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Old Collegians Newsletter

Friday 8 December 2023

Greetings from the Old Collegians office as we speed towards the close of another remarkable year!

I would firstly like to warmly welcome this year's College Leavers, the Class of 2019–2023, into our Old Collegians community and we look forward to having you back to events and reunions in the coming years! This week we also welcomed three new Honorary Old Collegians, Jo Bigford-Fleming, Claire Register and Allyson Duncan. These teachers have achieved the remarkable milestone of 21 years of dedicated service to the College, and I am sure many of our younger Old Collegians will have fond memories of them.

Once again, our reunions have enjoyed excellent attendance, drawing a lively community of over 600 Old Collegians and 200 of their partners at our various events this year.

In August, 70 Old Collegians and partners, ranging in years from Leavers of 1958–2016, gathered at The Caledonian Club in Belgravia, London, hosted by Rector, Christine Leighton. A heartfelt thank you to all who attended, contributing to the success of what turned out to be the most well-attended London reunion we've had. 
Photo Album >

This term, our Gentlemen's Lunch witnessed an impressive turnout, boasting 115 Old Boys aged between 73 and 97, gathering to reminisce and toast to the College's enduring spirit.
Photo Album >

We recently held a 10 Years On reunion for the Class of 2009–2013 and it was wonderful to see the accomplishments and endeavours of some of our younger Old Cols since leaving the College.
Photo Album >

A personal highlight for me was reconnecting with many alumni at the Christchurch A&P Show last month. A heartfelt thank you to those who took the time to stop by and say hello!

As we gear up for another exciting year, our calendar is brimming with events, including the reinstatement of the 30 Years On reunion and a Dunedin regional event. We look forward to welcoming many of you back, especially those who haven't revisited the College since their school days. Here's to the memories we've shared and the ones yet to be made!

For more information about these events, please click here >

I look forward to seeing some of you in the upcoming months.

Warm regards

Lisa Clark
Alumni and Community Relations Co-ordinator

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David and sam

OLD COLLEGIAN VISITORS TO THE COLLEGE

Last week I had the unexpected pleasure of giving a tour of the College to two of our special Old Collegians. David Solomon (1966–1971, Deputy Head Prefect, Drum Major, pictured right) and Sam (Simon) Schoeller (1967–1971, Prefect) dropped by to explore the new facilities and opportunities available to current students. During their visit, they shared cherished memories of their time at the College.

Sam, now a skilled wood carver and sculptor, has been residing in Switzerland for over 40 years. On the other hand, Dave, based in Christchurch, is likely familiar to many of you, especially for his remarkable staff tossing abilities. According to Sam, Dave could effortlessly throw his staff three stories into the air and never miss the catch, even in the challenging winds of a Canterbury nor'wester!

In a rare and impressive feat, Dave clinched the Open Staff Flourishing Title at the Nationals for three consecutive years from 1970–1972. At his second victory, a crowd of 17,000 rose to their feet in an unprecedented standing ovation at Carisbrook, Dunedin. This recognition showcased Dave's exceptional skills and left a lasting mark on the College's history.

SPORTS ACHIEVERS' WALL APPLICATIONS

We are updating our Centenary Sports Achievers’ Wall, located in the spectator gallery in Gym 2, and we welcome applicants from our Old Collegians community who fit the criteria and are not currently recognised.

Aim: to honour those students and staff who have achieved national and international representation at the highest level in sport.

The Old Collegians who meet the following criteria will be honoured by inclusion in the visual display on the upper pillars in Gym 2:

  • top level national title holders and / or representation, open grade, or ultimate team. New Zealand age-group champions are not included. The sport must have a clear egalitarian process for selection of national representatives;
  • official team members, either as athletes or officials, at the Commonwealth Games, Olympic Games, or Open-grade World Championships. Age-group championships or youth games are not included;
  • St Andrew’s College must be the final secondary school attended, or any past student who achieved national open grade representation during their full-time attendance at St Andrew’s College, regardless of subsequent school attendance;
  • can be representatives of other nations.

Please fill in the form to be considered for this special wall of recognition by clicking here > 

The list of names already recognised can be viewed by clicking here >

The deadline for submissions is Wednesday 20 December 2023. Please email your completed form to PDI@stac.school.nz.

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FROM THE ARCHIVES: MEMORIES OF BOARDING IN STROWAN HOUSE

Strowan House started life as a simple weatherboard farmhouse, built in the mid-19th century. With the determination of College founder, Rev. A.T. Thompson, the St Andrew’s College Board secured the purchase of Strowan House in 1917. A small army of tradespeople completed considerable works over the Christmas holidays ready for the start of Term 1, 1918, with Strowan’s 20 rooms transformed for use as staff and boarders’ accommodation and classrooms. The boarders slept in dormitories which had been created upstairs and had their meals in the downstairs dining room. There were tough times throughout the College’s first year at Strowan, with World War I still raging in Europe, a rapidly growing roll putting pressure on rudimentary dormitories for boarders providing barely adequate accommodation during a freezing winter, and the outbreak of Spanish flu.

In 1919 the accommodation crisis was solved by the construction of the infamous Dorm 6, an upstairs open-air boarders’ dormitory, which stretched along the west side of the building. A canvas blind was let down at night, providing scant protection from wind and rain. During the early decades of the College’s history, many boarders completed their schooling while living in Strowan House. It was their home, as well as their place of learning, alongside the day boys. By 1930, boarding facilities had been established on campus and only the senior boarders remained living in Strowan House, many in the infamous Dorm 6. In the early 1950's, sliding windows replaced the canvas blinds in the remaining open-air dormitories. Gone forever were the swirling mists and driving rain that invaded the dorms during the cold winter months, along with the maddening flapping of canvas which kept everyone awake on the windy nights. 

In 2023, our boarders are a lot more indulged than many of the predecessors!  We now have three boarding houses on the campus, Thompson and Rutherford, (new three-storey buildings which opened in 2013), and MacGibbon (which was refurbished in 2012).  Students share twin or quad rooms, divided into semi-private spaces encompassing a comfortable bed, desk, wardrobe and storage facilities, and a pin board.

Each house has communal spaces where students can relax and socialise, with day lounges on each floor of Thompson and Rutherford Houses. The food served in the Dining Room has changed a lot too, and Russell and his team serve delicious and nutritious meals to over 165 boarders each day. 

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OBITUARY: (Mostyn) Stewart Elms (OC 1953)

(Mostyn) Stewart Elms attended St Andrew’s College from 1947 – 1953 as a boarder. Throughout his time at the college, he displayed exceptional qualities, eventually earning the esteemed position of school prefect during his final year. His time at St Andrew's was marked by his active involvement in the Pipe Band, as well as his passion for rugby and boxing.

Following his graduation, Stewart pursued higher education, earning a B. Com from Otago University. Throughout his life, he embarked on three distinct careers, each marked by his unwavering dedication and exceptional accomplishments.

In 1962, Stewart acquired The City Hotel in Dunedin. It was here that he welcomed and hosted numerous special guests, including legendary figures like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and Shirley Bassey. In 1970, he was awarded a scholarship to study Hotel Management in Hawaii, further expanding his horizons and expertise.

In 1976, Stewart purchased Bushey Park Farm at Palmerston. Through his hard work and determination, he successfully restored the farm to its former glory, making it capable of supporting 6,000 stock units.

In 1990, at the age of 55, Stewart ventured into yet another field, attending Lincoln University in Christchurch, where he achieved a Post Graduate Diploma of Viticulture and Oenology. His dedication to viticulture led to the establishment of Felton Road Winery in Bannockburn, Central Otago, in 1991. Under his guidance, the winery became one of the most recognised producers of Pinot Noir in the country, earning numerous awards and accolades. Many of the original staff from the early days continue to contribute to the winery's success.

In 2000, Stewart sold the Felton Road operation. Residing in Wanaka, he was able to continue his love for the outdoors. As a lifelong avid tramper and climber, he conquered many peaks in the surrounding region over the years, leaving his mark on the landscapes he cherished. Stewart was also known for his deep passion for exotic cars, owning many over his lifetime.

Stewart sadly passed away, aged 87, on 27 August 2023, and a memorial service was held in Wānaka on 4 November 2023. Stewart's legacy lives on through his loving family. He is survived by his devoted wife, Kay, and their four daughters, Tanya, Anna, Lisa, and Kate.

Stewart Elms' life was an extraordinary tapestry of diverse experiences, a testament to his unwavering commitment to excellence in all his endeavours. He will be fondly remembered and dearly missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him.

FAREWELL TO LONG-SERVING OCA EXECUTIVE MEMBERS

At the August 2023 Annual General Meeting (AGM), we regretfully said goodbye to two exceptionally dedicated individuals who served as pillars in the Old Collegians Association Executive.

Mark Mulholland (OC 1973), who commenced his tenure in 2002, held the position of OCA President from 2016 to 2018. Jonathan Wells (OC 1987), a member of the Executive since 2012, assumed the role of President from 2018 to 2020.

Mark and Jonathan, you leave big shoes to fill, and we express our heartfelt gratitude for your unwavering dedication and commitment throughout the years. Your contributions have set a high standard, and we extend our sincere thanks for the lasting impact you have made.

Gaisgich as blàithe!

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StAC 60 Years On3

60 YEARS ON: Class Of 1964–1968

We are looking forward to welcoming our 60 Years On group for Founders' Day weekend, Friday 8 March – Saturday 9 March.

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS >

OLD COLLEGIANS ANNUAL GOLF TOURNAMENT 2024

The St Andrew's College Old Collegian Association Golf Tournament will take place on Friday 5 April 2024 at the Waitikiri Golf Club.

The proceeds from this tournament will support St Andrew’s College Cricket.

10.45am – Registration
11.30am – Shotgun start

Cost is $70.00 per person (including the green fee, BBQ, food platter).

Open to all Old Collegians and friends of the College.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER >
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Christmas Eve Service 2 12023

2023 CHRISTMAS EVE CHAPEL SERVICE

The Christmas Eve Chapel Service will take place on Sunday 24 December at 6.00pm in the Centennial Chapel.

Everyone is welcome to this family friendly service.

STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN

At St Andrew's College, the annual Prizegiving is a much-anticipated event, and the 2023 edition proved to be no exception when it came to delivering extraordinary entertainment. This year, the spotlight shone on various talented groups, however, the true crescendo of the evening came during the grand finale, a rendition of Led Zeppelin's 'Stairway to Heaven' that left the packed auditorium of around 3,500 attendees astounded. The video has now been viewed hundreds of thousands of times, in New Zealand and internationally, with many thousands of comments received online from well-wishers, fans of rock music, and the St Andrew’s College community from around the world, with articles in various newspapers and magazines, radio and television interviews and even a BBC podcast! 

The ambitious performance, following an arrangement by the band Heart, featured around 100 singers and musicians, seamlessly blending the sounds of the College rock band and orchestra, enhanced by an impressive light show. The various musical groups involved only came together three days prior to Prizegiving to put the whole performance together.

We compiled a video capturing the magic of the finale number. Whether you missed the live performance, wish to relive the enchantment, or want to share the experience with friends and whānau who couldn't attend, we invite everyone to share our pride in our 2023 Prizegiving finale!

Click to watch on the College's YouTube channel
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KEY DATES 2024

2024 will see the following reunions:

10 Years On: Class of 2010–2014, Thursday 14 November 2024
30 Years On: Class of 1994–1998, Friday 10 May 2024
40 Years On: Class of 1984–1988, 21–22 June 2024
50 Years On: Class of 1974–1978, 26–27 July 2024
60 Years On: Class of 1964–1968, 8–9 March 2024
70 Years On: Class of 1954–1958, Friday 18 October 2024 (in conjunction with Gentlemen's Lunch)
1st XV Rugby Reunion: Teams of 1954, 1964, 1974, 1984, 1994, 2004, 2014, Saturday 22 June 2024

The OCA also holds a number of other special events and functions throughout the year as listed below:

OCA Golf Tournament: Waitakiri Golf Club, Friday 5 April 2024
ANZAC Day: 
Centennial Chapel, Thursday 25 April 2024
Dunedin Old Cols Regional Catch Up: Wednesday 29 May 2024 (Venue TBC)
OCA Annual Dinner: Friday 16 August 2024
Gentlemen's Luncheon: 
 Friday 18 October 2024

The Old Collegians Association works closely with St Andrew’s College to facilitate an exciting programme of reunions and functions for Old Collegians.

The 10 Years On is taken from Year 13, and the others are from the year in which the Old Collegians started in third form (Year 9).

If you would like to assist in the organisation of your year group’s upcoming class reunion, please contact the Old Collegians Association by email at oldcols@stac.school.nz or phone Lisa Clark on +64 3 940 2085.

Old Collegians Reunions and Events >

E-REGULUS

You can now request to receive your Regulus magazine via email rather than a printed copy. Those with an overseas address receive this via email already, to reduce costs for the College in keeping with our whole-school sustainability goal. 

Please ensure your mailing address is up to date if you are living in New Zealand and want to receive the hard copy edition. See below form to complete to update your address in our system. 

In Regulus you will read about the academic and sporting successes of our current and past students, updates on the College, and all your Old Collegian news!

If you know of any Old Collegians you think should be featured in our Class Notes section of Regulus, or you would like to tell us what you are up to, we’d love to hear from you. It doesn’t have to be a significant achievement – our community just loves to hear about what fellow Old Collegians are doing. We also love seeing your wedding photos and new additions too!

To get Regulus in your inbox, or to share some news, please email oldcols@stac.school.nz and we can organise this for you.

To view online issues, please click here

Regulus NOV 2023
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SOCIAL MEDIA and StAC CONNECT

Want to keep up with the latest information on reunions and your fellow Old Collegian's news and achievements? 

To join our Old Collegians Facebook page, please click here

To join our new Old Collegians Instagram page, please click here

In the spirit of Old Collegians connecting, StAC Connect on LinkedIn enables alumni to share their professional and personal experience and expertise with existing Old Collegians. These connections will help prepare and motivate our young Old Collegians for a successful future. To join StAC Connect, use the link on our LinkedIn page.

We look forward to connecting with you.

BABIES AND WEDDINGS!

Have you recently had a baby or been married?

Send us a photo of your baby or your special wedding day for our November Regulus magazine. We will also send all new babies a St Andrew's Bonny Bear!

Please email details to oldcols@stac.school.nz



 

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