The longer the College stands empty, the more haunted it becomes.
I don’t wish to imply that I’ve communed with Thomas Ken in Chamber Court, or seen the Grey Lady. I’m talking about all the people who have been happy here, their memories, and our memories of them.
Some do their haunting in person, as visitors, or dons, but the Old Wykehamist with whom I associate the lines below returned to be received Ad Portas (the highest honour the school can bestow upon a guest, with a ceremony in the medieval heart of the College) in an astonishing line-up of his friends and contemporaries, all Fellows of the Royal Society or the British Academy. I’ve never forgotten his transparent joy at being back in the school he loved.
John Lucas (Coll: 42-47) died this April, aged 90. You can read all about his distinguished philosophical career in The Trusty Servant, but I remember him in a fraying greenish academic gown held together with what looked like electricians’ tape, standing at the lectern in Merton Chapel to read this poem.
They told me, Heraclitus, they told me you were dead,
They brought me bitter news to hear and bitter tears to shed.
I wept as I remember'd how often you and I
Had tired the sun with talking and sent him down the sky.
And now that thou art lying, my dear old Carian guest,
A handful of grey ashes, long, long ago at rest,
Still are thy pleasant voices, thy nightingales, awake;
For Death, he taketh all away, but them he cannot take.
William (Johnson) Cory, 1823–1892
28th April 2021
On 28 April 2021, the College's political society welcomed the Rt. Hon. Jacob Rees-Mogg MP to a virtual event for boys and staff. The talk covered a diverse range of topics, from Mr Rees-Mogg's position as Leader of the House of Commons to his vision for the country and how to improve socio-economic equality.
30th November 2020
Every year Winchester and Cheltenham Ladies' College pupils work in teams to deliver presentations at a Science Symposium for their peers. 2020 required more technology than usual but was as rewarding as ever.
19th September 2020
Science School has a diverse collection of fascinating objects, from an 18th-century microscope, fossils and taxidermy birds, to apparatus used to teach physics in the early 20th century. Twenty-four of the most interesting and unusual objects from the collection are now online.
22nd June 2020
English don Tom Quayle considers how literature bears "the indelible impression of its time" and what that might mean for the writing taking place during this turbulent period.
8th June 2020
English don, Richard Stillman reflects on the protests sweeping the United States and United Kingdom, what we might do to educate ourselves, and how this might help make a difference.
1st June 2020
Two brothers write of their experiences of lockdown together, with one studying for exams, and the other continuing his singing, remotely.