Principal's Blog: Mid June

blogBowerscrop1Demitting Dinner for Dr Eltis:
On 12 June High Table was full and arranged well into the Hall for a demitting dinner for Dr Sos Eltis as Vice Principal. As I said in my speech before Dinner she was characterised as Vice Principal by passionate commitment in the post. She is adored by her students and respected throughout the university. The lasting legacy of her three years as Vice Principal is to put diversity in the mainstream of our agenda and thinking strategically about achieving this. In a recent interview she has said ‘Well, I feel slightly like I’ve measured my life out in committee meetings.” Now she can get back to her books.

Law Networking Event:
We held our first Law Networking Event (the first of I hope many) at the amazing offices of CMS just over Cannon Street Station on 7 June. This was arranged through the generosity of David Zeffman, a law alumnus. About 30 barristers and solicitors had a great time discussing legal cases (and no doubt much besides).

Leavers Service:
The Leavers Service is always a wonderful event. The Chapel is packed and our excellent choir sings with even greater gusto than is normal. Amongst others there were readings from Thomas Treherne’s “Centuries of Meditations” and William Golding’s “The Spire”. Both were alumni of the College but of course centuries apart; they matriculated in 1653 and 1929 respectively.

This year’s Service on 10 June was particularly special for me. I had grown up with them. Some of the leavers at the Service had only known me as Principal. It was great to see many parents too. We wish au revoir to all our leavers but a special thanks go to Fleur Snow and Bethany Hughes whose choir conducting and general musical abilities have added greatly to College life.

Dr Stuttaford:
We mourn the passing of Thomas Stuttaford who matriculated in 1950 in Medicine. Many readers will know him as the Times doctor. He was a GP in Norfolk for 10 years, and a member of Norwich City Council, becoming MP for Norwich South from 1970 to 1974.  He was probably best known as medical correspondent for The Times from 1982 to 1991 and then as a columnist from 1991, and although he officially retired in 2002, he continued writing for The Times until 2009. He was awarded an OBE in 1996. We send condolences to his family.

Congratulations to all Nostrils who were honoured in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. There was a Knighthood for Simon Schama who was a Fellow between 1976 and 1980 and took part in a memorable Principal’s Conversation last year. Hugh Hildesley (Jurisprudence, 1960) Vice-Chairman, Sotheby’s USA and John Phibbs (Classics, 1970) gained MBEs.

Unfortunately I was not able to attend the Staff Student Sports Day. I am told that it was a great event with students distinguishing themselves. Congratulations go to the 'Workshop Lads' for winning the Five-a-side football, and also Finance Capital, headed up by Philip Parker and Gillian Chandler, for just edging out the student Committee in the Rounders final. Well done to the students for suggesting the event.

I gave a talk to the Woodstock Society about life as a Head of House on 5 June.

Over the weekend 1 to 3 June we visited the Hay Festival which is always a great event. The highlights for me were talks by Chelsea Clinton, Gordon Brown and David Miliband.

I wish all readers a good vacation.

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