The weather was fantastic as was the birthday party – which carried on over the whole of Labour Weekend.
Happy birthday Gordonton School, 125 years and going strong. Old and young turned out in great numbers to raise toasts, tell tales, catch up with classmates from decades past.
Number 8 Network’s Annette Taylor checked out proceedings on Saturday morning and found a lot of people having a splendid time.
Folk began gathering for speeches in the hall on a sunny Saturday morning –
The hall filled up rapidly –
One of the oldest former pupils, Arthur Riddell, tells some tales –
Followed by Dr Ngapare Hopa, who told of her journey from Gordonton School to Oxford University, where she earned the first PhD for a Maori woman.
Then came the anniversary cake, featuring the oldest former pupil Margaret (Peggy) Weeks, nee Laidlaw. Peggy is 88 and started Gordonton in 1932. Her young assistant is Casey Foster, who started school on the previous Monday and so is the youngest current pupil attending on the day.
Outside there were line-ups featuring current and past pupils –
One attendee enjoyed a spot of shade –
Flowers for Dr Hopa, pictured here with her cousin Cilla Henry.
Cilla then brought out her guitar for an impromtu song.
Reunion committee head Sally-Ann Riddell addresses the crowd.
The new fountain celebrating the school’s past –
Treasures and memories will be stored for future generations – happy birthday Gordonton and well done the hard-working, wonderful committee!