On Friday 11th January pupils of Whitehill School and St Mungo's Academy joined together at Glasgow Cathedral to commemorate the life of our patron saint, Mungo. Both sets of pupils read out their prepared question and answer summaries on the life and times of St Mungo, then laid wreaths of flowers at the tomb in the crypt of the cathedral.
This annual event is part of the Medieval Glasgow Trust St Mungo week and whose mission is to advance the understanding of the heritage of Glasgow from its foundations in the 6th century AD, with a focus mainly on its mediaeval development within the period 1100 to 1600. It is good that both Whitehill School and St Mungo's come together as part of this.
On 27th September, a group of 15 of our number visited Oran Mor in Glasgow to view the murals and ceiling painted by our former pupil and Achievement Award winner, Alasdair Gray. We were all astonished by the artwork, the imagination and the sheer technical accomplishment in getting up to do the ceiling. Not far off Michaelangelo.
We completed the visit with an excellent lunch.
The Autumn Lunch was held at the Marriott on Thursday 11th October, attended by 50 FPs and current pupils.
We had a very enjoyable lunch, followed by the raffle which culminated with the star prize, afternoon tea for two at the recently opened “Mackintosh at the Willow” on Sauchiehall Street. Gordon Caskie, who has recently moved house found an excellent watercolour painting of the old school building which had been painted by George Taggart, who passed away earlier this year. Gordon offered this painting to be auctioned for club funds.
It was “won” for an undisclosed sum by Ron Fernand.
Iain Callander made a short speech highlighting the stories of three former pupils and their sacrifice during the First World War, followed by a reading of a poem by John Munro. A small cross with a poppy remembering the loss of Robert Jeffrey and sent to us by his great niece was given to Molly Reid who will place it on the memorial at the school.
The annual dinner, held at the Marriott in Glasgow on 15th March, was acknowledged by all to have been a great success. Good food, a good venue and excellent company topped off by an inspirational speech and toast to the school by Mr Jamie Allan Brown one of our younger former pupils who has already achieved so much in his short career. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr Lillious Purvis, who will celebrate, this May, her 90th birthday. Lillious grew up in the east end of Glasgow during WW2, attended Whitehill in the 1940's and went on to Glasgow University from where she graduated with an M.A. However after a short teaching career, she returned to university to study medicine. She had to work weekends and evenings to pay her way and had to fight her way through the “system” to finally succeed in her chosen field. Lillious gave a short acceptance speech, addressed to us all, but specifically fitting for the current pupils in attendance. Her message was to never give up, work hard and achieve your goals whatever they are and do the right thing.
Dr Lillious Purvis with pupils Jamie Allan Brown Iain McLean
The evening closed, with Robin Brunton passing on the president's badge to Iain McLean. Iain gave a short speech summarising his years at the school and his career in industry. He thanked Robin for his two years as president and finally gave the vote of thanks to the hotel staff and the committee.