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Ex-KES scholars agree to carry on association

One of Lynn’s oldest school organisations was in danger of folding for good but has been saved by members at the 11th hour.

The Old Lennensians is a society for former pupils and staff of the King Edward VII Academy and dates back to when it was a boys’ grammar school, founded in the 16th century.

Andrew Stephen (4282488)
Andrew Stephen (4282488)

Although the 500-year-old school became co-educational in 1976,with a few intrepid girls joining the sixth form, and went comprehensive in 1979, the committee running the Old Lennensians had failed to appeal to the younger generation and was on the point of disbanding at last Saturday’s annual meeting.

“There was a motion on the table to wind up the OLs,” said chairman, Andrew Stephen. “But there was no way that could be allowed to happen.

“Many of the committee were not in the first flush of youth and wanted to stand down.

“They feared there was nobody to continue their good work, but an appeal for volunteers brought an extraordinary response from former pupils and we will be continuing with a fresh committee, buzzing with new ideas.

OL chairman Andrew Stephen, third from left, front, with history teacher John Smallwood and fellow students at KES in 1971 (4282486)
OL chairman Andrew Stephen, third from left, front, with history teacher John Smallwood and fellow students at KES in 1971 (4282486)

“Our first priority is to create a new website and boost our social media presence, because many former pupils don’t even know that the Old Lennensians exists!

“Some believed it was simply a society for old men who used to attend the grammar school, but that isn’t the case – this is a non-elitist group for all former pupils and staff of this amazing school.

“Getting involved in the Old Lennensians is a great way of keeping in touch with old school friends, as well as putting something back into the school that did so much for us as youngsters.

“We work closely with the school itself, providing support for prizes, memorial boards and items which the Academy Trust would not be expected to provide.

“We passionately believe that our association should celebrate and publicise the achievements of a school which is very different from the one we knew.”

“We are also offering automatic membership to all former teaching staff of the Grammar School and to those who taught for many years at KES since 1979.

“The new committee will be organising a busy calendar of events, including the ever-popular reunions, the Spring Lunch, visits to places of interest and sporting events. Some events will be for Old Boys and Old Girls only, but many will involve partners, children and friends.

“All members will be encouraged to organise events of their own.

“Next year’s AGM will take place before our next reunion, probably in July.

“We are in the process of setting up a new website, but in the meantime anyone can find out more on the
Friends of KES Facebook page.”

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