The May Bank Holiday weekend saw over 250 former students and their families visit Moray for the Gordonstoun Association Weekend. The school’s alumni returned from as far afield as Canada, the USA and South Africa, some after a gap of over 60 years, to celebrate the school 80th Anniversary. Events began on Thursday when the Old Gordonstounian Golf Society overcame a spirited School team at Nairn Golf Club and Friday saw the Annual Challenge match take place at stunning Castle Stuart course. On Friday evening the Laichmoray Hotel in Elgin played host to a reunion of former students of Altyre House, which was part of Gordonstoun in the 1950s, but located in Forres. Almost 70 folk gathered to enjoy a meal and reminisce about their school days.
On Saturday, GA Day itself, around 200 visitor enjoyed the warm spring sunshine and programme which included presentations by students in the Fire Service, The Coast Guard Service and the First Aid Service, as well as students who had been on international service programmes in Thailand and Ethiopia and the Round Square International Conference in the USA. In the afternoon there was a performing arts showcase in the Ogstoun Theatre which featured music, drama and dance. This included a dance performance put on by a group of returning students. There was also a very competitive netball match between the OGs and the school netball team.
Other highlights included an art exhibition which included work by both current and former students and by former members of staff as well as photographs tracing the school over four decades. The day culminated in an excellent meal in the evening which was attended by former students and senior pupils and by teaching staff. There were speeches by Simon Reid, the school Principal, who outlined the successes enjoyed over the school year before explaining the exciting plans for the schools further development. He was followed by Peter Ramsay, the GA Chairman, who thanked the school for their hospitality. The guest of honour for the day was Prince Max von Baden, whose grandfather, also Max, was appointed German Chancellor in 1918. It was he who encouraged Kurt Hahn, Gordonstoun’s founder, to open a school at Schloss Salem in 1920. It was also wonderful to welcome back Mrs Barbie Kempe and Mrs Elizabeth Mavor, whose husbands had guided the school in the 1970s and 1980s respectively.