A pre-season rugby day, followed by a dinner and dance in the evening, was held at the College on Saturday 31 August 2002. Its purpose was to celebrate 30 years of rugby under the tutalege of John Pope. John has relinquished his title of 'Master in charge of rugby' to Richard Halsall and it seemed an appropriate way to recognise John's contribution to rugby at the College.
The association’s dinner this year was a select affair. As if consciously to complement last year’s, when 30 years of coeducation was celebrated, an overwhelmingly male party gathered together in the Dining Hall on a cold November night. It was a most convivial evening of good wines, an excellent dinner, and of course one in which nostalgic reminiscences hung in the air like cigar smoke.
It may have taken 160 years but Brighton College finally knows how to throw a really good party! After a rainy start to the day it was decided to abandon the planned Reception on the Lawns, opting for the safety of the Great Hall. Around 450 guests filed past the ‘living statue’ to enjoy a glass or two of Champagne as the College Swing Band demonstrated why it is in such high demand. Street entertainers mingled among the dinner jackets and gowns to create a truly joyous atmosphere.
The inaugural Vice-Presidents’ Luncheon was held on Thursday 14 July at the Army & Navy Club, courtesy of Peter Miller (C. 1945-49). In spite of the chaos caused to the London transport system by the events of the previous week, all fourteen guests made it in time, many observing the 2 minute silent tribute to the victims of the London terrorist outrage en route.
In spite of all the rain dances and prayers for divine intervention to assist the England cricketers at the Oval, Brighton College was blessed with warm sunshine for OB Day, which was fitting because for some, it was their first visit in many a year.
Twenty five years is a long time but what about the 1949 PE team? They were there too and so were quite a few of those who were only yesterday (as it were) walking across the quad without a (real) care in the world. For those of us celebrating a silver anniversary of leaving the College it was for most the first time we had returned for a great many years.
The first OB gathering of 2006 was an all male affair that in terms of College attendance spanned over 50 years!
As numbers go, the evening started off slowly, but built to a comfortable throng of 25 or so Old Brightonians. When I arrived shortly after 6pm David Gold (S. 1986-91) and Adam Belson (R. 1979-84) were the sole attendees – apparently trying to convince a sceptical barman that this evening would be worth his while...