Recollections from Founder's Day
To mark the 100th anniversary of the death of Ardvreck’s Founder, W E Frost, we held a Founder’s Day on Saturday 21st May 2022.
To mark the 100th anniversary of the death of Ardvreck’s Founder, W E Frost, we held a Founder’s Day on Saturday 21st May 2022 to which we invited all our alumni, past headmasters and past members of staff. Over 100 guests joined us for a very happy and memorable event which included tours of the school, lunch in the Crabbie, a commemoration service in Crieff Parish Church and a slap up cream tea.
The guests, aged between 21 and 94, shared memories, mulled over archives, told stories and sang the school song very loudly! The thank you letters that we received after the event are testament to the love and affection with which the school is still held by all those who have passed through her.
“Thank you so much for organising Founder’s Day and opening up the school to us, Old Ardvreckians. It’s incredible how much of an imprint on my brain Ardvreck has — from touch and smell to the geography of the school. The butterflies coming up the drive, the grain of the banister, the view from the dorms, the people we met— it all unlocked so many memories.”
“It was a thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile occasion and a great opportunity to see how well the school has gone from strength to strength since I left it sixty years ago! I was most impressed by the cheerful demeanour, the smiles and the genuine enthusiasm of all the pupils involved in the stewarding and signposting in the school and at the church. The school has lost none of its high standard of catering. (The only thing I remember being particularly inedible was the cod roe which was served up occasionally for supper on Saturdays after Barvick!)”
“It was interesting that so little has changed in the detail and layout of the main building. It was the little bits of detail that sprung to my notice after nearly 70 years : the cramped passage down to the toilets and boot room, and the Crabbie hall; the relics in the Library; some of the panelling. The general feel of the old place was instantly present. However, having taken a straw poll amongst alumni, we all agreed that the biggest change was that it was warm. It is hard to explain just how desperately cold it used to be.”
“It was particularly lovely to realise that the school we saw in front of us in church was no different from the school we left behind in terms of its values and aspirations.”
“I must acknowledge the extraordinary pupils. They were so helpful and confident, and first class guides. I’m sure that we were not in that league. I guess that reflects what you and your staff are putting into the mix! There are tough times ahead, and it is stultifying to try to imagine what your current pupils will have to face in the next 70 years. We had it easy. But what I saw gives me confidence that you are at least giving them the best chance.”
“I thoroughly enjoyed it. Meeting some contemporaries and others was a distinct advantage and revisiting the old school that I had not been back to since leaving in 1955 was a great experience. I was particularly impressed by the girls that showed us around with their knowledge and enthusiasm – not shy in any way! This showed me that the school is in very good hands.”
“I fully enjoyed our visit to the school. I felt the very tangible groundswell of family and community spirit that is within the whole body of the school. Walking around, I found the arboretum atmosphere of the green and copper canopy to be very nourishing. The gathering space under the big tree in front of the school looks like a valuable anchor to the garden world that surrounds you all. And there are unkempt wild places that I remember and am glad to say have survived your otherwise ambitious new developments. Glad for the visit.”
“What a wonderful day I had on Saturday! I wanted to thank you for all the hard work you put in to make the Founder’s Day celebration such a success. It was not only an excellent tribute to Mr Frost, but to his vision of the unique school that has continued to evolve and remain true to the values he set in place. For me, it was a great joy to see the Ardvreck where I worked in the 1980s still has that special ‘family feel’.”
“Well done to the head boy and head girl at the church service. You both did a brilliant job of putting your reading across. The head girl looked like she was really enjoying telling the story, which really drew the congregation into be part of it. Well done done to the junior choir and also the pipes and drums! The school should be proud of you.”
We hope to hold more events in 2023 so please get in touch with Annie Le Roy-Lewis (firstname.lastname@example.org) to update your contact details.
“I absolutely loved it and I came away with such a happy feeling of nostalgia and love for the school. It was so nice to meet so many lovely people and see lots of old faces, most of whom I have not seen since I was 12 years old. I really enjoyed seeing some of my contemporaries again and giggling around some of our old haunts. “
“What a friendly and happy place the school is, the changes and improvements that have taken place since I left the school in 1958 are almost beyond belief. It was lovely to see all generations there and a good reflection on how Ardvreck remains such a happy place.”
“Mr Frost would have been quite overwhelmed at the great success of his school. It was great to chat to so many fine pupils, all most polite and well turned out, I hope they were not too bored with my reminiscing!”