The Arch 2022 Edition

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Officers of the Old Reptonian Society 2022/23

President (2022): Rachel Bacon (Abbey 1986)

President (2023): Nick Smith (Brook 1969)

President Emeritus: Rachel Bacon (Abbey 1986)

Vice President: Mark J Semmence (Headmaster)

President Elect: Sam Wilkinson (Abbey 1986)

Chair: Nick Walford (Brook 1969)

Treasurer: John Wallis (Latham 1971)

Governors’ Rep.: Matthew Needham (Priory 1980)

Old Reptonian Liaison Officer: Nigel Kew (Staff)

Old Reptonian Liaison Officer: Anna Parish (Staff)

Elected General Committee Members

Charlotte Ashley-Stojak (Mitre 2003) - Appointed 2019

Andrew Churchill (Priory 1982) - Appointed 2015

Abigail Halidu (Abbey 2007) - Appointed 2022

Daisy Heath-Abbott (Garden 2006) – Appointed 2019

Simon Johnson (Orchard 2004) - Appointed 2016

Radha Kaushal-Bolland (Garden 2011) - Appointed 2022

Tom Poynton (School 2006) - Appointed 2014

Eleanor Tyler (Mitre 2005) - Appointed 2016

Ex Officio Members

James Blackwell (Priory 2000) - Pilgrims

Paul Brownhill (Priory 1980) - Golfing Society

Andrew Colcombe (Priory 1978) - Yorkshire

Jonathan Every (Cross 1963) - Lancashire & Cheshire

David Exley (Priory 1995) – Fives

Charles Haydn-Slater (Cross 2003) – LGBTQ+

Martin Jones (The Cross 1997 & Staff) – Hockey

Guy Levesley (Hall 1975 & Staff) – Arts

Jamie Muirhead (Cross 2009) - Tennis Club

Martin Needler (New 1956) – Yorkshire

Mark Norton (Mitre 1986) – OR Masonic Lodge

Oliver Pepper (Brook 1990) - Cycling

Edward Rhodes (New 1995) - Squash Club

Nicky Samra (New 2002) Football Club

Edward Sheasby (School 2012) – OR Ambassador

Adam Sinclair (Latham 1978) - Yorkshire

Edward Sloane (Priory 1997) – Pilgrims

Michael Watson (Priory 2003) – Football

Front Cover: Radha Kaushal-Bolland (G’11)
Welcome 03 President’s Letter 04 Chair’s Letter 05 A Royal History 07 OR Spotlight 12 OR News 15 OR Events 21 OR Spotlight 30 Branch Updates 32 2023 Events 41 Further Education 43 OR Careers 46 The Repton Foundation 49 Headmaster’s Update 51 Repton Life 54 From the Archives 57 School News & Highlights 59 OR Book Club 63 OR Celebrations 65 Farewells 72 Pigeon Post 82 HOW TO KEEP IN TOUCH OR WRITE TO US (PIGEON POST): The Old Reptonian Society The Hall, Repton School Repton, Derbyshire DE65 6FH Tel. 01283 559320 Email: Contents
Repton Role Model, Founder of The Spicy Flexitarian and 2022 MasterChef Finalist.

Welcome from the 2022 President Rachel Bacon


Another year and the annual edition of The Arch has arrived.

Firstly, a very warm welcome to all those of you who are new to this publication, whether as new ORs or those reading for the first time in other capacities. We hope that you’ll find something to interest you in these pages. The Editors love to receive news of your latest endeavours, so if you have any updates to send or an article you think would be of interest, please do send it over.

For all of us, this has been a year of catching up – with friends and family, with events, and with those opportunities denied to all of us during the past couple of years. The lifting of Covid restrictions has been very welcome and has, of course, allowed the OR Society to pick up the schedule of events that we were unable to pursue for the past couple of years.

After a lengthy delay we were finally able to hold our flagship event - the OR Summer Ball at The Hurlingham Club in London in celebration of girls and women as part of the life of Repton.

The Ball was very well attended, with women from across the last 50 years sharing their experiences of life at Repton and beyond. Carole Blackshaw (A’70), one of the two women who joined the School in 1970, spoke about her experiences and the changes that have taken place over the intervening time, as well as her hopes for women at Repton and in their lives beyond the Arch in the future. Daisy Heath-Abbott (G’06) also deserves a vote of thanks for all of her hard work in the planning of this event.

The Women’s Leadership Forum, which kicked off with an online event late in 2021, was followed in April by an in-person event at the Royal Overseas League in London, where Ruth Millington (F’00) gave a fascinating overview of her new book, Muse, and the artwork associated with it. Numbers were slightly lower than hoped when some planned attendees were unable to attend due to Covid, but nonetheless, the event was much enjoyed for those who were able to attend. Ruth also appeared on the schedule of the recent Lichfield Music & Arts Festival discussing her book. We thank her for her time and look forward to hearing more from her in the future.

The Society continues to focus on improving women’s participation in our events and the wider life of the Society, and we would love to welcome some new female faces to the OR Society General Committee. Location isn’t an issue as meetings are conducted both online and in person, and your input is very valuable

so if you would like to find out more, please do contact the OR Society and we’d be very happy to discuss what’s involved:

Another key focus of the Society is careers at Repton. Our OR community has a great breadth and depth of experience and knowledge to share with those already in their careers, as well as those just starting to think about their potential career paths. A number of ORs, myself included, spoke at the Year 12 (Lower Sixth) Careers & HE Convention in June, giving the pupils an insight into some of the careers that they may not have considered – or even heard of – previously. The School is very grateful for the continued support of ORs in this area, and the database of experience that can be drawn on continues to grow. If you would like to register as a speaker for the 2023 Careers & HE Convention, please get in touch with the OR Office.

This is my last letter as President of the OR Society, as I hand the responsibilities over to the incoming president, Nick Smith (B’69). I have hugely enjoyed the opportunities that this has given me over the past couple of years to meet with other ORs and contribute to the development of the Society, and I hope that you’ve enjoyed seeing the developments and engaging with us just as much!


President’s Letter A New Year Ahead

Nick Smith (B’69)

Iam delighted to be taking on the role of President of the OR Society for the forthcoming year. I look forward to attending as many gatherings as possible and meeting up with friends old and new. Huge progress has been made in promoting the Society as an inclusive and welcoming environment for the various generations, and I am keen to help build on this momentum.

A few Arch readers will know me as a former player and now regular supporter of our cricket, football, squash and tennis clubs; and still appearing occasionally for the latter, a particularly challenging experience against the quality of current Reptonians! They may also recall that I did a couple of terms as Chair of the Society.

For those who don’t know me, I was in Brook House from 1969 to 1974, following in the footsteps of my father R.A.S Smith (B’43). Dad was a very handy games player who was awarded a teamer (colours) in each of the major sports of his day: cricket, football, hockey and fives. My three daughters were all in the Abbey in the years from 2000 to 2007. Subsequently, they have all been able to offer careers advice and support to boys and girls at School, Charlotte and Rachel for medicine and Victoria with work placements supporting her online magazine. I mention these because careers guidance for both ORs and existing pupils is, in my mind, a particularly important function of the Society.

I should like to offer my thanks and appreciation to outgoing President Rachel Bacon (A’86). Her presidential year of 2021 was badly affected by the lockdown, and it was a great move by the Society to ask her to remain as President for

this year. In addition, I should mention Rachel’s predecessor Mike Barnwell (O’57), a loyal supporter of OR activities, whose 2020 year as President was also spoilt by the pandemic. In true Repton fashion, both Rachel and Mike put on brave faces and made the most of what was a difficult hand.

From my observations and experiences the School and Society are in great shape. Despite the difficulties of the last two years Nick and the OR Office have brought tireless energy and enthusiasm to the OR Society and made a real difference to the way in which it operates. The other major factor in play has been the influence of Headmaster Mark Semmence, who has in a short time made a huge difference to the relationship between the School, OR Society and the various branches. The level of collaboration between us all is I believe the healthiest it has been for many years.

Finally, a warm welcome to those of you who have recently become ORs; you are our future and I hope you will keep in close contact with your contemporaries as well as making new friendships with those from other generations. I was much taken with the Headmaster’s words about last year’s leavers, describing them as ‘an indelible part of Repton history, not just onlookers of these memorable days, but shaping them through their vibrant, kind, amusing presence.’ Please bring these fine qualities to your lives as Old Reptonians.

As you can probably tell from the above, Repton has played an important part in my family’s life, and I am very much looking forward to my year as President.

The other major factor in play has been the influence of Headmaster Mark Semmence, who has in a short time made a huge difference to the relationship between the School, OR Society and the various branches.

Chair’s Letter View from the Chair

Nick Walford (B’69)

It has been quite a year since the last issue of The Arch in January, with complex challenges emerging for the UK and world leaders on several fronts. At times like this, I follow the advice of the Dalai Lama “Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.”

After the restrictions on the Society’s activities placed on us by Covid, I am pleased to report that we have had a full calendar of events. As you all know we want the Society, through its events and activities, to engage with, and be relevant to, as many ORs as possible particularly our younger and female ORs, as they are essential to our future success as an alumni community. I must stress that this is very much in addition to all the more traditional events and activities of the Society.

We started 2022 with the School Choir singing Evensong at St Paul’s Cathedral followed by a Drinks Reception for ORs and parents. It is lovely to see young ORs who were former Choir members, support the event, remembering the pleasure it gave them singing in such a special place.

The OR Office found an excellent, modern and more informal venue for this year’s Drinks in the City in March which attracted young and female ORs as well as our loyal older ORs such as Sam Swerling (B’53) who is now 83 years young!

There were three events that I was not able to attend – two Women’s Leadership Fora, one virtual and one live, which were excellent initiatives, and the Careers & HE Convention in June at Repton, which many ORs attended. We have recruited over 40 industry ambassadors over the last 18 months to help pupils better understand the career opportunities out there. This is an important and valuable group we are building to help both pupils and ORs in finding and developing their careers, and my thanks to all those ambassadors. If you

would like to be an ambassador do email the OR Office on

After two postponements the OR Summer Ball at The Hurlingham Club in west London, celebrating 50 years of girls at Repton, finally went ahead on a bright sunny evening in early May and was a huge success. Our thanks to Daisy Heath-Abbott (G’06) for coming up with the idea of the Ball and for her welcoming speech; to Carole Blackshaw (A’70), whom I remember arriving in the Sixth Form in 1970, for her interesting and insightful words and to Anna Parish for her amusing and heartfelt speech about what it is to be an OR. There were nearly 200 ORs in attendance with 82% under 30 and 62% female, and the most pleasing thing to me was the number of girls who said that they never expected an OR event to be such amazing fun!

In the more traditional areas of OR activity, the previous Saturday had witnessed more ‘amazing fun’ as the Old Reptonian Football Club beat the Old Etonians 7-1 in the Arthur Dunn Cup Final. I imagine Old Etonian, Arthur Dunn, would not have been amused by the result! The Headmaster very kindly hosted a Dinner the day before this year’s OR Day in The Hall for the winning Dunn squad plus the team from 1991, the last time we won the trophy, having lost three finals in the last ten years. This event preceded an expanded OR Day which involved seven OR football teams playing three matches against the School and two other matches between OR sides.

The Girls’ 1st XI Hockey team played a star-studded OR Women’s Team including Georgie Twigg MBE (F’02) and other international ORs and top club players. Prior to the match, Georgie attended the naming of the Twigg McCallin Room in the Sports Centre hosted by Mark Semmence, Martin Jones (C’97) and Nigel Kew. Georgie was in good company with another room named

after OR sporting legends CB Fry and Harold Abrahams.

There was a squash match with the School after which many who had played or watched sport on the day descended on the Boot for a barbeque from 4.30 onwards. The following day saw the School and members of staff play golf at Mickleover GC with members of the OR Golf Society. Plans for women’s football against the School did not materialise this year in the end but from all the feedback there is much momentum behind this expanded OR Day with more and more women’s events, so put Saturday, September 2nd 2023 in the diary!

The following day the OR Tennis Club retained the D’Abernon Cup at Wimbledon – so that is yet another success in their seventh consecutive final – a phenomenal achievement. Earlier in the year our Halford Hewitt golfers did extremely well under new captain Mark Anselm (C’86), reaching the last eight in a competition for 64 Schools. This year we entered the prestigious Silver Tassie, which is played at the Berkshire Golf Club and is a competition for lady golfers. The OR Golf Society is extremely keen for women to join and play in our golf days and matches and so if you are a golfer do get in touch with the OR Office.

It has been a phenomenal year for our sports clubs and I would like to thank the leadership teams of each club for their time, commitment, enthusiasm, and congratulate them on the success that they have achieved for themselves, together with enhancing the reputation of the OR Society and the School. There is more on our sports clubs later in The Arch.

I just want to update you all on the OR Office. Andrew Cook was involved in both the OR Society and the Repton Foundation. He was approached by his alma mater, Millfield, to perform the role of Development


Director that he did for us, which understandably was something he was unable to turn down. I would like to thank Andrew on behalf of the Society for all his work over the last three years as he leaves us in a much stronger position than when he started, and we wish him and his family well.

Jess Smith, whom some of you know had a dual role working on both the Repton Foundation as well as the OR Society has also left to take on the Role of Deputy Development Director at Denstone College. This is a promotion for her, and Denstone College is close to where she and her family live. I would, on behalf of the Society, like to thank Jess for her contribution to the OR Office whilst she was with us and we wish her well for the future. Once we have appointed a replacement for Andrew, we shall decide then on what further resources the OR Society requires.

Lia continues to be the day-to-day face of the Society in the OR Office in Repton and is doing a fantastic job for us all, and I know that she is excited about the year ahead.

Thank you to all those people who gave us feedback about how much they enjoyed the look, feel and content of the last issue of The Arch. We are keen to ensure that The Arch reflects how the School and the OR Community are today. We all very much hope that you enjoy this edition and please give us feedback with any comments you have to the OR Office –

I would like to thank the OR General Committee and the OR Executive Committee for all the work undertaken in the year so far. I am delighted to have welcomed onto the General Committee Abigail Halidu (A’07) and Rhada KaushalBolland (G’11) to increase our female representation. Rhada was runner-up in MasterChef demonstrating the depth and breadth of talent that ORs possess, and she appears later in the magazine.

I would also like to thank our outgoing President, Rachel Bacon (A’86), who will stand down from her role at the AGM in November. The strategic direction of the OR Society was heavily influenced by the research among OR women that Rachel undertook. In her role as President Rachel was able to help in the implementation of the strategy to address the challenges that emerged from the research in terms of the need for the OR Society to be more relevant for our OR women.

I am looking forward to working with our new President, Nick Smith (B’69) when he begins the role in November. Nick and I are direct contemporaries from Brook House, which rather sadly for us is now a block of flats opposite the Indian restaurant on the High Street! I was President in 2017 when Nick was Chair, we are very much looking forward to carrying on with the momentum that we have been building for the OR Society, albeit delayed by Covid.

I would like to thank Mark Semmence for how he has strengthened the reputation of Repton in his time as Headmaster, which is reflected in the fact that it is full and with an increasing waiting list. Progress of the OR Society is inextricably linked with the strength of our relationship with the Headmaster and the School. I am getting towards the end of the first year of my second three-year term as your OR Chair and I would like to also thank him for his enormous support and encouragement f or everything we are trying to achieve for the Society.

I hope I have given you a sense of what has been achieved over the last 12 months and that in spite of what is happening all around the UK and the world as far as Repton School and the OR Society is concerned we have every reason to be optimistic.

You will see the feature on Repton’s association with the Royal Family and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and in particular, her visit to the School in 1957, of which I know many ORs have fond memories.

Let me finish by saying that we were all shocked and saddened by the suddenness of the Queen’s death, and the extraordinary response from the nation highlights the gratitude of us all for her enduring life of service, demonstrating clearly to the very end that there are higher callings than self interest.

At times like this, I follow the advice of the Dalai Lama “Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.”

A Royal History

Repton has had connections with royalty for over 1350 years, and any visitor to the village will have passed signs welcoming them to the ancient capital of Mercia. As Kings of Mercia, both Aethelbald and Wiglaf were buried here, and in 874 the Vikings drove King Burhed from here and into exile.

A medieval Priory was established at Repton in the 12th century, and King Edward I was one its most prominent visitors; unfortunately, another King, Henry VIII, was the cause of its downfall. However, without his actions, Repton School would not have started on this site. Its founder, Sir John Port, was knighted in 1547 at the coronation of King Edward VI, and later sat in the Parliament of Queen Mary.

The School established under the terms of his will was officially linked, by the 1621 charter of King James I, to another creation of his beneficence, the Etwall almshouses.

Royal celebrations and commemorations have featured large in the history of the School – until the mid-nineteenth century, it was customary for the Headmaster to grant the boys a holiday on Oak Apple Day in memory of King Charles II. The Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1887 was marked with fireworks and a party, and her Diamond Jubilee with the planting of an oak tree outside the Arch.

The Queen visited Derby in 1891, and the whole School travelled in a special train from Willington to see her. In more recent

times, the proclamation of Queen Elizabeth II was read out from the steps of the market cross in 1952, and five years later both she and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the School as part of our quatercentenary celebrations

Her son, Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, came half a century later to help us mark our 450th anniversary. Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Kent has visited us twice, once in 1985 to open the Music School and again in 1992 to open The Garden, and in 2013 His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent opened the Science Priory.

The Queen’s Visit, March 28th 1957, from The Reptonian (abridged).

The first most of us heard of the Royal Visit came from the Headmaster at lists on the first day of the Lent Term. Many people tried to affect a casual attitude

“Oh, yes, the Royal visit” – but one could sense, even at this stage, a keen sense of anticipation and excitement. This increased as the term drew on. The Precinct became a hive of activity, with workmen tapping bricks

with one hand, while sipping their “elevenses” with the other; strange men with haggard ex- pressions and bowler hats were seen pacing up and down the School Yard; high officials of Derbyshire police became frequent visitors; the rural peace of February afternoons was shattered by the activities of workmen, equipped with pneumatic drills, concrete


mixers, diesel rollers and good oldfashioned picks and shovels, widening the road. The Bursar was heard to agree to a new carpet for the Audit Room-great things were afoot.

Thursday, March 28th, dawned warm and sunny, with that slight haze on the distant hills that promises fair weather. One could almost feel theHeadmaster breathe a sigh of relief-a sentiment shared by everyone concerned. Early birds brought back tales

of crowds in the Precinct and the route lined with sightseers, firmly ensconced on portable stools, drinking cups of coffee. One felt for Mr. Bolland - master in charge of the Precinct.

Work was prescribed until 10.30 am, and for all of us, it was a novel sensation to walk to School between lines of flagflapping children, cheering and whistling. Emerging into the light of day at 10.30, one was immediately struck by the greatly

increased sense of excitement and anticipation. Parents were walking around the School Yard and O.Rs. stood reminiscing in little groups. The police were everywhere; cool, polite, and indivertibly efficient, they even walked off with a Prefect’s bicycle, momentarily left outside the Lodge. The gaiety and colour, the cheerfulness and excitement immediately had their effect on those who had so far tried to stand aloof. These were now to be seen giving their shoes that extra bit of polish or straightening that stray hair. In the Houses there was a blend of relief and excitement; relief that the tedious days of rehearsal were over and that The Day had dawned at last, and excitement at what the day should bring forth. Those who were privileged to speak to the Queen were checking on their facts and perfecting that bow of the head. The Guard, resplendent in new uniforms, were hurrying to the Armoury.

By noon the scene was set. The Guard was in position, in lines as straight as one could wish them, their bayonets winking in the sunlight. The O.RS. were under the Yard wall, facing the parents and the School. Colour was everywhere- the bright hats and dresses of the ladies, the masters’ hoods, the red carpets, the khaki of the Guard, enlivened by blue and gold lanyards and the markers’ red sashes.


At 12.35 the spasmodic cheering of the crowds outside the Arch reached a crescendo. The Queen had arrived. The friendliness and the spontaneity of the Archbishop’s welcome set the tone for the day and helped to dispel any nervousness which those destined to play a big part in the day may have felt. Throughout the day the Archbishop was a very great asset; with his easy manner and ready wit, he made an incalculable contribution to the spirit of informality that helped to make the day so enjoyable.

When the Headmaster and Mrs. Thomas had been presented, all eyes were riveted on the Arch as the Queen entered School precincts. Wearing a dove-grey fitted coat, primrose hat, black shoes and carrying a black handbag, the Queen walked to the dais and received the Royal Salute from the Guard of Honour. R. L. Cowdell, commanding the Guard, accompanied Her Majesty around the ranks, answering her questions which displayed a lively interest in the School. After the presentation of Bandmaster H. A. Hole and SergeantMajors J. V. Paul and J. Goodwin, the Head Prefect-A. P. Thomas-called for three cheers for Her Majesty and His Royal Highness. The magic of her charm had already captivated the School; the Yard has never rung with such heartfelt cheers.

After presentations of the Governors, the Staff, Mr. Harry Altham (President of the OR Society) and Major Betterton (Chairman of the Governors of Etwall Hospital), the Royal Party moved on to the Masters’ Common Room, where Mrs. T. L. Thomas presented Mrs. Christie and the twelve senior ladies of the Staff. In spite of being behind time, the Queen never appeared to rush, stopping to have a word with many of the people she met.

In the Undercroft, in addition to the familiar exhibits, the Royal party looked at a display of statistical records, illustrating such features as careers, the School’s games record and academic results. Conducted by the Headmaster, the party proceeded to the Library via the Vassall Room and the Audit Room and were clearly impressed by the beauty of these rooms, with their old fireplaces, oak beams and panelling. In the Library, R. A. Cooke pointed out the historic beating block beneath the portrait of the Rev. Ford “Surely he was not so beastly,” said the Queen, to which the Archbishop replied “Not under my portrait, I am happy to say Ma’am.”

Meanwhile all spectators, including the Guard of Honour, had reassembled in the New Precinct in readiness for the opening of the Kindersley Gate. After the

presentation of Lord and Lady Kindersley, the Dowager Lady Kindersley and Mr. Marshall Sisson and Mr. J. P. Foster (the architects), N. Etherington-Smith, a greatgrandson of Dr. Pears, presented the Queen with a pair of scissors for cutting the ribbon across the Gate. Although so comparatively young, Etherington-Smith was put quite at ease by Her Majesty’s ease of manner, and was given four Maundy coins, a symbolical antidote against the severing of friendship. By that gift we should like to think that Her Majesty’s friendship for the School was established and will never be cut. After the Queen had named the new way from the gate to the Precinct “The Queen’s Walk,” the Archbishop said a prayer and blessed the whole precinct.

Crossing the Willington Road, the Royal Party were received by the Rev. and Mrs. Harcombe, who accompanied them round the Church and Crypt. Leaving by the North Door, they passed through the Pillars of Hercules to the Hall.

After the Queen had had a quick glass of sherry with the adults who had been invited to the Luncheon, the School Prefects and the head boy of Foremarke were presented. Here again the Archbishop set the tone of informality. Coming out of the


Headmaster’s drawing-room into the hall, he shook the Head Prefect by the shoulder, saying: “Relax, relax; she won’t eat you.” He was not in the least abashed when he realised that the Queen was standing behind him, laughing away. The Duke had a word with most of the Prefects, and laughingly inquired why the Orchard should need a head!

Luncheon was taken in the Hall diningroom, where twenty adults and fifty-six boys (six from each House and two from Foremarke) were assembled. Boys sat on either side of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, and, after a slightly slow start, conversation soon became animated. Many topics were discussed, among them music, apropos of which the Archbishop asked “But what is a skuffle club?” The meal-prawn cocktail, roast turkey, fruit salad and coffee-was subsequently described by one of the national dailies as “a typical School meal.”

After lunch, Cross, Sieff and Voelcker took Her Majesty and the Duke round the boys’ side of the Hall. Although the Duke is said to have a flair for discovering “skeletons in cupboards,” nothing untoward happened this time, and both the Queen and the Duke had plenty of opportunities for chats with boys in their studies, games room and library.

On completing that tour, the Queen was presented with a beautifully illuminated and richly bound genealogical tree, tracing her descent from Sir John Port.

The public had been asked to leave the School grounds quite private for the afternoon, and it was thus that the Queen saw the School as it normally is, and the Royal visitors were duly impressed by the natural beauty of the place. Guided by Rowell and Elliott, the Royal party walked through the Hall garden to the Garth and the War Memorial, where the Queen and the Duke remained a moment in silence, scanning the columns of those killed in the two World Wars. Emerging from the Garth, the party watched some sports practice; laughing and joking, the Duke entered well into the spirit of it. Looking up to the distant cooling towers, he turned to the Archbishop and said: “You know, Bish, what amuses me is what is going to happen to those monsters when someone thinks of a better way of producing power!” In Pears School the Royal guests watched a rehearsal of the Masque.

Walking from Pears School to the Science Block, the visitors looked at demonstrations staged by the Fencing team, the Gym team, the Sailing Club, the Fire Squad, and the R.A. and R.E. Sections of the Corps. Naturally the Duke was

particularly interested in these activities; so much so that he arrived at the Science Block after the Queen had gone in, and entered by the Metal Workshop door, thus catching a metal-worker-cum-gunner trouserless. The boy’s embarrassment was so apparent that the Duke calmly turned round and laughingly went out again to reenter by the main door.

Passing by a number of demonstrations in the Chemistry and Physics laboratories, the Queen came to the Metal Workshops, where she was presented with a model engine for Prince Charles, made largely by Voelcker, and, for Princess Anne, a miniature silver tea set, made by Mr. J. N. Emery, on a highly polished mahogany tray the work of Mr. T. L. Green.

On their way to the Maths. Block, the Queen paused to speak to representatives of the Staff of the Grubber and Book Shop. Biologists, signallers, philatelists, aeromodellers, the dance band, artists, and photographers all had a chance to show the Royal guests their skill. Even though they were now approaching the end of their visit, the interest of the Royal couple never flagged. Outside the Art School, the last presentations took place those of the senior School servants.


The final engagement in Repton was the Chapel Service. This was the most moving part of the day. To the coronation setting of “All People that on Earth do Dwell” the Queen and the Duke, accompanied by the Archbishop, the Chaplain, the Assistant Chaplain, the Countess of Leicester, Captain Vickers and the Headmaster walked slowly down the nave to their special seats under the pulpit. After Laudate Dominum, a lesson from Ephesians was read by the Duke with dignity and feeling; a Dyson

A Time to Reflect

On Friday, 16th September 2022, the School came together for a special Service in the School Chapel to mark the incredible life of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

The Chaplain shared this moving address:

“If you ask anyone who is British, why they are proud to be British they might give you lots of different answers. Some may say “I’m proud to be British because of Shakespeare - the greatest playwright who ever lived”. Others may cite more recent authors - our own Roald Dahl or J K Rowling. You may point to Britain’s impact on the world of music- and it won’t take you long to get to the impact of The Beatles. Whilst many might just think of the British countryside - with the dramatic British landscape of mountains and valleys. Perhaps there may be some who will just say “The Premier League”- and who can forget the roar of the Lionesses this Summer?

But there is a generation – probably your grand-parents or great-grandparents – who, I wager, would simply say “I’m proud to be British because of the reign of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II”. We’ve got to ask why that is.

setting of Nunc Dimittis, the Pilgrim hymn, and finally the Blessing given by the Archbishop all combined to produce a service of outstanding beauty, dignity and fervour. The service ended with the National Anthem, and with the Queen so near, it was not surprising that this was sung with the deepest feeling by everyone present.

Having signed photographs and the visitors’ book at the Hall, the Queen

granted the School four days’ extra holiday, which the Headmaster announced over the loudspeaker.

As the Royal cars drove through the School Yard between the two lines made by the School, we all had our last glimpse of the Queen at Repton. The heartfelt cheers that sped the Royal guests on their way was the only way we could all say “Good-bye” and “Thank you for a wonderful day.”

It might be because of the longevity of her reign, which brought stability after the crisis of the Abdication. The Queen was as much surprised to become Queen as her father was reluctant to become King. From the beginning of her reign, she vowed that abdication would never be part of her story. This has provided a fixed point in a world of bewildering change.

The Queen is also part of that generation which stared down the threat of Nazi tyranny and preserved for us the freedom we enjoy today.

But there are other reasons for revering her life and reign. The Queen knew what love was. When she first saw a young Phillip Mountbatten as a young woman visiting the Royal Naval Academy, Britannia, she knew that he was the one she wanted to marry - and would not be deterred by her parents’ initial disapproval.

There was also her humour. The actor Helen Mirren, when studying to play the role of the Queen, studied hours and hours of film. But the clip that gave her the biggest insight was a 30-second Pathé news story which showed an 8-year-old

Queen disembarking from a train behind her parents. In the carriage she can be seen laughing with her sister but the moment her foot touched the platform she straightened her coat, put her shoulders back and put forward her hand to shake the hand of the local mayor. Duty behind which lay a humorous love of life.

But the story about the Queen which I find most poignant comes from Dr David Nott, the Doctor famous for working around the world in the toughest of war zones. He describes in his autobiography how, on returning from Aleppo and the fighting in the Syrian war after hearing the news of the death of his mother, he received an invitation to meet the Queen. He describes how nervous he was and how, the moment he saw her, ‘the mother of the nation’, he wanted to break down and cry. He says that if the Queen had asked him how he was that is exactly what he would have done - but she didn’t. He then realised she recognised his grief because she too had lived through the grief of war. She knew how it felt on the inside. She simply said, “Let’s not talk; let’s just go and play with the dogs”. That’s exactly what they did - for an hour.”


Dream Big

Radha Kaushal-Bolland (G’11)

“Self-belief and resilience” was the answer given by Radha Kaushal-Bolland (G’11) when asked about the secret of her success as a 2022 MasterChef finalist. This is not just applicable to Radha’s recent TV debut, but across multiple facets of life. “You just have to believe you can, work hard and put absolutely everything into it – focus is key.”

Radha was awarded the distinguished CB Fry Scholarship award, a testament to her proven track record of academic commitment and leadership potential.

Radha certainly has the ability to inspire and lead others and is naturally gifted in a variety of fields. She is making a significant contribution as a Repton Role Model and to society beyond the Arch, as well as being a key influencer to the pupils at Repton.

Radha openly admits that her academic performance was, at times, an uphill struggle as she battled with dyslexia. Despite these challenges, she pursued a Law degree close to home in West Yorkshire. When lockdown measures resulted in lectures moving to remote learning, Radha found the pressure of work intensified, leading to hours spent analysing case studies and legal documents in her bedroom back at home with her family. In need of a distraction, she applied her creativity to another passion, and began to create meals for her mother and father as they worked long hours whilst working at Yorkshire Ambulance Service and the University of Bradford respectively.

Cooking, and a love of food, is deep-rooted in Radha’s family, her great-grandfather a baker, and parents regular hosts of parties and large family gatherings. Bringing family and friends together to share food and make memories was something that was part of her childhood and continues to enrich her life today. Home-cooked, finedining is at the core of her new vegetarian

private dining business, The Spicy Flexitarian.

Radha looks back on her time in the MasterChef kitchen fondly, in particular the close relationships and friendships that she made during filming. Her first encounter with the MasterChef presenters John Torode and Greg Wallace was when she stepped into the MasterChef kitchen and quickly discovered that they both have their unique strengths - aiming to please them both was a challenge in itself. Radha explains that John understands techniques and the complexity of the dishes that she presented, whilst Gregg appreciates the use of fresh produce and ingredients, representing the taste buds of the wider public opinion.

She discovered a mentor in series presenter John Torode, his unfaltering support providing encouragement throughout the experience whilst “Greg kept the tone light with his series of dad jokes!” laughs the young chef. However, most importantly for Radha, being on MasterChef has given her a platform to educate others about food poverty and sustainability, something she feels incredibly passionate about.

Was it competitive? Were they secretly waiting for their fellow contestants to leave the kitchen, sans apron? “Yes, of course it was a very competitive process but from the outset I knew that I would have to remain focussed on my own creative style of cooking. I had my target set on receiving the coveted MasterChef apron, but then each week I re-calibrated and set a new goal building on my previous experience and continuous improvements. This sheer determination and strategy allowed me to get to the MasterChef Final – something that I had previously only dreamed of achieving.”

And working with celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay...? “Chef Ramsay was incredibly supportive during the visit to his flagship restaurant in Chelsea. Indeed, he is meticulous, has an incredible attention to detail and expects everything to be perfect, but after all it is a three-star Michelin restaurant.”

What was the best moment on MasterChef? “My best and proudest moment was when I was given the honour to cook for members of the Royal British Legion. My great-grandfather was taken as a Prisoner of War during World War 2, and he narrowly avoided being sent to the gas chambers because of his prior training as a professional baker. As a POW, his life was spared as his skills were put to use working in the camp kitchens which ultimately kept him alive. I have always had empathy and kinship with the RBL, who continue to provide a wonderful service with their financial, social, and emotional support to members and veterans of the British Armed Forces and their families.”

So, what does the future hold for Yorkshirebased chef Radha Kaushal-Bolland? Her new business venture is going from strength to strength, alongside regular appearances at food festivals and restaurant takeovers. She has a solid business plan with short, medium and longer-term goals, with plans to produce a series of cookbooks and collaborations with established chefs. Expect to see The Spicy Flexitarian dominate the UK foodie landscape this summer and beyond.

Follow her journey on Instagram @thespicyflexitarian and at


A formative experience for a lifetime in Journalism

Robert Moore (H’76)

My first tentative and entirely forgettable attempts at journalism and news reporting were at Repton, where I wrote for the School magazine. A sporting success, a local archaeological dig, a teacher who had a fascinating background, a fellow Reptonian with an unusual talent - if it was interesting to me, I wanted to tell the story. Even at that age, at 15 or 16, I was determined to be a reporter. In a strange way, for the 40 years that followed I have been doing the same thing: looking for stories to tell and trying to make them accessible and engaging.

If Repton was my first experiment in finding news stories, then Oxford was my apprenticeship. I was editor of Cherwell, the university newspaper. Once more I searched for that elusive local angle that brought a story to life, and I looked for trouble - the kind of trouble that would annoy the establishment and give the underdog a voice. After I graduated, I started work at ITN, the company that has been my home for a lifetime of adventure and drama.

I regard myself as the luckiest reporter in the world. I was in Moscow during the fall of the USSR, in the Middle East during the violence of the 1990s and the doomed peace process, and I have spent nearly 20 years reporting from Washington. It was a story that culminated in the volcanic Trump presidency. On January 6th, 2021, I found myself on the steps of the US Capitol, embedded in the mob that was determined to storm the building and overturn the election result. If the Trump-supporting crowd was going to engage in a violent insurrection, then I would be the witness. It was saidonly half in jest - that I was the first Englishman to storm Congress since the War of 1812. Except my only weapon was a microphone and my co-conspirator was my cameraman. I was able to interview insurrectionists as they piled through window frames and tore through the corridors of power. It was political fury and revolutionary intent disguised as patriotism.

We received a lot of recognition for our January 6th reporting, including a BAFTA award, and multiple prizes at TV and film festivals. But in truth, what I did that day was precisely the same as I have done all my working life; indeed, the same as reporters do every day and in every corner of the world. We bear witness. We tell people what we see, we put ourselves at the intersection of colliding forces, and amplify the voices of those who don’t have a platform. It doesn’t always work out. I was once sent to Mongolia when the editor intended to send me to Moldova; I have missed scoops and made mistakes; and I have often been beaten to stories by rival TV networks. But across 100 countries, and through wars, revolutions, and natural disasters, I have done my best to bring the turmoil of the world to British television screens.

I am often asked how to get into journalism and what skills are needed. My answer doesn’t change: you have to be able to listen - really, deeply listen - and you have to possess curiosity. The best stories are never revealed at a news conference or told to you by people in power. The most important resource a journalist can possess is empathy for the powerless and disregard for the powerful.

It is also never too early to practise journalism. I started at Repton and from a small School magazine in Derbyshire to the steps of the Capitol, it’s been an exhilarating ride. I wake up every day wondering whose story I can tell next.

Robert Moore (H’76) is a Washington-based foreign correspondent for ITV News. As the only TV reporter in the world who accompanied the mob into the Capitol on January 6th, he won a BAFTA in May for his news reporting. He is also the current Royal Television Society reporter of the year and won the top prizes at the Foreign Press Association and the British Journalism Awards.

Credit: Press Gazette - British Journalism Awards journalist of the year Robert Moore of ITV pictured with Jeremy Vine and Dominic Ponsford.

OR News: Snippets

Congratulations to Joe Cook (C’11) for completing his first IRONMAN! Finishing third in his age category, Joe landed a spot on the podium and qualified for the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. Joe finished the race 43rd in world rankings for the 18 – 24 age category and was the first Brit home.

Leah Wilkinson (A’03), Welsh and Great Britain Defender has hit a milestone in her hockey career by becoming the most capped Welsh athlete in any sport. After making her debut for Wales in 2004 and her Great Britain debut in 2019, at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, Leah played her 200th game against England in the final pool game of the tournament.

Chris Hill (L’11) has achieved his 7th Music Fellowship with Honours. A dedicated and extremely talented musician, one to watch!

Tim Wilkinson C’75 has been appointed as Ambassador at Large and Special Envoy to Bafel Jalal Talabani, President of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan political party.

Fin Dearsly (C’13) (former 1st Team Tennis player) ran over 100 miles in 24 hours for charity!

Pip Maddocks (F’18) has joined the Roger Parry & Partners team, based in Oswestry, whilst studying real estate and land management, part-time, at Harper Adams University.

ORs Tony Lam (C ‘04) and Aaron Burgess-Smith (C ‘04), owners of Kanada-ya, launched their fifth site in London – famous for their authentic Tonkotsu ramen! The award-winning Japanese ramen restaurant is now located in Covent Garden, Piccadilly, Carnaby Street Angel and Ealing: @kanada_ya_ldn and at

Archie Harrison (L’20) made his first team debut for Derbyshire County Cricket Club in August. Credit: www.

Juan Costa (L’70 )and family joined supporters in Chile to watch the Repton Hockey teams play against the Chile National U21 B Teams at the Old Grangonian Club whilst on their tour to Chile and Argentina in August. Juan came to board at Repton from Santiago where he still lives now. Juan is pictured here with current Latham pupils, Noah and Sam.

Nashville Soccer Club announced that the club has signed defender Laurence Wyke (C’13) to a one-year contract with club options for the 2024 and 2025 seasons. Wyke began his professional career with Atlanta United FC after playing two seasons collegiately at Furman University.

Following on from five hit stage shows, the work of best selling author, Peter James returns with the world premiere stage adaption of WISH YOU WERE DEAD. An all star cast includes George Rainsford (M’96), who returns to the stage after eight years as Ethan Hardy in BBC One’s Casualty. In theatres until 25 July.

Jamie Clark (L’14), under the artist’s name Sfven, had his latest track, ‘Little Things’ featured on Spotify UK & Ireland’s RADAR: First Listen artist, @sfvenmusic

Anthony Turner (H’68) recited the Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred, Lord Tennyson to great acclaim at the matinée and evening performances of A Grand Old Time Music Hall, presented by the Passion Players with Professor Graham Cowley at the St Barnabas’ Church in Dulwich.

Tom Chambers (N’90) starred as Walter Hobbs, the rediscovered father of Buddy, in ELF The Musical at the Dominion Theatre. The smash hit musical is based on the much-loved 2003 film starring Will Ferrell. The 2022 cast of Elf © Mark Senior (Credit: NashvilleSC) Credit:

Ben’s Big Walk

Ben Chapman (P’07)

It took Ben Chapman (P’07) 51 days to walk the entire length of the United Kingdom, from Land’s End in Cornwall to John O’Groats in Scotland. During the 51 days, Ben walked a whopping 1766km and raised £14,000 for Prevent Breast Cancer.

Ben wanted to take up the challenge having had close family and friends affected by cancer over the years. The opportunity to raise awareness of the charity and to raise much-needed funds was one that he met with a smile, determination, and eventually, some new laces. In 2013 his friend Jonathan Rowles (P’07) completed the same route, becoming the youngest solo walker of the length of the UK, an incredible achievement that inspired Ben to take the first of many steps.

On Sunday 17th April Ben began his adventure, ‘wild camping’ his way through the UK. The route took him on some amazing walking trails, including the Cotswold Way, Pennine Way, West Highland Way and Great Glen Way. He was met with encouragement and support throughout, humbled by the generosity of people met along the way that were only too happy to provide Ben with complimentary refreshments and accommodation.

Over the 51 days, Ben climbed over 27,500 metres – three times the height of Everest! He also bumped into fellow OR Tim Giddings (H’65) in a café, who donated to the charity. It just goes to show that wherever you are, you can be sure to find an OR nearby!

Ben completed the walk on Monday 6th June at John O’Groats in Scotland where he was met by some friendly faces and a well-deserved drink or two.

“To be able to raise so much money for an amazing cause has been extremely motivating”.

If you would like to read more about Ben’s Big Walk, please check out his Instagram page @bensbiglife.

Liam James Karai (N’11) Credit: © Robin-Clewley Le nozze di Figaro as the role of Figaro

Operatic Success

Liam James Karai (N’11)

Liam James Karai is a Bass-Baritone of Scottish, Irish and Indian descent who is currently a member of the International Opera Studio at Staatsoper Hamburg. He was previously a young artist at the Salzburg Festival and before that completed a Postgraduate Diploma on a full scholarship as well as a Master of Music degree in Performance at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester under the tutelage of Quentin Hayes. During his time at the RNCM, Liam was awarded the Sir John Tomlinson Scholarship and the Andrew Lloyd Webber Scholarship, and was the winner of the 2021 Frederic Cox Award and the RNCM Silver Medal. He also represented the RNCM for the Joaninha Trust Award competition and for the Clonter Opera Prize, winning the first and placing runnerup in the latter.

Whilst at the RNCM Liam performed a variety of operatic roles, including Figaro in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, Minskman in Jonathan Dove’s Flight, Badger/Priest in Janacek’s Cunning Little Vixen and Ein Lakai and Der Haushofmeister in the Prologue to Richard Strauss’ Ariadne Auf Naxos. Outside of the RNCM, Liam covered the principal role of Parsi Rustomji in Satyagraha at English National Opera, performed as Leporello (Don Giovanni) with Allo Opera, and took on the role of Martino in British Youth Opera’s L’occasione fa il ladro at Opera Holland Park.

Liam made his international debut in July whilst on the Young Artist Programme at the Salzburg Festspiele singing Guccio in Gianni Schicchi within Il Trittico. He also performed in some concerts in Salzburg with the Mozarteum Orchestra singing extracts from Le nozze di Figaro as Figaro, Cosí fan tutte as Don Alfonso and Cenerentola as Alidoro. Other upcoming roles include Verwalter/Wächter in Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth von Mzensk and Sciarrone in Puccini’s Tosca, both of which will be on the main stage at Staatsoper Hamburg.

Alongside his operatic career, Liam is a keen concert soloist and has regularly performed in opera galas, recitals and concerts across the UK. In recent months Liam has performed at St John’s Smith Square in an Opera Gala and also as a soloist in Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music as a British Youth Opera alumnus. Liam also recently recorded a recital with Clonter Opera last month thanks to his competition success.

Prior to his studies at the RNCM, Liam graduated with First Class Honours from the University of Leicester where he read Banking and Finance on a vocal scholarship. He is a keen gym-goer and marathon-runner and competed to one of the highest standards of University Basketball in the United Kingdom during his undergraduate degree, acting as the president of the University of Leicester Basketball Club in his final year.

Credit: © SF/Marco Borrelli - final concert in Salzburg
Credit:© Robin-Clewley Le nozze di Figaro

A Royal Occasion Andrew

At first, we thought that the email informing my wife, Eileen, that she had been nominated to attend a Buckingham Palace Garden Party, was a hoax. However, a telephone call to the Lord Lieutenant’s office soon confirmed otherwise. Who had nominated her, and why, remains confidential; but we suspect that it was in recognition of her voluntary work with Cruse Bereavement Care over many years, especially during the recent pandemic and previously after the major incidents in 2017 at London Bridge and Grenfell Tower.

Thus, on May 18th, having had the car valeted, we drove from home to the Palace, parking nearby thanks to my Blue Badge; and, after a short, escorted walk past gawping onlookers, were privileged to join the small group of similar badge-holders right in front of the main gates rather than the crocodile of other guests queuing as far as the eye could see. With surrounding roads closed - due to preparations for the imminent Jubilee celebrations - to everyone except for the fortunate few, like us, displaying a Palace parking permit; it was a surreal experience to be one of the few cars enjoying traffic-free passage along The Mall and Birdcage Walk, both arriving and leaving.

Being amongst the first guests allowed through the gates, it was only when we eventually reached the gardens and saw the

Williamson (N’59)

sea of ladies’ hats and fascinators that we realised just how many others there weresome 8,000, I understand, including more clergy than we had ever seen before in one place! Making our way across the manicured lawns, we headed for the refreshment tent where we were offered a wide selection of immaculate sandwiches, wraps, scones and cakes - some with an iced Platinum Jubilee emblem - with tea or juice but no alcohol, all to the stirring accompaniment of a military brass band.

Just as we finished our tea, the National Anthem announced the arrival of the Royal Party: Princess Alexandra of Kent, the Duchess of Cambridge, and the Earl and Countess of Wessex, who were immediately surrounded by those guests closest to them, with a mixture of informality and carefully orchestrated security afforded by members of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen at Arms as well as halberd-bearing Yeomen of the Guard (not to be called “Beefeaters”, we were told) one of whom allowed himself to be photographed with Eileen.

After a second visit to the refreshment tent, whilst the Royal Party themselves took tea elsewhere, we made our way across the lawns again to await their reappearance, when we were lucky enough to be standing behind one of the guests selected to be presented to the Duchess of Cambridge.

And then it was suddenly all over, as if in a dream. But what memories to share with our grandchildren, not least the official framed photograph including our original invitation proclaiming that “The Lord Chamberlain is commanded by Her Majesty to invite [Name] etc.”

Looking Forward

A Poem by Eileen Williamson

The day the invitation came We were sure it was a scam: But, no, it turned out to be true, Though many think it is a sham.

On Wednesday, 18th of May, I can’t wait to see the Queen At a Royal Garden Party: Yes, that’s why I am so keen!

Of course, I have to wear my best, Not just any old thing will do: What about that special outfit Bought years ago in Timbuctoo!

Sad to say the Queen won’t be thereShe’s not been well is what I’ve heard; No matter who the Royal is I should be thrilled to have a word.


The OR Women’s Leadership Forum

Exploring the role of the Muse in Art

The OR Women’s Leadership Forum has steadily been gaining momentum since its virtual launch in November 2021. It was agreed that an ideal follow up would be the opportunity to meet in-person and when the opportunity to visit Ruth Millington (F’00)’s “Muse” exhibition at The Royal Overseas League came, we jumped at the chance to see each other and celebrate International Women’s Day at the same time!

Guests enjoyed a private viewing of the “Muse” exhibition and an appearance from guest speaker Leah Brown (G’03), an inspirational legal professional, activist, writer and mentor who was incredibly inspiring to listen to and really made us all pause to reflect on our role as women in society and some of the challenges that we have and still continue to face.

The next meeting will take place virtually and we look forward to sharing more details with you closer to the time.

Spoiler alert – One of our confirmed speakers is cover star for The Arch 2022 and MasterChef finalist Radha Kaushal-Bolland (G’11)!


Drinks In The City

Welcoming new faces!

Our annual London Drinks event at a new venue for 2022 was a great success!

On Thursday 7th April we met at Jamie’s Adam’s Court near Liverpool Station for our annual Drinks event in the City. We had a great turnout from our younger ORs who enjoyed the opportunity to catch up with friends and make some new connections.

OR Society Chair, Nick Walford (B’69), spoke about some of the changes that we have seen over the last 12 months, followed by Headmaster, Mark Semmence, who spoke of the current landscape at Repton.


Drinks In Your City The OR Society on Tour

It has been amazing to see many new faces at our OR Society drinks events outside of London. Please look out for dates in cities near you.

On March 8th, we kickstarted our tour in Bristol at The Beer Emporium. Joined by a group of Bristol-based ORs, we caught up over a few drinks. A very enjoyable evening that we look forward to building on next year.

Tuesday 15th March saw the OR Society hosting drinks at Das Kino in central Nottingham. With a mix of familiar and new faces, it was superb to see friendships re-ignited and new ones created. The evening ended with several rounds of pizza, shared amongst friends.

We would love to hear your thoughts on where to visit next, please do get in touch so that we can organise drinks in your city.


The OR Summer Ball

Celebrating 50 years of women at Repton

On Saturday 7th May we were finally able to host the much anticipated OR Summer Ball. The sun shone as we enjoyed drinks in the Palm Court Atrium and adjoining gardens before sitting down for a three-course meal.

A warm welcome from Daisy Heath-Abbott (G’06) was followed by wise words from Carole Blackshaw (A’70), one of the first girls to attend Repton. Anna Parish, former Housemistress of The Mitre concluded the speeches with a snapshot of life at Repton now and a trip down memory lane which was welcomed by all.

It was a delight to see so many ORs and Friends of Repton turn out for the event, with over 80% of guests under the age of 30. We hope that you enjoyed the celebrations as much as we did.

Thank you to all involved in organising this event; a special mention to Daisy who presented the idea for the Ball, and what a great idea it was!


OR Day & BBQ

The first Saturday of the Michaelmas Term has always been the opportunity for OR footballers of whatever age and ability to return to the School to meet, play and ‘recover’. This year, however, looked to build on this by expanding the range of sports on offer, thereby making it an even more significant day in the annual Diary of OR events.

Whilst we were not able to go quite as far as hoped, along with five games of football - three against the School (two wins and one defeat) and two intra-ORs (at either end of the age spectrum!) - there was also a game of hockey vs the Girls 1st XI and a squash session, involving both an exhibition match and games against pupils.

The OR hockey team included Olympic gold-medal winner Georgie Twigg MBE (F’02), though even her presence was not enough for the ORs to avoid a close defeat.

Just before the hockey got underway, Georgie, along with fellow medallist Shona McCallin MBE (A’08), were honoured at a short Reception in the Sports Complex, where the Hospitality Suite was re-named the Twigg McCallin Room. At the same time the Conference Room was re-named the Fry Abrahams Room.

Once all the strenuous activity was over, around 80 ORs walked/hobbled down to The Boot for a BBQ. This was the first year of this more organised post-match gathering and seemed to be a tremendous success.

The hope is that this format will now be repeated in years to come, with the added inclusion of a ladies football match, so do put Saturday, September 2nd 2023 into the diary now!

As ever, if anyone has any feedback, positive or negative, about the day, or suggestions going forward, please do contact the OR Office.


The Arthur Dunn Cup - ORFC take home the trophy!

The Old Reptonian Football Club (ORFC) recorded their 12th Arthur Dunn Cup triumph since the competition began in the 1902/03 season, making them the fourth most successful club behind Old Carthusians, Old Malvernians and Old Salopians.

It had been 31 years since we last lifted the cup (1991) and during this barren spell the club had been beaten finalists in 1993, 2002, 2012 and 2017. With a good balance of talented young players and experienced leaders, the squad was arguably the strongest it had been in the past decade, if not longer. Huge credit must go to Matt Carrington and Nigel Kew for their excellent work in creating such well-rounded footballers and encouraging them to push for a place in the squad.

1st Round: Old Radleians (a)

Trips away to traditional “rugby schools” are never easy and it wasn’t until the second half that the ORs took control. This was a warning sign for the squad that any team we come up against will work hard, be physical and do whatever it takes to stop us playing with freedom. Luckily, the players stayed calm, and their quality shone through in the end.

Score: 5-2

Goalscorers: Alex Evans (N’04) x 2, Jack Bull (O’12), Jamie Slack (C’14), Artem Aliev (P’14)

2nd Round: Old Berkhamstedians (a)

Having played them already in the league, we knew what to expect from Old Berkhamsteadians; a physical side who looked to play on the counter with long balls over the top. However, with Tom Whitwell (P’16) (making an outstanding debut) and Bull at the heart of the defence, this was a tactic that was never going to work. After a tight first half, the ORs again took control after the break to win comfortably.

Score: 6-1

Goalscorers: Mike Watson (P’03), Tom Jones (S’17), Alex Evans (N’04), Jake Raine (C’15) x 2, Jack Bull (O’12)


Quarter-final: Old Shirburnians (a)

We didn’t know much about our opposition, who sit a few leagues further down, and to make things harder it was a torrid day with Storm Eugene causing carnage. Though chances were missed a strong end to the game saw the ORs safely through.

Score: 3-1

Goalscorers: Josh Riley (P’11) x 2, Tom Jones (S’17)

Semi-final: Old Chigwellians (a)

This was the club’s sixth semi-final in eight years. Having lost one and won one against Old Chigwellians in the league this season, we knew this would be a tough game, particularly away in Essex with their boisterous fanbase. The slippy pitch made it hard for either team to build any momentum in the first 15 minutes, but a penalty save and then a late first-half goal turned the game in the ORs favour.

Score: 3-1

Goalscorers: Tom Buffin (S’14) x 2, Jake Raine (C’15)

Final: Old Etonians

Having watched the Old Etonians in their semi-final replay against (a very technically sound) Old Bradfieldian side with ORFC Chairman, Nick Walford (B’69), we were very confident that our typical style and game plan would work a treat. We knew they would offer a threat at set pieces (having scored from 5 corners in their first clash with Old Bradfieldians) but they were old, slow and technically miles behind our squad.

The final was the club’s 290th match in the Arthur Dunn Cup competition and the seventh time facing Old Etonians, of which we had only lost one - historical statistics courtesy of Ian Payne (L’55).

The game couldn’t have gone much more to plan. We pegged them back in the first 15 minutes with balls over the top, which in turn created space in between the lines for us to exploit. The first goal was a stunning pattern of play including Riley, Will Norcross (S’12) and Jones, before the ball fell to the feet of Buffin who cut inside and finished into the corner. His second goal came shortly after and was a tad less beautiful; a speculative shot that slipped under thekeeper. This two-goal lead gave the players a new lease of life, and the shackles were off. Norcross scored one of the best goals in

final history as he played a neat one-two with Riley before dribbling from the halfway line past five Old Etonians and sitting the keeper down before flicking the ball over him.

The backline of Evans, Bull, Tommy Speed (P’14) and Fraser Lane (L’08) were dealing with everything thrown at them with ease, before kickstarting attack after attack as the second half saw more of the same, it was total football at its peak. Buffin bagged his hat-trick with a clever outside of the boot finish from distance as the keeper was in no man’s land and then his fourth, to make it 5-0, after Riley unselfishly squared it across the six-yard box. Grabbing four goals in any game is a huge achievement, let alone a final. Frustratingly (but something we can live with), there was no clean sheet today either. The Old Etonians finally showed a threat when breaking down the left and putting in a low cross to be turned in at the second attempt - very similarly to the goal that booked their spot in the final.

The introduction of Raine and Matty Bowman (S’17) gave us a boost and it didn’t take long for the former to get his name on the scoresheet, as he always does. It was a trademark header from an inviting cross by the trusty left wand of Evans. The scoring was finished, and a new Dunn Final record was set, when Norcross made it 7-1 with a powerful shot into the near post that bamboozled the keeper who had a day to forget.

The final was a very special day, not only because of the incredible performance on display, but the monumental support we received from everyone on the side of the pitch and from those who sent messages in advance; it is an occasion that will live long in the memory for everyone connected with the club and School. To top it all off, the honour of handing over the majestic trophy to the winning captain falls with the Chairman of the Arthur Dunn Cup, which just so happens to be Nick Walford (B’69), Chairman of the ORFC. It was a proud and fitting moment for Nick to pass the trophy to skipper Evans , as he has played a huge role in the club’s progression over the last few years through his unwavering support. Hopefully, this talented group can stay together and look to dominate the competition over the coming years.

Score: 7-1

Goalscorers: Tom Buffin (S’14) x 4, Will Norcross (S’12) x 2, Jake Raine (C’15)


Arthur Dunn Cup Dinner

On Friday, 2nd September, the night before OR Day, the Headmaster, Mark Semmence, very kindly hosted a Dinner in The Hall to celebrate the magnificent victory of the ORFC in the Arthur Dunn Cup.

Those invited included not only the squad who trounced the Old Etonians so emphatically, but also the squad who had last held the trophy aloft some 31 years before. The evening was thus a delightful fusion of two generations of outstanding Repton footballing talent, with friends meeting friends but also new acquaintances made.

Inevitably there was much reminiscing, not only informally but also in the short speeches. Whilst occasionally the memory might have been a bit hazy, what cannot be disputed is the standing of Repton football, both past (distant and more recent) and present. Something of which to be really proud.

32 THE
1991 ORFC Team 1987 ORFC Team

Branch Updates

The OR Society is home to several Branches, Clubs and Societies. Please do get in touch with the OR Society if you would like to find out more about what is involved or to be put in touch with the relevant Branch, Club or Society Lead.

OR Tennis

It has been great this summer to see the grass tournaments back in full swing and with full audiences in attendance once again, and I hope you’ve all been able to get out and enjoy some tennis, be it playing or spectating.

ORs vs School match

The year’s summer tennis season kicked off as usual with a wellattended and well-fought OR vs current Repton team evening on Tuesday 24th May. The School team were brilliant hosts as always and worthy opponents. The evening included singles, doubles and mixed doubles, with an opportunity for all levels and ages of ORs to get on court and get involved. It was great to see a record OR attendance at the fixture. The weather was obliging, and the School put on an excellent spread of food for the hungry players. After a number of close-fought matches the Old Reptonians’ experience finally showed with a finishing rubber score of 17-12. The evening ended with a trip to the pub for the ORs – it’s like we’ve never been away! Massive thanks to James Rushby, Director of Tennis, for organising the event, and to Phil Brindley (N’02) for captaining the OR team.

D’Abernon Cup

The 2022 D’Abernon Cup competition kicked off on 19th June, as we looked to retain our title from 2019, after the competition was postponed in 2020 and 2021. Our first-round tie promised to be a challenging encounter away at Sherborne (Dorset). With a depleted team due to a number of injuries and a Covid case, our campaign seemed at risk of ending before it had begun. The ideal time, then, for D’Abernon Cup debutant Benson Greatrex (O’65) to step up to the plate and demonstrate a volley masterclass and take two wins out of two (outwitting much younger opponents!), to lead the team to a 3-1 win. Thanks also to Dom Lea (S’11), and Dan Cottier (L’99) for making the journey down to Devon to get us off to a winning start.

The Semi-Final was due to be held at Repton on 7th August against Wellington, in a re-match of the 2018 quarter finals. Unfortunately, Wellington had a lastminute drop out so couldn’t field a full team and had to forfeit the match, handing us a place in our 7th final in the last 7 competitions - a record we are rightly proud of.

The final took place at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet club on Sunday 4thSeptember on the hallowed turf at Aorangi Park, as we took on new opposition in Bromsgrove Old Boys. The Old Reptonians team of Paddy Foley (N’11), Alex Grocott (S’10), Dan Cottier (L’99), Rich Harrison (H’92), Jamie Muirhead (C’09) and Dom Lea (S’11) battled hard to open up a strong 2-1 lead after the first round of doubles. Cottier and Harrison continued to make smooth progress, to put the score at 3-1 to Repton, but the match still appeared very much in the balance as both remaining matches in the round went into important tie-breaks. A couple of strong returns at the right moment from Muirhead and Lea made it 4-1, while Foley and Grocott found an impressive extra gear in their deciding set to put the match beyond doubt, playing some of their best tennis under pressure at the

most important moments. A clean sweep in the last round made the overall score 8-1 and sealed an excellent defence of the D’Abernon Cup title for us. Our 5th title in the last seven competitions!

Thanks to everyone who has represented and supported the team this year. It’s a real pleasure to organise, with such fantastic group of people engaged and involved. Thanks also to Wimbledon for hosting the D’Abernon Cup final once again and making it such an occasion.

If you would like to get more involved in the D’Abernon Cup team, please let me know you’re interested in throwing your hat in the ring and give me an indication of your playing level.


OR Squash

Squash at Repton has never been a major sport with football, hockey and Fives taking precedence. Nevertheless, remove comma the game has always been played by many Reptonians over the years, with squash teams and a Captain of Squash andfixtures played against schools and clubs.

There have been ORs who have played the game competitively and reached the heights at county level, gained “Blues” and, in some instances, competed nationally. In most of these cases it was typical that Repton played little part in their development and this was derived from either university or participation at good squash clubs around the country or abroad.

What is really interesting to note is that in its inaugural year of 1926. The Drysdale Cup, which is the Junior Amateur National Championship for boys under 19, was won by CJ Wilson (P’1922). Wilson was in the Cricket 1st X1 of 1925 but presumably played sufficient squash at school to enable him to win the event. Most winners have become national champions at senior level and in some case world champions. The Drysdale was founded by Dr Theodore Drysdale of St Paul’s, Cambridge and RAC Club.

During my time as an OR we entered the annual Londonderry Cup competition, one of the oldest tournaments in world squash having its inauguration in 1934, with its name coming from Lord Londonderry who was President of The International Sportsman’s Club at the time. I played in the Repton side for many years from the mid ‘60s when John Ervin (M’43) was

Secretary, to the ‘90s. I was the ORSC’s Secretary for 20 years having taken over from Alan Ambrose (H’48) who sadly is no longer with us and handed over to Scott Greenhalgh (N’76) in 1987. In that last year we had our best run in the Londonderry and reached the semi final, losing to Greshams who were the eventual winners of the event, thanks to the 3 squash professionals in their side. Regular winners of the Competition in my time were Greshams, Lancing and Aylesbury GS

Interest in the ORSC waned following the ‘90s, and we failed to enter a side in the competition for a number of years until 2015 when I managed to persuade Ed Rhodes (N’95), who had been Captain of Squash at School, to take on the job as Secretary; and those who run the Londonderry Cup tournament from the RAC Club were delighted to have us back. Ed, who is a very busy man with a young family, has managed to raise sides for the Londonderry but we are not that competitive. We are keen to know of ORs playing competitive squash; please do contact Ed.

Both Ed and I are delighted to hear we have entered a new era at Repton with leadership coming from the Headmaster and his team. With the ability and enthusiasm of Ben Miller, Head of English and Master in Charge of squash, we have someone who is intent on introducing and promoting the game within the School and locally. And that augurs well for the ORSC as the School provides the life blood for the ORSC.

Squash at Repton has enjoyed a considerable renaissance over the last academic year, aided by the arrival of two superb players in B Block and by the excellent weekly coaching sessions offered by Welsh international and current world number 151, Owain Taylor.

After a fallow period when the school had no courts, during the construction of the sports centre, participation in squash has increased drastically, leading to hotly-

contested House squash competitions for both boys and girls and won by The Cross and The Mitre, respectively. This next academic sees the return of competitive squash fixtures for the first time in several years and it’s gratifying to see the continued growth of other racket sports at the school, too.


OR Golfing Society

Patrick Franklin-Adams (H’58) Celebration of Life

Several Society members attended the memorial for OR Patrick Franklin-Adams (H’58) at his beautiful home in Sussex. Patrick died during lockdown, this was the first real opportunity to celebrate the life of a terrific man who contracted Alzheimers at the age of 57. A gathering of over 200 friends and family was hosted by Patrick’s wonderful wife Carol, who tirelessly continues to raise phenomenal amounts of money for the Alzheimer’s Society. We were all made exceptionally welcome, fed and watered royally and entertained with a eulogy from Carol and all four of their children including Katherine (A’84).

The memorial was extremely well attended as Patrick was a larger-than-life character who enthused all who met him. Although Patrick was an all round sportsman, his passion was golf - he was in the 1983 Halford Hewitt Repton winning team.

Return of Bruce Knight (H’72)

Bruce was the Hon Sec of the ORGS for 10 years until he emigrated to South Africa in 2000. He returned to catch up with old friends, visit Repton for a trip down memory lane, play golf at his former club Little Aston and attend the celebration of life for Patrick Franklin-Adams (H’58).

OR Ladies Golf - The Silver Tassie

This year the OR Golf Society entered their first ladies’ team in the Silver Tassie, which is a ladies’ golf competition for alumnae of Independent Schools which are members of the Independent Schools Joint Council. The Silver Tassie was founded in 1961 by Gerty Hubbard, who wanted to create an event similar to the Halford Hewitt but for ladies. This event is held at the Berkshire, the format of the competition is a team of four and is played in pairs, a 4BBB - Stableford. One pair plays the red course and the other pair plays the blue course. The 2022 team was Lindsey Shaw (A’77 - Captain), Bec Brookes (A’93), Erica Sanders (G’10) and Sophie Lamb (A’08).

Southern Spring Meeting

26 Old Reptonians met at New Zealand Golf Club in Surrey for a convivial breakfast, lunch and tea interspersed by two rounds of golf. The morning winner was Nick Walford (B’69) with 41 points, with Jack Williams (S’04) runner-up.

n the afternoon, James Fletcher (L’92) and James Gildersleve (O’71) took the honours with 39 points ahead of Tony Bishop (P’72)

and George Gould (O’10) on 37 points. The Isouthern meeting was enriched by the presence of several members of our Cheshire and Midlands branches of the Society and particularly by the number of generations represented, with the ages of those participating ranging from 21 to 81. Post lunch Kümmel was kindly supplied by ORGS President Richard Fry (N’60).

After we played, the team had a delicious two-course meal followed by a presentation, where we got a mention for entering the competition for the first time. The team had a very enjoyable day. We weren’t in the mix for the prizes but we did not do too badly seeing it was our first time in the competition. We are hoping to enter a team again in 2023 and we would love to enter two teams one year.

If you are interested in playing, please contact Bec Brookes (A’93) via email or Lindsey Shaw (A’77)


Halford Hewitt

The 2022 edition of the Halford Hewitt was back in its familiar April spot in the golfing calendar. Typical British spring weather accompanied us all week, as did our hardy and faithful supporters who followed us round.

The campaign started at Royal St George’s against Clifton College. A tighter match than the 4-1 result may have suggested probably helped sharpen us for our nextround opponents, Epsom.

Epsom are one of the consistent favourites in recent times and a side we had not got the better of either. It was a Halford Hewitt classic, as the deciding match went into


Rye Golf Club Sunday 2nd October 2022

A host of eager Repton and Marlborough golfers woke up to a Sunday morning that was wet and grey; notwithstanding, they all appeared on time at the wonderful Rye links for 36 holes across the Jubilee and Old Courses.

Twelve holes later the steady rain finally ceased and hopes rose for a sunny afternoon. Those 11 doughty souls who stayed for the post-prandial round on the Old Course were rewarded with one of those glorious experiences that is the

extra holes to determine who progressed. Two tight and nervy holes led us to the 21st and the long Par 3 at RSG. A towering tee shot to the correct level by Alex Mair and a slippery downhill putt by Pete Forster secured a memorable 3-2 win.

Saturday morning saw us move back to Royal Cinque Ports to face Harrow in the 3rd round. A tense and scrappy affair with the result uncertain throughout, we were delighted to win 3-2 and progress to the Quarter Finals in the afternoon.

The opposition was Haileybury and they beat Repton 3.5-1.5 to reach their first semi-final in over 40 years. Without wishing to sound unfair to the victors who

had played well, quite simply as a group we felt that we had been a little flat. That’s sport, and it happens. We move on.

Everyone contributed and some very good matches were won. We had the second debutant in as many years in Jeffrey Chow (C’11). There were some new and familiar supporters who came down and helped make it a memorable ORGS week. Thanks to all, and we look forward to the next campaign.

reserve of wonderful old Links like Rye, with a breeze blowing across fast-drying and sun-dappled dunes, great views across the bay to Fairlight and inland across the Romney Marsh, and for the alert, the occasional yacht sailing up the canal from Rye Port to the sea. How richly we were rewarded. Bliss indeed!

And so to the golf which was played in great spirit and with some fine golf. Evenly balanced at lunchtime at 2 points apiece, the afternoon round went right to the final match, in which David Scarrett (P’04)

(playing on his own as numbers were uneven) brought in the winning point for Repton. Rye looked after us very well. A great day was had by all.

Repton team: John Fletcher (L’66), Richard Fry (N’60), Gordon West (B’62), David Scarrett (P’04), Daniel Page (L’99), Chris Lawson (L’84), Sandip Basu (O’91)

John Fletcher (L’66 - Match Manager)


Repton Pilgrims Cricket Club

After a tough couple of years, we are pleased to report that it has been a more positive year for the Pilgrims. With Cricket Week being cancelled for the past two seasons due to Covid, we had only played one fixture in a two-year period.

We had a tough draw in the first round of the Cricketer Cup, coming up against last year’s losing finalists, Oundle Rovers, away from home. Oundle fielded more or less the same side that had reached the final last year. On a slow wicket, the Pilgrims got off to a steady start scoring about 40 at about two an over before the first wicket fell. After that no-one could get started or begin to get on top of some accurate slow bowling. An unnecessary run out added to our woes. Oundle sensibly juggled their batting order and sent in a ‘pinch hitter’ to open the batting - it came off and the match ended quickly. The result aside, we were very grateful to the players who committed to play and made the long journey to Oundle, and equally to those who came to support.

The standard of cricket in the competition is high and to make progress in it we need to put out the strongest side possible. The unavailability of key players for the Cricketer Cup remains our biggest issue. It would be greatly appreciated if the best of the present cricketing generation of Pilgrims could make themselves available for selection next year.

We have all enjoyed the success of the Old Reptonian footballers and the Cricketer Cup, like the Arthur Dunn Cup, is a prestigious competition. Success in the competition reflects well on the School as well as the Club. In Mark Semmence we have a cricket minded Headmaster, and in Cameron Wake a Master in Charge who understands ‘Old Boys’ cricket; incidentally they both played for their Schools in this year’s Cricketer Cup. They both understand the importance of the competition and they will encourage recent Leavers to become committed to playing for the Pilgrims. The future looks promising and let’s hope for a good cup run next year.

Cricket Week 2022 began with a win/lose 45 over per side game against the Lincolnshire Gentlemen. The fixture has been captained by Jim Blackwell (P’00 - Pilgrims) and

Charlie Tomlinson (Lincs Gents) for almost a decade. It is always eagerly awaited and keenly contested, and this year was no exception. The Gents won the toss and elected to bat first on a wicket that looked batter friendly despite the substantial amount of cricket that had been played on the square in the preceding three months. Either side of lunch the Gents posted a very competitive 287-3 aided by 38 not out from a Pilgrim (Nick Tomlinson – H’89) and significant contributions from a couple of batters with accents more akin to New South Wales than South Kesteven. James Byrne (S’10), Jack Bywater (C’11) and Freddie Cheshire (S’15) were the pick of the bowlers with Bywater forcing one batter to retire hurt with a vicious blow to the helmet. Callan Harvey (O’12 - 76) and Felix Waters (O’08 -66) put the Pilgrims in a commanding position at 154-2, from that point on wickets fell at regular intervals until the final one fell in the 39th over with the score at 226.

Jim Blackwell (P’00) - Match Report.

Given the strong connection with Oundle through the School’s Master in Charge of Cricket, a new fixture against Oundle Rovers was introduced for the Thursday of Cricket Week. The Pilgrims were keen to rectify the Cricketer Cup loss only a few weeks previous and got off to a strong start after winning the toss and electing to bat first. Jon Sheard (N’89 - 60) and Nafis Shaikh (L’20 - 39) put on 92 for the opening partnership in just over 20 overs. However, the Oundle bowling attack remained disciplined on a slow wicket, and the Pilgrims struggled to build any momentum or put together any meaningful partnerships towards the end of their

innings. Zach Wenham (S’17) ended the innings 78 not out with the Pilgrims declaring on 256 for 8. The Pilgrims needed early wickets, given their below-par total. Oundle started positively with a number of boundaries, but the early introduction of spinner Wenham broke the opening partnership with 39 runs on the board. Wenham struck again in his second over leaving Oundle 54 for 2. This brought Master in Charge, Cameron Wake, to the crease – keen to show his recent Leavers his cricketing prowess. He certainly did that! Cameron struck 136 not out off 60 balls, and the 3rd wicket partnership put on 201 in 130 balls. Despite the thumping 7-wicket defeat, a great day was enjoyed by all, and both teams will look to build on the fixture next year.

Tom Poynton (S’06) - Match Report.

A traditional timed fixture concluded Cricket week 2022 against the ‘old enemy’ Staffordshire Gentlemen. The Gents elected to bat first on another scorching hot day at Repton and after a scratchy start found momentum with their middle order either side of lunch. They had, however not budgeted for the ‘smiling assassin’ Wenham who, with his flight and guile plugged away at their middle order with figures of 5-85 off 18 overs. This limited the Gents to 223 declared off 54 overs with time being the only concern for the Pilgrims. Michael Jacques (C’05) fell cheaply once again but after that there were several starts until Dom Bennett (P’10) dug in for a majestic 66* supported with a cameo from captain Ed Sloane to keep the rate under control and get the Pilgrims over the line.

Edward Sloane (P’97) - Match Report.


The Pilgrims season finished with a revived fixture against Chatsworth Cricket Club –a T20 evening fixture played on a Friday evening. The Pilgrims fielded a strong and youthful XI which was supported by about thirty followers, complete with assorted folding chairs and picnics, who were rewarded with a stunning setting and a glorious clear blue sky. Amongst the followers were the distinguished cricket writers Charles Sale (B’70) and Michael Henderson (N’72). Whilst there was not really enough jeopardy in Friday’s proceedings to warrant a piece by Sale, the sheer timeless Englishness of the setting certainly would have suited some prose from Henderson. It had everything; a parkland setting with a stately home in the background, immaculate estate railings enclosing a surprisingly green outfield,

a small, thatched pavilion and the Derwent running alongside. As for the cricket, the match was rather one-sided. The Pilgrims batted first and made 201 in their twenty overs with a number of retirements. The Chatsworth bowling improved as the evening wore on by which time it was too late to rein in the batsmen. Chatsworth replied with about 100 – I can’t be too precise because once the writing was on the wall the paper scoring ceased. A very enjoyable evening was had by the teams and spectators who adjourned to the Cavendish Club for post-match refreshments. The thought is that next year we will not take the Cricketer Cup side to Chatsworth, so, if your cricket is more village than premier league, look out for next year’s fixture list and apply to the match manager.

The future is bright with a number of very good cricketers recently leaving – the likes of Archie Harrison (L’20) and Nafis Shaikh (L’20), who have aspirations for professional careers with Derbyshire.

Finally, we would like to give special thanks to the School, the Headmaster, the OR Society, School Caterers, Andy Butler and his Grounds Staff, Cameron Wake and Chris Read, and our sponsors Baron & Grant Investment Management Limited.

OR Football Club Season 2021/22

This was one of the club’s most successful seasons in recent times, gaining promotion back into the Premier Division after a 15year absence and lifting the Arthur Dunn Cup, with a record-breaking final win (7-1), for the 12th time.

There were many highlights, most notably the 5-0 thrashing of Old Marlburians who sat top of the table, putting six past Old Salopians and beating Old Berkhamsteadians 12-1; an aggregate across three games. However, what made a massive difference this year was the fact we managed to keep six clean sheets compared to our average of one per season for the past ten seasons. Therefore, it was fitting that league goalkeeper, Gleb Tverdokhlebov (P’16), playing his debut season for the club, deservedly shared the Player of the Season. He shared it with Alex Evans (N’04), who in his 12th season for the club notched 14 goals and 14 assists from left back. Josh Riley (P’11), Ed Jackson and Artem Aliev (P’14) had breakthrough seasons, with captain Mike Watson (P’03) relishing his new position in central midfield, bagging two hat tricks in back-to-back games.

Another reason for the club’s league success this year was the consistency of the squad. It was rather fitting that the promotion-clinching (scorpion kick) goal came from Luke Lacey (C’07), a player who gives 100% every week whether he plays 90 or 20 minutes, and his positive attitude and presence lifts the players around him. He has fast become a favourite with the fans who have nicknamed him the “Isle of Man Caravan” for his (perceived) lack of mobility, but when you read the game like Madini then you can afford to be a little slow off the mark.

Special mentions must also go to Alex Needham (N’10) and Eemeli Heiskanen (P’19) who clocked up some miles travelling down to London from the Midlands for games throughout the season. This level of commitment shows how special the club is and what it means to play for ORFC.

Next season we aim to secure our place as a Premier Division side and look to retain the Arthur Dunn Cup, something the club has never achieved after its previous 11 victories.

Credit: @andythephotographer Credit: @andythephotographer

2023 Yorkshire Reunion

* For recent leavers, the OR Society will subsidise your tickets, so if you are aged 30 and under, the ticket price is just £30.

2022 Yorkshire Reunion

After a gap of 14 years, Martin Grayshon (C’61) as Secretary and Martin Needler (N’56) as President of the OR Yorkshire Branch, resurrected the Annual Dinner at The Bridge Hotel and Spa, Walshford on 25th April. This was attended by over 40 ORs, some former parents and staff, with a wide range of ages from pupils who had recently left the School to octogenarians. Headmaster, Mark Semmence, gave an update on the School and the plans for the future. This location was chosen because of easy access from the A1 and onsite parking. It was necessary to pre-order food from a varied choice, which required a bit more organisation by Martin, but proved to be well received by all.

All agreed that it was a very enjoyable occasion enabling them to meet and discuss times past and renew friendships and requested that another event should be held in 2023.We would like to broaden our attendance and encourage other members to register their interest by contacting the OR Office.

The price per head of £45 / £30 * will include a champagne reception, canapés at 7 pm, a three-course dinner and music afterwards, with the bar open until midnight.

ORs from all over the country are welcome to attend and The West Park has rooms available at a special rate. This event will have limited capacity and is expected to sell

out so please book early to avoid disappointment via The Little Box Officeor by contacting the OR Office

Andy Colcombe (P’78) and Adam Sinclair (L’78) are arranging an evening at the award-winning West Park Hotel Harrogate (19 West Park, Harrogate, HG1 1BJ) on Thursday 11th May 2023.

The Old Reptonian Masonic Lodge

Members of the Old Reptonian Masonic Lodge had their usual meetups in London at the end of January and the middle of June this year.

The June meeting is when a new Master of the Lodge is Installed. This year, Ian McClary (Staff ’02) handed over to Peter Smeaton (N’72). Afterwards, there was time for refreshments in the spectacular new bar within Freemasons’ Hall, Great Queen Street, before heading to the Grand Officers’ Room for a Champagne reception followed by a fine three-course dinner with wine.

Dinner was open to OR boys and we were delighted to welcome three, who have all since expressed an interest in becoming members of the Lodge. At dinner, members collected £275 for charity with a total of £500 going to this year’s chosen charity, the RNLI.

For any OR girls wanting to become involved in Freemasonry, the Lodge actively promotes a strong relationship with the Order of Women Freemasons, which also recognises the distinctive character of single-sex spaces whilst also celebrating gender equality.

Integrity, Friendship, Respect and Charity – This is what we stand for. If any OR would like more information on this great organisation, then please contact Lodge Secretary, Mark Norton (M’86), or see details on Repton Life.

Repton Life:

LinkedIn Group:

2023 OR Lancashire & Cheshire Branch Reinvigoration

You will have noticed the Yorkshire Branch of the OR Society reinvigorating itself with well-attended events and an increasing network of ORs. Not wishing to be outdone by our very good friends on the “wrong side” of the Pennines we too are reinvigorating the Lancashire & Cheshire Branch of the OR Society.

Step 1: We are starting with a Drinks in Your City, which will be in Manchester on Thursday 20th April 2023 at The Alchemist (1 New York Street, Manchester M1 4HD) from 6.00 pm.

All ‘Friends of Repton’ are welcome for informal drinks after work. This means ORs, Parents of ORs, Parents of current pupils, ORs living in the North or just visiting. There may even be transport organised from Repton for those who wish (specific details to follow).

Step 2: We are going to build a series of events focused on different interests. Ideas so far include events connected with the Northern Powerhouse and Lancashire Cricket Club. The elder OR population have been great supporters over the years, but we would like to make a real shift to make sure our younger ORs and female ORs are also actively engaged with the OR Society.

We would love to hear from you any ideas you may have of what you would like to do. We have a couple of OR Ambassadors already and are looking for more if you would like to help.

OR Professional Property Club

To make sure you are included in future Lancashire & Cheshire comms, if you wish to attend the Drinks Event, have ideas for future events or would love to help out as anAmbassador, please contact the OR Office -

We look forward to reconnecting.

OR Lancashire & Cheshire Branch

Secretary - Jonathan Every (N’92)

Ambassador - Amelia Haywood (née Etherington) (M’09)

Ambassador - Julian Crossley (C’82)


As with years before, we are planning on booking a lunch somewhere in Central London. This has been a fantastic event in years gone by, and one that has resulted in both new friends and business. If you are interested in joining us, please send an email to and you will be added to a mailing list.


2023 Events

As well as enjoyable occasions in their own right, OR events provide a great opportunity to re-connect with friends from your House or Year you very rarely see, or with whom you may have lost touch.

With this in mind, the OR Office would be delighted to hear from anyone who might be willing to act as an Ambassador, happy to contact contemporaries in advance of an event to ensure groups know their fellow ORs will also be attending. Needless to say, the


30 January – Choral Evensong at St Paul’s Cathedral, London OR Lodge – Dinner


20 April – Lancashire & Cheshire Drinks in Your City, Manchester

ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup, 2022-23 Final

Office will help all it is able to with contact information. Do let us know if you would be interested in taking on this role.

Ticketed bookings are available via The Little Box Office

Please view the events calendar below and make sure to regularly check for the most up-to-date event information or contact the OR office –


10 February – School House 25th Anniversary Dinner, Repton

21 February – Steinway Showcase Concert, London

23 February – Drinks in The City, London

ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup – 2022-23 Quarterfinals


4 May – Drinks in Your City, Newcastle

11 May – Yorkshire Reunion Dinner at the West Park Hotel, Harrogate

20 May – Gaudy 50th Anniversary, Repton

21 May – 2023 Cricketer Cup – Bye Round

22 May – OR Golfing Society: The Silver Tassie 2023, Berkshire Golf Club


1 July - Speech Day & Leavers’ Ball

9 July - 2023 Cricketer Cup – Quarterfinals

23 July - 2023 Cricketer Cup – Semi-finals Pilgrims CC Cricket Week

ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup – Draw

OR Tennis: D’Abernon Cup Semi-finals


12 October – OR Sports Night at the Queen’s Club, London OR Reunion in Germany

6 to 8 October – OR Golfing Society – 2023

Grafton Moorish – Hunstanton & Royal West Norfolk

28/29 October – Fives: Midlands Tournament, Repton

ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup – 1st Round


13 August - 2023 Cricketer Cup –Final


2 March – Drinks in Your City, Oxford

4 March – Fives: Varsity Match, Oxford vs Cambridge, Repton at 1.00 pm

ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup – 2022-23 Semi-final

30 March to 2 April – OR Golf Society: 2023 Halford Hewitt Cup

JUNE OR Lodge Dinner

Women’s Leadership Forum – Online Event

OR Tennis: D’Abernon Cup Quarterfinals

10 June – L6 Careers & HE Convention, Repton

11 June – 2023 Cricketer Cup – 1st Round

13/14 June – OR Golfing Society: Senior Darwin Trophy, Woking

25 June – 2023 Cricketer Cup – 2nd Round

29/30 June – OR Golfing Society: Bernard Darwin Trophy, Woking


2 September – OR Day & BBQ, Repton OR Lodge Dinner

OR Tennis: D’Abernon Cup Final


11 November – OR Society AGM, Repton

11 November – OR Annual Dinner, Repton

12 November – Remembrance Sunday Service & Act of Remembrance, Repton

28 November - Christmas Musical Celebration, Repton


ORFC: The Arthur Dunn Cup – 2nd Round

6 December – Carol Service, Repton


A year in the US Alex Urwin (L’13)

Iultimately spent just shy of a year living in New York and studying at Columbia. I took classes ranging from the study of foreign policy and diplomacy to the political economy of climate, transatlantic economics, leadership in policymaking, and political economy courses on Russia and China, as well as evening classes on speechwriting, political communication, and political campaigning.

I wrote papers on vaccine diplomacy (which was picked up by a UK think tank), the ‘golden era’ of UK-China relations, New Labour, the UK’s response to climate change, and the manner in which Number 10 is organised for foreign policy (which was picked up by the Atlantic Council). I also wrote my thesis with one of Columbia’s top professors, Adam Tooze, and focused on the political economy of the UK’s relationships with China, the US, and Europe in the early 2010s. In the process of writing the thesis, I had the privilege of interviewing senior government ministers, David Cameron’s national security adviser, and Obama’s chief of staff and treasury secretary. I am still finishing my thesis, but I am due to graduate with a distinction.

Outside of the academic work, I managed to see a lot of the country - New Hampshire, Boston, Washington DC, Baltimore, and an amazing Christmas road trip around the deep south - and meet a lot of interesting people, many of whom I know I’ll continue to see well into the future.

The academic year finished at the end of May, with the university’s traditional commencement ceremony, attended by well over 10,000 students and guests, and which was addressed by Hillary Clinton, amongst others. I have attached a few photos.

Whilst I am hopeful of spending further time in New York, or elsewhere overseas, I have now returned to the UK to take up a short-term post in the Office of the COP President, where I am responsible for advising the COP President (Alok Sharma) on climate finance and business engagement, as well as acting as his speechwriter. The UK holds the presidency of COP - the United Nations’ conference on climate change - until COP27 in November, at which point it will be handed over to Egypt and I will look for the next opportunity.

So, thank you for the support of the OR Society.


OR Society Grant


Did you know that every year the OR Society awards a grant to ORs to support career development and further education opportunities?

In keeping with the OR Society founding principles to maintain links with Old Reptonians and support their endeavours after their time at Repton, the OR Society is proud to provide grants to ORs seeking to further develop their career ambitions. As is the case with support for OR Branches, each application for funding will be discussed on an ad-hoc basis by the OR Society Executive Committee and taken to the General Committee meeting in September of each year for approval. As part of any grant funding application, we ask applicants to:

1 Highlight previous support for the OR Society and its founding principles

2 Demonstrate how the grant will positively impact the applicants career progression

3 Agree in principle to provide feedback on how the grant has supported their career development and to commit to support future careers initiatives for pupils and / or other ORs

If you would like to make an application for the OR Society Grant please submit your application in writing to We require a description of the course or placement and a supporting statement that outlines the benefits to you of participating. The deadline for applications is 31st August 2023.

OR Society Pupil Educational Grant

In 2022 three very worthy pupils were awarded the OR Society Pupil Education Grant. The grant is available to Lower and Upper Sixth pupils who are looking to further develop their skills before leaving Repton. These skills might help to support a University application, or prepare students for the workplace. Placements are varied and have included courses at various Summer Schools in addition to vital community development projects overseas.


OR Gap Year

Eve Lownds (A’16)

Opening my results in August 2021 I had little idea of what the next year would hold while I re-applied to medicine. I never intended to have a break after leaving Repton but the disappointment of four rejections was a blessing in disguise. If I could go back, I would not change a thing.

Initially I obtained a student placement with the Mental Health Charity, The Charlie Waller Trust. In this role I went behind the scenes of the charity sector while also exploring my passion of mental health education. Concerts, sports events, and schools were just some of the places I visited to spread the message of Charlie Waller and support fundraisers. I learned more practical skills during this time too, including sorting data and proofreading mental health resources. Working both from home and in the office, my first job introduced me to the intricacies of working in teams and less desirable things like brie left in the fridge over a bank holiday. I found this job difficult at times and I can take away experience of less positive elements which will help me in future to know what to look out for.

In February I received two offers for medical school and I impulsively booked a plane ticket to Costa Rica. With very little planning and even less Spanish I embarked on my first solo-travel trip. I visited jungles, beaches and mountains and made friends from across the globe. This time really gave me the space to process the last few years of lockdown and take a breath before beginning medical school. Visiting candle lit natural hot springs was a definite highlight as well as a 90m drop Tarzan swing for the adrenaline lovers. Although nervous at the start, solo travel was the best decision, I would recommend it to everyone.

Returning home, I began a job at a small coffee shop in my hometown. With no experience it was a baptism of fire (or boiling milk) and was vastly different to my previous office job. Lots of ‘dodgy’ latte art later, I made some lifelong friends in my co-workers despite my reputation for spilling drinks. Working in hospitality gave me renewed patience and communication skills and undoubtably will help me speaking to patients in later life.

Writing this in my Uni room of Medical School, I was blessed with a gap year and cannot wait for what the next five years will bring before I start life as Dr Lownds.


OR Enterprise Circle

Tom Poynton (S’06)

Baron & Grant Investment Management Limited

Upon leaving Repton in 2008, I signed a full-time professional contract with Derbyshire County Cricket Club (CCC) as a wicketkeeper-batsman. I was fortunate to play over 100 First XI games for Derbyshire CCC across the various formats (2007-2016) with my highlight being winning the LV= County Championship Division 2 title in 2012 along with scoring a First Class hundred in the same season.

I was extremely active as an ambassador for Derbyshire CCC, promoting the club and the game in the local area through presentations, speeches, media interviews, coaching, and networking with key stakeholders. This helped me to develop unique relationships and a network of diverse contacts that I would eventually “call upon” when my career ended.

My professional cricketing career was tragically cut short through injury in 2016, and after 10 years as a professional cricketer, I re-trained in financial advice and investment management.

After several work experience opportunities at leading financial firms, I was instrumental in establishing Baron & Grant Investment Management Limited (B&G) where I am an Executive Director (SMF3 – Senior Manager Function). I am a qualified Financial Adviser and also sit on the Investment Committee.

B&G is an owner managed, FCA directly authorised discretionary investment management business with retail advice permissions. We are specialists in managing investment trust focused portfolios – a genuinely differentiated approach to the vast majority of investment or wealth managers.

We provide financial planning, advice and discretionary investment management services to individuals, companies, pension schemes, Trusts and Charities. We offer leading expertise and pride ourselves on providing clients with exceptional levels of personal service.

Alongside my professional career, I have also volunteered to sit on a number of General or Executive Committees. These include the Old Reptonian Society, Swarkestone Cricket Club, the Derbyshire County Cricket Leagues, and the Mayor of Derby’s Charity Committee. I am also a Panel Member for the Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC) when requested. The CDC is responsible for all aspects of cricket discipline covered by the England & Wales Cricket Board’s Rules, Regulations and Directives.

I have found these voluntary roles very rewarding, and they have been hugely beneficial to my personal development – particularly in terms of corporate governance experience. I highly recommend exploring similar roles in areas that you are passionate about.

My advice to others wishing to follow in similar footsteps is to be bold (with your goals and ambitions), be brave (with taking risks) and be kind (to everyone!). Working hard is a given, but also “work smart”. Have discipline and consistency in your everyday approach and compound those efforts over time.


OR Enterprise Circle

Kate Nash (née Allan) (G’92)

Kate Nash Literary Agency Ltd

Iwas aware of the business world from an early age. I would go into the office with my Dad who was the marketing director of a supermarket chain, and play space invaders on the only computer while he chatted to his colleagues about whether they could steal a march on their rivals with a ‘1p off butter’ promotion. Meanwhile my mother ran her own business, a children’s publishing company. At the weekends we might go to see the ribbon being cut at a superstore or go to bookshops.

I wanted to go into marketing after University and became a graduate trainee in the UK’s leading shopping survey company and got to work with many famous brands. After a couple of years there I moved into the trade, marketing at a global drinks company Pernod Ricard, then I went back into market research and then into marketing and comms at a top shopping dot com.

I always knew I’d jump away from PAYE at some point. Having entrepreneurs in the family gives you the confidence or perhaps it’s in the genes. In 2006 I thought I’d go for it and I set up a PR and comms agency with an ex-journalist friend. We did quite well until the 2008 downturn and so I took another leap and set up truly on my own: as a literary agent.

Time to mention my love of writing! I’d had several novels published in my 20s and loved the glimpse into the business of books. I did some publicity work with publishers, book awards and festivals. I discovered what literary agents did. Agents had the best job. My own novels were too niche to be bestsellers but was there anything stopping me discovering tomorrow’s bestsellers?

I launched my literary agency in January 2009 and in February found out I was pregnant. I had to rework my original business plan.

I became full time in 2015 when my younger son started pre-school and it wasn’t until 2017 that I was earning a full time living. We now employ six members of staff and have a freelance reader.

The History degree does have its relevance. I’m lucky to count both Sunday Times and USA Today bestselling authors of historical fiction among my author clients.

In 2022 I was nominated for Literary Agent of the Year at the British Book Awards, publishing’s equivalent of the BAFTAs. There’s not too many awards going for agents but in 2018 I collected a Rising Star from The Bookseller and in 2019 Agent of the Year by Romantic Novelists’ Association.

Today’s agents don’t just sell a manuscript to a publisher and then sit back. We are super busy representing our authors’ work around the world and in every format possible, including television and film.

My mother reminds me that she always thought I should go into television and now I’m selling stories to television production companies. I guess I’ve not landed too far away.

The important thing is to do something you can really add your own talents into and you know you can enjoy. It’s too much hard work to build a business otherwise.

Kate Nash is founder and director of Kate Nash Literary Agency Ltd.



On Saturday 11th June the Science Priory became a hub for the 2022 Lower Sixth Careers & HE Convention. Parents, pupils and staff members were joined by a number of inspiring speakers from the Repton community. The Careers Convention is an opportunity to hear from industry professionals, learn more about their pathways after Repton and to understand some of the challenges they have faced, and overcome, during their careers. We are recruiting for industry ambassadors. If you would like to sign up, or find out more, please contact the OR Office.

Industry Embassador Spotlight

Eli Ankutse (L’95) Pelota - Sporting Clothiers

Eli Ankutse left Repton in 2000, fuelled by the desire to combine his two passions, sport, and business. An accountancy degree then might not have been the obvious choice, and despite continuing the course at Leeds University, Eli admits that it wasn’t particularly inspiring. During an interview for a role in investment banking, it became clear that his entrepreneurial spirit would not be easily dampened, and his career path took a dramatic turn.

Fast-forward through some meaty development roles in FMCG, consultancy projects working with luxury brands such as Ferrari, sports brands such as Nike and the

launch of a skincare brand, and Eli and former Repton contemporary-turnedbusiness-partner Chris Beastall (L’95) found themselves at the helm of an opportunity. Pelota was born to fill a gap in the loungewear market, focusing on the gap between sport and formal wear which they are calling “Après Sport”. Initially launching with a carefully curated range of six products, priced from £50, Eli and Chris intend to create collections based on sporting themes. Eli stresses that the quality of the products is non-negotiable, and something that was hugely important when sourcing suppliers of organic cotton, ready to be manufactured into high-end garments in London.

The OR Society recently met with Eli on possibly the worst day for a photo shoot at Repton! Howling wind and relentless rain could not stop the shoot as they set the scene in the Fives courts and in several other locations around the School. “It made complete sense for us to do our first shoot at Repton, it’s where we nurtured our love of sport, it’s part of our brand story.”

Eli has ambitious plans for the brand, along with other passion projects such as his partnership with start-up DOSE, where he is a mentor for professionals managing their personal development and mental fitness.

Find out more -


The Repton Foundation

Sir John Port opened the School’s doors to our community in 1557 to provide local people with a good education irrespective of wealth or status. Our founder’s ethos continues today through The Repton Foundation where generous donations from parents, friends and Old Reptonians provide an equal footing from which to begin a lifechanging education.

Everything we do at Repton – learning to think, to play, to create, to compete, to win, to lose, to appreciate what is around us – is built on the bedrock of a healthy and conscious balance in all things. Whilst we are a school with intellectual ambition, world-leading sports coaches and facilities, where artistic endeavour forms an integral part of everyday life, the emotional and physical wellbeing of our pupils remain our imperative.

The Repton Foundation allows young people, regardless of background, to experience a fully funded education at Repton. There are currently a number of pupils at both the Prep and Senior school who benefit from donations made to The Repton Foundation, allowing them to receive transformational bursaries. These donations are gratefully received and critical to the success of our fundraising strategy.

If you would like to discuss making a donation to our transformational bursary programme, please contact us:


Headmaster’s Update

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

The death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in September prompted an extraordinary wave of emotion and sadness, felt throughout the nation, the Commonwealth and the world, but it also marked a real moment in history. Like so many, the Repton community has its own recollections of her, notably her visit in 1957 to open the newly built 400 Hall - welcomed on that occasion by former Headmaster Geoffrey Fisher, who as Archbishop of Canterbury had married the then Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip and later crowned the young Queen. While current pupils perhaps knew her rather better as ‘the nation’s grandmother’, the atmosphere at our school service of remembrance, held in the Chapel and the Garth, spoke eloquently of our unanimous respect and gratitude for an unparalleled life of service, distinguished by the sense of duty, quiet grace and dignity which was her hallmark for 70 years. In a world beset by conflict, division, and hardship, that notion of selfless service to others remains at the heart of the core values to which we aspire as a community, and it is hard to conceive of a finer role model for our young people.

While world events like this give us pause for sombre reflection, every school year brings fresh energy and renewal – new pupils, new challenges, and new opportunities. It’s one of the privileges of working in education. I am

delighted to report that we opened in September with a full school roll, welcoming a new Head at the Prep, Mrs Vicky Harding, and across both sites, our classrooms, boarding houses, sports pitches and auditoria are buzzing again.

Examination results

After two years of school-assessed grades, 2022 saw a return to a more familiar regime of formal examinations at GCSE and A Level, and the results underlined the determination and resilience which both cohorts had faced all the challenges of the pandemic years. At GCSE 60% of grades were in the 9/8/7 range, while at A Level 77.4% of grades were A*-B. In a year of tighter margins nationally in the race for university places, some 80% of Reptonians secured their first-choice destination and 96% one of their top two. Once again, well over half of the Upper Sixth have moved on to Russell Group universities, with four candidates confirming their places at Oxford and Cambridge, and – part of a growing national trend - a further six chose to study abroad at institutions including Cornell, Harvard, and NYU. Their individual success also confirmed the success with which the School has maintained the strength of its provision throughout all the vicissitudes of recent years. In fact, we emerge from this period with our academic strategies significantly enhanced and EdTech now embedded in our regular classroom delivery, complementing the face-to-face interaction of student and teacher for which there is no replacement.

New cultural heights

We can now say with confidence that the life of the School in all its aspects is not just back but back to its very best. November’s production of ‘Medea’ provided utterly compelling drama: visually stylish, crackling with tension as it built to its horrific climax, and featuring, in a company of rare depth and maturity, a simply towering performance from Ali Harris in the title role. The stunning location of Chatsworth’s Painted Hall provided an inspiring venue for the musicians’ celebration of the life and work of Ralph Vaughan Williams – what a memorable experience for performers and audience alike. Our keyboard provision has been greatly enhanced this year by the purchase of a new Steinway grand - immediately put through its paces by our top pianists in a superb Launch Concert. And, if you are not able to get to Derby Cathedral or St Paul’s to hear the Chapel Choir in the coming weeks, listen out for their forthcoming broadcast on BBC Radio 4.

A golden sporting summer and autumn

The summer saw a rare cricketing achievement as Archie Harrison (L’20), last year’s 1st XI Captain, made his first-class debut for Derbyshire against Worcestershire as an 18-year-old. Repton’s cricketing strength can also be seen in the many pupils – boys and girls – who have been called up to represent their counties at U16 and U18 levels. As with our football programme, the (Continued on page 50)


girls’ game is rapidly developing, mirroring the national picture, and our U15s ended their season in September as runners-up in the School Sport Magazine National T20 final. Still only two years old, Repton Swimming Club is now very firmly established and attracting ambitious athletes who want to combine an academic programme with the chance of international success, and our swimmers returned from both summer and winter championships with a clutch of medals, including multiple golds. The footballers made the most of the Michaelmas Term. The boys’ 1st XI is advancing strongly in both the Hudl League and ESFA and ISFA competitions, and there has been plenty of individual success

for both our boys and girls with selections for ISFA teams, national squads and professional clubs.

Needless to say, the hockey players are not to be outdone! Following a spectacular summer tour of Chile and Argentina, both the boys’ and the girls’ 1st XIs have maintained 100% records this season. Repton teams are progressing strongly at all age group in the National Competitions, the senior girls now boasting an unbroken run of 69 victories going back to 2015. We remain extremely proud of the number of pupils – more than any other schoolwho have received international call-ups, representing England, Wales, USA and Germany and from U16 up to U21.

The renaissance of Fives continues. In a first for Repton, the School entered the all-female Richard Black Cup and a team comprising pupils, ORs and staff played in the Graham Turnbull Trophy competition at Eton. Making the most of our magnificently refurbished facilities, we now look forward to hosting the Varsity Match in March, with ORs representing both Oxford and Cambridge.

We were delighted too to be recognised in the Tatler Schools Guide and The Week’s ‘Best of the Best’ Schools Guide, where we received the ‘Great for Sport’ accolade. Pleasingly, the latter not only recognised our success in nurturing top talent but also in promoting of a whole-school culture of healthy activity, mental well-being, and the power of teamwork. But perhaps best of all was the award for ‘Happiest Boarding School’ from Muddy Stilettos: one can’t ask for much more than that!

Inspiring ORs

Following on from the Rio and Tokyo Olympics, the summer’s Commonwealth Games provided another opportunity to fly the Repton flag in women’s hockey. Suitably enough, Leah Wilkinson (A’03), already the most-capped Welsh athlete ever, notched up her 200th appearance in a group match against an England side that featured Shona McCallin (A’08), Flora Peel (F’13) and Lily Walker (F’18), with the England trio going on to take gold in the final. The extraordinary sporting legacy of ORs, both recent and not-so-recent, has been fittingly commemorated in the renaming of the Sports Centre’s Hospitality Suite as the Twigg McCallin Room, in recognition of Georgie and Shona’s gold medals at the Rio Olympics, while the conference facility will be known as the Fry Abrahams Room, celebrating well over a century of OR sporting excellence: a very proud legacy.

In tennis, the OR team retained the D’Abernon Cup at Wimbledon – a remarkable fifth triumph in six years, while 2022 was an outstanding year for the OR footballers, who not only won the Arthur Dunn Cup for the first time in 31 years but did it with the highest-ever winning score – 7-1 against Old Etonians. OR sport is evidently in very rude health! This year’s OR Day in early September was attended by almost 100 and a busy afternoon of football, hockey and squash was rounded off with an excellent BBQ at The Boot – a new format which proved very successful.

It is always a great pleasure to welcome you to OR events, at Repton or elsewhere – whether you come to play sport, share


news or swap reminiscences, or simply enjoy yourselves, as at the OR Summer Ball at The Hurlingham Club. We are especially grateful for your generous support of our careers programme, which opens up new horizons for our current pupils: most recently, Radha Kaushal-Bolland (G’11) shared her experiences both as a finalist on MasterChef and setting up her own business, The Spicy Flexitarian - an evening of insight, inspiration and mouth-watering ideas.

Our ambition for the future Successes like this reflect the significant progress we have been able to make over the last three years, when, despite all the external challenges, we have seen pupil numbers rise, our family of schools expand both within the UK and internationally, and the completion of the through-school project. This enables us to plan for the future with real ambition and confidence and I am very excited to share the news that

the Governing Body has approved our plans for future development across both Repton and Repton Prep. At the senior school the plans include the creation of two 3G football pitches (removing the need for the winter timetable), the renovation of Art, Textiles and DT departments, a Business Centre focused on promoting entrepreneurialism and innovation, and a new Grubber and café which will see the historic area inside the Arch restored as the School’s ‘centre of gravity’ and its magnificent buildings providing inspirational spaces for collaborative work, socialising and relaxation. Our programme of house refurbishment will continue, but, in time, the creation of an eleventh boarding house will provide decanting facilities, allowing us to undertake more substantial improvements – not just modernising the house but also effecting a radical shift to energy efficiency, environmental probity and wellbeingwithout compromising the School’s normal functioning. At the same time we must and

will maintain our commitment to recruiting and retaining staff of the highest quality, in the sure knowledge that it is people that ignite curiosity, nurture growth and make the real difference in a Repton education.

We cherish our heritage with gratitude, respect and affection in equal measure, but we honour this best by looking forward with real ambition and energy, and, while we cannot be complacent in these times of significant economic and geopolitical challenge, nonetheless I believe we are as strongly placed as at any time in our history to make the very best of the opportunities that exist. As ORs your presence in our past, present and future is of inestimable value, and I very much look forward to sharing the next chapter of Repton’s exciting story with you.

With my very best wishes,


Welcome to the OR Society 2022 Leavers Celebrating success at Speech Day

We were delighted to welcome pupils, parents, guardians, staff, and friends of Repton to our annual Speech Day celebration.

It was a fantastic day celebrating the outstanding achievements of our pupils, as well as providing a memorable final day at Repton for our (Upper Sixth Form) Leavers. Many thanks must go to the Director of the V&A and Guest of Honour, Dr Tristram Hunt. Addressing the audience he spoke about how we, as a society, should champion the arts and liberal teaching, embracing creativity, individuality, and the beauty in the world. Thank you for your insightful words and for inspiring our future generations.

Celebrations continued well into the evening with the Leavers Ball, held on the Paddock. We wish you the very best of luck in this next chapter and look forward to welcoming you back to Repton soon.


Repton Life

Presentation of The Alastair Gordon Fielding Cup

In the Cricket Pavilion during the luncheon interval on Speech Day, Saturday 2nd July 2022, the Alastair Gordon Fielding Cup was presented by Clare Gordon to the 1st XI’s best fielder of the 2022 season. The Cup was presented to the School by his fellow teammates of 1971 in memory of Alastair, who sadly died of pancreatic cancer in 2017.

Alastair Michael Gordon, affectionately known as Al, was a farmer of good Kentish stock. He, like his father and grandfather before him, was educated at Repton and entered the same house, The Hall, his grandfather Philip Leslie in 1909, his father Alexander Nigel in 1944 and Al in 1967.

Al, or AMG to his Kentish friends, played 1st XI cricket in 1970 and 1971 and was a leg-spin bowler and ‘agricultural’ tailend batsman. However, he will most be remembered for his marvellous cover-point fielding. As the report in the Michaelmas 1971 Reptonian of a match against a Dutch Youth Selection XI, remarked: ‘two of the batsmen had the audacity, poor fools, to hit the ball to Alastair Gordon and call for a run, failing to heed an earlier warning when he had hit the stumps from square on with the batsman just in his crease.’

“You took on his arm at your peril”

John Crane, the President, spoke first at the presentation about Alastair’s fielding prowess and then reported that the fielding award was

being endorsed by Paul Sheahan, a brilliant Australian cover fielder of the late 1960s/early 1970s.Paul Sheahan and John Inverarity, both Schoolmasters in later years, had visited Repton in 1972 and had dinner with former master i/c of cricket and Housemaster of Brook House, Scottie Cheshire. [Derbyshire were playing the Australian touring team at Chesterfield and both players had wished to visit Repton]

John and James Ross (whom he had met at the Arch) took the players around the School and after their tour signed John’s “Blue Book” as they had no other paper with them. Cameron Wake, the new master in charge of cricket, spoke next and welcomed Alastair’s family to Repton and then talked about, without naming the recipient, the reasoning for the player’s selection for the prize.

Tom Gordon, the eldest of the three Gordon children, wearing one of his father’s many OR ties, talked about his father’s love of cricket. He mentioned that Alastair was a leg-spin bowler but then quoted the 1972 Wisden Public Schools’ report in which it said:

‘Repton had good claims to be regarded as the strongest [1971] side in the Midlands. Like two or three other successful teams they suffered their only defeat at the hands of M.C.C.. They prospered on the strength of their batting, headed by the aggression of J.R.H. Whittington [the originator of the idea for the Cup], and pace bowling. That they left

half their matches drawn was probably due to the lack of a class spinner.’ He then mentioned that it was probably a good thing that the Cup to be presented in Alastair’s name was a “Fielding Cup” rather than a “Leg Spin Cup”!

Clare Gordon presented the Cup to M. Yousaf Bin Naeem for his outstanding fielding in 2022 and the worthy first winner of the Alastair Gordon Fielding Cup. Many congratulations to him.

After the presentation James Ross gave the Gordon family a guided tour of The Hall (now School House) where Alastair, his father, grandfather and great-uncle boarded. They also visited the Old Priory, CB Fry’s grave, and The Garth where the Gordon children found mention of their great great-uncle Alexander Maurice Gordon on the Remembrance memorial board. He was killed in action at Bellewaarde Farm, Ypres on the 20th January 1916 at the tender age of 21.

Many thanks to Cameron Wake for his organisation of the day, to Headmaster, Mark Semmence, and the School for their generosity in treating the Gordon family and the 1971 Holland tourists – it was a truly memorable occasion for all concerned.

Peter Bradburn (P’67)

Former Staff – 1977 to 2014


The Wisden Club Cricket Hall of Fame

Scott Oliver profiles a Staffordshire strokemaker who took down the Aussies.

The following article of Peter Gill (H’61) featured in the March 2022 edition of Wisden Cricket Monthly, Issue 53. ©

Most young English cricketers grow up dreaming of a match-winning performance against Australia yet very few achieve it, even among full-time pros. In 1977, Peter Gill, Staffordshire’s 29-yearold opener, caressed 92 as the Minor Counties XI took advantage of a sporting declaration to beat the Australian tourists in Sunderland: Doug Walters, David Hookes, Kerry O’Keefe, Len Pascoe, et al. He had also made 39 in the first innings, earning him £100 as Player of the Match, a quick radio interview and a champagne celebration. “There were 40 or so still to get when I got out,” he says, “having a slog at one from Gary Cosier. It was the innings of my life.”

It was a golden summer for Gill, whose 710 runs were the most in the Minor Counties Championship. He also captained his club, Longton, to the North Sta & South Cheshire League (NSSCL) title, scoring 711 runs at over 50 to top the league averages. There was a handy 41 for the Minor Counties XI against Essex in the B&H Cup, too, that tough earlyseason gig for undercooked club players, “particularly against Peter Lever on a flyer at Old Trafford!”

Astonishingly, Gill debuted for Staffordshire before he had even played for Longton firsts. It was 1966, he had just finished his A-levels at Repton – where he won the first of three

*Cricketer Cups the following summer, beating PBH May’s Charterhouse in the semis and ER Dexter’s Radley in the final – and he was drafted in to play against Lancashire second XI at the behest of Staffs skipper and former England batter Jack Ikin. “I then made my first-team debut for Longton on the Saturday,” he adds. The club won the title that year, landing five in his first seven seasons.

Gill slowly learnt his trade during those early NSSCL years, facing the likes of Garry Sobers and Sonny Ramadhin, making steady if unspectacular contributions. However, in his pomp, from ’74 to ’83 –five years at Longton and four at Stone, split by a season in the North Staffs and District League as pro for Kidsgrove – he amassed 6,137 NSSCL runs at 47.57, twice finishing top of the averages, three times coming second, and notching a century in each campaign.

He averaged 60.86 in his final year at Longton, the second highest ever in the league. He then topped the NSDCL averages and run charts for Kidsgrove (942 at 52.6). And he averaged 57.39 in his debut season at Stone, when his 1,038 runs made him the first player in NSSCL history to break the four-figure mark. The following year, he scored 116 in the inaugural Stffs Cup final as Stone beat West Bromwich Dartmouth. It was the purplest of patches.

That breakout 1974 season saw Gill make 52 on List-A debut against Glamorgan at Longton, which helped get him on the radar for the Minor Counties XI, for whom he debuted in the 1976 B&H Cup. In 1978, a year after downing the Aussies, Gill made 49 as the Kiwis were beaten in Torquay.

Back with Stffordshire, Gill would rack up 141 MCCA Championship appearances, scoring 6,814 runs and skippering the team from 1982 to ’84. In his first game as cial captain, against Shropshire at Shrewsbury, he suffered a horrific injury that would blight the rest of his career, his head colliding with a colleague’s shoulder as he attempted to take a steepling catch. “I had a depressed fracture of the cheekbone and a shattered orbital floor. I had to have emergency surgery to save my eye, and still have a plastic plate in there. I was lucky we weren’t playing out in the sticks. I was never the same player after that.”

Gill played his final Staffordshire game in 1985, signing off for Stone three years later, aged just 40. In 2015, he was coaxed from the golf course to become president of the county he had served with such distinction as an elegant and highly productive run-maker.

* Editorial note: there were two Cricketer Cup wins, not three.


From the Archives

The Fine Art of Graffiti

Ihave cause to remember the Reverend Gerald Ormsby Vandeleur (H’1853) on an almost daily basis, even though he died over 120 years ago. His name is carved into the wooden door of the Library, just one of hundreds of names that boys artfully rendered onto the fabric of the School with their penknives and braddles in the nineteenth century.

One of my ongoing research projects is to record these names, and, where possible tie them to entries in the School Register. The Causey is covered in names, some up to six inches high, and must have taken many hours to complete. One wonders what the penalty was for such audacious vandalism – boldly signing a name in a school that numbered only 50 pupils was either an act of foolhardy bravado or an activity that was taken lightly by the masters. Whatever the case, and without wishing to encourage any modern addenda, I am very glad that they did. They are, in many cases, the only records that we have of these very old Reptonians, and

it is hard not to look at their skilful efforts and wonder what they did next.

Richard Formby (H’1841), whose lettering is so large that it surely belongs on a billboard, became a lawyer and a Justice of the PeaceAlfred Simpson (H’1855) who carved nearby, practised as a solicitor. John Pedder (H’1844) joined the Royal Lancashire Militia at the start of the Crimean War, but on the ancient walls of the Old Priory most of his principal carving companions took to holy rather than military orders once they’d left Repton; at least a dozen future vicars left their mark on the Causey walls.

Most its graffiti was carved when the School was at a particularly low ebb – there is very little once Dr Pears takes charge in 1854. Before the Chapel opened in 1859, Repton boys would worship next door in the Parish Church. Iuse the word ‘worship’ loosely, as there are several accounts of them firing off catapults at the ears and noses of any monument within range, and those who have seen the effigy of the recumbent knight at the

entrance to the crypt can readily attest to their accuracy. Every remaining inch of the poor alabaster knight was used for graffiti, and although not all of it was left by Reptonians, some of the most prominent were. Robert Falcon (H’1843) was a serial offender – he carved his name on the knight’s chest and in several other places around the School. Unsurprisingly, he became a vicar.

Because some of our earliest headmasters didn’t keep registers, the names of hundreds of Repton pupils are lost to us. ‘Henry Sykes 1644’ is scored onto the oak panels behind the Headmaster’s chair in the Library, and ‘H Peacock 1791’ appears on one of its shelves, but, as yet, we know next to nothing about them. Part of the joy of this project is in trying to fill in the blanks, and over the coming months if I am seen to staring at walls or tracing letters with my finger, please be assured that I haven’t entirely lost the plot.


The Peter Bold English Prize by Paul Stevens, Repton Archivist

Peter Bold was a Repton pupil from 1667 to 1670 and he later became the Secretary of the Earl of Huntingdon, the Earl having been his patron while he was at School. Peter is, by far, the oldest Reptonian of whose life at the School we have significant details. His letters give us what is in all probability a unique account of the syllabus studied at a School like Repton in the seventeenth century.

Peter was first introduced into the Huntingdon household as a playmate to the very small child who had become the Earl at the age of five. This was the start of a long association between the two, with the young Earl soon paying for Peter’s education at Repton. Parents of today may note with some interest that in 1667 his ‘lodgings and diet’ at School were £12 per annum. However, then as now, there a few additional expenses along the way

Besides he must bring with him both his bed and furniture, his linens and woollens and six shillings as his entrance towards his firing (his heat.)

From Repton Peter wrote regularly to the Earl, usually requesting an inordinately large number of books to be bought for his education. At this stage the School was ten years away from having its first Library in the Garth Room and boys were expected to purchase all of the volumes that were necessary for their studies. These were still relatively expensive, but young Master Bold lived up to his name in tenaciously soliciting as many as possible from his wealthy patron. In total over the next two years he requests twenty-four books from the Earl, a tremendous number of books at that time for a Schoolboy to be wanting, or using, or asking for. Often one suspects that he is name-dropping authors in a grandly ostentatious manner in order to impress upon his patron that he has a voracious appetite for learning.

Upon Tuesday I received your lordship’s letter at Repton having been since that day a week there. My master not only doth teach us in the School but at noon and night both

to construe Latin authors and cosmography. He hath placed me in the second form and put me into Greek, but I want several books: that is Perens, Justin, Lucius Florus, Epitome of the Roman Lives, Erasmus’ Adages, Tulley’s Orations, Sallust and Aesops Fables, Greek and Latin, which I desire your honour to help me to.

From this reading list we could infer that the School was solidly classical in its outlook. However, in his many letters Peter defends the School against criticism made of its curriculum and teaching methods which were considered to be too modern in comparison to other Schools. In a very spirited missive Peter contrasts for the Earl the methods and success of the former headmaster of Repton, Mr Ullock, with his successor Mr Sedgewick.

But I assure your lordship there is as great cause for its increase as can be, for since it was a School for what I can hear it was never better taught by the master, nor followed. For whereas formerly every form was heard once a day, or rarely twice, they’re duly taught now four times, and longer lessons by far; and I’m sure the boys who were under Mr. Ullock do say they have learnt more under Mr. Sedgwick this one year than they could have done under their former master in three. And for exercises, the head form makes a theme and eight or nine pair of verses a week; and the form I am in does the same for the theme but eight of the verses; and the two under-forms make Latin every night. Therefore I beseech your lordship judge what cause any person has either to despise or to raise slanders of our School which now have grown so common here in Derbyshire that I believe they have by this reached your Honour’s ears. My Lord, I beg your honour’s pardon for troubling your honour with this long ribble-rabble, but it is partly out of my great zeal to vindicate my master, to whom I am particularly obliged, from those strange reports that are spread abroad concerning this School and partly to give your honour an account of my time since I came to Repton which, my lord, I’ve endeavoured to employ so as not to throw away your

great pains and cost, no more but only to redouble my thanks for that most excellent book of King James’ and for Sliden which when I have once more read I intend, God willing, to return.

Peter’s education at Repton ends rather abruptly in 1669, and when his father writes to thank the Earl for all his help, there is an inference that Peter has overstepped the mark in some way. There is a possibility that in a period when Repton was coming under close and hostile scrutiny he thought his son had been too undiplomatic in his defence of Sedgewick to the Earl, who as well as being his patron was a governor of the School. Whatever the reason for the departure of Peter Bold, his father gave the Earl of Huntingdon high praise at the end of the letter:

For you received him a little child, but return him a lusty man, not only improved in strength and stature but well polished and refined with knowledge both in books, manners and men.

After Repton, Peter Bold went to St. John’s College in Cambridge in 1670. He was made Deacon at Ely, and was ordained in Westminster by Bishop Thomas Spratt. He became a curate at Uppingdon and preached daily in the large hospital for the poor in nearby Stamford. In his latter years he became rector of Burton Petwardine and remained there for the rest of his life.

The Peter Bold English prize was founded in the 1980s by the author Lucyle Hook. Miss Hook, a professor at Columbia University, came to Repton in 1977 to deliver a series of lectures on her research into Peter Bold. She died in December 2003, aged 102. The prize should serve not only to commemorate Peter Bold and his love of books and letters, but also the Earl of Huntingdon who established the first Library in Repton School, and not least Miss Hook herself whose tireless enthusiasm for research has greatly illuminated our understanding of the School’s history.


School News & Highlights

Vinehall joins the Repton family of Schools

We are delighted to announce that Vinehall prep School in East Sussex will join the Repton Family of Schools from 17th May 2022.

Repton already has two prep Schools within the UK and seven Schools internationally, with a further three due to open in the next few years.

The newly appointed Vinehall Chair of Governors and Managing Director of the Repton Family of Schools, Daniel Lewis, says of the partnership: “We recognise that there is a shared educational and pastoral

ethos focusing on the development of each child’s talents in order to better serve the community. This exciting collaboration will help Vinehall and Repton pre-empt the demands of a rapidly changing independent Schools’ sector and defend against the uncertainty of political and economic factors outside of our control.”

Vinehall will continue to be an outstanding day and boarding co-educational prep School in East Sussex, and will continue to provide the exemplary educational vision and pastoral care for which the School has a strong reputation.

Headmaster of Repton School, Mark Semmence, comments: “Above all, offering outstanding educational opportunities to children remains our core purpose. Vinehall is joining a family that highly values each individual, nurturing talent to develop happy, resilient, selfmotivated and confident young people. Geography plays no part in this partnership: like-mindedness does.”


Repton’s STEM programme wins national award!

Repton’s STEM programme has been singled out as the leader in its field having been awarded the Education Business STEM Award 2022.

Every School in the UK is eligible to apply for the award, but with a focus on handson learning and real-world applications that enable Reptonians to solve material problems facing our generation, STEM at Repton was considered award worthy.

Repton’s Head of Science, Dr Stuart Ingleston-Orme has been instrumental in collaborating closely with colleagues to craft Repton’s world-class STEM programme. He said: “We know there is great demand in the workplace for people who have skills associated with science, technology, engineering and mathematics, even in jobs that aren’t traditionally associated with STEM. Here at Repton these subjects are accessible to every pupil; our full-boarding culture means that departments are open all day, every day to any pupil who wants to use the facilities. We are enormously proud to have been singled out for this award, which pays testament to the high value we place on preparing pupils for life beyond School.”

Repton’s university-standard Science Priory, complete with its own observatory, sits at the heart of the School’s campus, flanked by the mathematics block, DT labs and Sports Centre meaning STEM permeates every aspect of learning.

Headmaster Mark Semmence commented: “Repton’s comprehensive STEM enrichment programme runs from Prep to Upper Sixth. We know that even pupils who choose not to pursue STEM subjects for A Level need to have a firm grounding in STEM principles to be well prepared for the workplace, so I am enormously grateful to our passionate teachers who continually develop engaging ways of ensuring our curriculum extends beyond what is required to pass an exam.”

Science days for primary-aged pupils at the senior School include practical lab lessons and visits to the observatory. Year 8 participate in the CREST awards, a scheme to inspire young people to think like scientists and engineers. Both Repton campuses run plentiful clubs and societies and regular talks and workshops with speakers such as Professor Robert Winston are well attended. The Engineering

Society recentlydesigned and built a functioning hovercraft whilst MedSoc participated in a fracture workshop with a leading orthopaedic surgeon. Prep pupils engage in GreenPower F24 - designing and engineering their own electric cars and racing them at Goodwood and Aintree. F24+ at GCSE level will introduce electronics and gearing.

Pupils benefit from a flexible and creative approach to learning. For example, Repton’s Maths Orbital programme sees top-set mathematicians practice beyond the scope of the curriculum to develop a deeper understanding of real-world mathematical problems. Pupils are awarded points for academic rigor but importantly for mentoring other pupils and community-based initiatives such as hosting booster sessions for younger pupils.

Repton’s STEM team regularly host partner state Schools from the village and across Derbyshire. Our annual cultural exchange with Toyota Nishi High School Japan promotes scientific collaboration and we work with Repton pupils in the UAE, China, Malaysia and Cairo on exciting international projects. STEM at Repton promotes limitless possibilities.


The Repton Family of Schools (Formally Repton International)

Our international family continues to grow, and now comprises seven Schools – four in the UAE, one in China, one in Malaysia and, since September 2021, one in Egypt. The original purpose in establishing these Schools was to provide income to fund bursaries for pupils less able to afford a Repton education, as well as to help fund development projects here at the UK School. Since opening its first School in Dubai in 2007, Repton International (now RFS) has contributed over £6 million to the School and this figure grows with each passing year.

Not only do the international Schools provide much-needed income but they also offer a wealth of opportunities for collaboration and cultural exchange, raising our pupils’ horizons and also providing opportunities for our staff to share ideas and good practice.

Our latest additions

Repton Cairo opened in September 2021 with 87 pupils (set to start the coming School year with over 160 at the time of writing), ranging from Nursery to Year 6. The School boasts excellent facilities and is situated in the prestigious ‘Mivida’ development, in New Cairo. Repton Cairo is a wonderfully warm and welcoming School community with a great sense of energy and a real appreciation for the joy of learning. Reptonians there can choose from a wide variety of high quality co-curricular activities and STEM (or STREAM as they prefer to call it) sits at the heart of the curriculum there, with ‘maker spaces’ and fantastic resources for robotics and programming.

From September 2022, the Year 6 pupils will move up into Year 7, their first year of Secondary School as the School works towards becoming a ‘through-School’ over the next seven years. In due course, Repton Cairo will be joined by a sister School in Cairo, on the western side of the city.

As part of a strategy to broaden our reach here in the UK, another Prep Schools has recently joined the Repton family: Vinehall School in East Sussex. Vinehall is a coeducational Day and Boarding School and sits on a beautiful 20-acre site near Robertsbridge. The School has excellent facilities and a wonderfully welcoming, ‘family feel’. We are delighted to be working with Vinehall and will update you on developments.


Over the past year a number of projects have been initiated to bring Repton and its international family closer together. Now that travel restrictions have eased, I’ve had the pleasureof visiting all our UAE Schools and have also spent time at the Cairo School and at Repton Malaysia. Mark Semmence also visited Repton Cairo this year, to take part in its opening event.

Pupils at all our Schools participated in the inaugural Repton International Debating Festival, debating ‘live’ across three time zones via Microsoft Teams and learning all about the British Parliamentary style of debates. Pupils from our UAE Schools also contributed to the Repton Historian this year,

bringing their perspectives to bear on topical issues such as the end of the US occupation of Afghanistan, and a project to pair able pupils from our School in China with some of our Scholars at the UK School has also begun. We hope to bring you more updates on collaborations with our international Schools as they emerge, and in the meantime look out for news regarding the reinstitution of an international exchange . . !

This year also marked the fifteenth anniversary of the founding of Repton Dubai. Repton (UK) sent a number of artefacts and documents from our archives, charting the history of the School, to be displayed as part of Repton Dubai’s ‘Repton Heritage’ exhibition.

Finally, Repton hosted an event for Repton Dubai alumni at the Hurlingham Club in June 2022, to give those former pupils from the Dubai School a chance to catch up and connect, and to forge stronger links with the UK School.

Next steps

As the world continues to open up, we look forward to more opportunities for connection, collaboration and exchange. We continue to seek projects for the establishment of Repton Schools both abroad and closer to home, and in the meantime hope to bring you more news of our Qatar and Bulgaria projects as they start to take shape.


Repton hailed as the UK’s ‘Happiest Boarding School’

Repton has been crowned the UK’s Happiest Boarding School in the 2022 Muddy Stilettos Best Schools Awards.

Muddy Stilettos’ Schools Guide is a unique, independent, honest online resource for parents seeking insight into the UK’s competitive independent school sector. The site’s founder, Hero Brown, visited Repton in February 2022 saying “I really enjoyed looking around Repton and feeling the passion and care. Everyone is lovely.” The site’s review describes Repton as: ‘One of the UK’s oldest schools, Repton in Derbyshire holds a deserved reputation for sporting brilliance, mind-boggling facilities –and a refreshing lack of pretension.’

Repton’s nomination included quotes from current and past pupils, including full boarder Hattie, who said: “I think my favourite part (of a Repton education) is the sense of community we have, as a school, but also as a house. My house has become my second home and being a border has enabled me to make strong friendships that I know will last way beyond my Repton career.”

Headmaster, Mark Semmence, commented: “Winning awards validates of all the work our

dedicated staff put into to bringing our pupils a world-class education. However, this award feels particularly special as any educator’s over-arching aim should be to ensure that pupils are happy. We know that young people who are happy perform better and those who perform better are happy. This is borne out in our exam results as well as by our pupils’ performance on the sports pitches, in the theatre, the music school and in Repton’s superb House spirit. By interweaving traditional care with scientific data driven tracking we have developed highly tuned pastoral care provision that works for every child.”

Muddy Stilettos’ founder, Hero Brown, commented: “With over 400 schools entering the first year of the Awards the standard has been incredibly high. After three rounds of painstaking judging, Repton was unanimously chosen as the winner of the Happiest Boarding School award, an accolade that’s richly deserved for this excellent school.”

Repton’s House system provides a strong sense of belonging. Housemasters and Housemistresses, Tutors, Matrons and their friends and peers provide a nurturing and

familiar base, giving Reptonians the confidence to try new endeavours, succeed academically and make the most of every opportunity provided by a Repton education. A rich extra-curricular programme that includes day pupils as well as boarders ensures that weekends are busy and inspiring times. Seventy per cent of Reptonians board, but every pupil belongs to an integrated House meaning that all pupils feel the benefit of the School’s strong community.

The judging panel, Chaired by Muddy Stilettos founder, Hero Brown, rank amongst the most highly-respected senior educators in the UK and included: Patrick Derham OBE, former Headmaster of Westminster School, Professor Dr Ger Graus, the Global Director of Education Kidzania, Emma Goldsmith, Head of Dragon School in Oxford and Tove Okunniwa MBE, former CEO of London Sport.

Repton also received a Highly Commended Award for the Most Inventive Sports Programme. In 2021 Repton was awarded the Education Business Award for Remote Learning, alongside being shortlisted for two Times Education Supplement Awards.


Caroline England (A’79)

CWA Dagger shortlisted Caroline England (A’79) is known as the ‘Duchess of dark domestic noir’.

Caroline also pens gothic-tinged psychological thrillers as CE Rose.

Both CE and Caroline write multi-layered, dark and edgy ‘domestic suspense’ stories that delve into complicated relationships, secrets and the moral grey area.

Drawing on her days as a divorce and professional indemnity lawyer, she loves to create ordinary, relatable characters who get caught up in extraordinary situations, pressures, dilemmas or crime. She admits to a slight obsession with the human psyche, what goes on behind closed doors and beneath people’s façades. She also enjoys performing a literary sleight of hand in her novels and hopefully surprising her readers!

To the unsuspecting eye Dee Stephens has a perfect life as the vicar’s wife: a devoted marriage to her charismatic husband Reverend Vincent, an adoring congregation and a beautiful daughter.

But beneath the surface, Dee is suffocating. Vincent is in control, and he knows her every sin. Desperate, Dee escapes into a heady affair with Cal, an old schoolmate.

But is Cal the saviour she thinks he is? What dark secrets does he harbour? And to what lengths will Vincent go to when he uncovers the truth?

Darkness lies at the heart of this family…

‘Layers of secrets are gradually peeled back in this brilliantly absorbing tale.’ Marion Todd, author of Old Bones Lie

In 1959 Milly starts her new life as a housemaid at Rutherford House, working for the aristocratic Rutherford-Percy clan. Entranced by her new mistress, Vivienne, she becomes deeply embroiled in the household and the keeper of dark secrets the family conceals beneath the mansion’s grand exterior.

In the present day Christie is working as a psychiatric nurse when she meets troubled patient Lillian Percy, Vivienne’s granddaughter and heiress to Rutherford House. They soon bond over the loss of their mothers – Lillian’s died when she was a child; Christie’s mysteriously disappeared over twenty years ago – and Christie finds herself increasingly fascinated by Lillian’s family and their imposing ancestral home.

As Christie learns more about the Rutherford-Percys, she finds a shocking clue that could help her uncover what happened to her own mother. Desperate for answers, Christie puts her job, her family and even her very life on the line. But how much of the truth does she really want to know?

Idiots Inc. by Guy “Mex” Jones (L’78)

Guy Jones (L’78) passed away in June 2019. In his later years, and with his insight and his love of words, he turned to writing poetry in his own gifted idiosyncratic style. He often wrote under the pseudonym of “Mex”. Idiots Inc, written 15th May 2017, is profoundly relevant as to how he saw and perceived the troubles besetting the world.

Erratum – the Editors apologise for the typing error of the first word on line 11 of Idiots inc. in The Arch –Winter 2021. The first word should have read ‘Greed’ and not ‘Green’.

Matter we are, but matter we don’t Specs of intrusion, we will, but we won’t. The infinite of nature’s relentless path So be it, we will incur her wrath.

Needless aggrandizement for nought but self

We delude our tiny insignificant selves.

What betters the company of a friend?

Exactly, nothing, it’s the reason to the end.

So why do we enemies our neighbors

Seek to kill rather than nurture friends?

Greed and religion all succumb to power

Money is not the root, the love of power

And its mind-altering delusion of life

That is the evil which causes our strife.

Seeking control is the unnatural natural Which untempered will see us revert to natural.

Power begets ownership and greed

The sin of the world is wanting without need.

Our tenure small and full of bold

We give little but take the world.

About time our higher being came down Took us to task and made us the clown.

Our bravado is hollow and devoid of meaning

We should get on with living, not killing.

Raw and heartfelt we strive for the moment

Ultimate heartbreak is surely the prominent.

Planet decay our lasting memory

Oh I hope we die in dismay.

As river leads to ocean, so raindrop leads to heart

Flora or fauna from start to finish is just same art.

From earth to dust, birth to death, ever revolving.

We traverse the planet neither giving nor making.

The night is mine, please keep your days

The peace of solitude, without the maze

Of beings and being within the haze

I wish no harm to any, but always



Elliot (S’04) and Harriet Cornish-Sheasby (M’06) are delighted to announce the arrival of Ralph Wilfred Cornish-Sheasby on 6th September 2021.

Tom Poynton (S’06) and Gemma Brotherton welcomed Lily Mae Poynton on 12th October 2022.


Yu-hsin Liao’s (S’00) proposal to his fiancée Alicia Chou was made on the portico steps overseeing the Foremarke lake on 27th Aug 2021. The idea was suggested by Yu-hsin’s classmate, George Dunnicliff (S’00), when he revisited the UK for another ORs wedding.

Joshua Benn (S’06) and Eloise Howells celebrated their engagement. The marriage will take place in December 2023.

Danielle Croson (G’07) and George Stewart were engaged on 10th August at their home in Lincolnshire. The marriage will take place in April 2023.



Georgie Twigg MBE (F’02) to Iain Lewers on 16th September 2021 at Doddington Hall. ORs in attendance: Fliss Brown (F’03), Susie Catlin (née Gilbert) (F’02), Nicky Dawson (F’06), Alice Haxby (M’06), Beattie Kirchner (F’03), Annie Rattigan (née Collett) (F’06), Charlie Twigg (L’05) Nick Worral (H’93) to Cally Revell on 24th September 2021 at The Abbeywood Estate in Delamere, Cheshire. Ben Parker (H’93) was the Best Man.

Alex Evans (N’04) was married to Katie Moore in Repton at the Chapel on 7th May 2022. The reception followed at Calke Abbey, Derbyshire. ORs in attendance from left to right:Tiffany Bowers (M’04), Ashlie Samra (née Caddick) (G’05), Fran Thacker (F’04), Nicky Samra (N’02), Abigail Halidu (A’07), Chris Paget (P’01), Abi Rodwell (F’04), Harriet Fell (F’01), Callum McIntosh (P’06), Sarah Rodwell (née Huish) (A’04), James Kilby (N’04), Richard Lawrence (P’04), Joe Fell (O’03), Samantha Evans (F’08), Luke Lacey (C’07), Mike Watson (P’03), Jack Williams (S’04), Jack Golding (P’04), Alex Paget (P’07), Francesca Burley (née Evans) (F’04), Joshua Golding (P’06), Joshua Webster (N’04), James Leavesley (N’04), Alex Haynes (P’04), John Golding, Ben Samra (N’03), James Bishton (L’02), David Scarrett (P’04).

Andrew Freelander (S’06) to Erin Banks-Kelly on 16th April 2022 in the Repton School Chapel with the reception in Pears School.

Francesca Beharrell (A’09) to Thomas Bacon (N’08) on July 15th at St Mary’s Church, Colton with the reception at Colton Hall Farm.

ORs in attendance, from left to right:

Front Row: Hannah Robertson (A’12), Hannah Ewins (G’10), Abi Reading (A’12), Jessica Hobday (G’08), Georgia Gillbanks (M’09), Thomas Bacon (N’08), Francesca Bacon (A’09), Molly Beharrell (A’11), Georgie Whitehouse (M’09), Laura Bacon (A’12)

Middle Row: Sam Benson (P’12), Harry Garland (L’08), Mark Pearse (O’04), Harry Busby (S’08), Milly McDougal (M’10), Ella Nicholson (A’12), Jessica Variava (M’09), Ellie Brown (F’08), Hollie Dawson (F’11), Jessia Birch (A’13), Kitty Froggatt (A’14), Ellie Proudlove (A’11)

Back Row: Oli Ludlow (O’05), Matthew Proudlove (N’12), Eliza Benson (A’14), Maud Davies (A’12), Harry Benson (P’10), Harry Taroni (O’08), William Fox-Davies (S’09), Katie Hopkisson (A’11), Max Summerton (S’10)

ORs in attendance: Daisy Heath-Abbott (G‘06), Harriet Cornish-Sheasby (M‘06), Elliot Cornish-Sheasby (S‘04), Oliver Townley (S‘04), James Sisson (S‘04), Anna Borup (G ‘04), Fran Thacker (F‘04), Grace Cohen (A‘04), Richard Doxey (P‘05) and Stephen Cornish (N‘08).

Aaron Burgess-Smith (C ‘04) to Phoebe Heath-Abbott (M‘06) on their marriage on 30th July in Cheshire.

Christian Peters (N’03) to Annika Niesmann on 27th August 2022

Annika and Christian met in in Christian’s hometown Muenster in 2010, they became a couple in 2011. The wedding at the registrar’s office was on the 21st of October in 2016 with close family only. The original church wedding with extended family and friends was planned on their 10th anniversary on 18th September 2021. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, the wedding had to be moved to this year. After a cloudy start to the day, the church service took place in brilliant sunshine at St. Joseph Church at the port of Kiel. The wedding reception was held at the ACQUA Strande Yachthotel at the beach of the Baltic Sea. ORs in attendance: Nils Cooper (N’01).


ORs in attendance, from left to right: Richard Doxey (P’05), Luke Lacey (C’07), Scott Woodhead (S’05), James T Leavesley (N’75), Alex Evans (N’04), James Kilby (N’04), Jack Golding (P’04), Mike Watson (P’03), Jack Williams (S’04), Victoria Leavesley (M’06), James Leavesley (N’04), Lucy Leavesley, David Scarrett (P’04), Abigail Halidu (A’07), Johnny Leavesley (N’82), Alex Paget (P’07), Tiffany Bowers (M’04), Joshua Webster (N’04), Tiffany Woodhead

James Leavesley (N’04) to Dr Lucy Kirk at the Château de Tourreau in Provence on 10th September 2022. (F’07), Aoife Broderick (A’07). Daniel Hall (O’75) to Caroline at Upper House Estate, Kinder, Derbyshire on 8th October 2022. ORs in attendance, from left to right: David Lavender (B ’73), Peter Neil (P ’75), Daniel Hall (O’75), Caroline Hall, Massimiliano Casini (M’76), Peter Village KC (M’74), Col. Guy Harnby (M’75).
Stunning venues, set in historical grounds Bespoke packages tailored for your dream day Preferred supplier lists & event management Flawless attention to detail & on-site support No corkage costs! To discuss your requirements further, contact: 01283 559383 Site: Facebook: @leighmcaraphotography Instagram: @leighmcara Pinterest: Leigh Mcara Photography Set within the grounds of Repton School and Foremarke Hall, discover a totally unique and stunning wedding venue, that will make your special day perfect. YOUR HAPPILY EVER AFTER THE ARCH 71 OR CELEBRATIONS


The Abbey

Abigail ‘Abby’ Whitfield (née Wilkinson) (A’82) on 27th February 2022.

Brook House

John Gwydyr Cameron (B’57) on 13th December 2021.

Jonathan Robert Collings (B’67) on 1st May 2021.

Christopher James Gummer (B’53) on 1st January 2021.

John Morris Peake (B’38) on 30th March 2022.

The Cross

Frank Harper-Jones (C’46) on 31st August 2022.

James Alan George Hartley (C’46) in 2021.

Robert Austin Hind (C’56) on 30th May 2021.

Dr. Brian Smith (C’47) on 21st May 2022.

Canon John Wheatley Price (C’45) on 15th September 2022.

The Hall

Alastair ‘Jumbo’ Morris Barnett (H’57) on 31st March 2020.

Dr. Edward Beesley (H’83) on 12th December 2022.

John Hartley Brooks (H’44) on 3rd March 2021.

James ‘Jim’ Matthew Cartright (H’44) on 7th October 2021.

William ‘Bill’ Timothy Colman (H’51) in July 2019.

Martin John Richard How (H’45) on 23rd July 2022.

Arthur William Hutt (H’47) on 24th December 2020.

Alexander Wesley ‘Stewart’ Mann (H’46) on 25th April 2022.

Olwyn ‘John’ Owen (H’56) on 18th May 2021.

Latham House

Jonathan England (L’70) on 29th January 2022.

John Greaves Ross Martyn (L’57) on 10th April 2022.

The Mitre

Peter Christopher Orpen (M’64) on 4th April 2020.

Trevor Horace Neal (M’83) in February 2021.

New House

George Henry ‘Christopher’ Needler (N’58) on 19th December 2022.

Frederick Michael Scott (N’50) in August 2021. Dr. Alexander ‘Haig’ Simonian (N’69) on 3rd February 2022.

The Orchard

John Michael Foster (O’58) on 9th January 2022.

Roger Bryan Hyde (O’41) on 9th January 2022.

Michael Dyson Roff (O’46) on 10th December 2021.

Richard Charles Scorer (O’58) on 11th September 2020.

David John Traill Shentall (O’53) on 3rd September 2022.

Richard Quentin Philip Tannahill (O’66) on 4th February 2022.

Priory House

John Stephen Chick (P’48) on 19th February 2022.

Peter William Lord (P’62) on 22nd November 2022.

Colin Andrew Rose (P’68) on 13th December 2021.

Former Staff

Jill Winifred Pellow on 9th December 2021. Dr. Kenneth Robinson on 12th August 2021.

June Ratcliffe on 19th October 2021, (non-academic).

Peter John Williams on 13th January 2022.

Remembering our Loved Ones

The OR office has received many wonderful memories of Old Reptonians, each with their own unique story. To allow our OR community to read this collection of memories, we have created an online Obituary for each submission on the website – www.

There is no word limit for online farewells and the OR office can send out a printed copy to family members and close friends upon request. If you would like to make a submission for the annual printed Arch publication, please provide an edited version of no more than 450 words, along with a photograph if available. The deadline for the next edition is 30th September 2023.

If you wish to receive a printed copy of any Obituaries, please contact the OR Office directly and we would be very happy to post these to you –


The Abbey

Abigail ‘Abby’ Whitfield (née Wilkinson) (A’82)

19th October 1965 – 27th February 2022

It is with great sadness to report that Abby Whitfield (née Wilkinson) (A’82) passed away peacefully at home on the morning of Sunday February 27th, surrounded by Abby’s husband Charlie and their two daughters Minnie (M’16) and Martha.

Abby had been ill for some time but was determined to live life to the full for as long as possible, which she did, including

Brook House

John Gwydyr Cameron (B’57)

13th November 1943 – 13th December 2021

John sadly passed away on the 13th December 2021. He had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease for some time and passed away peacefully with his wife Jo and eldest child, Sophie at his side. He leaves behind his wife Jo, and three children: Sophie, James and Tom, and two grandchildren, Ella and Oliver, children of Sophie and his son-in-law Simon Scott.

John was popular at Repton being more academic than sporty. He always had a way of getting the best out of people with his keen sense of humour! John Eggar, his Housemaster, had him lined up for Head of House for his final year at the School, when John was denied that option and left Repton to join his parents, living in Rhodesia and Nyasaland, without attempting his ‘S’ Levels.

8th January 1940 – 1st January 2021

Christopher, who died on New Year’s Day, a week before his 81st birthday, entered Repton in 1953 in Brook House following his father who attended Repton in the 1920s.

He had a successful career with A Levels in Modern Languages and began a lifelong love of the French language and France which he visited on numerous occasions in his life. He was in the 1958 cricket team where he was much admired for his brilliant fielding. He excelled at Fives, captaining the team in 1958. He stayed on at Repton for an extra term and was appointed Head Prefect for the Autumn Term. Only a few weeks before he died, we talked about Remembrance Sunday and his role in it as Head Prefect. This, of course, followed the wonderful video of last year’s Remembranceservice held at Repton, so different in many ways because of Covid but beautifully executed.

a family holiday to Belize just before Christmas. Abby will be remembered for how much she enjoyed life, how she always lit up the room, always had time for those that knew her and always had a hug for them.

Abby will be missed but never forgotten.

However, after a year off thoroughly enjoying himself in Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia, John returned to the UK to join Coopers and Lybrand to be articled as a Chartered Account with a year at Edinburgh University reading Scottish Law. This led him to be assigned to the Montreal Office where he met his wife, Jo.

Happily married for 48 years, John and the family settled in Clapham, London and John moved into Personnel Selection, first with Coopers, then on his own and finally, having recruited everyone for a particular organisation, he joined the organisation himself and appointed himself as the Personnel Director. Typical John – demonstrating that initiative to take that opportunity –presumably learnt at Repton!

Sadly, much missed.

Peter Cameron (Brother), Lt Col MC RM

Christopher elected not to go to university, but he did obtain a degree later at the Open University. Instead, he joined the family wine business, Dolamores, with branches in London and Cambridge. However, this was not for him nor a short spell in banking. He briefly taught at this time for Dick Sale at Oswestry and at Shiplake College under his old Housemaster, John Eggar. It was there that we became close friends although I was 3 years his junior at Repton.

He knew by then that teaching was right for him and initially he taught at Cothill, a prep School near Oxford. He was by then married with two children, Henry and Katy.

However, the bulk of his career was at Collet Court, the prep School of St Paul’s in London where he taught languages and was responsible for introducing a cuttingedge language laboratory, enabling him to celebrate the French language and culture with his pupils.

After the break-up of his first marriage, he met Stephanie Judson, a fellow teacher at Collet Court and after his retirement they moved to a delightful North Cotswold village where they both became pillars of the community. The church was important to both of them. Christopher used his skills to repair walls and stiles and designed stained glass windows. He read avidly and enjoyed listening to music.

He was diagnosed with leukaemia 5 years ago and showed great patience in dealing with the disease and was ably supported by his wife and children. In December he developed Pancreatitis and was unable to combat it with a weakened immune system and died in the John Radcliffe hospital. Owing to Covid restrictions a small family funeral was held. My wife and I met Christopher and Stephanie for lunch just before the first lockdown, and they were the last couple we met socially. An old friend dearly missed by many.

Christopher James Gummer (B’53) (M’56)

John was born in Cambridge in 1924 and won a scholarship to Repton where he excelled both academically and at all sport. A national publication when he was 15, noted that he was proving himself remarkably adept at cricket, soccer, squash and lawn tennis. In particular, he played in the first cricket eleven for three years.

He went up to Clare College, Cambridge in 1942 for the two years allowed in wartime and played hockey, squash and tennis for the university. As he was reading engineering, he was allowed to go to university rather than be called up but he was bound by committee to determine what

he did after he left. He joined the Royal Corps of Naval Constructors, qualified as a naval architect, and continued to play the same three sports. The pinnacle of his sporting career was to play hockey for Great Britain in the 1948 Olympics and win a silver medal. Earlier in the year he had been reserve for England at squash and a few weeks before the Olympics he had won a squash tournament and got through two of the three qualifying rounds at Wimbledon

He left the Navy after 6 years to pursue a career in business and worked for Baker Perkins for 36 years, based in Peterborough. During the 1970s he spent 4 and a half years heading up the Australian subsidiary and 2½ years heading up the American one. Ultimately, he became Managing Director and later Chair, and was awarded a CBE for services to industry in 1986.

He retired from Baker Perkins in 1987 and was either the Chair or a member of over 20 national and local boards and committees, including the CBI, the Manpower Services Commission, the RSA examinations board and some local ones including the Nene Park Trust and the Peterborough Partnership. He was very active in

The Cross

My husband Frank always used to tell me that his school days in Cross House in Repton really were the happiest days of his life.

Not really a highflyer or good at sports, he fitted in well with academic life. At the age of 13, he made three good friends who remained in touch for the rest of their lives. Edward Wilkinson (C’46) is the last of the group.

Always fascinated by radios, he built a radio set through which he communicated with other schools. Free of the modern constraints of Health & Safety, the cadets were released overnight in a remote location, with no map or compass, and told to find their way back to school, which was a huge adventure. After taking A Levels he filled the remaining weeks with many visits, including going down coal mines.

the local branch of the Royal British Legion. He was in demand in the run-up to and during the 2012 Olympics. He was a torch bearer in Peterborough and invited to be part of the Opening Ceremony together with other former medal winners.

While John was at Clare, he met Elizabeth Rought, who was at Newnham and also played hockey, squash and tennis for the university. They married in 1953 and had a daughter Catharine in 1954 and a son Christopher in 1956. John and Elizabeth celebrated 65 years of happy marriage just a few weeks before she died in 2018.

John returned to Repton for reunions over the years and was delighted to be invited to open a new hockey pitch. He particularly enjoyed reading about the achievements of younger Repton hockey players.

John and Elizabeth lived in a village outside Peterborough for over 40 years until their final move to a flat next door to a care home in South West London. He died in March 2022 after a short illness.

He studied Engineering at Cambridge University and thoroughly enjoyed his time there. His subsequent career always had an engineering connection. On his retirement, he added to his already considerable workshop a wood lathe, on which he made many beautiful objects, as well as furnishings and bookcases. He was generous with his time helping friends and was known locally as Mr Fix-It.

Always keen on motoring, he owned a TR4 in his bachelor days and toured the continent many times with a pneumatic tent. Latterly he drove a red Mazda MX5 and put many thousands of miles on the clock.

He died peacefully after a long struggle with Parkinson’s Disease.

John Morris Peake (B’38) 26th August 1924 – 30th March 2022 John Peake revisits Wembley Stadium in the run-up to the 2012 Olympics CREDIT: © Andy Hooper CREDIT: © Kevin Quigley Credit: © Andy Hooper
20th August 1932
31st August 2022
Frank Harper-Jones (C’46) -

Frank was born in Shrewsbury but being brought up in Wrexham and having many Welsh speaking relations on his father’s side, he was very proud to be considered half Welsh.

His School days at Repton in Derbyshire were very happy. He was not a highflyer, preferring to build radios to communicate with other Schools. Four new boys met at tea with their parents when they were all 13, and they remained firm friends for the rest of their lives. There is just one of them left, Edward Wilkinson who lives in Derbyshire.

Frank loved climbing in Snowdonia and was really at home in the cold and icy conditions skiing in the Swiss mountains.

So, it was ironic that, when he was called up to do National Service, like all young men at the time, he was promptly sent out to Jamaica in the broiling sunshine. He was there at the time of the Coronation in 1953 and, as a 19-year-old lieutenant with a passion for motorbikes, he formed a display team to take part in the celebrations. He was never happier than when telling friends how he had inveigled local garages to donate eight bikes and borrowed others. After two crashed in rehearsals, he formed one new bike out of the bits. They spent many hours roaring round the island, running in these bikes, and the resulting display was memorable.

He went on to read Engineering at Caius College, Cambridge, where he was equally happy. Again, there were four undergraduates on the same landing, Frank and three lawyers, Barry, Brian, and Guy, and they formed a lifelong friendship. They and their wives and families have spent many very happy times together, despite living long distances away from each other.

Frank always had an affinity with the Army, being in the TA for many years, and being Standard Bearer for the local branch of the Royal British Legion until recently. This qualified him to live in the Royal Star & Garter home in High Wycombe, where he would have been very happy. Sadly, he was only a resident for nine days, but he died there very peacefully surrounded by a lot of love and care.

Frank was often known as Mr Fix-it. When he was only 8, his mother’s sewing machine broke down and he asked if he could mend it. She finally agreed, and he fixed the sewing machine – no problem! His workshop was amazing, like an Aladdin’s cave, with everything meticulously boxed and labelled. If needed, he could produce any tool, any size of screw or screwdriver, both metric and imperial, ladders, and towers – and he had a wood lathe and a metal lathe, all in immaculate condition. He had a reputation for helping everyone.

When (Robin) had trouble with a part on his vintage car, Frank proceeded to make a completely new part, and we were able to join the rally and have a wonderful trip round Windsor Great Park in this 100-year-old Cadillac.

His great friend Ron was a cellist and when his bow broke, he was told it couldn’t be mended, and a new bow would cost many thousands of pounds. Frank quietly selected one of his glues and, with the aid of a couple of clamps, mended it perfectly.

As friends reached memorable birthdays, and Ruby, Golden and even Diamond anniversaries, he enjoyed making small dishes in appropriately coloured wood, and adding a silver disc in the middle, with names and dates to commemorate the occasion.

He loved classical music and Beethoven was his idol. In fact, he met Jenny outside the Royal Albert Hall after a concert when he sat in the posh seats and Jenny stood promming. For him it was love at first sight, but Jenny took rather a long time to make up

her mind, despite his frequent proposals. For many years they gathered friends to go to Prom concerts, having a picnic and a bottle of wine beside the Serpentine, then walking across to the Albert Hall.

Jenny recounts that Frank always liked to be well dressed and formal, and one warm summer concert she looked around and noted that Frank was the only person among about 5,000 who was wearing a tie!

Frank was very involved with the Royal Institution and really enjoyed going to lectures there – not so long ago these were a black-tie event. He would persuade his friends, Rob, in particular, to go with him and for many years he drove up to London for a wide variety of lectures. He hardly ever missed an exhibition at the Royal Society and went every year with his pals to the Model Engineering Exhibition – like small boys!

It was Frank who introduced Rob to Remap – a group of retired engineers who help elderly and disabled people in their homes by adjusting and adapting their aids and equipment to their own needs. A worthwhile enterprise.

The St George’s Day parties organised by the Lunns were memorable. The entertainments were men only – they dressed as policemen, ladies in crinolines, nymphs, and shepherds, played the toy symphony, but the highlight had to be the Morris Dancing, where eight arthritic chaps danced and leaped about waving hankies and clashing sticks.

Christmas parties at the Larches were held for about 40 years and were a wonderful start to Christmas. There was always a lot of music, with friends providing a quartet, and even the most reluctant were persuaded to do readings in a variety of accents. Frank would get the Baby Burco out of the loft and brew up a highly spiced mulled wine to go with Jenny’s homemade mince pies.

Frank loved his children David and Miranda and had a great interest in his grandchildren – Matthew, Alex, Amélie and Oliver. Although distance separated them, he very much enjoyed taking part in their lives.

Since his father lived till the age of 103, we all expected Frank to do the same. Happily, he reached his 90th birthday – just – and today we will celebrate this, but a few weeks late.

Frank did quite a few jobs around the church, and it is largely due to him climbing up into the belfry that we have a working bell again. May all the bells ring for him – we shall miss him very much. A true gentle gentleman.

The Harper-Jones Family

It was after one of these Christmas events that they formed a group of technical friends. There was a big scientific discussion going on late into the evening, and the wives were desperate to go home. Jenny suggested giving a dinner just for the chaps, so they could talk science to their hearts’ content. About every two months they went to each other’s houses and willing wives concocted a fabulous dinner, then left them to it. The first dinner was about 27 years ago!

Out of this came the technical holidays, which did include the wives. They began with a visit to CERN in Geneva, where they descended to the depths of the earth to see the Hadron collider, just before it was closed up. Frank organised a cable car trip at Les Aiguilles du Midi, where there is a mile-long stretch of cable between two pylons.


There followed a holiday in Montpelier where they saw the amazingly beautiful Millau Bridge, and Frank and Rob drove to see a solar installation powered by a thousand mirrors.

Since then, they have taken a house each year in UK and first visited the Falkirk Wheel in Scotland, then the pump storage scheme in Dinorwig, the Sizewell B power station in Sussex, as well as the burial mound of Sutton Hoo. The North East proved a great hunting ground for technical innovation, as well as Craster Kippers! A stay in Rye allowed them to visit the underground war rooms near Dover Castle. But it was not all serious stuff, judging by the large number of empty wine bottles they sheepishly dispose of at the end of their week’s stay.

Driving was a great passion of Frank’s and in his youth, he drove all over the continent, camping out in his inflatable tent. He found a way of overinflating the spare tyre on the back of his sports car, then connecting it to the tent. In the pouring rain, his tent would take 30 seconds to inflate, while everyone else was struggling with tent poles and canvas. The only time he complained latterly

was when he was barred from driving his nippy little red Mazda sports car, due to being affected by the growing impact of Parkinson’s Disease.

Frank loved his children David and Miranda and had a great interest in his grandchildren – Matthew, Alex, Amélie and Oliver. Although distance separated them, he very much enjoyed taking part in their lives.

Since his father lived till the age of 103, we all expected Frank to do the same. Happily, he reached his 90th birthday – just – and today we will celebrate this, but a few weeks late.

Frank did quite a few jobs around the church, and it is largely due to him climbing up into the belfry that we have a working bell again. May all the bells ring for him – we shall miss him very much. A true gentle gentleman.

The Harper-Jones Family

The Reverend Canon John Wheatley Price (C’45) 13th August 1931 –

15th September 2022

John was born on 13th August 1931 in Nottingham, 3rd child (Michael and Ruth) of Tom and Con Wheatley Price, loving, committed Christians and the founder-leaders of Nottingham boys and girls Crusaders. John was converted aged 12, at a schoolboys’ Christian camp in Herefordshire. The verse that brought him to Christ was Galatians ch.2 v.20.

He went to Repton School, Derbyshire. Head of House (The Cross), 1st XI Hockey, founder of Christian group. He already had a place to read Medicine at Christ’s College, Cambridge, then a clear personal call to the Ministry, at the age of 17. He was accepted by ACCM aged 18 as a National Serviceman. No one today recognizes an early call to the Ministry. Christ’s college withdrew their place, but Emmanuel College [his father’s old college] offered him one for Natural Science.

National Service in the Sherwood Foresters, trained initially by the Warwickshire Regiment at Budbrooke Barracks near Warwick, then came officer training at Eaton Hall near Chester and to the Regiment [1st Battalion] as subaltern in Goslar, Germany 1950-51.

At Emmanuel College, Cambridge 1951-54 he read Natural Science Part 1 and Theology Part 2. He played a bit of hockey and was active in the Christian Union AND had a clear call to missionary service. He was on the Mission Committee for John Stott’s first university mission in 1952, and for Billy Graham in 1955. He was Missionary Secretary for CICCU for a year and Missionary Secretary for then IVF [now UCCF] for a year. While he was CICCU missionary secretary, the Lord spoke to him. that the Christian Union would commit itself to pray that 70 members of the C.U. [numbering 400 plus] would serve God overseas. God honoured this prayer for a Cambridge Seventy, at least 87 actually went and after 30 years, with some still overseas, the average length of service was more than 12 years. In 2016 the Cambridge Centre for Christianity published an 80 Page booklet “The Cambridge Seventy”.

John went to Ridley Hall, Cambridge 1954-56, then ordination in York Minster by Archbishop Michael Ramsey (M’18) to serve as curate in the 40,000-population parish of Drypool, with Dick Willams, behind the East Docks in Hull, under Jim Roxburgh, later the Bishop of Barking. John was there for 3 ¼ years.

A year’s training at the CMS college, Liskeard Lodge was mostly memorable for meeting and getting engaged to Jean, nee Ogilvie (at Foxbury the ladies’ college). He proposed and was accepted just 8 weeks after taking her to see film ‘The Nun’s Story’!

They sailed in September 1960 with 20 or so other missionaries via Suez to Mombasa, by rail across Kenya (on the ’iron snake’) to Tororo, and then by car to Ngora and Kumi respectively, in Teso District of Northeast Uganda. We had to pass a language exam before CMS would let us choose a wedding day and passed the exam in record time. Jean was delivering babies in mud huts. We were married in Ngora pro-cathedral on 26th August 1961. Bishop Stephen Tomusange took the service in English and Ateso. In those days it was not practical for any family to join us. We honeymooned in the highlands of Kenya.

John’s first task was Chaplain to Bishop Stephen, himself a missionary from the south, helping to establish the new Diocese of Soroti, travelling Teso and Karamoja Districts and learning the Ateso language. In due course, he was Vicar of Soroti Cathedral, setting up a multi-racial, multi-lingual parish; Diocesan Secretary and Registrar; first Warden of St. Peter’s Community Centre near the Cathedral, usually having 2 jobs at once and finally was the first Archdeacon of Soroti, having pastoral care under the Bishop for the 5 counties of the North of the Diocese. In each responsibility, the aim was not to set up the job but to Africanise it having helped to train the next man.

All our children were born in Uganda, but our eldest son lived only a matter of hours. While Jean was still in hospital, John took the funeral service for little Andrew whose grave is near our old house.


In 1974 because of Idi Amin, we moved to Kenya for John to be missioner to the Iteso people in Western Kenya, but within days he was asked to be Archdeacon of Maseno North Diocese. We lived in Maseno, on the Equator, for 2 years. The children went to the excellent St.Andrew’s School, Turi (at age of seven or less) and for the final year Jean was Matron to the senior girls. John returning ahead of the family, had 6 months final deputation/ resettling in UK in 1976.

It amused John to be interviewed in 10 Downing Street, and was offered the “run down, but with potential” parish, [11 years decline] of Clevedon St Andrew with St Peter. Then followed 11 years of hard, but rewarding work, building with a small group of loyal, brave and praying people into what the Archdeacon described at the end as one of the major parishes in the Diocese. Highlights included an evangelistic mission led by a team from Ridley Hall, the growth from none to more than 20 Bible Study Groups, a further evangelistic time with the Church Army, the unanimous and bold decision of the PCC to tithe all gifts, which on their initiative was raised by 5% each year for three years, a decision to build a Church Centre with an initial Gift Day for this which raised £38,500 [they had never previously given even a 4 figure sum in 1 day], becoming a training parish, with one excellent curate followed by another and forming a United Parish with Christ Church, Clevedon, so that the Electoral Roll was nearly 600 active people, worshipping in 3 centres. After 11 years, and nearing 56 years of age, it seemed right to move on.

Surprisingly, but excitingly we went to Christ Church, Amsterdam with the Inter-Continental Church Society. By this time Anne had a degree in music, was a trained teacher, Deborah had a math’s degree and held a Short Service Commission in the Royal Signals, Peter was training to be a nurse at the Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, and Stephen had just completed “A” levels. He came with us to Amsterdam for a year before going to Leicester University to read Maths and Economics, getting a PhD in Economics & University lectureship. Peter, after nursing, took a good Honours degree in International Business Studies and has since worked in Pharmaceuticals. The 5 years in Amsterdam were very special, with at least 25 nationalities in Church every Sunday, a congregation losing 33% a year, a demanding range of pastoral work, a church plant and a chaplaincy which became completely self-sufficient financially.

The last but one surprise was a unanimous invitation to be priest in charge of two parishes just outside John’s beloved Peak District of Derbyshire, bringing Matlock Bath & Cromford together in one parish. One highlight was the recruiting and financing of a full-time youth worker of real ability, now ordained has just completed 15 years, in Abu Dhabi and Kuwait, and received an MBE for his work in Kuwait. Another was to lead a party to the Holy Land for 12 days. The final surprise was to

receive a letter from The Times to say John was one of the 30 “Preachers of the Year” competition, because, quite deliberately, John had not entered! He did not preach to compete, but to proclaim the unsearchable riches of Christ. Two short sermons were published, one preached at his mother’s funeral, and the other the still birth of a niece’s baby.

We retired to Melksham, to be near our siblings and John’s father. We were amazed that we could afford a house to retire to, God’s mathematics are a mystery. John’s father, who lived to be 98, had 3 children, 10 grandchildren, and 18 greatgrandchildren. We were reasonably accessible to our scattered children and had a house large enough to welcome at least one family at a time. We were made very welcome there, in the church and town.

Each year for seven winters we went out together under I.C.S as Chaplains to the Thomson Holiday ‘Young at HearT’ programme, going to Paphos in Cyprus, Benalmadena in Spain, Palma Nova in Tenerife, Sousse, and Tunisia twice. Majorca, Alvor in the Algarve, Portugal, and Puerto de la Cruz.

We ‘retired’ again to Knowle and were welcomed by people at Knowle Parish Church and our neighbours, and were close to our family, some to have settled happily in the area. Stephen and his family have since emigrated to Australia. Blessed by our 4 children, 12 grandchildren and 1 great granddaughter aged 1.

John is a Canon Emeritus of Soroti Diocese, Church of Uganda. In 1996, John was given a “Certificate of Recognition of Service” by C.M.S. Jean and John were made Life Members of ICS in 2004. John helped in the nearby parish of Barston and two inner City parishes and a little in Knowle.

Sadly, he developed AMD, wet Macular degeneration in 2003, but continued in Ministry coping with sermon notes in Type 72! Then in 2016 Parkinsons was diagnosed and active ministry up front came to an end. He celebrated 60 years as a Priest in ministry on Trinity Sunday 2017 in York Minster with Dick and Su Williams. We celebrated 61 years together and thank the Lord for them.

It is abundantly clear that from all the tributes following his death at 91 that John had an enormous influence on the lives of many people over the years in the many places and countries in which he and Jean ministered. He enabled people to come to a living faith in Jesus Christ and he encouraged them in their Christian discipleship. John was caring pastor, a committed missionary, a faithful biblical preacher, and teacher, an encourager of others and a loving family man.

To God be the Glory


Alastair ‘Jumbo’ Morris Barnett (H’57) 4th January 1943 – 31st March 2020

Rarely perhaps has Repton produced such an eccentric ‘character’ as Jumbo, someone who was a living legend in his own time, even while still a pupil.

Alastair Morris Barnett, “Jumbo” to all who knew him, was the only child of Doctor Lady Isobel Barnett, a well-known household name in the 1950s and 1960s as a regular BBC broadcaster, “regarded by audiences as elegant and witty, the epitome of the British aristocracy” [ ] (although in fact she owed her title to her husband, Sir Geoffrey, a former Lord Mayor of Leicester). Thankfully for his friends, whilst not the brightest pupil at Repton, he had inherited from his Grande Dame mother the social graces and impeccable manners of a true gentleman, talking softly and politely in beautifully correct English, with a genuine respect for and interest in everyone, irrespective of their status at School or station in life. Indeed, it is probably no exaggeration to say that Jumbo was one of the most popular pupils and ORs of his generation, loved by all, and having neither malice nor enemies, which is why I am surprised that, nearly three years after his death, no-one who knew him better than I did has written a tribute in The Arch

Our friendship at School was short-lived and unusual, with a two-year age gap, as I was a newly-arrived New House scholar in Remove B, and Jumbo a Hall Bim Second (in his third year) who had started in the Third Form. Having both opted to learn German from scratch (with JFMW), we also coincided in the same Chemistry class where I found myself voluntarily sharing a bench, Bunsen burner and similar dangerous equipment with him, when neither of us was particularly scientific nor practical. I have often wondered since, in half-jest, whether I was the only person foolish or brave enough to partner with Jumbo; but I am glad that I did, for he proved to be the antithesis of the typical haughty newly promoted Bim Second when confronted by a bumptious New Youth, even expressing gratitude for my assistance, thereby contributing to assuaging my initial apprehension as a first-time boarder. Thereafter, outside the classroom we often met on the playing fields in our respective Fourth House teams comprising the least sporty boys, until Jumbo left Repton early for an agricultural college. Occasionally I would espy his mother’s Rolls Royce parked outside the Arch, ready to take him out after Sunday morning Mattins. I never met

her; but he did meet my mother several times, on whom he left such a lasting impression that for many years thereafter she would often fondly reminisce about her Speech Day encounters with Jumbo in the 400 Hall, especially when she wrote to me (when I was living abroad) to say that Lady Barnett had sadly died. His warmth of character left a similar impression years later on my wife, who always looked forward to and enjoyed meeting him.

Twelve months after I left Repton and so several years since Jumbo had, whilst wandering through Paris one Sunday afternoon in the Spring of 1965 I was unexpectedly confronted by the sight of him walking towards me. “Hello, Andrew”, he said unhesitatingly, “how nice to see you. How are you?” – or words to that effect. Typical Jumbo: the instant recall of my name followed by various facts about me; whereas I, to my shame, in order to introduce him to my companion, had to ask him for his real Christian name! It may possibly have been that unfaltering memory that had contributed to him earning his eponymous nickname, with no need for a surname. Many years later, at one of the last OR Dinners in the 2010s when we often sat together, he gave an extraordinary display of that memory when the then President challenged us with an impromptu quiz about Repton life and slang in the 1950s.

It was impossible not to recognise Jumbo at those OR Dinners, Days and Gaudies, since (after leisurely driving to School over several days and staying in the same Bed and Breakfast establishment down Boot Hill) he inevitably appeared in full Highland Regalia - a nod to his Scottish ancestry on his mother’s side - albeit slightly dishevelled which only added to his charm.

Despite his lack of academic prowess, Jumbo persevered with his German, writing in that language to JFMW each birthday and/or Christmas, and receiving back the corrections!

In later years, Alastair - as I preferred to call him – loved to travel, sometimes taking cruises back-to-back. Let us hope that he has at last found a safe resting place. As he might have tried to say: “Ruhe in Frieden, mein Freund”.

Andrew Williamson (N’59) [Accessed: July 2022]

Dr Edward Beesley (H’83)

21st February 1970 – 12th December 2022

‘I was fortunate to work with Ed Beesley at Rugby School for seven years at the start of my teaching career. Ed was hugely charismatic, had boundless energy and enthusiasm, and was an outstanding Head of History and House Master. The boys in School Field worshipped him, and he was great supporter of each and every boy in his care. He was kind, patient, humorous, as well as challenging in the right waythe teaching profession has lost an extraordinary ‘School Master’. My thoughts are with Lizzie, Augusta and Theo.’

Mark Semmence (Headmaster)

The Hall

21st February 1970 – 12th December 2022

Edward Beesley joined The Hall in Mike Charlesworth’s last year as Housemaster in Michaelmas 1983. He had been recruited into the school by the Head of Tennis, Roger Thompson, as one of the country’s most talented tennis players at U14 level.

He preferred to spend his days at Repton broadening his horizons beyond tennis, but he had an abiding love for the game, particularly for the creative artistry of John McEnroe and later of Roger Federer. After A Levels we went to watch the 1988 Wimbledon final together, played over three days due to rain delays, an experience made possible by Andreas Graham (M’83) allowing us to stay at his Fulham home on consecutive evenings. During one rain delay Ed and I talked our way into the apartment where Stefan Edberg’s coach Tony Pickard was shielding his protégé, enabling us to spend time in the company of that year’s Wimbledon champion.

As a schoolboy, Ted (as he was then known) was the teacher’s nightmare: unkempt, often late for lessons, frequently with the wrong books, often reeking of nicotine, always looking for the weakness to exploit or the argument to provoke. His subversiveness, indolence and bravado were overlaid with a good deal of charm and charisma, which kept him out of serious trouble. Among his peers, Ted was funny, fearless and empathetic – qualities which served him well in his later career as a schoolmaster.

Like many of us at Repton at the time, he was an extra in the 1984 television series Goodbye Mr Chips. In the Hall, we regarded Housemaster Mike Charlesworth as our very own Mr Chips. Ed was heavily influenced by his charismatic, fair and kind approach to school mastering.

After the family moved from Oxfordshire to the Welsh border village of Bettws-y-Crwyn, Ed studied history (a love of which he shared with his father Jock) at Lampeter, University of Wales, before gaining a PhD at the University of Bristol. He spent many years teaching at Rugby School, including a spell running a day pupils’ House.

As a leading expert on Cromwell and the English Civil War, he would dedicate school holidays to historical research in the British Library, and he occasionally caught up with Marcus Barnett (H’83) and me over a pint at the Betjeman Arms at St Pancras Station. At the time of his death, he was Head of History at St Paul’s School for Boys, Hammersmith. He entered Repton in form 3E.

Edward Beesley died in December 2022 of a heart attack. He leaves a wife Lizzie, two stepchildren Augusta and Theo, and possibly one of the country’s largest David Bowie collections of vinyl. An online book of condolence has been opened on the St Paul’s School website. His 2022 lecture on the life of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II can be found here.

Jim left School at 16 and joined the family firm. When the firm was sold to Jewsons, Jim set up on his own. He branched out into timber-frame housing, building a number of bungalows on the grounds of the family home and across Powys and Shropshire, including his own. A fire dealt a catastrophic blow to the business in the early 1970s, and from then on his focus turned to letting commercial property.

Other than cars, Jim had a deep interest in trees, from both commercial and academic perspectives. He planted a number of redwoods at Lletyderw, which are now in excess of 100ft in height. He was a long-term member of the Council for the Protection of Rural Wales and was the local branch chair for a time in the 1970s.

Jim died peacefully at home in Wales at the age of 91. The son of a successful timber merchant and the youngest of four children, he was brought up on the Welsh borders. Jim was educated first at Oswestry School and then later he boarded at Repton. His favourite story recounted the time the boys made an ice slide across the playground during a particularly cold spell, onto which the Headmaster then unwittingly drove inhis new Morris 8, resulting in a collision with the wall at the bottom of the hill - a fitting end to a Morris 8.

Jim grew up with pre-war cars. His first car was a Riley 9 Biarritz handme-down from his sister. He recognised Riley quality and such was his enthusiasm for the marque that he and a band of fellow enthusiasts founded the Riley Register in 1954 - a club that still provides a focus, wealth of information and spare parts for Riley owners all over the world. He joined the Vintage Sports-Car Club in 1952, taking part in driving tests, rallies and trials.

After retirement he was able to branch out into pre first-world-war cars, which included the friction-drive Metz, a Hudson Super Six and the 12/16 Sunbeam Sports. He was very generous in lending his cars to his children to use for fun, holidays and competition. Although not particularly competitive, he delighted in their successes and commiserated in the inevitable failures and breakdowns - neveronce a cross word for a seized engine, broken crankshaft or lost wheel.

Jim was quite shy by nature, although that did not stop him sharing his views robustly on occasion. He mellowed greatly, however, and thoroughly enjoyed being a grandfather. He had a great sense of humour and enjoyed a sense of the ridiculous. Jim leaves his wife Liz, his children Matthew, Duncan and Jenny, and eight grandchildren.

© Spring Bulletin of the Vintage Sports-Car Club –

Dr Edward Beesley (H’83) Adrian Pepper (H’83) (Son) James ‘Jim’ Matthew Cartwright (H’44) 11th June 1930 – 7th October 2021

1st February 1943 – 18th May 2021

Died peacefully at home at Dinton Croft on 18th May 2021 aged 78.

He was much loved by his wife Sarah, his children Katie and Harry and grand-children Molly, Lara, Hugo, Holly and Flora.

10th September 1932 – 25th April 2022

Dearly loved father, father-in-law, grandfather, and friend who is now at peace. Stewart always spoke fondly of his time at Repton.

3rd April 1931 – 23rd July 2022

Since his death in July 2022, many official obituaries of Martin have appeared in sundry publications and on the internet, such was his wide-spread impact on the world of church music, especially as the founder (in 1965) of the Royal School Church of Music’s successive Chorister Training Schemes.

Personally, I owe him a great debt of gratitude ever since, in the mid-1980s, he unexpectedly joined the congregation of Emmanuel Church, South Croydon, where I was Director of Music. Although I knew who he was – a Commissioner of the RSCM at nearby Addington Palace – it was not until he invited me home to dinner and casually remarked that I conducted like Mervyn Williams that I realised he was an OR.

That evening was a major turning point in my life as an amateur church musician, since he was able to advise, and subsequently mentor, me in formally training and qualifying as a non-keyboard playing church choirmaster (achieving a Diploma in Church Music) in the days when most organists also fulfilled that role.

Later on, after moving away from Croydon, I was able to apply with confidence and success for music posts at other churches which would otherwise have been beyond my capabilities - most recently the prestigious Maidstone Parish Church, from which ill health forced me to retire only a few days before he died: a coincidence or divine intervention?

Martin John Richard How (H’45) Andrew Williamson (N’59) Olwyn ‘John’ Owen (H’56) Alexander ‘Stewart’ Mann (H’46) Mark Loughran (Son-in-law)

4th August 1955 – 3rd February 2022

New House

Haig Simonian died on February 3rd at the age of 67, as his family announced in an obituary in the Neue Züricher Zeitung.

Born in 1955, he studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the University of Oxford. After completing his PhD with a dissertation on The Privileged Partnership: Franco-German Relations in the European Community 1969-1984, he briefly worked as an investment banker before turning to journalism. From 1984 he worked first as a business editor for the Economist, then in 1987 he went to Frankfurt as a correspondent for the Financial Times. After that, he worked in Milan and Paris.

In 1999 he moved to Berlin as the leading German correspondent for the Financial Times, and from the end of 2003 he worked in Zürich as Switzerland and

Austria correspondent. He retired from journalism in the summer of 2012 and worked as a freelance writer. He had extensive experience in broadcasting and as a conference leader and wrote a monthly column for the NZZ am Sonntag, he also appeared regularly on German, French and Italian-speaking Swiss radio and television as well as in Germany and Great Britain.

He was also Co-President of the BritishSwiss Chamber of Commerce (BSCC) based in Zürich. The British Chamber of Commerce paid tribute to Simonian in a separate obituary as a person who brought a breath of fresh air to the BSCC with wit and brains.

© (sda/tim)

Whilst not necessarily always enjoying his time at Foremark Hall and Repton, he always held an interest and we would often talk about his time at school and his contemporaries.

After leaving Repton he qualified as a Chartered Accountant (CPA) with Hodgson, Harris and Co. in Hull (now part of PWC). He then attended Trinity College Cambridge as a mature student and following that he joined his father, Harold Needler, in the family business Hoveringham Gravels Ltd., together with various family companies in the UK and Canada. Among recent projects is the creation of Kingswood’s mixed-use development in Hull. After the early death of his father in 1975 he became a Director of Hull City Football Club until its sale to David Lloyd in 1997.

He then moved to live in Monaco where he is survived by his wife, Delphine, and stepdaughter Loulou.

4th September 1944 – 19th December 2022

Christopher sadly passed away on Monday, 19th December.

Having been diagnosed with ALS - Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a form of motor neurone disease - about three years ago, he gradually deteriorated until he was wheelchair-bound for about the last 15 months. Fortunately, he did not lose his ability to speak and certainly retained his memory.

The Orchard

30th August 1944 – 9th January 2022

John died peacefully on 9th January at home, from cancer, aged 77. Dearly loved and loving husband of Ann, much loved father of Diane, Anthony and James and a devoted grandfather to his seven grandchildren. Very dear brother of Bill, Richard and Philip (all ORs) and Liz. He will be greatly missed by everyone.

Ann Foster (Wife)

Needler (N’56; Cousin) George Henry ‘Christopher’ Needler (N’58) Dr Alexander ‘Haig’ Simonian (N’69) © Picture: zVg John Michael Foster (O’58)

2nd November 1952 – 4th February 2022

Richard was born on 2nd November 1952 in Surbiton. Richard enjoyed all sports and would often play golf with his grandfather, who lived close by. His other favourite pursuit was fishing. At Repton Richard was really into hockey and was in the county hockey team in Nottingham. The family moved to Nottingham when Richard was around 14 years old.

He also really loved his languages - he did Classics and Modern Languages, which led to his love of France and many family holidays there. He even spent a year camping in a tent while working in Dijon in a pharmaceutical factory. He made friends with a local family and virtually became an adopted son. Richard also became a fan of fine food through this time spent in Dijon, particularly loving desserts, and sweet treats.

He trained as an accountant and worked his way up to being a finance director. Richard was blessed with entrepreneurial flair. He bought a franchise called Snap on Tools. This stood him in good stead, and he was able to blend his financial expertise with his business skills to great effect.

Richard then went to London and got a job in the city, which is where he met Heidi in the office where they both worked. They married on 17th May 1986. The couple first lived in Blackheath, then they moved to Southampton where their children, Ben and Elizabeth were born. The family enjoyed lots of lovely holidays to France and Spain camping, as well as further afield to Thailand, Australia and Florida.

In 1999 Richard was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. He was only 47, which thankfully meant that his symptoms were very mild at first. He retired in 2007 due to his health gradually declining. This gave him the time to return to the golf course, which he loved. He was a good player and was on the course as often as he could be and achieved a good handicap.

The last 10 years have been more challenging, but Richard wanted to do everything he could to help others who were suffering with this debilitating disease and so a large part of his life was spent raising money and awareness in whichever way he could.

Richard enjoyed his life, and he lived it to the full. He was kind, warm and humorous and the master of terrible jokes! He was very easy to talk to, good fun, and he loved a party, always the first to arrive and the last to leave.

Priory House

It was with great sadness that I learnt of Nick’s death whilst the choral music of the last night of the 2022 Oberammergau Passion Play was still freshly ringing in my ears. During our time together at Repton (1959-1964), he was surely one of the best senior singers, if not the best: to quote one of our classmates, in recalling Nick: “I only have a fond memory of Nick very beautifully singing Schubert lieder in front of an audience at Pears School”. That too is one of my lasting memories of Nick, having come second to him in singing competitions on various occasions. In his last year, he was deservedly appointed as Mervyn Williams’ last Head Chorister; and as such was, I like to think, instrumental in ensuring that Bill Agnew (N’45) - then Deputy Director of Music - succeeded Mervyn as Director of Music by nonverbally encouraging the Chapel Choir to perform best for Bill’s audition.

We first met in the summer of 1959, when sitting the gruelling scholarship entrance examination, the only time that I ever outperformed Nick. (For example: shortly after entering the School as a Classics Exhibitioner, he successfully gained a Foundation Scholarship the following year, which some of us did not). After O Levels, we parted company academically, Nick studying Classics, and I Modern Languages.

Heidemarie Tannahill (Wife) Richard Quentin Philip Tannahill (O’66) Nicholas ‘Nick’ Michael Babington Rowell (P’59) 23rd December 1945 – 3rd October 2022

Our paths continued to cross, however, both chorally and across the chess board, with Nick eventually pipping me to Captain of Chess in our final year, when the School Team comprised Boards 1 (him), 3 and 5 from The Priory, and Boards 2 (me), 4 and 6 from New House. Unsurprisingly, to ensure that The Priory would win the House Matches that season, Nick only ever needed to play just the once when both our Houses met in the very last round!

Despite our seeming rivalry as singers and chess players, and belonging to different Houses, we were good friends, renewing our friendship after retirement when we both found ourselves living only a few miles apart in Maidstone in the mid-2010s. Indeed, shortly after we moved to Maidstone, Nick emailed to apologise for not welcoming us immediately on arrival! Sadly, however hard I tried, I could never persuade Nick to sing in the Parish Church Choir of the county town of Kent, where I was choirmaster. He did, however, join my sporadic coffee morning gathering of tenors, who not surprisingly welcomed him with open arms: indeed, one of them turned out to be his insurance broker!

In 2011, Nick attended a reunion of Mike Charlesworth’s 1959 Remove B, ahead of which he wrote the following resumé of his life after Repton, starting with the premise that his main trait was “curiosity – a mixed blessing”. Out of respect, I have not altered the original:

Professional Life

“If I’d heard of Social Anthropology, I’d probably have taken my first degree in it. In the event, thanks mainly to John Thorn [Headmaster], ‘Sworth (Charlesworth, Form Master Remove B) and Percy (Proctor, Form Master V2A), I glimpsed the riches of English Literature and opted for that – ditching Theology, as Church people seemed so implausibly smug. Then: 5 years with Unilever (in my second year as Domestos brand manager - it was Lever Brothers’ biggest profit-earner); Masters at London Business School, followed by apprenticeship as management researcher, teacher, consultant; Lectureship in Management at a nameless university, where a psychopathic professor cured me –and others – of further academic aspiration.

Subsequently: 28 years of divers interesting activities, with mixed success, e.g.: running management courses with, and for, some special people; serving as Trustee for two small national charities, including 3 years as Chair of the National Association for Premenstrual Syndrome (yes, I told them they should have

a clinician, but with good access to world-class clinicians they said they liked how I helped them work together); and serving as Churchwarden, then Treasurer of a liberal C of E Parish until the hosts of Barchester prevailed, and I left”.

Family Life

“I have come to appreciate Jung’s dictum that life gets easier as one surrenders one’s illusions about other people (and, perhaps, about oneself).

Now, and for the past 18 years, I live with the gifted and burdened Lynette” to whom I observed him to be a devoted husband, in later years gifting her a magnificent Welsh harp.

Memories of and Association with Repton

Out of respect for Nick who, like many scholars, did not appreciate the supremacy of sporting prowess over academic success under John Thorn’s predecessor, and in the spirit of “warts and all”, I quote his unexpurgated comments:

“I took Lynette to visit Repton a decade ago, ahead of her teaching practice at Tonbridge School as a mature PGCE student. It was half-term, deserted, but a most hospitable groundsman showed us round – a real credit to the School. At the New Parade Ground sports centre we met a football coach apparently seconded from Derby County, who reminded me of all I had disliked most about the bullying presumption of some (not all) of my games-heroic peers. After enjoying the ethos of The Priory about as much as John Thorn seemed to enjoy Repton itself, I haven’t maintained contact. This is a shame – staff offered many expressive opportunities, away from the House, that I remain grateful for and that have shaped me”.

Happily, however, Nick and Lynette did eventually accompany Eileen and me to, and enjoy, a Gaudy in the late 2010s. Coincidentally, I think that Nick and I were the first Old Reptonians that our respective wives met: in Eileen’s case, bumping into him on an Ostend-Dover overnight ferry in 1970.

I am sure that the heavenly choir will benefit from Nick joining it; and that he will continue to enjoy listening to Lynette playing the harp, perhaps even singing along with her, albeit from afar.

Former Staff

Jill Winifred Pellow

18th December 1934 – 9th December 2021

Former Staff – 1978 to 1995

In 1979, at a cost of £350,000, The Abbey opened as a purpose-built permanent home for Repton’s girls, with Jill and Gerry Pellow as its joint Houseparents. The House, which the Daily Mail described on its opening as a “modern luxury block”, was built to accommodate sixty sixth-form girls and was full by its second year.

Not only were Jill and Gerry caring Houseparents, they were also both great and extraordinarily well-travelled assets to the Geography department. Indeed, their partnership dated from their time together as Cambridge geographers, who were

united not only by their academic interests but also by their passion for and prowess at sport, with Jill a netball blue and Gerry a football one. Both entered the teaching profession after university although Gerry became a member of the Repton Common Room some years before being joined by Jill, in 1978, the intervening years for her involving teaching at St Wystan’s and elsewhere as well as bringing up their three daughters, Sara (A 1977), Tessa (A 1979) and Susie (A 1982).

Jill firmly believed that girls had as much right as boys to be present at Repton and had the potential to be even greater contributors to School life: an article of faith which she was never shy about preaching not only to the boys themselves


but also, on occasion, to their Housemasters. Competition for Abbey places was indeed so great that Jill could justifiably echo Miss Jean Brodie in describing its members as the crème de la crème and under her and Gerry’s able stewardship the Abbey rapidly became a centre of academic, sporting, dramatic, artistic and musical excellence, with its post-music competitions concert in particular setting the standard for all other Houses. The much-appreciated annual House trips to a West End Show also blazed a path in terms of extracurricular cultural enrichment.

Jill also strongly believed that the Abbey should be a half-way house between School and university. Some girls may have resented Shape-Up, the compulsory aerobics session, and others doubtless felt that Jill cramped their style - literally when she checked a soaring hemline or plunging neckline - but these things were imposed, as they would eventually come to realise, with their best interests at heart and she was always careful to treat her charges as adults, which encouraged a mutual respect and ultimately resulted in a higher standard of behaviour. Jill was always firm but scrupulously fair in implementing any punishment of misdemeanours, being ready to discipline when the circumstances demanded it but also very quick to forgive the wayward.

Her determination to stick up for her girls and House was exceptionally valuable at a time when the School was still an overwhelmingly and sometimes

intimidatingly male environment. For example, it was not until 1994 that the School had a Senior Mistress and not until 2002 that the practice of appointing a Head Boy and a Head Girl became the norm. Thus, it is a tribute not only to the exceptional qualities of Carol Miles but also to Jill and Gerry’s work in raising the profile of girls in the School that Carol became the first female Head Prefect in 1984. Jill certainly knew all the strengths –and foibles – of her girls to an astonishing degree: her House Supper poems detailing both for each girl in rhyme were a tribute both to her wit and omniscience.

In seemingly small as well as large matters, Jill was keenly aware of the need for Abbey girls to present themselves in the best possible light as when, after notices one day, she reminded the House that hanging their swimming costumes and towels from their windows risked making it look like a downmarket Spanish hotel. Her concern for her girls’ well-being sometimes even allegedly extended to her listing those boys best avoided and those of whom she and Gerry approved. However, human nature being what it is, that probably meant the kiss of death for the latter and kisses of a very different kind for the former.

The story that the succession of Abbey dogs - Wilbur, George and Hobson - were specifically trained by Jill to respond aggressively to the mere sight of a trousered leg, when such was the exclusive prerogative of the male, may well be as apocryphal as the claim that Abbey

dishes were heavily laced with garlic prior to any Social. It is, however, almost certainly true that Jill was the member of staff who notched up most entries in the School magazine as she worked tirelessly backstage in the wardrobe department over many years for all staff, house and School plays at a time when drama was regarded as a team-building exercise almost on a par with sport, and productions were legion. Not only was her knowledge of the costume store legendary but her dedication was such that she even added to its stock by knitting facsimile of chain mail armour!

In Goodbye Mr Chips, towards the end of his life, Mr Chipping fondly reminisces about all the children he’d encountered in his career, “And all boys.”

The Repton students who benefited from Jill’s ethic of service were not all girls but it is as Abbey Housemistress, 1979-1993 that ‘Ma’ Pellow, ably supported by Gerry and Matron/Housekeeper Jude, will be best and most fondly remembered, with a twinkle in her eye calmly, confidently and capably overseeing the advent of the Abbey as a physical House, lovingly tending to its growth, providing a strong role model for and fostering the individual talents of its members, and ultimately playing a key role in the School successfully becoming fully coeducational.


Patricia Wilmot

David Wilkinson

Peter Bradburn

Russell Muir

John Billington

William Bryant

Alan Watkinson

Christopher Richmond

John Green

Mike Charlesworth

John Fleming

Colin Carrington

Jill Pellow

Edward Fairbairn

Tim Scott


Anne Green

Fiona Scott

Bernice McLaren

Peggy Price

Fiona Fairbairn

Dorothy Gladwin

Photograph – ‘Thark’ Staff

January 1940 – 19th October 2021, (non-academic)

June Greenfield was born in Burton-onTrent and her family, like many in that area, worked, directly or indirectly, for the brewing industry. After secretarial college, she too would go on to work in the accounts department of one of the major breweries, learning to use one of the early electro-mechanical calculating machines.

June’s connection to Repton School goes back to when she met her husband to be, Pete Ratcliffe. They met at a village dance and became engaged during a family holiday to Sunderland, marrying in 1962, and living for most of their married life on Tanners Lane. A few years after the birth of their son she started working at the School Shop, then situated in what is now the gallery and business centre by the Cross. In those days, as well as providing all the uniforms, books, and sporting goods for the School, it was also very much a shop for the whole village. She continued to work there, eventually becoming manager, until retirement.

During this time there were many changes, including the shop moving to within the School grounds to become part of the grubber. But there were also opportunities, such as the racket re-stringing business, when she was, technically at least, Pete’s boss.

For several years June and Pete also ran the Junior Common Room bar, something they both enjoyed greatly, and this really emphasised that to them Repton School was more than just a job but a major part of their lives, providing many lasting friendships.

Outside of the School, June loved musical theatre and attended many productions both locally and further afield. She was also an avid reader, with an interest in history, particularly fascinated the Viking excavations that took place around Repton.

Following retirement close contact was maintained with the School which continued after Pete passed away. It is difficult, at times, to separate the lives of June and Pete from each other. Their involvement with the School was both

Despite attending a local grammar School with a good reputation, Battersea Grammar School, Peter was not a strong academic in his teenage years. Instead, he began to show an aptitude for playing the piano and eventually an interest in the organ. His parents arranged for him to have organ lessons with a local teacher of distinction, Dr Arthur Stacey, who himself had been a chorister of the Temple Church under Walford Davies and knew the great George Thalben-Ball. Indeed, Dr Stacey once took his young organ pupil to a service at the Temple, where Peter was allowed up into the organ loft to observe GT-B accompanying a Handel anthem from a full orchestral score, whilst turning round to hold a conversation with his new young acquaintance!

work and social and something they were proud of and passionate about and as such will be remembered by many generations of students and staff.

June was cremated at Bretby Crematorium in November 2021 the service was conducted by Bob Short, former School Chaplain and for some years June and Pete’s neighbour on Tanners Lane.

Personal note: Writing this about my mother brings to the end three generations of my family’s association with Repton School: great-grandfather, grandfather, grandmother, father, and mother all lived and worked there. I was brought up within this environment and have many happy memories as a youngster, ranging from watching sporting events, to summer days spent at the old outdoor swimming pool and various theatre productions. I will never forget the kindness shown by so many current and former students and staff over the years.

25th February 1943 – 13th January 2022

Former Staff – 1992 to 2003

Born in wartime Kings Lynn, Norfolk, Peter was brought up for the first three years of his life by a doting group of familial women – his mother, her twin sister and his maternal grandmother. Like many of his generation he didn’t set eyes on his father until he was three, which perhaps explained their slightly uneasy relationship until later life. Peter was to be joined seven years later by younger brother Robert and the family moved to Streatham in London only a few years after that.

In his late teens Peter won a place to study music with the organ as his specialism at the Royal College of Music in London, where he was given over as a student to Dr Sidney Campbell, then Director of Music at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. The ‘Old Man’ took a shine to his young protégé and quickly had him living within the castle, first working as his P.A. and then upon graduation from college as the first ever organ scholar at St George’s. Since then the scheme has seen well over a hundred young organists follow in Peter’s footsteps and use it as a stepping stone to becoming a professional organist.

In 1966 he took up a position as SubOrganist at York Minster to Dr Francis Jackson, who himself has died very recently at the distinguished age of 104. There he met Margaret, later to become his wife of fifty-three years, who herself was well-known in York musical circles as accompanist of the York Musical Society and a founder member of the Chapter House Choir. Their liaison caused a change of direction for them both and the following year saw Peter embark upon a teaching course at the Institute for Education in London.

After a few years of rebuilding, Peter and Margaret moved to Manchester where they would take jobs teaching music at Birley High School and Chetham’s Hospital School (very shortly then to become Chetham’s School of Music). They lived in a large flat above two opera singers, Caroline Crawshaw and Patrick McGuigan (who sadly died in 2019) and enjoyed a rich and varied musical life centred around Chet’s, Manchester Cathedral and Holy Trinity Salford, where Peter practised the organ in preparation for his FRCO exam in which he was awarded the Lympus Prize. There were a number of very talented musical students of the time with whom they were lucky to work, including Peter Donahoe, Catherine Edwards and David Hill. They were married in the area in 1969.


The early 1970s saw a move to Halifax in West Yorkshire, where Peter became Head of Music at Crossley and Porter School (later Crossley Heath) and consequently Director of Music at St Jude’s Parish Church. He and Margaret also founded the Taverner Choir of Halifax, a chamber choir for talented amateur singers from the area. Professionally Peter flourished, studying for a MA at Leeds University and building a fine reputation as a music educator, organist and choral conductor. Personal happiness evolved further too, as in 1977 Thomas was born after much hope and prayer.

Some years later, after it became clear he shared his parents’ aptitude for music and became a chorister of Ripon Cathedral, Peter was prompted to give up his church job at St Jude’s and become a weekend Layclerk in the Cathedral Choir. Five more years of happy music-making followed, Peter enjoying being a cog within a successful machine, rather than having the responsibility to run it. Many friends were made with much humour ensuing in a happy period of his life.

At the age of forty-nine he made the sideways professional step from working as a teacher in the State Sector to becoming Chapel Organist of Repton School, where he also headed up the academic music teaching. Whilst at Repton, he became involved with another adult chamber choir, The Sitwell Singers and eventually became their conductor. As with Taverner in Halifax, many exciting and successful projects blossomed from their partnership and both choirs vastly enriched his musical working life. He also highly valued his friendship and working relationship with the singers of St Wystan’s Church in Repton, their organist Terry Bennett and his colleagues and friends in the Derby Organists Association, of which he was the President for a time.

He retired in 2003 at the age of Sixty and enjoyed a good decade plus of freelance organ playing, piano accompanying, choral conducting and choral singing, much of which gravitated towards Leicester. He had a positive association with Leicestershire Chorale and WQE

Sixth Form College. He played regularly for Anglo-Catholic Mass at St Aidan’s Church in New Parks, for Neil Page at St Barnabas Cathedral in Nottingham and twice for the Bardi Symphony Orchestra in De Montfort Hall.

His happiest association in retirement however was with his grandson George, with whom he had a strong and supportive relationship. In 2018 Peter was diagnosed with MDA, a rare form of blood cancer, but through the support and amazing care of the Haematology Team at Queen’s Hospital in Burton and his Consultant Dr Humayun Ahmad, he enjoyed four further years of quality life. His ending was calm, peaceful and pain-free, with Margaret and Tom at his bedside listening to all his favourite choral and organ music from a life well-lived and well-loved. We are very grateful for the expert care given to him by both the Palliative Care Team at Queen’s Burton and the amazing nurses and carers of Barton Cottage Hospital Wing.


OR Pigeon Post

Inspired by Art at Repton

Dear OR Society,

I have been meaning to write to you for a long time and, as is the way of things, kept putting it off to another day. During one of my regular sort-outs of papers I came across your card which you were most kind to send to me on my 80th birthday, more than a year ago now I fear. I was most impressed with your system and the fact that you were organised enough to do that. I think it is a very kind thought and I suppose in a way you must have no idea of how your older ORs are faring.

I was at Latham House from 1953 to 1958 and at Foremarke Prep School for three years before that. My son Nicholas was at Foremarke and the Cross a generation later but I am afraid he does not subscribe to the Public School or boarding School ethos and so his son is being educated in the State system down in Devon where he now lives. I had always hoped my grandson would follow us to Repton but it was not to be. The younger generation does not feel the same way and of course the costs are very high now in relation to normal incomes. My son is an archaeological historian and lecturer.

Over the years I have read about the exploits of many ORs including some of my contemporaries and I had always thought I might send some details of what I have done with my life. Unfortunately I have never done very much of interest to other people I should imagine, having been in and out of different careers and pursuits. When I left Repton, having been unable to get a scholarship to read Classics at either Oxford or Cambridge, I went to the Central School of Speech & Drama in Swiss Cottage and had three happy years there. After that I went a little haphazardly into acting and singing with a band for some years, finally becoming a sound engineer in a film post-production studio in Hampstead and later Queensway.

I met my wife, Judith, before I went to Drama School whilst working at Frinton Repertory Company and when I went on to the Central School I found that she ran the student canteen there. As a result I was well looked after in the food department and we gradually became a couple, getting married in 1963. We weretogether sixty years but I am sad to say that my wife died in January this year after a fall last July and a period of illness. Not many people manage sixty years now I fear, although my sister has been married three years more so it is obviously in the family.

Whilst I was working at the Sound Studio I formed a greetings card company (Elgin Court Designs) which was run from a spare room in the studio. I had first started designing cards in the Art School at Repton, and had helped my sister start a firm, Gallery Five, which became successful and quite well known. Elgin Court became successful and we moved the business to a much larger location in Abingdon, near Oxford, where I changed direction, virtually gave up all connections with the entertainment business and my wife and I worked in the Card Business, producing and selling millions of greetings and Christmas cards over many years. In the end too rapid expansion brought financial difficulties, and we were obliged to sell out the business to a larger organisation. The name continued in use until very recently until the firm which bought us out itself collapsed about a year ago, and nothing remains of my longterm connections with the greetings cards business, my sister’s firm Gallery Five having also closed down voluntarily a few years ago.

During all this time I have had one other abiding interest, which I also had in embryo at Repton, namely philately, stamp collecting, postal history.I have been a collector since my sixth birthday (I can remember how the first gift packet I was given on that day looked) and I have developed my interest in the field all the rest of my life. I purchased the business of the late Harry Hayes who was the leading specialist in the literature of

Philately & Postal History and called the new Company HH Sales Limited, which was also run firstly in London and then from the address in Abingdon. That still continues in a new form as HH Sales, no longer a Limited Company, which is now run by my assistant and colleague of thirty years Casper Pottle, who took over from me five years ago. It continues to function in Bradford as the main source of literature on the subject of philately and postal history.

I joined the Royal Philatelic Society in the late 1960s, became a member of the Expert Committee in the 1970s and I am currently the longest-serving member of that committee having been active for over forty years. Because of my activities there I was firstly made a Fellow of the Society and finally in 2016 was elected to the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists, a small select group to which four or five members from all over the world are added each year, usually one or two from the UK.

Thus, although I have really done nothing much to distinguish myself through my work and life I can probably say that I was one of very, very few Reptonians who became Fellows of the Royal Philatelic Society, and probably the only one who has been elected to the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists.nI am thus able to sign myself as Stephen Holder RDP, FRPSL.

Credit: Dane Garrod FRPSL

Priory House 100th Anniversary

In 1961 three Priory boys started playing guitars together, and, with the addition of another from the Hall who had a Drum Kit, Repton’s first ‘band’, The Sunsets, was born! Graham ’Shifty’ Abbot (P’58) played lead guitar and tutored John Ballinger (rhythm guitar)

A meeting with old friends in Brill.

On a hot August day, a number of ORs from The Hall who entered the School in the mid-1960s had lunch in Brill, Buckinghamshire, with Barry and Pat Downing, Mariel Toynbee and Shirley French. Barry taught French, German and Russian and was a House Tutor of The Hall before becoming Housemaster of the Priory. He then became Second Master during Graham Jones’ tenure as Headmaster. Barry obviously had a great influence on the boys in The Hall and our

and David Hings (P’59) (bass guitar) to a level where most of the instrumental hits of the day from the Shadows could be played to a reasonable standard.

respect and affection for him remain undiminished even after 50 years. Peter Toynbee taught Modern Languages and was Housemaster of the Mitre. Roy French taught English and became Housemaster of New House. Outside the classroom he was in charge of hockey having been a Blue and captained the Cambridge team. After retirement, he was instrumental in setting up Repton Enterprises. I calculated that Barry, Roy and Peter jointly gave over 100 years of service to Repton.

We all had a wonderful time, there were many happy reminiscences of The Hall and the School. Mariel Toynbee brought a School photograph taken in the summer of 1963, and we all had great fun trying to identify members of staff and boys. Everyone was very reluctant to disperse after such a very happy gathering.

Clockwise from left: Mariel Toynbee, Barry Downing, Michael Clough (H’66), Shirley French, Pat Downing, Nic Stenhouse (H’65), Liz Green, Roger Green (H’64), Sarah Mast, Charlie Edmundson-Jones (H’65), Louise Clough, James Ross (H’68), Michael Li (H’65).

Old Reptonians in Singapore!

Now that the Covid restrictions have eased in Singapore, the four of us managed to meet up at an English pub equivalent called the Tavern at the Tanglin Club in Singapore. Please do contact the OR Office if you would like to join the group for the next meet up.

Dear Editors,

As always, I really enjoyed your previous issue, one letter and one article with photographs stood out for me. The letter from Robert Miller (L’76) reported that Michael Wesson (H’40) is still hale and hearty at the age of 94. The Booth family with an only son, my friend Chris (P’53), were good friends and used to holiday with the Wessons. In 1956 they took a cottage on the Roseland Peninsular in Cornwall, and I was invited to join them for their second week. I think Michael and his brother, Tony (H’43), had a pied-à-terre up the road, but nevertheless, it must have been some cottage to accommodate their mother, Phyl, their two lovely sisters, three Booths and me. My memory is of the warm welcome I was given by both families and of great conviviality.

The report of the Priory House Dinner also stood out. I was sorry that more of my contemporaries were not there, John Hings (P’55) being the notable exception. I was pleased to meet up again with the Kukhnin brothers, Andrey (P’97) and Ivan (P’03). It still seems remarkable to me that two Russian brothers would enter the Priory for Sixth Form before going on to Cambridge and Durham respectively. As Ivan is now based in Moscow as a partner at Deloitte, the fact that he would travel from there to Repton for the Dinner was impressive.

There appeared to be some ignorance at the Dinner regarding exactly what centenary we were celebrating. The Priory existed as a Boarding House at least from 1879 in the Old Priory. J H Gurney, a

science master, built a boarding house in 1886 down the High Street. On retirement he continued to live in the house, his private property, rattling around with no boys present. My grandfather, Alan Bragg (JHG 1893) said that in his retirement Gurney set himself the task of weighing the world. He died in 1919 and bequeathed his house to the School. Thus it was possible for the boys in the old Priory to move to the new Priory in 1921. This was the centenary we were celebrating thanks to Gurney’s generosity.

Yours Sincerely,

From left to right: Alfred Cheng (O’75), Juliet Wolfe (née Ryalls) (A’83), Richard Coventry (B’73), George Hudson (S’06).

ReptonIAN (1990-1995): prize winner(s) revealed

‘Sanders comes up trumps! Long-lost treasure unearthed in OR’s loft’: we are delighted to reveal that the appeal made in The Arch from Ian Hall (N’90) has led to a successful result.

Our previous article detailed how Ian and contemporary David Hart (N’90) have been digitising the 62-edition back catalogue of the ReptonIAN, a slightly subversive underground publication circulated from 1990-1995. But, inexplicably, edition 59 was missing from their archives. Did anyone have a copy?

First to respond was Tom Sanders (N’89) who located the missing edition in his attic. As promised, Tom received a Chewit as his prize (actually, two packets plus one individual Chewit taped to an A4 sheet as attempts to source a single 1990s-era Chewit failed). This composite photo, created exclusively for The Arch in the ReptonIAN’s style, shows the (Covid-compliant) prize handover.

Des Cheung (P’90) also stepped forward with a copy of the missing edition and, as this came after Covid compliance rules apparently allowed the opportunity to hold a ‘work meeting’ in a pub, the ReptonIAN team jumped at the chance to offer a further prize.

Our exclusive photo shows Ian Hall (holding the additional prize), ReptonIAN lifestyle contributor and columnist Ben Walker (C’90), David Hart and Des.

Ralph Cowdy (H’54) was a very old friend of mine. He told me this amusing story which Justin Glass (H’63), another OR friend, thought was worth sending to the editor of the Old Reptonian magazine:

When Ralph was in the Lower Sixth form there was a trainee teacher of geography giving a lesson. Towards the end of the period the young man walked around the class. He came to Ralph’s desk and admonished him with the words: “You haven’t written anything down!”

Ralph replied: “You haven’t said anything worth writing down yet!”

Later that day a junior from his House came to Ralph and told him that the Housemaster wanted to see him. Ralph went to his room and knocked on the door. The Housemaster said to him that was hardly “a kind thing to say to a trainee teacher”. You have to be more encouraging. I am surprised at you Ralph!” Ralph was told to bend over and he was given three of the best.

After school, a junior came to say the same thing to Ralph. In slight trepidation, Ralph again went to the door. Hardly before he entered the room a sherry was thrust into his hand. That was not the only surprise. The Housemaster went on:

“I would like to make you a House Prefect!”

It was obvious that the story had amused the Staff Room and punishment had to be given, but that turned out to be token punishment seeing as he was made a House Prefect a few hours later!


Dear Editors,

Ronald Sichel’s (L’54) article in last year’s issue about our Rifle Shooting Team arriving the Ashburton Shield in 1958, brought memories of more achievements at Bisley in 1960*.

The Cadet Eight of which I was a member won the Marling, a physically demanding competition simulating an infantry charge. Starting at 600 yards and firing at targets at intermediate ranges down to 200 yards, the sight and sound of almost an entire battalion moving forward at the double was awesome. We also earned a trophy for third

Dear Editors,

I enjoyed Robin Brodhurst’s piece on Harry Altham in the Winter 2021 edition of The Arch (‘The Altham-Bradman Letters’).

I knew Harry well. My father Roger and his brother John met him when they were at Repton in the 1920s. They were in Brook House, and distinguished cricketers and all-round games players. Perhaps in view of this Harry was kind enough to take an interest in me. He used to have a member of the School as his ‘correspondent’ to keep him in touch with life at Repton, in which he was deeply interested. I was lucky to be appointed to this job for 2-3 years before I left Repton in 1956.

We exchanged letters once or twice a term,

Dear Editorial Team,

Further to my letter which you kindly included in the recent issue of The Arch, I am again moved to say what a great read it is and how interesting to hear all the news of such successful students coming from the Repton experience.

It made me wonder how many ORs are like myself, who went through both Foremarke Hall and Repton without achieving anything of note but still managed to make a success of their lives in one way or another. I won’t bore you with my life history but thought you might be amused by my Latin report from Dickie Sale which read, and I quote “Turner progresses steadily - backwards!” - a wording which today I suspect would not be allowed but at the time probably was correct!

Briefly after leaving Repton, where I struggled to get the necessary six O levels to

place in the Ashburton itself, and another for a top placing in snap-shooting.

My personal best was in practice at the old army range at Burton, mentioned by Sichel. I put all nine rounds, including sighters (not ten, because you didn’t keep ‘one up the spout’) into the Bull at 500 yards. That’s a circle only six inches across. And no telescopic sights, just the aperture rear sight in which lined the foresight up to the target. I still have the scorecard, ‘Well done!’ wrote the famous A.K. Bolland.

* It is possible that this was in 1961, the individual medal that was given to each team member is stamped ‘Marling 1960’ on the back. However, this may have been a centenary issue, since there is a figure of a musketeer of the face of the medal with ‘1860’ below him.

andI would keep him up to date with what was going on at Repton, particularly as to how the School’s cricket was going. His letters were splendid (although I agree that his handwriting was not easily read), but unaccountably I do not now have them. How I let them disappear I do not understand. In the early part of my ‘term of office’ I learned a never-to-be-forgotten lesson. He often kindly enclosed with his letter a ten-bob note, and I was probably rather slow in writing to thank for it. I subsequently received a reprimand, with just the right amount of severity, and I hastened to respond, “Oh dear”.

Harry was extremely kind to me, and several times I went to stay with him and his wife in Winchester. I enjoyed countless hours in his

amazing cricket library. He took me to cricketing events in London and Hampshire, most notably to a dinner in Southampton, at which he was in the chair, to the South African Touring Team in 1955, where I met some heroes of mine, e.g., Roy McLean. I was also very lucky to be proposed by Harry to the Free Foresters, and I still have some cricket prints which he gave me when I got married.

I have always felt very privileged to have known Harry Altham. He was a remarkable man- interested and knowledgeable about so many things, and an inspiration to the young. And he absolutely loved Repton.

enable me to get articles to start my Accountancy career, I then struggled to pass both the intermediate and final accountancy exams to qualify. In order to do so, I attended Ronnie Anderson’s cramming courses in Wales before each exam and met up with OR David West (B’51), who lived in Great Longstone, North Derbyshire, and we struck up a friendship which saw us meet up again, sharing a flat in Kensington, but working for different firms. I moved up to Worcester after two years in London and David was my best man in 1964.

Because I was allowed to enjoy my sport so much at both schools, I became reasonably able at squash to county level, soccer to local league level, and cricket to a good league level, especially with my local Colwall village team which reached the national village competition semi-finals twice while

I was playing and finally won it in 2020. So not only do I enjoy the reflected glory of the success of the present generation of Repton students but also in the great success of my village cricket team.

In professional terms I joined up with another accountant and started our own accountancy practice in Worcester which went from strength to strength over the coming years and eventually joined up with one of the national firms in which I was a partner, retiring in 1996.

All of this I am sure was very much put down to the excellent all-round experience and character building at Repton although at the time not necessarily aware of the benefits to come!

Yours sincerely,


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Articles inside

ReptonIAN (1990-1995): prize winner(s) revealed

pages 90-91

Priory House 100th Anniversary

pages 88-89

OR Pigeon Post Inspired by Art at Repton

page 87

The Orchard

pages 81-86

New House

page 81

The Cross

pages 74-81

The Abbey

pages 73-74


page 72


pages 66-71

Repton hailed as the UK’s ‘Happiest Boarding School’

pages 62-64

The Repton Family of Schools (Formally Repton International)

page 61

Repton’s STEM programme wins national award!

page 60

School News & Highlights Vinehall joins the Repton family of Schools

page 59

The Peter Bold English Prize by Paul Stevens, Repton Archivist

page 58

From the Archives The Fine Art of Graffiti

page 57

The Wisden Club Cricket Hall of Fame

page 56

Repton Life Presentation of The Alastair Gordon Fielding Cup

page 55

Welcome to the OR Society 2022 Leavers Celebrating success at Speech Day

page 54

Headmaster’s Update

pages 51-53

The Repton Foundation

page 49

Industry Embassador Spotlight

page 48

OR Enterprise Circle

page 47

OR Enterprise Circle

page 46

OR Gap Year

page 45

OR Society Grant

page 44

A year in the US Alex Urwin (L’13)

page 43

OR Professional Property Club

page 40

2023 OR Lancashire & Cheshire Branch Reinvigoration

page 40

The Old Reptonian Masonic Lodge

page 40

Repton Pilgrims Cricket Club

pages 37-39

OR Golfing Society

pages 35-36

OR Squash

page 34

Branch Updates

page 33

Arthur Dunn Cup Dinner

page 32

The Arthur Dunn Cup - ORFC take home the trophy!

pages 30-31

OR Day & BBQ

page 29

The OR Summer Ball

pages 25-28

Drinks In Your City The OR Society on Tour

pages 23-24

Drinks In The City

page 22

The OR Women’s Leadership Forum

page 21

A Royal Occasion Andrew

page 20

Operatic Success

page 19

Ben’s Big Walk

pages 17-18

OR News: Snippets

pages 15-16

A formative experience for a lifetime in Journalism

page 14

Dream Big

page 13

A Royal History

pages 7-12

Chair’s Letter View from the Chair

pages 5-6

President’s Letter A New Year Ahead

page 4

Welcome from the 2022 President Rachel Bacon

page 3
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