AUTUMN 2018 2018 marks the 50th year of girls at Marlborough College and the 175th year since the College was established
Deus Dat Incrementum Armistice Day 1918 Memorial Hall Festival The move to co-education
Master’s Welcome It is a great pleasure to write a short introduction to the last Marlborough Together during my time as Master. Emma and I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know this whole dynamic community with its so many associated branches. The fact that our years here coincided with the remembrance of the Great War has been an essential point of emphasising what it is for Marlburians to understand service to one’s fellow man and woman. As we reached the 175th and 50th anniversaries, this year has had a special edge to it. As my time concludes, it has been wonderful to see the Memorial Hall re-opened by HRH Princess Eugenie, thus providing a clear link to the original opening on 23rd May 1925 by HRH The Duke of Connaught and Strathearn. With the names of the fallen brilliantly illuminated, the building has a special quality of blending the traditional past with the progressive present. As such, it represents two of Marlborough’s key values. The rest of this edition of Marlborough Together emphasises past, present and future, showing just how vibrant a community exists here. In thanking for our years here, long may Marlborough College flourish. Deus Dat Incrementum J O N AT H A N L E I G H – M A S T E R
In the Spotlight
E D T O L PU T T – DE PU T Y H E A D AC A DE M IC
Sophie and I are hugely looking forward to moving to Marlborough. The same could possibly be said for Jim – although it’s quite hard to tell. He’s 13 months old and obsessed with an empty mint tin, which he loves to roll around on the floor. I spent the last nine years at Radley College in Oxfordshire – Sophie the last five. Before going on maternity leave, Sophie was a fundraiser at the Ashmolean Museum. She has a History of Art background, is a keen rower, and was born and raised in The Netherlands (although, frustratingly, her English is much better than mine). At Radley, I was Head of Physics, a supposedly invaluable and certainly low-level sports coach, and Master in Charge of the curiously titled Declamations Competition. This provided some outlet for my performance interests: singing and acting. I was a Choral Scholar at St John’s College, Cambridge (where I studied Engineering). It was an enjoyable – but huge – commitment, which in my fourth year I replaced with acting: two musicals and
a terrible Pirandello double-bill at the Edinburgh Fringe (the audience not once outnumbering the cast). Flushed with the success of the Pirandello, I attended a one-year Music Theatre course at the Royal Academy of Music. It was a wonderful year, and my ticket to fulfilling my somewhat niche ambition to become a part-time actor and part-time structural engineer. Were the best bits of my four years of acting squeezed into one month, it would pack quite a punch: a small but strange role in Stephen Poliakoff’s lovely Friends and Crocodiles, a brief appearance in a rather cheesy film with Timothy Spall, and a scene in the first of the Downey Jr Sherlock Holmes films (about which, don’t ask...). And then I became a teacher. Sophie and I married in 2015 and later that year we had our first child, Martha. Martha lived a precious, but short life, blazing the trail for her tin-loving younger brother, Jim. We look forward to meeting you all.
The 2017/18 academic year marked the 50th year of girls at Marlborough and the 175th year since the College was established. S C HO OL WA L K The celebratory events have included a 20-mile school walk in September, supported by over 1,000 pupils, parents, Old Marlburians and members of Common Room which raised over ÂŁ63,000 for ShelterBox, The Kipungani Schools Trust and the Marlborough College Bursary Appeal.
C YC L E TO T H E S OM M E Some 64 OM riders completed a poignant three-day cycle from the College to the Somme in October, culminating in a moving ceremony at the Thiepval Memorial and a commemorative dinner where all those gathered remembered Marlburians who died in the First World War and on the beaches of Normandy.
L to R: Sylvie Weatherall (TU 1984-86), Susannah Fiennes (LI 1976-78), Robin Child (CR 1971-92), Rosie Scott (MO 1990-92), Emily Faccini (LI 1983-85)
S OT H E BY ’S A RT E X H I BI T ION In December, Marlborough guests raised £30,000 to support the Marlborough SpringBoard/RNCF Bursaries at a Private View hosted at Sotheby’s. An exhibition of work by four former pupils, taught by inspirational Head of Art, Robin Child (CR 1971-92), celebrated the 50th anniversary of co-education.
F E S T I VA L OF SP ORT School matches against St Edward’s, Canford, Winchester and Sherborne and Old Marlburian rugby, football, mixed hockey and netball teams played alongside each other in the Festival of Sport which celebrated the sporting acumen that has been such an integral part of school life for the last 175 years.
C OM M E MOR AT ION A N D PR I Z E DAY The events of the year culminated in a magnificent Prize Day that celebrated all the achievements of the current school as well as the past, in pioneering full boarding education and, in 1968, in being one of the first schools to admit girls. We also said goodbye to Jonathan and Emma Leigh whose tenure as Master has left an indelible mark on Marlborough’s history.
Armistice Day November 1918 Extract from Chapter 5, Aftermath, Story 68, Marlborough College and the Great War in 100 Stories by David Walsh (C1 1960-65)
For Marlburians at the College, we have a vivid record of that day written by Arthur Bird, 16 years old, in C3: â€˜On this day it suddenly dawned on us that the war was at an end, so after breakfast we all streamed down the town (against rules) to hear the Mayor, Hughes, one of our masters, announce the news. There was a lone Scottish piper marching up and down playing his doleful tunes and that was all. When we got back to school, the boys in Upper School began to throw anything, books, kishes, ink-bottles, coal through the large windows and out-college boys who were in for lunch threw them all back again; the wastepaper baskets were burned and I personally burned all the notices. There was an unholy mess. A list was put up so that boys who had taken part in the destruction would put their names down and have ten shillings added to the bill or pay the ten bob themselves, quite a lot squeezed their pocket money and paid. The right spirit I thought. That night we barricaded our dormitory at the top of C3 to prevent the captains getting in and got away with it. We had a service in Chapel and so ended our first Armistice Day.â€™
The Editorial in the first Marlburian to be published after the end of the war is more prosaic, significantly failing to live up to the euphoria of the day: ‘Words fail us when we try to express the real significance of November 11th 1918. We have conjectured for years past about the coming of peace; now that it is here we seem utterly unable to realise it’ Cyril Norwood’s Chapel sermon in December began with a sense of deliverance and joy at the end of the fighting: ‘All the schooldays of nearly all of you have been shadowed by the war; you have seen the shadow vanish. The future of you all has been clouded with a doubt, and the cloud has rolled away from your life.’ But his most important message was one of hope and renewal: ‘By the graves of all the dead in this war, I would say to you to look forward. Commemorate the fallen by the future which you build.’ John Masefield said of this poem by Siegfried Sassoon (CO 1902-04) that it was the only poem he knew that was adequate to express the feelings of a nation emerging from the horrors of the Great War.
“Everyone suddenly burst out singing; And I was filled with such delight As prisoned birds must find freedom, Winging wildly across the white Orchards and dark-green fields; on – on – and out of sight. Everyone’s voice was suddenly lifted; And beauty came like the setting sun: My heart was shaken with tears; and horror Drifted away... O, but Everyone Was a bird; and the song was wordless; the singing will never be done.”
Cyril Norwood (Master 1917-25)
Siegfried Sassoon (C0 1902-04)
Marlborough College and the Great War in 100 Stories was produced to mark the conclusion of the College’s commemoration of the centenary of the First World War and as is available to purchase, price £40 at: shop.marlboroughcollege.org All proceeds after costs go to the College’s Bursary Appeal.
Restoration and Transformation The transformation of the Memorial Hall raised many challenges, perhaps the greatest of which was how to improve how it worked as an auditorium without losing its historic charm. Identifying its key elements was an essential first step – whether the poignancy of the engraved names of the fallen, the simple elegance of its architecture, or the way the afternoon sun floods it with light.
Works to the Hall were always envisaged as more than simple restoration. The serious acoustic problems, paucity of audience amenities and lack of usable backof-house space were limitations to be overcome. To succeed, however, a delicate balance had also to be achieved between preserving the Hall’s intrinsic qualities and improving its function, a balance between old and new. Under internationally renowned Canadian architects Jack Diamond and Matthew Leila, the Memorial Hall has been transformed into a first-class auditorium. Its shortcomings have been resolved in a way few could have imagined at the outset. The mathematically complex ceiling reflector for example, so necessary to the improvement of the acoustics, is, to my mind, a work of art. It adds a stunning focal point and yet does not dominate the space. The adjustable ceiling reflector is one of many devices used to resolve the Hall’s acoustical problems: the increased opening
of the proscenium arch, pivoting acoustic panels, sound-proof doors and new upholstery fabric, all play critical roles. Additionally, audience amenities have been improved, from the addition of an air-circulating system, to cloakrooms at the lower level ingeniously connected to the auditorium via ramped vomitoria. The back-of-house space has been rationalised, maximising its potential for pedagogical use as well as for performing arts. Finally, and of paramount importance, the architects never lost sight of the raison d’être of the Memorial Hall: the names of the 749 Marlburians who fell in the First World War, engraved along the back ambulatory wall, are once again clearly visible and, now, discreetly illuminated. “We will remember them”. The transformation of the Memorial Hall can be seen to be a resounding success. It preserves the very best aspects of the old Hall whilst elevating it to an exceptional 21st-century auditorium. TANIA FREEMAN CHAIR OF THE MEMORIAL HALL DESIGN COMMITTEE
Memorial Hall Festival 1st – 11th November 2018 The Memorial Hall Festival will celebrate the re-opening of the Hall following its £6.5 million refurbishment with a spectacular line-up of events, lectures and concerts. Lecturers include the adventurer and renowned photographer Brian Anderson, Dr Jean Moorcroft Wilson (acclaimed biographer and critic of First World War poets and poetry), and The Revd Canon Andrew Studdart Kennedy presenting his fascinating lecture on Woodbine Willie. On the musical front there will be performances from leading College music scholars and as part of the Marlborough College Concert Series, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales – a concert that will be recorded for future broadcast on BBC Radio 3. We also welcome England football legend Stuart Pearce for an illuminating interview. One of the most prolific writers and historians of our generation, Dr Jeremy Black, opens the Festival, followed later in the week by school events including a charity pupil ‘Illumination’, a Modern Languages Department film night presenting La Grande Illusion, a pupils and staff history play, a walk and talk presented by Head of Art, Edward Twohig, and the annual Old Marlburian Club Day event. The Festival ends on 11th November, following the Armistice Day Service in Chapel. PHILIP DUKES ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
The move to full co-education How strange to think that over the course of just about a decade, the feelings of Common Room towards full co-education swung from 80% against to 80% in favour. At the time we were amongst the leaders in this bold new direction, but close consultation at Senior Management level and professionals engaged in girls’ education gave Common Room invaluable insights into the impact of the change.
First Mill Mead House photo 1989
There seemed to be quite a buzz of excitement and optimism at the prospect. There was always going to be a great benefit to Lower School boys in having girls around from the start, but to my mind co-education would overcome the many challenges facing the boys moving up to the Upper School: they had always had to adjust to the intake of unknown, clever, talented, possibly more mature, girls (such was the competition to get in to Marlborough) who might break up established friendship patterns and be daunting, attractive or distracting, or all three at the same time! It would also end the very challenging practice of girl Captains having to supervise Lower School boys’ bedtimes!
So how to accommodate the Lower School girls? The final plan was to create three new girls’ Houses: Elmhurst was purpose-built on to the rear of the former junior House of that name; A House in Court was disbanded and refurbished to become Morris House (so In-College Shell boys joined their senior House directly); and Mill Mead and a new C3 were built as linked Houses on the water meadows (in place of some very beautiful Victorian greenhouses, I’m sad to say!) In-College Houses would no longer take girls in at Sixth Form level and B1, B2 and B3 were phased out, leaving C1, C2 and B House in much more spacious accommodation. Out-College Houses were unaffected, and New
Penny Reading, Lent 2018: Deus Dat Incrememtum by Jane Darby
Sandra Clark at the Class of 1992 Reunion, June 2017
Court was yet to be created at this stage. For the first year only, the Lower Sixth girls from In-College Houses would become the Upper Sixth girls in the new Houses, and new entrants would join the Shell, Remove and Lower Sixth. For obvious academic reasons, no girls would join the Hundred, to which the boys took great exception â€“ the bolder ones amongst them might be seen with the letters DFTH chalked on to their jackets (Dave [David Cope the Master] forgot the Hundred)!
This original play was created to celebrate fifty years of girls at Marlborough College and was inspired by the BBC Points West feature that aired in 1968. Whilst many things have changed the production reminded us of the pioneering spirit of these pupils and the forward thinking ethos of the College at that time.
The coming of Lower School girls brought with it very particular attention to the pastoral side of pupilsâ€™ lives in the College. Henceforth each pupil would be allocated a personal Tutor in House whom they would see once a week, and house captains were briefed to watch out for unkindness of any sort, or protracted unhappiness, and to report it to the HM. So, in effect every pupil had the possibility of sharing problems with House Captains, Head of House, Tutor, Resident House Tutor, HM or Chaplain. In addition, and from very early on, Wednesday afternoons for the Shell were devoted to their Shell course, in which issues of health and happiness were addressed. I think also that whereas the boys had always accepted a high level of discipline, the idea of the carrot rather than stick had to be applied more to the female of the species!
So, all in all, co-education has proved to be a most interesting challenge to us all. So far down the line now, we accept it as absolutely normal and would not change it for anything. SA NDR A CL A R K FIR ST HOUSE MIST R E SS OF MIL L M E A D 19 89 -2 0 03
Forthcoming Events 2018
www.marlburianclub.org/events Saturday 15th September HM Forces Dinner Marlborough College
www.marlburianclub.org/ membersnews Thursday 18th October Education Network Event London Tuesday 30th October OM Law Dinner Oriental Club, London
Marlburian Club Dinner at Hampton Court Palace Sunday 16th September 50 years of Girlsâ€™ Celebration Marlborough College Saturday 10th November Club Day Marlborough College Wednesday 28th November OM Womenâ€™s Network Event London
A celebratory Marlburian Club Dinner was held in the magnificent surroundings of Hampton Court Palace this year to mark the 175th anniversary of the College and the 50th year of girls at the school. Go to members news for a review and gallery of images from the evening.
Wednesday 19th September Class of 2013 5-year Reunion Jam Tree, Chelsea Tuesday 25th September Arts & Media Networking Evening London Thursday 27th September Class of 1998 20-Year Reunion Jam Tree, London
Wednesday 12th December OM Carols Chelsea Old Church, London
Wednesday 10th October Property Group Networking Event London Remember to send your news to: firstname.lastname@example.org Facebook.com/TheMarlburianClub
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