|1 Dec 2020|
A welcome message from our new Head,
Lots of painting, refurbishment and tidying has been completed at Windlesham over the last few months and our school is now looking at its very best.
Education and fun is still at the heart of Windlesham and, despite all the current restrictions, we have a happy and healthy group of pupils all thriving in their 'bubbles'. The teachers have absorbed and delivered online teaching to great effect, with some pupils overseas still taking advantage of this, although I think those who could, were happy to be back in the classroom enjoying face to face education.
We hope you are all keeping safe and well.
Keep in touch!
Something to Hoot About
Some teacher farewells - Sarah Clancy (Head of PSHE), has taken early retirement. Charles Bloem (Maths and Games), now teaches at a Fulham Prep. Michael Wright (OWL'79), Raleigh House Parent, French, English and Games teacher, has returned to his former career as a writer. Justin Blake (Head of Social Responsibilities and Junior Department Teacher), now working with HundrED UK. Paul Spencer (Assistant Head Academic), currently enjoying retirement. Kevin Eaton (Estates Bursar), enjoying time at home renovating the family house.
Point of Information founded by Max Anderson (OWL'12) and Lily Margaroli (OWL'12) the Co-Chief Liberal writer for this current news, debating forum. https://pointofinformation.co.uk
Podcast success for Adam Buxton (OWL'82). Adam is a well known comedian who has also written a book, the Ramble Book, and now enjoys his latest challenge, making podcasts. https://www.adam-buxton.co.uk/podcasts
Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England, Professor Chris Whitty (OWL'79), is the UK government’s Chief Medical Adviser and head of the public health profession, and currently a very busy man advising the government about the COVID19 situation.
Head up! is a group of university students who have a variety of disabilities, physical & mental health conditions, learning difficulties and neurodiversity and we are proud to say that Mhairi Mclay (OWL'12) is their VP https://head-up.org/about.html
A new company set up by Oliver Roblin (OWL'07), which was featured in the Luxury Telegraph earlier this year https://www.thefamilyfilm.co.uk
Richard Foster (Head 2007-2020) was nominated for the Tatler Award for Life Time Achievement. A lovely nomination for Richard to retire with.
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! One of our alumni families, the Margaroli's (daughters, Flo (OWL'11) and Lily (OWL'12), are bring in the spirit of the season to life with lots of entertainment and great food at their hotel, The Ardington. If you are interested in having some fun and supporting them click here
Horses coming to Windlesham, watch this space, we will be opening our doors to horse riding and livery within our grounds in 2021
Nick Baveystock (OWL'75)
Director General and Secretary
Institution of Civil Engineers - The journey to his success
You asked how I ended up as Director General of the Institution of Civil Engineers. I think a combination of luck and circumstance. After all the usual progression of schools, universities and the like (which included a period working as a roofer on a building site) I joined the Royal Engineers in 1985. Luck smiled on me: after a year learning the basics of handling explosives, bridging rivers at night, and mine warfare, I was sent to Northern Ireland to build fortifications across the Province. During the nineties most people in the Royal Engineers ended up at some point in the Balkans. I was fortunate to spend a delightful summer teaching various people to use fast boats to board sanctions-busting vessels at night, before commanding a regiment in both Kosovo and Iraq. In Iraq during 2003-2006 engineers were in huge demand, both in fighting the insurgency, but also in supporting the national reconstruction effort.
After commanding a regiment I was sent back to Iraq, firstly as the Multi-National Division Chief Engineer, and then as Chief of Staff of the UK Division. The Iraq tours were fascinating and varied; from building accommodation and airheads for the coalition, the Counter IED campaign, through to managing swathes of the reconstruction effort during which I learned more about oil fields, ports, water supply and power generation than I thought possible. There are never enough engineers to go round, and many of my young officers and soldiers, often straight out of training, found themselves doing things they could not have imagined possible only months before. Before leaving the Army I was lucky enough to command the Royal School of Military Engineering as it was going through a £3.2 billion transformation. Not only did we train the Royal Engineers but the Defence Animal Centre was part of the school, so we trained horses and dogs as well: never let it be said that a career in engineering is not varied and eclectic!
I was never quite sure why I was asked to join the ICE. I had acquired a reasonable and broad knowledge of engineering in my time in the Army. But managing any big organisation needs much broader management and leadership skills, coupled with some commercial experience. I think I was able to draw on my engineering background, which set me up quite well for this. The ICE is, of course, a very different organisation focused very much on addressing some of the really big global challenges society faces. Probably top of the list at the moment is how one gets an industry which generates significant amounts of carbon to get to a net zero, or better, an absolute zero position. Very close behind decarbonisation, and closely associated with it, is designing solutions to reduce the effects of climate change. These two alone can keep me occupied pretty much full time: they need global not national solutions, and that means building global as well as national alliances.
I am sometimes asked if I would do it all again, and the answer is a resounding yes. The Royal Engineers taught me about people and trust, engineering taught me about solving problems in a practical and intelligent way. I don’t think I could have done what I do now without both!
Nick - Brigadier at the Royal School of Military Engineering
(Nick's father, Robert Harold, was also a pupil at Windlesham in the 1940's)
A Blast From The Past - Elements 2007
air - earth - water - fire
Found memories of one of our most spectacular events.
In this time of little entertainment I thought it would be good to remember one the Windlesham's most exciting and lavish events, Elements, which raised funds for the Chestnut Tree House Hospice.
Many of you will recall this was a huge musical extravaganza held at school, involving many neighbouring primary schools, performing during the day and the evening. Children from the age of 4-13 took to the stage, (which was the one Robbie Williams had just been using on his tour), to sing, dance, play music and act. We even connected live, via satellite, and spoke to the NASSA Space Station. The sound system used for the evening was a surround system, which was so loud it 'bounced' off the Downs! We had to gain special permission from the CAA who kept the skies clear above us to accommodate all the exceptional planned activity.
Anthony Hutchings was the mastermind behind this event, he wrote the music and together with Jane Denman at his side and the Windlesham staff, pulled the entire day and evening together.
The day finished with the arrival of the Red Arrows performing a display above us and then parachuting in and landing on the stage. This was followed by a performance from the entire school singing and taking part in the most spectacular laser display. The finale was the largest firework display, set off in sync with a collaboration of music, the South Downs has ever seen
Making Maths Count
Graham Stott (OWL'68)
Mathematics, Greek & Porridge at Windlesham 1963-1968
Like two billion other people at the moment, I am a prisoner of mathematics. The COVID-19 pandemic is in full flow and medical experts are using mathematics to advise politicians on how to control our lives. Indeed one of these experts is himself an alumnus of Windlesham.
Maths was very much my strong suit at school and I was pleased to learn from my daughter that the Honours board still hangs in Pevensey with my name on it as a testament to that fact. She had asked to look me up when attending a conference at the school recently and this prompted Lee Haines, the alumni relations manager, to get in touch to try to tease out some reminiscences from me. Now I am a prisoner of the lockdown, I thought I might as well pass some time by taking a trip down memory lane.
I remembered reading nearly thirty years ago in one of the school magazines an appreciation of the life of Colonel Mike Francis, who taught me maths. I had a vague recollection of him mentioning me by name. Lee very kindly tracked down the magazine and posted it on the OWLS website; re-reading the article truly opened the floodgates of nostalgia for me.
The article itself on pages 10 & 11 of WHAM 1981 is well worth a read even if you never knew Colonel Francis. His portrait of the staff room in the late fifties will raise an eyebrow if not an outright laugh. For me, what was special was he remembered me after so many others had subsequently passed through his capable hands and he claimed to have had no favourites. I was by no means his star pupil in terms of ability, but obviously did well enough.
Colonel Francis, who acquired a certain strange nickname, for reasons I never understood, (I do not recall him smoking, unlike other members of staff I could mention). We did however enjoy imitating his very military bearing and habit of standing on one leg and swinging the other in a fairly stiff fashion as if taking a conversion on the rugby field.
He obviously took after Archimedes as he did a lot of thinking in his bath. He would often stride (not quite a march) into the classroom and begin the lesson “ … I was thinking in my bath last night …” He would then fix us with his piercing but benevolent stare as he threw out another little poser to torture our young minds, all the while standing on one leg and lining up the conversion with the other.
One I remember particularly well .......(click here to read more)
Tammy Marlar (OWL'80)
Windlesham - her constant companion
I arrived at Windlesham in 1976 at the tender age of eight, but with the luxury of an older brother and sister to ease my journey! After four idyllic years, I followed in my mother's (and Elizabeth Ann's!) footsteps to the relative penitentiary that is Cheltenham Ladies College, a world away from the carefree, co-ed Windlesham experience! But I was to return to Windlesham for two very happy stints as gap-year and graduate student teacher and matron, and have been closely involved with the school ever since in some shape or other.
After reading Law at Exeter University, I had a hugely diverse and enjoyable 20+ year career raising funds and awareness for environmental protection, wildlife conservation and sustainability causes. In 2013, I went to art school as part of a sabbatical to study photography, and 6 years on, I'm now a professional (and happy to say award-winning) photographer, specialising in fine-art nature photography, but also with a client base of families, businesses and events for whom I do portrait and documentary work.
The Windlesham legacy is such a powerful one for me, and 40 years on since leaving, I have a wonderful group of OWL friends, even swimming the English Channel in 2000 with friend and contemporary Phil McCrum as part of a relay team!
To see more of Tammy's beautiful photos visit:
Dr Thomas A Milnes Coates (OWL’99) and Miss AL Watson
The engagement is announced between Thomas, only son of Sir Anthony and Lady Milnes Coates of Helperby, York, and Annabel, elder daughter of Mr and Mrs Philip Watson of Hawkhurst, Kent
Mr Richard A Byam-Cook (OWL’98) and Ms MYF Munro
The engagement is announced between Richard, son of Mr and Mrs David Byam-Cook of Putney, London and Melody, daughter of Philip and Vicki Munro of Wivenhoe, Essex
Mr CB Fenton and Miss Joscelyn Bieneman (OWL’00)
The marriage took place on 11th July 2020 at St Nicholas and St Cyriac, South Pool, between Christopher and Joscelyn in glorious sunshine.
Hon Charles Chido Ezemenari to Chinyere Adindu (OWL’00)
The marriage took place on 27 June 2020 in London between Charles and Chi-Chi.
Frederick Hugo Ring born on 21st May 2020 to Laura (nee Hudson) and Tom (OWL’98), a brother to Max.
Rocco Urs Ernst Schwarzenbach born on 15th November 2020 to Michelle (nee Ackerman) and Guy (OWL’95), a brother to Rhea Francesca and Allegra Anna.
Matilda Louise Moffat born on 13th May 2020 to Francesca (nee Moore, (OWL’01) and Stuart.
Felix Oliver Richards Harris born on 19th June 2020 to Philippa (nee Denman (OWL'00) and Will
Leonard Robinson, fondly known as Robo at Windlesham, passed away in August. He was a wonderful man and was an integral part of our school until he retired with Ruth. They both often came back to support us and he will be very much missed by all who knew him.
Jethro Lyne (OWL’85), died at home in Dorset from cancer on 30 May 2020 aged 48. Adored husband of Amy; father of Saskia, Jasper and Misha; son of Mandy and Roderic. Art historian, mediaevalist, teacher, much loved friend to many around the world.
Antony Walker died, November 2020 at the age of 94. Hugely respected former Raleigh Housemaster, teacher of Classics and master i/c Tennis in the 1970s & 80s. Many will also be grateful for all the weekend hospitality given by him and his wife Mary, who survives him, at their Storrington home.
Postponed But Not Forgotten
We have had to postpone many of our events this year, however, we want you to know we are making plans for 2021.
Once normal life is restored we hope it will be a busy year, we are very much looking forward to inviting our alumni back to school and celebrating with you.
Here are just a few of the events we are planning:
Keeping In Touch
We are always interested in hearing news from our alumni.
Please let us know how you are and what you are doing. We have a very strong alumni community and we would like to be able to help you help each other in this every changing, challenging world.