Written by Abigail Wharne, Archivist
Friday, 03 November 2017

Almost two years ago, Hew Prendergast emailed the College about his ancestor, Sir Harry North Dalrymple Prendergast (BC 1849-50). We were thrilled to hear from a descendent of such an illustrious OB, and invited Hew to speak to our 4th Form. Much to their delight, Hew brought along one of Sir Harry’s swords. It was fascinating to see an object with such an exciting story; an object which also prompted me to learn more about the sword that had once been kept in the College’s chapel, above Sir Harry’s plaque.

Interest in the sword was reignited this week when I read two articles – one in The Telegraph and another in The Times. These fascinating pieces focused on the sad story of Sir Harry’s missing VC. I decided to write to the editors, referring to another article written in 2005, which stated that Sir Harry’s sword disappeared from the College in the 1960s. To my surprise, The Telegraph wrote a follow-up piece, which can be found here.

As Eleanor Steafel writes, we are now looking at records held in the archive to see if we can discover more about the sword, and where it might be now.

Abigail Wharne


Abigail joined the Development team in April 2015, having previously worked for the University of Sussex Special Collections, East Sussex Record Office and Towner Art Gallery. She regularly answers historical enquiries and catalogues archive material, so that it can be accessed by College staff and the public.

Abigail also manages the school’s heritage collections, including rare books and a wide range of artefacts. As a qualified teacher, she enjoys using archives to inspire and educate Brighton College pupils.

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