OWs Celebrate Their “Four Musketeers”

John Branston, Bob Schad, Ken Nicholas & Dick Glynne-Jones

With a combined service of 170 years to Whitgift School, four retired teachers, all in their 80s, basked in the adulation of four generations of their former pupils at a dinner held in their honour at the Whitgift Sports Club in Croham Road on Friday, March 25th.

More than a hundred OWs aged between 35 and 75 gathered to celebrate the careers of Ken Nicholas, Bob Schad, John Branston and Dick Glynne-Jones. Pip Burley, WA Chairman, said: “It must be very unusual, if not unique, for a group of pupils, some now well into their seventies, to be able to join together to acknowledge the debt we owe to four fine schoolmasters. They touched our lives and – for better or for worse – influenced the way we are today. Those years did indeed seem ‘golden’ and we hope that these four indomitable characters share the same affectionate memories of us as we do of them.”

The French-themed dinner, prepared by resident Chef Richard Woodall, included French Onion Soup, followed by Coq au Vin and a selection of French cheeses. A highlight of the evening was a video tribute by celebrated Old Whitgiftian actor, Martin Jarvis, filmed in his home in Hollywood. Other tributes came from retired Headmaster, David Raeburn and multi award-winning author, Old Whitgiftian Neil Gaiman.

In proposing the toast to the “Four Musketeers”, distinguished Old Whitgiftian, Sir Jeremy Cooke QC said: “These men shaped our lives and we are lucky to have this opportunity to say ‘thank-you’”.

As the end of the evening each ‘musketeer’ was presented with a framed cartoon of the quartet as a memento of a special and moving occasion.

WA Members will soon be able to view Martin Jarvis’ video tribute in the Members’ Area of this website. Coming soon!