Whilst the weather threatened to dampen spirits, the alumnae came out in force - undeterred by the blustery, cloudy day. They were welcomed with a wonderful bubbly reception in the recently inaugurated Ayckbowm room.
For those of us who remember it as Sheldon or the original staff room, then a Maths classroom...its new function provides a perfect arena for showcasing archive materials, hosting small gatherings and as a meeting room.
The school caterers provided a lovely spread with a selection ranging from open sandwiches to melt-in-the-mouth macaroons! With wine a-plenty, the alumnae filled the Banqueting Hall with melodic chatter as they reminisced and caught up with each other.
Undoubtedly, Mavis Wilder (née Goddard 1939) stole the show as she regaled us with tales of her days as Head Girl. She spoke with much affection and was visibly moved whilst watching some of the current students read from the Head Girls’ diaries, detailing the concerns and responsibilities that this position entailed. Extracts from wartime diaries showed that in spite of horrendous wartime events, the Head Girls of that time still kept a close eye on commitment and standards of behaviour.
The school tours were as busy as always - with the new building a source of much interest for those who remembered the original Pickford warehouses. To see the school in its current form - a seamless blend of old and new - epitomises the journey Old Palace has taken in these last two decades. Many thanks to the girls who acted as guides for the tours – it is evident that love of the Old Palace buildings unites us all.
The summer reunion has become a traditional event in the year. The alumnae relish an opportunity to see each other and meet within the school grounds. It is a wonderful way to spend a hazy, rainy, inclement, blistering hot (please delete as appropriate!) Saturday afternoon in June. With nostalgia the order of the day - a rare chance to reminisce with leavers that span decades.