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A Short History of Victoria College: 1980-1989
Compiled by A.M. Bellows
See also Sources and Selections
On 23rd March 1980, Mr R.A.
Postill, M.A., T.D. died at Verrington Hospital, Somerset, aged
73. He had been unwell for some time. Mr Postill had been headmaster
for twenty-one years from 1946 to 1967.
Two memorial services were held in the Great Hall, one for
the Old Victorians, and one for the present school. In an memorial
address to the latter, College master L.A. Landick (who had served
for sixteen years under Mr Postill) remarked that "Ronald Postill led
the massive task of post-war reconstruction, appointing staff,
instituting many activities and traditions upheld to this day.". Mr
Landick went on to comment that two years earlier, Mr Postill had
presented the Postill Trophy for cricket bowling to the College at an
Old Victorian’s dinner, and this, and his name on the headmasters
board, would remain to remind the school of him. Bible readings were
also given by the current headmaster, Martyn Devenport, and the
vice-president of the Old Victorian’s Association, Advocate F.C.
Hamon. The service ended with a verse of the Carmen.
As well as the death of Ronald Postill, the year was also
marked by the death of Senator Cyril Le Marquand (at College
1916-1919), who collapsed and died on 27th February 1980, aged 77,
while attending a colleague’s funeral. "Father of the House" in the
States’ Assembly, he had been a member of the States for 32 years,
with the last 23 of these as Jersey’s "chancellor" - president of the
Finance and Economics Committee.
Michael Wagstaff was awarded a King Charles I Scholarship at
Pembroke College, Oxford, to read engineering science.
The School Science Fair again had overall prize winners from
the College. This was, jointly, Simon Bisson and John Le Fondre for
their Channel Tunnel project.
Bertram Bree was chosen by the Young Ornithologists Club of
Great Britain to be their "young ornithologist of the year".
The Drama Society (linking Victoria College and Jersey
College for Girls) produced "Charley’s Aunt". This was notable for
the performance of a young Russell Labey as Stephen Speltigue
"showing great promise as a character actor", according to the
review. The three main leads were taken by Jeremy Taylor (winner of
the Kenneth More prize for drama), Sean Patterson and Guido Omissi;
the latter stole the show with his drag act as the spurious Donna
The newly formed Victoria College Miniature Rifle club
completed its first season, with approximately eighty boys shooting
The Computer Studies activity saw three new 380Z
microprocessor research machines made available at Highland’s
College, which moved from tape storage to 5 inch and 8 inch
diskettes, and could be used for BASIC programming.
The Electronics Activity saw the first four entrants to the
A/O level in "Electronics and Electricity"; all passed, with pupil
Andrew Gray gaining a well-deserved "A" grade.
Football had a bad season, losing to Elizabeth College 1-5
at home, and 0-1 away. Hockey also saw the College lose to Elizabeth
1-2, and the College also lost its cricket matches. However the
Victorians redeemed themselves in the squash match against the
Elizabethans, with a resounding 5-0 win; the College plays winning
their games with ease. They became the first holders of a handsome
trophy donated and presented by Mr Harry Hickling.
An Old Victorian making the news was Mark J. Boleat; during
the year, he contributed articles about the Channel islands for the
Daily Telegraph and the Investors Chronicle.
In July, Derek Cottrill left the College to take up
theological training in preparation for ministry in the Church of
England. "Beaky" as he was popularly known, was, as colleague Stephen
Lucas remembered "a reserved and private person, yet one endowed with
a well-developed sense of humour". D.J. Cottrill came to the College
in September 1969 to teach history, moving to take on the position of
Head of the Junior School in 1976. He researched the history of
Victoria College, and wrote the history "Victoria College 1852-1972",
which was published in 1977.
Also leaving was Lieut.-Colonel R.J. Finch. "Dick" Finch, as
he was known had graduated in French and German in 1936, spent twelve
years in the Regular Indian Army, having a distinguished military
career which ended abruptly when he was wounded and invalided out of
the army. He came to Victoria College as a master in 1936, and had
over the years demonstrated his wide-ranging abilities by teaching
English, French, Latin, German, Geography, Mathematics and History,
and taking on the position of Housemaster at
College House from 1967 to 1974. He was
also noted for his "authoritative voice of command" by C.C.F. cadets
on the parade ground.
The aforementioned D.J. Cottrill had also been Group Scout
Leader for the 11th Jersey Scout Troop (comprising cubs, scouts and
venture-scouts), and this post was now filled by P.T. Germain, with
D. Penri-Evans taking over as Scout Leader for the College Scouts
P.T. Germain also received the Chief Scouts commendation for
his work in organising the Scout’s Island Gang Show; the College
entry included camels, Spaniards and Scotsmen!
The transfer from cubs to scouts and onwards to venture
scouts was now becoming a regular occurrence, and the entire group
now had around 100 members, with 34 in the College Scouts. A
reorganisation of patrols led to new patrol names being given -
Eagles, Lions and Kingfishers.
Given the increased numbers, and the cost of hiring
transport for excursions, it was decided to look towards the purchase
of a 15 to 20 seat minibus; this would be named the "Jubilee Bus", in
recognition of 60 years of continuous Scouting at the College.
The C.C.F. saw a reorganisation of leadership, with Group
Captain J.W.E. Holmes standing down from command of the R.A.F.
section, and A.E. Hill taking over. Also J.L. Le Breton handed over
the R.N. section to A.J. Dykes, so that he could concentrate more
fully on shooting.
More Old Victorians made the news with Michael De La Haye
(College 1969-1976) awarded an honours degree in French at the
University of Nottingham, with distinction in the spoken language. He
left the Island to take up a teaching post under the Tunisian
Following in the steps of Derek Cottrill, Old Victorian
Stephen Mourant (1965-1973 at College) left the Midland Bank Trust to
go to St. John’s College, Nottingham to study theology as a prelude
to entering the Church of England ministry.
Senator Ralph Vibert (College entrance in 1923) was voted
into office by the States as Jersey’s new "Chancellor" - President of
the Finance and Economics Committee.
Finally, the year saw the death of former master
Lieut.-Colonel R.L. Eden. Born in 1904, he died on 30th September
1980, aged 76. Eden began his teaching at the College in 1931 as an
assistant master teaching physics, and he reorganised the department
on more scientific lines than had hitherto been the case. During his
time at College, he was at one time Careers Master, Head of Science,
Vice Principal, Master in charge of shooting and Officer Commanding
C.C.F. In the latter capacity, he had commanded the Corps through its
O.T.C. days to its reformation after the Occupation as the J.T.C.,
then as it is now, the C.C.F. He was admired also for his ability to
defuse conflicts with his calm manner and quiet humour. When told
that a room would be named "Eden" to commemorate his service to the
College, he commented wryly that "It’s nice to have a thought of
paradise on the way to purgatory".
At the start of the year, College
House saw a complete refurbishment. Floors were carpeted,
curtains hung in windows, and the dormitories had new showers, baths
and lavatories fitted. The kitchens were re-equipped to include a
modern style canteen for day books. Able to take up to fifty
boarders, this was an attempt to revitalise the boarding facilities,
and stem the declining numbers, by modernising the building.
At the end of the Spring Term, Miss L.S.E. Biddles left to
further her teaching career in Canada. Also leaving was P.W. Doughty,
teacher of English and History.
On 21st April 1984, former teacher Captain N.C. "Paddy"
Blomfield died, aged 70. Prior to retirement, he had been a member of
staff at Victoria College for 35 years. He would be most remembered
for his donation, in 1964, of the much coveted Blomfield Trophy,
which is awarded each year for the best House in Sports.
Later in the year, on 16th August 1981, Mr Aubrey Basset
Jolley, former master at VCP, died.
Channel Television televised a local School Science Quiz.
The Victoria College Team - Jonathan Egre, Timothy Le Breton and
Brian Murray - were victorious over Elizabeth College Guernsey.
It was also a good year for the College in the School
Science Fair, with Daniel Laffoley being overall winner of the Shell
Shield of Science for his project on bats; he also earned a place on
the BBC Television Young Scientist of the Year programme.
Fame to came to John Searson, who was given the accolade by
the Jersey Sport’s Council of being their Sport’s Personality of the
The Dramatic society saw Ward Jenner and Dominic Omissi take
the leads in a dramatisation of Shakespeare’s "As You Like It".
The Computing Activity saw the introduction of four
Videogenie microprocessors in addition to the 380Z. A.C. Lavery’s
"Othello" program also gained the first prize in the Computing
section of the School Sciences Fair.
The school library was the beneficiary of an extensive range
of books covering every aspect of Chinese life and culture; this was
entitled the "Cole Wou Memorial Collection" and donated by the
parents of Wou in memory of their son.
Teachers leaving in the summer included two mathematics
teachers - Michael Allnut and Ian McWhinney, both of whom who had
taught at College from 1976 to 1981. Group
Captain J.W.E. Holmes, English Teacher (and World War II flying
ace), also retired, while Ronald Youngs retired as Head of English,
but continued to teach part-time.
The new Head of English was newcomer Mr. M. Talibard. Also
joining the College staff were Mr. Baker (mathematics, with special
responsibility for computing), Mr A. Hamel (modern languages master),
Mr Du Feu (mathematics) and Mr Norwoood (technical studies).
Daniel Hopwood won a scholarship to study at Atlantic
College in Wales; he was the first student from Victoria College to
The Prefect System came under fire when Peter Gem,
Housemaster of Braithewaite, thought it could be improved by making
all year seven boys School Prefects as this would reduce the burden
of duties on them; also, he thought that the system created, in the
upper years, "a so-called elite, where none actually exists".
However, Brian Vibert, Deputy Head, did not see any changes were
needed in the future. It is noteworthy than Peter Gem’s changes,
although not taken up, were in fact a reversion to the position of
Headmaster G.S. Farnell who, in 1893, introduced the Prefect System,
but gave the post to all sixth form pupils.
On 9th July 1981, Victoria College witnessed the first "Rock
Concert" in its 129 year history. Aiming to raise money for the
International Year of the Disabled, this featured local band "Back in
Omar’s Moustache are Fab" supported by "Captain Quake and the Shaking
The Scouts finally succeeded in raising enough funds for the
purchase of their "Jubilee" minibus, although £600 was still
required, and had to be loaned. The minibus was officially presented
to the Scouts during the "Superstars Fete" by the Chairman of the
Group, Mr David Binnington.
Academic success featured again this year, with Kevin Liffey
winning an Open Scholarship to Queen’s College, Cambridge.
New teachers starting this year included Mr Gilson
(Geography), Mr Pickup (Chemistry and Biology) and Mrs Wilton
(English and History), and Mrs Smith.
Retiring was long serving teacher Mr Fred Lang. He had been
a member of staff since 1959, and had been head of physics. However,
he was also a student of classics, and as recently as 1977 had been
the only member of staff capable of marking the Common Entrance
Examination paper of a candidate who offered Greek.
Also leaving was Mr Penri-Evans, teacher since 1979, who had
also been Scout Leader, and Choirmaster at St Mark’s Church.
A new canteen was open. This was situated on the site of the
6th form common room and the Scout’s tuckshop. A choice of food was
offered, including hamburgers, chicken and mushroom pie, beefburgers,
along with chips, spaghetti, potatoes, mixed vegetables and drinks.
It was found that the majority of the school’s pupils used the
canteen occasionally, with well over 200 using it daily.
The Drama Society saw the final production by Ronald Youngs.
This was "Romeo and Juliet" with Ward Jenner as Romeo and Tracey
Browne as Juliet. Russell Labey also garnered a good review for his
jovial buffoonery as Capulet.
The Electronics activity group, under the supervision of Mr
E. Le Quesne, saw pupils Peter Rayson and David Speight producing a
testing device for Mr John Birtwhistle, the States of Jersey
Educational Psychologist; this would test the capabilities of the
mentally handicapped, and cost £100 in parts to do what a
commercially available machine costing £2,000 could do. Rayson
and Speight would go on to win the Shell Shield of Science in the
School Science Fair for this work.
Chess was undergoing a revival at the College. Pupil Jon
Hawes became the new Island Under Nineteen Champion, while M. Rombold
won the Under Twelve Championship and went on to represent Jersey in
the Under Sixteen Island Chess Team.
In the summer, another long serving teacher to leave was
Colonel Hamon, who had decided to now retire from part-time teaching.
Also Mrs Smith left at the end of the summer term, being the
first member of staff in the history of the College to leave to have
a baby. Later, in October, she gave birth to a daughter, Jessica.
New members of staff in the Autumn term included I. Simpson
(Physics) and P. Fekete (English)
Braithewaite won the Blomfield Trophy for the first time in
In July 1982, the well-known actor, Old Victorian
Kenneth More, died after a long illness.
Born on 20th September 1914, he had come to the Island when his
father was appointed manager of the Jersey Eastern Railway, and began
his acting career while at the College. He was best known for classic
films such as "Geneviere" and "Reach for the Sky", and on Television
in "The Forsyte Saga". In 1957, he had presented the school with an
oil painting of King Charles I, which hangs prominently in College
Hall, but equally lasting a legacy was his institution in 1962 of the
annual Kenneth More Prize for Drama.
Another Old Victorian to die this year was H.H. "Skin" Le
Quesne, at College from 1922 to 1929. The founder of Le Quesne’s
Chemist, he died suddenly on 1st September 1982.
The Great Hall was refurbished, with a new oak floor being
In April, pupil Alan Hilton was awarded a grant from the
Barreau Art Scholarship, being accepted to study art at Christchurch
The Scouts also made the news with Trevor Prouse being
chosen as on of the Island representatives for the 15th World Scout
Jamboree; this was held in West Canada, in the foothills of the
The College Rock Group "Slip of the Tongue" were formed this
year, and performed in the Howard Davis Theatre.
The Computing Activity Group saw the introduction of the new
BBC microcomputer. This popular activity had now grown to 70 members.
Pupil Mark Rumbold continued to demonstrate his marked
ability at chess, being the youngest ever winner of the Jersey Chess
Club’s Norcroft Trophy.
On the 14th May 1983, former teacher Reg Nicholle died, aged
75. Best known for his sterling work with the R.N.L.I., Reg had been
a much loved "character" at College, whose stirring stories of the
sea would be long remembered, as well as his booming voice
reverberating across the gymnasium. His funeral took place at the
Town Church, which was filled to overflowing, when many congregated
to pay their respects to this famous Jerseyman. A memorial service
was also held at College Hall on 23rd May 1983. Modestly, he was
commemorated at College by a simple plaque on the wall of the
gymnasium, which reads "R.J. Nicholle, O.V., served here 1940-1971.
At the end of the summer term, Mr Smyth left; he was a
French and German teacher, who was also House Master in charge of
College House; the latter position was now filled by Mr. J.P.
It was a good year for football, with Victoria College
beating Elizabeth College 2-1. Pupil Bino Campanini also completed
trials with two mainland football clubs - Sheffield Wednesday and
Brighton and Hove Albion.
Cricket also saw Elizabeth College out for a mere 160,
losing to the College team.
A third win for the Victoria College against Elizabeth
College came with squash, where Victoria won easily 3-0.
Another sport, new to the College, was golf. Here, Michael
Preston won the Le Hocq Open with a handicap of 19.
In shooting, Xavier Gotel won equal third place on the
English Skeet Home International at Melton Mowbray with his prowess
in clay pigeon shooting; he scored 97x100, while the winner got
Also with shooting, Paul Willing and Tom Child were picked
to shoot for Canada.
The C.C.F. saw the retirement of Captain Frank Mustow
(teacher 1959-1983) after a career in the marines spanning 23 years.
He was presented with an inscribed cigarette lighter.
This year was notable for a number of Old Victorians making
the local news.
R.W. "Bob" Le Sueur (at College 1932-1938) made the news
with an amusing and informative letter published about his "Five
Month Jaunt to Asia". Bob had actually taught English for 24 years at
rival school Hautlieu until his retirement in 1981.
Another Old Victorian in the news was Geoff Hamon (at
College 1934-1941) who retired from the position of Jersey’s
Comptroller of Income Tax after 29 years.
Famous Old Victorian Colonel Blashford Snell began looking
for volunteers for his new expedition, Operation Raleigh.
Reverend Stephen Mourant (at College 1965-1973) gained his
Bachelor of Theology Degree at the University of Nottingham, and was
ordained into the ministry of the Church of England on 3rd July.
Jolyon J.S. Baker (at College 1971-1975) gained his equity
card in Gilbert and Sullivan’s "HMS Pinafore" at the Queen Elizabeth
Hall, Festival Theatre.
Lieut-Colonel "Mick" R. Lanyon (at College 1954-1962)
returned to Jersey to take up the post of Commandant at Jersey
The college magazine, "The Victorian", underwent a facelift,
with a new format and larger, more readable print
In April, a team of 7th year "economists" received a prize
for finishing first in the Channel Islands Section of Williams &
Glyn’s "Stock Piler" competition. Paul Le Marrec, Gary Keeling,
Seamus Morvan, Neil Harris, Peter Purvis and Jonathan Hubbard were
presented with a trophy from the bank’s local manager, Ray Sidaway.
Eighteen teams had taken part in the Islands.
The summer term saw the departure of a large number of
teachers. Leaving to other schools were Mrs Wilton, Mr Evans, Mr A.J.
Vardon and Mr L. Inness. Retiring from teaching were Mr J. Martland
and Mr R. Gasston.
Mr Peter Gem, although retiring from full-time teaching,
would continue part time. He donated a Drama Cup to be presented
annually for a House Drama competition. The entry by Braithewaite won
the cup this year, with their performance of "The Hole", directed by
The new Head Prefect, Adrian Staite, also demonstrated a
flair for drama, winning the Kenneth More Prize for Drama.
New teachers arriving in the autumn included Mrs Montgomery
(Economics Department), Mrs Curgenven (Physics and Technology), Mrs
Chipperfield (Chemistry), Miss Arnold (English and Drama), Mr Haydon
(Modern Languages) and Mr Chevrau. The College was now seeing quite
an influx of female teachers.
Music teacher Mr Davis acquired for the department the use
of a BBC microcomputer; on a more conventional note, he also set up a
Junior and Senior String Quartet. Music was undergoing a revival at
College, with fine soloists Jeremy Averty on the Trombone and James
Fisher on the Viola.
Sadly, the year saw the death of former College music
teacher Ken Parry; aged only 54, he died in England, where he was
living. Ken had been music teacher at three island schools including
College (from 1962-1971), and was instrumental in 1967 for being one
of the founders of the Jersey Youth Orchestra. He was also noted to
be a good sportsman and games master.
The Chess Activity on Friday afternoons widened its remit to
include all board games. As well as chess, other games such as
"Risk", "Ulcers" and "Scrabble" were also played.
In the Autumn, the Marine Biology Activity group was
re-formed after a lapse of ten years. Among other projects was
observation of the effect of the invasion of the Japanese seaweed
"Sargassum" in the gullies in Jersey, particularly at La Rocque.
Lastly, it was a troubled year for scouting, with numbers of
the College troop dropping to a mere ten boys; fortunately, the cub
packs at Prep were flourishing with numbers up to thirty.
Early in the year, Mr. Haden (French) and Mr Sheldrake
(Geography) left the College. Mr Sheldrake was starting a new career
in education for the visually handicapped. His place as Geography
teacher was taken by Mr Rotherham.
Art teacher Robert Tilling had a large canvas shown in the
Royal Academy summer exhibition; in March he received the Bronze
Medal of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours for the best
work of a non-member; the next month, he was elected a member.
No less than four boys from Victoria College were selected
to play for the Jersey Junior Muratti side against Guernsey at
Springfield. Unfortunately illness meant that Mark Rebindaine could
not take part, but Geof Mauger, Bino Camanini and Jon Kellett all
acquitted themselves well.
Continuing his success with chess, Mark Rumbold won the
Richardson Cup for being the best Jersey player under 18 in the
Twelfth Jersey International Chess Congress.
An opinion poll was taken of pupils at the College for "The
Victorian", which endorsed the school uniform in every year. Opinion
was firmly against the locking of school buildings during the lunch
hour, especially during cold winters. The most favourite classroom
was Room 3, with its "lively atmosphere" while C7 also was "bright,
big and modern". Least favourite was nearly "Tatam", but it was
beaten by Room 1, which was "dark, depressing, cold, cramped, gloomy
- looking derelict".
Later in the year, a further opinion poll was taken on the
proposed flooding of Queen’s Valley. 75 of those polled were in
favour, with 280 against. When asked whether the States would
disregard public opinion, and flood the valley anyway, 224 though
this would be the case, 110 thought not, and 21 were undecided.
A new 6th Form Council was set up and pupils elected to
represent the interests of the seniors, and foster better
communication between seniors and staff. Among the aims of the newly
formed Council was a proposal for a new 6th Form Centre, and for
better facilities for Directed Study Periods.
Dunlop won the House Play competition this year, with its
production of "The Wall", directed by Trevor Cristin.
Bruce House organised a charity committee whose aim was to
entertain rather than raise funds. Ninety senior citizens from St
Helier enjoyed their review, with lively sketches performed by Jon
Egre, Matthew Costard, Andrew Jones, Richard Farnham, Lee Popejoy,
Melvin Hefford and Sara Williams.
Membership of the computer club was now twenty three, and
the Genie computers were sold and all replaced with the new BBC
This year the School Science Fair took place at De La Salle
School’s new science laboratories. Alex Ohlson and John Brimicombe
were awarded the Shell Shield for Science in the Open Class. They
displayed three BBC microcomputers, together with software they had
written and add-on boxes they had created; the equipment was designed
for use by handicapped pupils at Mont A L’Abbe School.
A Guitar Club saw a brief entry into the School activities
this year, and staged several lively acts.
Squash saw the sixth year in a row in which Victoria College
beat Elizabeth College, winning 5-0. The winning team included Shane
Hollywood, Michael and David Steigenberger, Philip Le Cornu, and Ian
It was also a good year for football, where the first XI won
all its matches on tour.
Showing that the C.C.F. was not all ground based, Graham
Brooks and Douglas Mason were awarded R.A.F. flying scholarships.
The swimming pool, as a result of funds raised by the
P.T.A., was now covered by a "greenhouse". The pool cover project
meant that swimming could now take place throughout the year, and was
no longer dependent upon the vagaries of the weather. The States of
Jersey had funded 75 percent of the cost (of £44,000), leaving
the P.T.A. to successfully raise the remaining £11,000. The
organisation of the fund-raising was under the leadership of the
Chairman of the P.T.A., Mr Richard Pirouet.
A Summer Concert was held in the Great Hall on July 10th to
raise money for Jersey Hospital’s League of Friends. The music was
arranged and conducted by the Director of Music Peter Davis.
In the Autumn, the College was visited by former Prime
Minister, the Right Honourable James Callaghan, M.P., and the new
Lieutenant Governor, Sir William Pillar.
This term also saw the arrival of Modern Languages Teacher,
Mrs Claire Garton, to teach French and German.
Lunchtimes saw the re-introduction of Christian Fellowship
meetings under the able and experienced leadership of Geoff Powell,
while on Friday afternoons, Peter Gem explored the intricacies of the
New Testament Synoptic Gospels, preparing those attending for
Geoff Powell was also busy on Friday afternoons, when he
began a new activity - classes in Latin. This explored the classical
version of the language and looked at everyday life in Rome two
thousand years ago.
The Photographic Group staged a successful exhibition in the
Art School, with pictures by Mike Binnington, John Laurens, Nick
Touzel and Andy Jones; it was officially attended by the
Lieutenant-Governor, Admiral Sir William Pillar.
Scouting underwent a revival, with Mr Chris Totty taking on
the leadership of the Aubrey pack on the departure of Mr David
Thelland; meanwhile, the main College group expanded from six to
upwards of twenty by the end of the Autumn term. With the enthusiasm
of leader Mr Rotheram, they won the Island Commissioners Hiking
The Old Victorians held their 75th Annual Dinner in the
Great Hall on 20th December. It was the first attendance for the
Lieutenant Governor Sir William Pillar, and the final one for
retiring Bailiff Sir Frank Eraut; the latter was presented with the
curious retirement gift of a silver lump of sugar, suitably mounted.
The year began well, with the inspection of Victoria College
by Her Majesties Inspectorate of Schools (HMI); their report was most
favourable, and praised the many excellencies of the College.
The House Play "Day of Atonement" , directed by Matthew
Costard, was won by Bruce House.
It was a good year for sport, with Michael Guegan was
selected to run for Jersey at the Commonwealth games, and Jon Kellet
having football trails with Southampton.
Pupil Robert Macrae appeared on Channel Four’s "Countdown"
and won £200 for the College Scout Troop.
In the Summer, Geoff Powell left again, this time to take up
a position as Lay Pastor of St Aldate's Church, Oxford. Mr Baker took
over as Head of the Junior School.
Other teachers leaving included Sue Chipperfield (chemistry)
who was moving to Hautlieu, Marc Chevrau (English) who would be
taking up educational research at Lancaster University, and Elizabeth
Street who was leaving science teaching to return to her former
profession of pharmacy.
Arriving were Mr Le Petit from d’Hautree (English) and Mr
Hopkin (Mathematics and Computing). Mr Hopkin hoped to improve the
quality of Victoria College’s computing facilities to bring it up to
standard for the next decade and beyond.
The Computing Activity had now dropped in numbers to just
four pupils under Mr Shaw; there was, however, an improvement in the
standard of work produced from last year, when many taking part spent
time on creating and playing games. Of particular note were a 3D
graphics program by Dominic Chan and a Weather Analysis program by
Later in the year, Mr Hopkin set up a computer laboratory in
the then 6th form common room (renamed "Tricker"); the room was
filled with networked BBC master terminals to a server. Computing
began as a compulsory subject in the lower school, and optional for
the higher years.
The short-lived Guitar Club ended after the departure of
over 70 percent of the group this year.
Electronics Activity had changed to a much more academic
pursuit over the years, and now all pupils were steadily working
towards the new Cambridge O-Level syllabus.
Rugby returned, a new revival of an old College sport. The
College Team, for the first time in living memory, won the J.S.S.A.
tournament, defeating Hautlieu and De La Salle.
Also in the sporting arena, College boy Mike Guegan
represented Jersey in the Commonwealth games in July. He took part in
the 400 metre and 800 metre track events, winning 4th place in the
400 metre heats, and making a new Island record of 48.4 seconds. In
the semi-finals, he finished 6th. In the 800 metres, he did not do
quite so well, coming 6th; and so not going on to the semi-finals.
However his time of 1 minute 53.97 seconds was only 0.8 seconds
slower than Sebastian Coe, the winner of the heat.
The autumn term saw the introduction of the new GCSE
syllabus at Victoria College, together with a weekly "tutorial"
period for pupils.
Braithewaite won the Blomfield trophy for the fifth year in
The Art Department were looking at the possibility of a new
block, including a ceramic and craft room. The subject was doing
well, with pupil Stephen Bougeard being awarded the Picot Art
Mr Brian Vibert began a new Activity - Jersey Norman French.
With 6 pupils, he looked at the course book, "Le Jerrais Pour Tous"
by Paul Birt; the group also met with Dr Frank Le Maistre, O.B.E.,
F.R.A., whose "Dictionnaire Jerrais-Francais" was a labour of love
over forty years in the making.
A rival to the "Victorian" was created by the Media Studies
Activity group, under Mrs Chipperfield and Miss Garton, producing
"The Media Mag"; this offbeat look at the College sold at 20 pence.
Braithewaite won the Blomfield Trophy again.
A College revue held in the Howard Davis Theatre, and
lasting a mammoth three hours, raised £190 for Amnesty
The Marine Biology Group noted the vast spread of Sargassum
(Japanese Seaweed) around the coast of Jersey, principally in
The Sailing Club lost "Just Mary" in the hurricane force
storm of October 1987; fortunately, the boat was insured, but it
would be still difficult to find a suitable replacement..
The Old Victorians’ Annual Dinner in December had as guest
speaker Old Victorian "Dixie" Landick. Guest included the
Lieut.-Governor, Sir William Pillar and the new Bailiff, Sir Peter
In his speech to the Old Victorians, the current headmaster,
Mr Martyn Devenport, commented upon the recent attempts to remove the
6th form from the Colleges and turn Hautlieu into an Island 6th Form
College. "The College continues to flourish," he said, "despite dry
rot, a crumbling facade, rotten plaster - and some politicians and
On 14th December 1987, Old Victorians John Le Marquand and
Ralph Vibert left the States of Jersey, retiring from political life
together. Between them they had amassed 76 years in their time in the
States which dated from 1948.
Braithewaite won the Blomfield Trophy again, and also won
first place with the House Play competition; their entry was "Our
Man" by Daniel Clucas, which was directed by Philip Ozouf.
Sport against Elizabeth College was not so good, with
Victoria College losing the Dorey Cup in Tennis by 9-0 for the first
Two Chess teams from College competed in the Times National
Telephone Competition. In the local schools cup, College took all the
trophies, with Daniel Bunting, under 12 champion, Andre Short, under
14 champion, John Le Quesne, under 16 champion and Mark Rumbold,
under 19 champion.
The new School Council discussed House Colours, a new type
of tie for Prefects, and the Directed Study System.
At the School Prize Giving, Martyn Devenport, headmaster,
expressed concern that the new facilities and buildings which had
been planned for 1987 had been delayed three times. "Four principal
areas require attention," he said, "Art and Design, Technology,
Computers and Sport". He put the delay down to excessive demands on
the States for other Capital Projects.
July saw the departure of Mr L.A. Landick. "Dixie", as he
was popularly known, had been a teacher at the College for 37 years,
and had re-introduced the German language to the curriculum after the
Second World War.
Also leaving were John Du Feu, Mathematics teacher since
1981 at College, and Norman Bailey, member of Art Department since
1971; Mr Bailey took up the post of Head of Art at Hautlieu.
The regular Summer Concert was cancelled this year, because
of too few people wishing to attend. However the College held a
successful, well-attended, Summer Fete in July. This was used to
raise funds to launch the new Victoria College Trust Fund. The fete
included raffle tickets, a "dunk tank" for members of staff, various
stalls of produce and goods, "beat the goalie", bean bag throwing and
other numerous attractions. £3,000 was raised for the Trust Fund
Scouts, under new leader Mr Peter Le Sueur, recaptured the
Island Commissioners Hiking Challenge Trophy. Scouting activities
this year included canoeing, abseiling, camping, bivouacking,
shooting and orienteering; in May there was a visit to Sark, and in
June there was a week spent in the Lake District.
The Scout Hut was refurbished, with new carpets, new walls
and a telephone installed.
In the Island Cub Gang Show, held at the Opera House, the
cubs performed "The Sound of Music" under the leadership of Chris
Scouts from the local troop also participated in the Jersey
Kenya Project 1988 to provide two schools in Kenya with clean
drinking water by building two water "harvesters" - large reinforced
concrete tanks for rainwater storage.
Victoria College organised a golf tournament at the St
Clement’s course, and this was won by pupil James Birch.
The Sailing Club were still seeking a replacement vessel for
"Just Mary". In the meantime, the Youth Service allowed them the use
of the Bosun Dingy fleet based at St Aubin’s Fort. As well as this,
in July, ten pupils under the supervision of Mr Blythin spent a five
day cruise along the Brittany coast in the "Nantucket Trader", a
forty-five foot schooner; they covered a total distance of 150
New teachers in the Autumn term were Mrs Sibelle George
(modern Languages), Adrian Pearce (Mathematics) and Giles Bois (Old
Victorian 1969-1972, now part time art teacher).
The new Science Club began meeting every Monday after
school. The pupils worked on a variety of projects, with James Young
winning the Gold Award for his project on "Behaviour Pattern of a
The Victorian saw a change of editor from Mike Talibard to
The Theatre Group, eight boys and five girls, was now
working towards a GCSE in "Drama and the Theatre"; this was a two
The arts also saw the introduction of the Landick Cup, names
and presented by retired teacher "Dixie" Landick for the highest
score by a House in Arts Competitions, these comprising Drama, Art
and Music. This year Braithewaite won by a single point, for despite
Dunlop winning the House Play Competition, Braithewaite made up
points in Art and Music.
The House Plays this year were "Next Time I’ll Sing to You"
by James Saunders, produced by Dunlop (first), "Luther" by John
Osborne produced by Bruce (second), "The Birthday Party" by Harold
Pinter produced by Braithewaite (third) and "Waiting for Godot" by
Samuel Becket, produced by Sartorius (fourth).
A new activity - "car maintenance" was began by 6th formers,
who began by working on an old 1872 Vauxhall Viva; this vehicle was
renamed the "Vauxhall Victoria".
Computing saw yet another innovation under Mr Hopkin, with
the introduction of a modem connection and a Victoria College
Bulletin Board system.
The Victoria College dramatic society’s production this year
was J.B. Priestley’s "When we are married". In a change from the
norm, it was performed at the Art Centre and not at the Howard Davis
Theatre. The director of this comedy was Julie McLoughlin. Of the
cast of sixteen, special mention was made in reviews of Alison Ryan
and Jane Delmer who together provoked much laughter from the
audience; also Conrad Yates was notable for bringing a comic
highlight in his small roll as the major.
While the arts showed a resurgence, there was a decline in
the C.C.F. numbers, with a number of long-term pupils moving to
become senior NCOs, but many less younger cadets, leading to an
imbalance between "chiefs" and "indians".
However, this did not prevent a contingent going to Dartmoor
Adventure training at Easter, supervised by Messrs. Tostevin, Dykes
and Pearce, and based at Okehampton Army Training Camp. The programme
included three days expeditions across the moor, and three days
caving, rock-climbing and abseiling.
Time in England was also spent to Geography pupils. The
A-Level Geography field course went to Slapton Ley Field Centre in
Devon. This was the first time that girls from Jersey College for
Girls had attended to course alongside boys from Victoria College.
May saw a Royal Visit by the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
She was escorted around the College grounds by headmaster Martyn
Devenport, and was introduced to Miss Victoria Aubrey and Frank
Lewis, BEM. Michael Hedditch, head boy, read and presented the Loyal
address to the Queen on behalf of the College. Her Majesty then
awarded the Gold Medals and History Prizes. Keith Dixon received the
Gold Medal for Science, Dominic Chan the Gold Medal for Mathematics,
Philip Le Cornu the Queen’s Senior History Prize, and Marc Read the
Junior History Prize. An extra days holiday was awarded by the Queen
to commemorate her visit, and another commemoration was made by
Connetable Iris Le Feuvre, Chairman of the Governors, planting a tree
for her Majesty in the school grounds.
Old Victorian and well-known poet Jeremy Reed was
commissioned by Mike Rumfitt, editor of the Jersey Evening Post, to
wrote a "Poem for the Queen", published in the Jersey Evening Post,
to honour her majesty’s visit to Jersey.
It was a good year for hockey, with Adam Garwood and
Alistair Burt both having trials for the Hampshire County Team.
Even better results were shown in shooting, where pupils Ian
Jones and Conrad Yates shot in the July U.K. Cadet Rifle Team in the
inter-services match at Bisley; the team came second, beating the
service teams of the Regular Army, Royal Navy, Royal Marine and Royal
Head of Art, Robert Tilling, was M.C. at the First National
Blues Festival in Burnley over the Easter holidays and delivered a
lecture on the blues, ragtime and gospel singer, the Rev. Gary Davis.
As the Summer term began, so did a three year programme to
restore the College stonework, which had sadly deteriorated over the
years, with the softer rock and cement .badly eroded.
Staff leaving at the end of the Summer term were John Perry
(biology), Stephen Lucas (history), Colin Benson (english) and Giles
Leaving teacher John Perry, M.A., M.I. Biol., came to the
College in 1963 as a biology teacher. In an appreciation given by
Brian Vibert, he was described as "exacting but fair, versatile in
his approach, ready to change his techniques and attitude to teaching
when he felt it necessary, even if he did not personally wish to. He
loved the subject he taught and expected others to enthuse too."
Stephen Lucas, also leaving, had been head of history since
September 1967, succeeding Frank Willy in the post. In the Second
World War he had served in Bomber Command from 1942 to 1947 as a 2nd
Pilot Flight Engineer and Warrant Officer. After, he graduated in
history at Jesus College, Cambridge. John Clapham, commenting on his
departure, said that he was "instrumental in introducing local
studies" and also "a producer of successful school plays, an
accomplished performer in many Island dramatic and musical
productions, and a talented and witty performer in a double act with
Colin Benson, teacher of English since 1976, had made an
important contribution to Victoria College in the implementation of
the "A" level in General studies.
The 11th Jersey Scout Troop now had 38 cubs (aged 8-11), 30
scouts (aged 11-15), with 12 adult leaders, and was at it strongest
for many years as it approached its 70th year, having been founded on
7th February 1921. Activities this year included abseiling, archery,
arrow work, athletics, bivouacking, building assault courses, camps,
canoeing, carol singing, first aid, hiking, photography, Duke of
Edinburgh award scheme work, swimming, shooting, outdoors cooking and
The Computer Studies Group ceased as an activity as it now
formed part of the main school syllabus, and computers were no longer
available for the group. Computing at Victoria College, however, now
included the option of a GCSE as part of the curriculum..
It was a mixed year for sports, with Victoria College losing
to Elizabeth College at squash for the first time in eleven years,
losing 8-2. In football, however, matters went the other way, with
the Victoria First IX winning over Elizabeth by 2 to 1.
The cricket team, in the meantime, went on a tour of
Barbados in July, under the supervision and coaching of Mr Ray Pearce
and Mr Douglas Ferguson. Under their Captain, David Pearce, they won
five games, but lost four, with one being abandoned due to rain. The
best tour performances were by Philip Le Cornu, with a batting
average of 58, and Bradley Vowden, with a bowling average of 16.4.
Stephen Lucas returned in November to judge the House Play
Competition. Sartorius came first with their production of "Loot",
Bruce second with "Rosencrantz and Guilderstein are Dead",
Braithewaite third with "Heil Caesar", and Dunlop last with "The
Two former masters died this year - Jack "Pop" Horn and John
The Autumn term saw scaffolding on
the New Buildings and the Theatre and Music Block to enable the
cleaning of the stonework. Work also began in
October to renovate the walls and windows of the Main Building.
It was hoped that by next year work the planned extension to the New
de Carteret building would begin, proving much needed new classrooms,
computing facilities and a new changing room.
The year also saw a major project under consideration - the
relocation of Jersey College for Girls from Mont Cantel to College
House. On October 17th, the Parent Teacher Association met with the
new Director of Education, Brian Grady, to update parents and staff
on the possible resiting of the school, and there was an open and
frank discussion, in which one major concern was the increase in the
volume of traffic at Mont Millais, although there was also some
concern that the close geographical proximity of the two Colleges
might erode their distinct identities, with the sharing of
Old Victorians were making the news again this year.
Gary Misson, after successful work at Charing Cross Hospital
became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons at the young age of
28. Having specialised as an ophthalmic surgeon, he was now going to
take up a post at the Birmingham Eye Hospital.
Daniel Laffoley was making a study of British estuaries for
Christ Minty became Vice-President of the Old Victorian
Association and President of the Jersey Cricket Association.
Mick Hubbard received the Ernest Whittle Memorial Prize
awarded by the Royal Society of Chemistry for his work at the States
And finally, Sir Peter Crill, Old Victorian, unveiled a
plaque naming the States Pathology Laboratory after the late Edward
Geal, Old Victorian, who had been instrumental in upgrading the
pathology and blood transfusion services in the post-war period from