The Tower from Trinity Avenue
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Speech by Peter Austen

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the Cheyne Walk Club.  There are a lot of familiar faces, and there are one or two who have never been to a Reunion before, or have been, but not to this venue before.  People have come from far and wide as usual.  I don't know who the farthest is, possibly that's Mary coming from Ireland.  That's a fantastic effort as always Mary.  Talking of Mary, she will be coming round with the collection box.  The money goes towards Ian's running costs for the fabulous website for Trinity.

Anyway, I have not come far.  I live in Cliftonville, a mere 10 minutes stroll.  Moved there 20 years ago, mainly because of its proximity to the General Hospital, the Three Shires Hospital, St Andrews, so I think I have got it covered living there.  The only downside is we get a lot of people who want to park on our drive, but we don't charge.

Normally at this point, I mention a few of the anniversaries.  Dates when people left school or age anniversaries.  It will be 50 years since the class of 65 left the sixth form, it will be 50 years since the class of 67 left the fifth form.  The year of 63, which has always had the greatest turnout, will have passed 70 this year.  The youngest regulars, the class of 73, passed 60 this year.  They can now get the Senior Railcard, but sadly not the bus pass.  They will need to wait longer for that.

Anyway, it just leaves me to thank Ian again for all his hard work over the years, and all the preparation.  He sorts out all the administration, prints the notices and the name labels, and makes it easier for me on the day.

He did say on his booking this year that he would like to see Whispering Bob Harris come along.  Many of you will remember that he was probably our most famous former pupil.  Sadly he has never put in an appearance, despite several attempts to try to get him along.  I tried to get in touch a couple of years ago.  I decided to read his autobiography recently, I understand why perhaps.  He did leave Trinity under a bit of a cloud, and he never really enjoyed his time there at all.  He was spotted by one of the teachers during the summer holidays drinking a half of bitter shandy in a pub in Weston Favell.  This was reported to the Headmaster and when he returned to the school in September, he was hauled in front of the headmaster, where I think he was about to be caned.  Not wanting to be the first sixth former to be caned, he promptly left the office, cycled home, got all his school books and stuffed them in to his saddle bags and went back to school, piled them all on the headmasters desk and said you can stuff your school and never returned.  Which may explain why we have never seen him. 

Any of you who listen to Bernie Keith on Radio Northampton?  He gives us very good publicity in the week before the reunion, giving us a plug every day, and I mentioned it to him.  He said, perhaps he has been there Peter, but you have never noticed him as he is always whispering!  I don't think so somehow.

Anyway, it is time for me to hand over to the main man.  Can we have a round of applause for all the hard work he has done.  Ian   [Ian's speech]


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