Guild Reunion 2019

On Saturday 18th May, over 300 Guild and Honorary members of all ages descended on Cheltenham for the Guild AGM and Reunion. For 113 members, it was the first time that they had returned since leaving College! We were thrilled with the attendance. People came from far and wide - from 13 different countries outside the UK.

The day was packed with events including the May Concert, College Prayers, the AGM, an Archive Exhibition celebrating Guild's 135th and St Hilda's East's 130th anniversaries, College tours and visits to the EET suite, as well as trips up to the Observatory and a look inside Starlab, College's inflatable planetarium.

Following year group photographs, Guild members enjoyed a delicious summer buffet lunch in the Princess Hall and the gardens.

In the afternoon, the Guild Festival Orchestra (GFO) performed Beethoven's Symphony No. 2 (first movement without the adagio introduction), as well as an arrangement of Bach by Mr Hawley. The GFO was formed this year, and over 40 Guild members assembled to perform this musical tribute to Mr Hawley in his final year as Director of Music. 

In the afternoon, Guild members attended a tea in the new Health and Fitness Centre at Field, where they were given tours by the staff. For those who wished to continue into the evening, 80 Guild members stayed on for dinner in the Princess Hall.  A few Guild members even returned the following morning to attend the College service which included the baptism of the daughter of a member of staff in the Princess Hall.

The day offered the perfect opportunity for Guild members to catch up with old friends and staff, and it was wonderful to be able to welcome so many of them back to College.

Recordings of Prayers and the AGM are available to listen to via the Members Resources section of the website (login required) or by clicking here

Guild and College Films shown during the AGM can be found at the end of this page.

Photographs from the reunion can be found after the films at the foot of the page

To read the Chairman's speech click here.

Feedback from attendees

"Thank you for organising such a successful Guild reunion. I'd particularly like to say how impressed I was by the engineering centre. What a fascinating opportunity for girls. Good to see STEM thriving at Coll. It was also a treat for us (class of 1979) to meet Miss Davson, as bright as a button at 93. I wonder how many other teachers of our era are still in touch with Coll." (1979 Leaver)

"Thank you for all your hard work with your team as planning such a day takes so much effort which certainly showed in everyone’s enjoyment. One Guild member has messaged me saying she had never been back to College since but will definitely attend the next Guild event." (1989 Leaver)

"Thank you for organising such a splendid day.  Us Roderic 1979 girls thoroughly enjoyed seeing each other again and renewing acquaintances with other girls.  The food was delicious (so much so that we ate too much lunch and struggled with dinner!) and everyone made us feel so welcome.  I particularly enjoyed seeing Mrs Armitage and Miss Davson, and will look forward to seeing the official "decade group" photos in due course." (1979 Leaver)

"I just wanted to thank you for a really wonderful day on Saturday.  I was quite nervous about coming back, but the whole day was beautifully arranged and it was a joy to see so many old faces and catch up. I particularly liked the fact that we were able to wander around Coll on our own - I have had many dreams over the years of the school and getting a chance to orientate myself and see all the classrooms again was wonderful." (1989 Leaver)

"Thank you very much for all your kindnesses that made last Saturday’s reunion so special for my stepmother and me.  It was a wonderful day packed full of memories.  I loved sitting next to the Principal at dinner - what a privilege and a surprise. Please thank her for me for her considerate and interesting conversation.  I enjoyed the delicious food, please thank the catering staff and the current students were so helpful and informative on our tours of College and later St. Helens. I cannot promise to be there in 2020 but maybe in 2024?" (1969 Leaver)

"We all had a wonderful weekend and many, many thanks to all of you at College for making it so special." (1989 Leaver)

"Thank you so much for a fabulous weekend- it was wonderfully orchestrated (literally!) and tremendous fun. Please pass on my thanks to the catering team too; they did a fantastic and highly professional job serving us, and the food, Pimm’s and wine was all lovely. I’m sure that OGs who have never returned before will be rushing back next time!" (1989 Leaver)

"An enormous thank you for all your hard work in getting it all organised. Many of my year never wanted to come due to various experiences when they were here but I think they were converted this weekend. For me the best Guild weekend yet, and I’ve been to a few! Thank you to you and your team." (1979 Leaver)

"What an enormous treat College gave us on Saturday at the Guild reunion! I’m still processing how many familiar faces and lovely conversations I had, all day. It was so great to have our year back in the mix of a really enormous gathering!  Thank you so very much for all your super organisation and the amazing array of activities, the SFC girls who did really enjoyable tours, the house tours and the totally delicious food, both at lunch and at dinner. Starting in the PH with a fabulous Prayers and then the AGM, it was all beautifully run and I wear my daisy with pride!" (1989 Leaver)

Guild’s Reunion Day constitutes the heart of Guild’s events, and takes place annually in May. Guild's reunion format means that each year group is invited back every 5 years and next year's reunion and Guild AGM will be on Saturday 16th May 2020 and leavers from 2015, 2010, 2005, 2000, 1995, 1990, 1985, 1980, 1975, 1970, 1965, 1960 and beyond will be invited back. For further information please contact the Guild Office on guild@cheltladiescollege.org