGM. Cathy served as a Foundation Board member from 2013 and as Secretary from 2014. We are very grateful for the contribution of your time, expertise and support of PLC and the PLC Foundation. Cathy has been a valued member of the PLC community since 2006, with three daughters studying at PLC: Anneliese who graduated in 2013, Phoebe in 2015 and Eliza as Head Girl in 2018; and volunteering at the Junior School, Friend of Music and Open Garden Day.

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PLC Foundation Scholarship Student Halimah Mohamad Zaini PLC Principal, Ms Begbie met with the current PLC Foundation scholarship students for lunch earlier this year and was amazed at the distance the scholarship students travel to attend PLC. The students all agree that it is worth the hour each way on public transport to be a PLC student.

The PLC Foundation Scholarship students enjoy getting together and, as a group, are very sad to say goodbye to Halimah, who is completing Year 12 this year. Halimah has been an exceptional student – some of her achievements are listed below:

Year 11: Academic Excellence Award * Alliance Française Examination Très Bien * National Chemistry Quiz Distinction * Carmichael House Distinction Pocket * Member Stage Band * Member Wind Ensemble * IGSSA Volleyball D Team * IGSSA Netball D Team * IGSSA Soccer A Team.

Year 12: Academic Captain * Participated in Australian Computational and Linguistics Olympiad * Scholarship to attend the L’Acadèmie De Paris under the Oxbridge Program * Academic Effort Semester 1 * Subject Excellence Semester 1 - French * Academic Honours * Stage Band Pocket * Wind Ensemble Pocket * IGSSA Volleyball C Team * IGSSA Soccer A Team  37



Gavin Law Bunning AM (Kindy 1945-1946)

Congratulations to Gavin who is one of our proudest Old Boys and was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for significant service to the hardware retail industry, and to charitable organisations in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday honours list.

Wendy Addis (1954)

According to Wendy, her school days (1942-1954) were busy, happy, privileged and rewarding, and prepared her for the last 77 years. Wendy’s mother introduced her to school by correspondence in 1942 and taught her at home for two years during the war. She learnt to read, write, sew and knit along with other early childhood activities to help organise her life in an orderly manner. Two years followed at the local state school then, three years in boarding school at ‘Kobeelya” prepared Wendy for life at PLC. Teachers who inspired Wendy include, Miss Birt for developing her interest in books – she will always remember her reading, Dumas’ ‘The Black Tulip’ and Marryat’s. ‘The Children of the New Forrest’. Dr Summers and Mrs Cusack instilled in her an appropriation of poetry (who remembers Browning?), Shakespeare and to refer to a dictionary which she continues to do regularly when doing crosswords. When Wendy first saw the ‘Mona Lisa’ and the ‘Nightwatch’, she blessed Mrs Ladomirka for giving her an interest in Art. Miss Hope and Miss Major helped her appreciate History and Geography which developed into a deep love of travel. Miss Hosking gave her an understanding of ‘Living Things’ and promoted her interest in gardening and the environment. The inspirational woman continues with Miss Huchison and Miss Norris who taught Wendy on appreciation of singing and music which developed into a further appreciation for opera and classical music. The sports staff encouraged her to play sport and the limited gymnastics inspired a love of ballet.

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Miss Barclay sadly did not influence Wendy, greatly. She loathed Maths but the solid grounding in Physiology was very beneficial for her long careers. Wendy felt Mrs March could not encourage culinary skills and she doubts ‘Gussy Irvine’ would be able to understand the economics and Politics of today’s Australia. Vivid memories for Wendy include, butter jars in 1949, baths three times a week! Black stockings – she has never worn them again, sleeping on the verandahs in winter and summer, tea leaves thrown on the floors to eliminate dust when sweeping! Dissecting a rat in Biology classes, usually followed by a roast dinner! The long march to St Luke’s on Sunday – it prepared her for the hundreds of miles she has trekked while bushwalking.

Delys Bird AM (Temby 1955)

Congratulations to Delys who was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for significant service to higher education, and to gender studies and literature in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday honours list.

Margaret Floyd (1958)

Margaret has no daughters or granddaughters, so when she attended her 60 Year Reunion in 2018, it was her first time back on PLC grounds since she left school at the end of 1956. Margaret said the reunion was a very joyful occasion seeing so many of her old friends. It was also a revelation to see how PLC has evolved over the past 60 years and she was particularly impressed with the Archives Room. Margaret left PLC at the end of her Junior year in December 1956. She believes she was streamed nonprofessional, being weak in maths/ sciences and went to commercial college to later become a Medical Secretary.  She worked for medical specialists in Perth and in Melbourne and loved the interaction with the patients. When her sons were at Secondary school, she decided she needed to complete her education. Margaret

enrolled at UWA and studied for an Honours Degree in History. She gained an Upper First and a PhD scholarship. Unfortunately, severe back problems were not compatible with the long hours of study, and she was forced to abandon my PhD thesis. In recent years, building on her PhD research, Margaret has written a multi-generational social history of her father’s Cornish mining family.  It is almost complete, and she intends to self-publish the book, next year. Margaret has also self-published several books of poetry, and believes her love of history, literature and poetry was fostered by some of the fine teachers at PLC, especially Miss Hope.

Eleanor Bennett (Scrymgeour 1959)

After leaving school, Eleanor was accepted into Claremont Teachers College where she gained a Bachelor of Science with honours in Botany. When sitting the exams for her DipEd she saw a position advertised for a botanist at the Western Australian Herbarium. She got the job and worked there for over five years, also completing her Masters in Science. Eleanor married in 1968, and when her son was born in 1970, she was required to resign from the herbarium. For the next 8 years Eleanor, did part-time work assisting Professor Grieve with the preparation of how to know Western Australian Wildflowers and late lectured in botany to horticulture students at Bentley Tech. In 1979, when her husband was transferred as principal to Ravensthorpe District High School that Eleanor started research for her PhD, and on returning to Perth in 1982, she worked part-time at the Western Australian herbarium assisting with the writing of the Flora of the Perth Region. In 1985 Eleanor was appointed as Display Botanist at Kings Park and Botanist Garden where she was responsible for the naming of all plant collections, undertaking research and assisting with the voluntary group, the Kings Park Guides.

The headmistress of PLC at the time, Dr Summers, however, always impressed on “her girls” the value of a University education, and with the somewhat bewildered agreement of her parents, Judith completed a Law degree at The University of Western Australia.

Judith Gardam (1962)

Judith Gardam LLB, LLM, PHD, FASSA is Emeritus Professor at the University of Adelaide Law School and is a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria and the High Court of Australia. Judith graduated PLC during an era where community expectation was that marriage and a family were a woman’s ultimate goal.

From 1995 to 1999, Eleanor worked in a botanical consulting firm until 2000 when she set up her own botanical consulting company and after a notable career in botany, at the end of 2016, she decided to retire from full time work. Since then she has had some casual work as well as working on a voluntary basis. Eleanor’s current major project is for the shire of Capel where she is surveying a large Banksia Woodland reserve.

Patti McBain (1978)

Since PLC days, Patti has forged a career in wellness and personal growth. She teaches yoga and meditation and trains teachers from her studio in Clarkson, WA. She lives close to work and enjoys driving a converted electric car. Last year, Patti got the opportunity to come back the PLC junior school to mentor one of her Meditation Facilitation trainees who was giving some staff a taste of mindful meditation. When Patti reflects on her years at PLC from Grade 1, she is grateful for the inspirational teachers, and believes her love of the environment was fostered from her geography lessons. Explorational walks to the river, wearing the panamas hats in junior school are lovely fond memories for Patti.

Partly because of the difficulties confronting women in the legal profession at that time, combined with a very restless spirit, it took Judith quite some time to determine where her vocation lay. She moved to Melbourne in the late 1970s where she found her feet as a teacher and scholar and commenced a journey that has been all consuming and infinitely rewarding. Judith is a feminist international law scholar, and the focus of her work has been on increasing the legal protections for civilians and, in particular women, during times of armed conflict.

One of the most interesting aspects of her work is that it has brought her into contact with a range of international actors including the military of various countries, United Nations agencies, non-governmental organisations and the International Committee of the Red Cross to name a few. Judith’s work is the first in the field and she is acknowledged as an international expert on the topic. Her scholarly writings led to her election as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. On reflection, her career is somewhat of a total surprise to Judith as there were no role models for her at the time and she had no real plan, but it worked out. For her, every moment has been worthwhile.

Jocelyn Hudson (Gawler 1978)

After 12-and-a-half years as a student at PLC, Jocelyn worked in the National Bank (now National Australia Bank) She married, had three children and after eight years to look after her children and husband, she returned to work in the bank part time for 4 years. Towards the end of that time Jocelyn started bookkeeping for a few small businesses and now she has her own bookkeeping business - Your Place or Mine Bookkeeping Service and currently employees four staff. Her children are now adults and she has been working as a bookkeeper for 18 years.

Jana Ripper (Ross 1978)

Plants and gardening have been Jana’s passion since doing a BSci (Agric) at UWA after leaving PLC. Currently she works two days a week at a garden centre and on the side has a small consultancy business helping others have a successful green space. Jana and her husband also have a small cropping farm in West Dale that also keeps them busy. Two of her three children now live in Sydney, giving them an excuse to pop over east on occasions. Jana is still in contact with a few dear old school friends despite the distance between them and she thoroughly enjoyed catching up with so many friends at the reunion.

Sasha Bosich (1989)

In 2017, Sasha had a successful double lung transplant, which inspired her to hold a fundraising cocktail party for Foundation Breathe at the PLC Lighthouse. The event raised over $43,000 for the Heart and Lung Transplant Foundation of WA Inc. at Fiona Stanley Hospital for the purchase of medical equipment to keep those on the lung transplant waiting list healthy enough for transplant surgery, including five portable oxygenators, ten specialised nebulisers and twenty handheld spirometers. The medical equipment recently arrived at the hospital and has been loaned to a number of patients on the wait list for new lungs. Sasha is feeling great and has just reached her 2nd year post-lung transplant. To celebrate, she is hosting the Foundation Breathe Cocktail Party once again, on 9th November 2019, in the PLC Lighthouse.  39



Tara Newton-Wordsworth (2005)

In August this year, Tara Newton-Wordsworth, by her own admission, dragged her husband, toddler and baby to Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and exploited them for as much comedy material as possible. ‘Motherhood’ is Tara’s debut stand up hour and draws on the hilarious everyday scenarios she’s experienced as a new mum, while also touching on some heavier topics. The show is a funny, honest and insightful look into the world of a new parent. Tara is a comic, actor, wife and mum. She has performed in renowned London based comedy sketch show ‘NewsRevue’, subsequently directing and co-writing the Edinburgh Fringe run of the show. She has worked with Fay Weldon, directing her show ‘I love my love’, played one of Nicole Kidman’s punks in the feature film ‘How To Talk To Girls At Parties’ and has performed spots at some of the world’s top comedy venues.

Dr Kate Stannage (1989)

Sharyn Cook (1979)

Sharyn attended PLC for three years and attributes gaining many good long-term friendships with her time at PLC. She lives in Kulin and farms (cropping & sheep) with her husband Paul and son, Will. Sharyn’s other sons, Sam and Austin are currently studying away from home. Sam is studying at Curtin University while Austin is competing Year 12 at Great Southern Grammer. Sharyn also works part time as a registered Nurse at Lake Grace Hospital.

Kate came to PLC in Year 3 and later won a Carmichael scholarship to Senior School. In addition to her academic studies, while at PLC, all-rounder Kate would study French horn and she also competed nationally in gymnastics, diving and athletics, and in Year 10, joined the WA Youth Orchestra. Kate completed her undergraduate medical degree at UWA and graduated from orthopaedic training in 2008. She went on to do post-fellowship training in paediatrics, with a special interest in neuromuscular conditions and 3-dimensional gait analysis. Kate is currently Head of the Department of Orthopaedics at Perth Children’s Hospital. She is President of the Australian Paediatric Orthopaedic Society, the first female President of an orthopaedic subspecialty organisation, and one of only three female orthopaedic surgeons in WA. Kate has previously sat on the board of Healthy Hips Australia and is currently on the board of Australian Doctors for Africa. She has been an Australian Medical Association representative on the Government Working Group looking at sexual harassment within the medical workplace and is the West Australian representative on the

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Australian Orthopaedic Association’s Orthopaedic Women’s Link. She also sits on the WA Australian Orthopaedic Association WA Executive and Regional Training Committees. In 2018 she was the West Australian winner of the Excellence in Women’s Leadership award. Her research interests are in the field of neuromuscular muscle morphology and function, and she lectures at both UWA and Notre Dame Universities. Kate has spent time volunteering and teaching in the Solomon Islands, is an active lecturer with the Pacific Islands Orthopaedic Association and works with Australian Doctors for Africa to establish clubfoot treatment clinics in Madagascar and Somaliland. It has taken considerable persistence and at times great fortitude to achieve her childhood ambitions, Kate noting orthopaedics is a long and difficult pathway and journey, seldom undertaken by women, with females only representing 3.5% of this workforce. Kate attests that for its many challenges, hers remains an amazing job and she struggles to imagine another career, offering quite so much variety or fun.

Julia Barker (2007)

On a wild and wintery weekend in June, Julia Barker married Andrew Duffy at the PLC Chapel. Julia loved having her wedding at PLC and the beautiful interior of the Chapel provided much needed protection from the bad weather. It certainly was a PLC affair as three of the flower girls are current PLC students (Isobel, Isla and Olivia Barker), as well as Julia’s usher, Penny Barker. Julia’s bridesmaids, Casey Lister and Casey Bombara, like Julia, are PLC graduates from the Class of 2007.

Eleni Petros (1989)

Qualifying with a Bachelor of Laws from The University of Western Australia in 1996, Eleni went on to work as a solicitor for several law firms in Perth and Sydney. In 2002, she travelled to London, initially intending to be there for only a couple of years, she is still there 17 years on. After sitting the English qualification exams early on in the piece, Eleni works is a dual qualified English and Australian lawyer. She is the Head of Product and Innovation at Marsh McLennan in London, a Global American Insurance Broker, where she has worked for the past 10 years. Eleni has been married to Ben for 9 years, and has two little boys, Harry who is seven-years-old and Max, 6, they are 13 months apart. These days, Eleni is a keen runner (admitting to never being very good at sport at school), having completed the London Marathon, several half marathons and many 10 mile and 10 km races. She is also a regular at Parkrun in Winchester, Hampshire, England, where they now live.

Elizabeth Kuiper (2012)

Elizabeth has just published her first novel ‘Little Stones’ which is a fictional story, inspired by her formative childhood experiences. Elizabeth grew up in Zimbabwe before immigrating to Perth with her mother. She graduated from PLC in 2012, and from the University of Melbourne with a degree in politics and philosophy in 2016. She is currently completing a Juris Doctor at the University of Melbourne. Her writing has been shortlisted for

Kirstie Stewart (1989)

With two daughters, now eight-yearsold and nearly 10-years-old, PLC seemed a distant memory to Kirstie before attending her 30 Year reunion. Now a single mother, she is three years into successfully running her own architectural practice, specialising in Education for Private Independent Schools and Residential. Reflecting on her Reunion, Kirstie loved seeing so many familiar faces, 30 years on since graduating from PLC.

the Hal Porter Short Story Competition and the HG Wells Fiction Short Story Competition and longlisted for The Richell Prize by Hachette Australia. She was the 2014 winner of Best Fiction Piece in an Express Media publication. Elizabeth credits her teachers at PLC who taught and supported her throughout her school experience, in particular, her English Literature teacher, Roland Leach. ‘Little Stones’ is available in all good bookstores.  41


Helen Patricia ‘Pat’ Gladstones (Burns 1950) 31 October 1933 – 31 August 2019

From her first days at Meerlinga Kindergarten, Pat’s life revolved around music; in particular, the piano. In 1940 she came to PLC where she spent the next eleven years, best summed up in Dr Summers’ reference saying Pat “always entered wholeheartedly with all forms of School activity, and was an outstandingly good  President of the Music Club, and also a very conscientious Prefect.” On leaving school in 1950 Pat joined the staff as a music teacher and accompanist until 1954, when she went to London to study at the Royal Academy of Music. She returned to Perth in 1959 with a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music and a Certificate of Merit for her outstanding work accompanying the opera class. She resumed playing the organ at St Mary’s, taught at St Mary’s and Christ Church Grammar Schools, and was the Honarary Deputy Accompanist of the UWA Choral Society. She also joined several chamber music groups, including the University Madrigal Singers. This had a profound impact, as it was there she met John Gladstones, who had also recently returned from studying overseas. Their first meeting was not propitious though as, in a misguided attempt at helpfulness, his first words were “I think you went wrong in the third bar.”

music. They attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace and even saw the third performance of the new musical Hair! Back here, Pat taught piano at Hale School, played their chapel organ, and became a leading accompanist. She was also an eisteddfod adjudicator, and travelled to many a country town to hear twenty children play ‘The Marching Piglets’ in many a drafty town hall. Several of Pat’s students, including Rob, have gone on to establish successful musical careers. Helen’s remains strictly amateur. After John retired in 1991 they indulged their love of travel, often choosing destinations for their superb vineyards Tasmania, New Zealand and America’s Pacific coast. She also often visited Canberra when Rob, and then Helen, moved there. In later life Pat faced significant health challenges - among them, breast cancer in 1980, a near-fatal bout of septicaemia, and chronic back pain. By the time she retired at 80, macular degeneration had made reading difficult, but she still loved listening to music, audiobooks and lectures, nourishing her lifelong love of learning. She always watched her beloved Lions play footy at Subiaco Oval with her knitting on her knee,

Pat Gladstones (Burns 1950) with son Rob (OSC 1981) and daughter Helen Gladstones (1982), on their way to spending a year in London, 1967.

and was also a devoted follower of the West Coast Eagles - but if they weren’t doing well, she was known to switch off the live game and play a DVD of one of their Grand Final wins instead! Always optimistic, Pat believed it was up to her to make the best of things and, in facing her deteriorating health, was courageous to the end. At an event on 27 October at St George’s College, Pat was remembered by former students, family and lifelong friends including Barbara Finch (1950), Jill Crommelin (Meatherel 1951) and Jan Manners (Perrin 1953). She was farewelled, fittingly, with music. Her music lives on in John, her devoted husband of nearly 57 years, her son Rob, daughter Helen, and granddaughters Hannah and Zoë.

They married in Guildford Grammar School Chapel on 19 December 1962, a 39oC day complete with thunderstorm and bucketing rain, and rented a place in Nedlands just big enough for the Steinway grand piano on which generations of children were taught. They then bought one of the Empire Games village houses in City Beach, and were there for the next forty years. Their two children, Rob (OSC 1981) and Helen (1982) were born in 1964 and 1965 respectively, before John received a Nuffield Foundation Fellowship in 1967, funding a year of overseas study. The young family relocated to London and lived opposite the zoo in Regents Park while happily immersing themselves in London’s

42  Blackwatch 2019 Edition Two

1950 Prefects Back: L-R: Helen Watson, Sheila Birch, Jennifer Flintoff, Margaret Kirkwood, Robin Sinclair, Pat Watson, Pat Burns Front: Eunice Seddon, Barbara Finch (Head Prefect), Dr Summers, Wendy Loton, Nancy Smith

We are greatly saddened to hear of the passing of our following Old Collegians: Barbara Dorothy Abernethy (Kennedy 1944) 28 September 1927 – 3 October 2019 Marian Lennox ‘Nixie’ Angeloni (Richardson 1938) 27 March 1922 – 13 October 2019 Simone Marisa Barker (1995) 15 October 1977 – 31 March 2019 Norma Idarene Dermer (Baty 1941) 21 September 1924 – 26 April 2019 Florence Jean ‘Flock’ Dubois (Lissiman 1942) 7 April 1925 – 6 March 2019 Elizabeth Mildred ‘Millie’ Edgecombe (McLarty 1933) 6 December 1915 – 14 June 2019 Dr Kerry Patricia Everett (O’Regan 1967) 8 June 1950 – 19 April 2019 Jean MacFarlane Firman (Williamson 1948) 28 October 1931 – 2 March 2019 Tereena May Fry (Quartermaine 1964) 31 July 1947 – 28 March 2019 Helen Patricia ‘Pat’ Gladstones (Burns 1950) 31 October 1933 – 31 August 2019 Glenice Alison Gordon (Pascoe 1939) 18 September 1922 – 25 June 2019 Betty Margaret Hawley (Bates 1948) 13 October 1931 – 3 March 2019 Rayma Hemingway (1946) 12 February 1929 – 20 January 2019 Mareea Letitia Henderson (Sides 1966) 15 April 1949 – 29 July 2019 Robin Ann ‘Buss’ Jestrimski (Bussemaker 1964) 21 August 1947 – 26 May 2019 Ethelmary Kenworthy (Cook 1949) 10 January 1933 – 16 August 2019 Sarah Shellabear (Bennison 1975) 7 July 1958 – 27 July 2019 Betty May Stenhouse (Clapton 1943) 3 July 1926 – 29 May 2019 Glenis Ada Stephenson (French 1953) 10 April 1935 – 12 March 2019 Valerie Muriel Sutherland (1957) 18 July 1940 – 18 July 2019 Patricia Marjorie Thompson (Barnett 1947) 3 August 1930 – 16 July 2019 Judith Clare Trainor (Sprigg 1971) 23 May 1954 – 7 April 2019 Judith Elizabeth Tweedie (Foreman 1949) 1 January 1933 – 19 September 2019

Important dates 2019 DECEMBER MONDAY 9






















































Jean Hilda Westle (Walker 1961) 29 May 1944 – 17 October 2018 Elaine Harvey Williams (West 1941) 31 October 1924 – 31 August 2019

We are also sad to advise the following former staff members also passed away: Rosemary Hay (PE teacher in 1962-1963 and 1975-1977) 15 July 2019, aged 85 Susette May Stenhouse (formerly Morison, PE teacher 1970-1982) 29 July 2019, aged 87

COMMUNITY TOURS If you are looking to experience the unique PLC culture and spirit, we encourage you to join us at one of our Community Tours. A tour of PLC allows you to view our facilities, meet our Principal and staff, see our girls in their learning environment and ask any questions you may have. To enable us to give you the best possible experience on the tours, numbers are limited and bookings preferred. For Community Tour dates and bookings for 2020, please visit

Celebrating 100 years of PLC OCA

Soirée Saturday 4 April 2020 3.00 - 7.00 pm

To celebrate this 100-year milestone and lifelong friendships forged at school the PLC OCA is hosting an event to bring together Old Collegians across the years and generations.



2020 centenary celebration

Old collegians’ association

Editorial Details Blackwatch is published for the community of Presbyterian Ladies’ College A College of the Uniting Church of Australia 14 McNeil Street, Peppermint Grove Western Australia 6011 T: +61 8 9424 6444 F: +61 8 9424 6466 Please address all correspondence regarding Blackwatch to Publications and Communications Co-ordinator +61 8 9424 6475 at PLC or email CRICOS Provider Code 00447B

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PLC Blackwatch 2019 Edition Two  

PLC Blackwatch 2019 Edition Two