Waimate Branch 2013 Biennial Report
It gives me pleasure to present to you this biennial report.
As I have said before, when is a President not a President, but I do not wish this Branch of TGHS Old Girls to no longer function. Hence I have tried to keep things going.
I regret that the planned biennial meeting in August was postponed, and I apologise for making that decision, but it was unavoidable. We have had a number of family bereavements, and illnesses, and today we think especially of Barry and Lorraine Morgan, as Barry has been and is suffering ill health. This was why the meeting is not being held at their place. We can only hope one day next year we will get to see their photographic record of their “90 days round the world.”
In spite of things we have managed to meet several times over the last two and a half years.
Our last biennial meeting was held at Te Kiteroa, where we had a tour of the winery. Hopefully when the café/restaurant gets up and running we can return there.
27th October 2011 we visited Van Leuwens automated dairy farm. This was a great educational venue for a few of us, including interested husbands.
In May 2002, Agnes and I attended the opening of the Gwen Avery Complex at Timaru Girls’ High School.
On 19th June, 2012 17 members met at Artrio’s, a happy get together and the boys made us all so welcome. Such a shame it no longer exists. Pam Gibson, Timaru President spoke to our meeting.
8th November we met at the old Otaio school, which is now an art gallery, coffee shop, and we were told of the use of the old Otaio school and enjoyed the paintings, and we also enjoyed a garden walk. We welcomed Sarah Davis the Head mistress of TGHS and she spoke to us about the schools activities. Our Life Member Anna Hobday was interested to return to Otaio school where she took a bus load of girls from our old school to help in the clean up after the floods of 1986, when she was the head mistress. Members then went to the Makikihi Craft shop, the iris gardens at Makikihi and some had lunch at Butler’s.
On the 16th May 2013 14 members again met at Artrios, for a coffee and a chat. Mrs Rae Wilson our Life Member was thought of having recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Agnes visited her afterwards, with flowers from our Branch. Pam Gibson updated us with school and Old Girls activities and told us about the archives being established. We were so proud of our member Helen Scott who was able to identify some old photos.
The midwinter luncheon was held in July when 32 members spent a happy time socialising with husbands, and enjoyed a roast meal at the Criterian Steak House.
To the future of our Branch. Sarah Davis has invited us to go “back to school”, and have lunch in the cafeteria, this will be early in 2014 when we can find a date to suit the school. A visit to the Gwen Avery complex will also be held on that day.
In 2017 it will be our 50th birthday, let us work towards that date, and hope we can celebrate in style.
To Agnes, Joan and the committee, I express my sincere thanks, for carrying on the good work they began so many years ago. Well done to you all.
Judith Neilson (Harris)
Christchurch OGA 2014 Report
Presidents Report – 2013/2014
During 2013 the Christchurch Branch of Timaru High School Old Girls’ Association continued to enjoy a variety of events that brought former pupils together to celebrate that one thing we have in common – our school.
Our AGM was held in early March here at the Mary Potter Community Centre with 24 attendees. Our guest speaker was Liz Reece from Age Concern Canterbury who gave us an engaging and encouraging presentation on the services provided by Age Concern and in particular her own role of co-coordinating the Accredited Visiting Service for this region.
We celebrated High Tea at The Casino on 19th May with 21 of us enjoying a waist-threatening array of sandwiches, savouries and cakes. It was at this event we presented to Principal Sarah Davis a Cup for the School’s annual Junior Prizegiving Ceremony for the Top Academic Student in Year 10.
On the 12th September 25 of us enjoyed a lavish Dinner at the Five Stars Vietnamese Restaurant in Ilam, an evening that left our tummies very full.
Our final event for the 2013 calendar year was our very popular Christmas Morning Tea at Eliza’s Manor where 30 members, including three guests from Timaru Branch, enjoyed a splendidly catered feast presented by our own Ann Zwimpfer.
Timaru Branch held their mid-winter luncheon at The Poplars on the 7th July and I attended this on behalf of our Branch. I also attended the Ashburton AGM and Supper on the 8th November.
During the year I made contact with several other “old girls associations” in the Canterbury area with the view of forming an affiliation; nothing too formal and more like a sharing of ideas. As a result of this Elizabeth Bills and I attended a Waitaki OGA Afternoon Tea on the 12th October at Kate Shepherd House. I am still in contact with Christchurch Girls High and awaiting further information as they are making some changes to their old girls’ branch structure.
I represented the Branch at the Senior Prizegiving at the School on the 6th November and also the Junior Prizegiving ceremony on the 10th December where I was invited to present the “Cultural, Sports and Special” Awards for Years 9 and10. This included the inaugural presentation of our donated cup for the Top Academic Student Year 10; the top of the Junior School. This was indeed a proud moment for our Branch.
2013 saw the 100 year anniversary of the splitting of the original combined Boys and Girls school. In 1913 the boys moved to their North Street site and the girls continued at Cain Street. Although we didn’t celebrate this anniversary here in Christchurch, it was recognised publicly at both schools, and the centenary of the forming of the Boys school coincided with the retirement of their Rector, Kevin O’Sullivan.
We sent our apologies to Dunedin, Waimate, Timaru, and Nelson/Marlborough Branches for their meetings during the year. As always, attending functions in other Branches is voluntary with an open invitation to all old girls nationwide. Information is generally held on the School website or you can contact me as I usually have a list of upcoming Branch functions.
During the year we welcomed four new members: Alison Davies; Margaret Eggleton; Bev Hurst; and Polly Hyndman-Porter. We also welcomed Alison Mareko back to the Branch. Sadly we also acknowledged the passing of two former ‘old girls’ of our Branch. Patty Lilley passed away in November 2012 and Anne Field during this past year.
Condolence cards were sent to several members of our Branch who lost members of their families during the year. We also acknowledge illness and hospitalisation when we are alerted to members suffering from any serious injury or ailment.
On a happier note we continued the practice of also sending a birthday card on behalf of our Branch to members celebrating a significant birthday during the year. According to our records we currently have one lady over the age of 90, another 15 over 80 and another six turning 80 this coming year. It is wonderful to see many of our senior ladies attending our meetings and we acknowledge their ongoing support. If you are aware of any significant occasions that should be recognised please do let your committee know as we love to remember and recognise our girls.
The Newsletter enclosed with the Annual Programme provides a summary of the upcoming year’s events and other activities. With the cost of mailing information to members we rely on the assistance of our team of Ringers to pass additional information as it comes to hand during the year. We encourage all girls to contact their Ringer or a Committee Member for any requests for information.
I extend my sincerest thanks to our Ringers again for their time and effort over the last year. Having additional Ringers reduces the pressure on those managing this task: Catherine Comber; Ruth Harwood; Christine Haythornthwaite; Heather Kelland; Neroli Marks; Tessa Molloy; and Jenny Roberts; along with Committee Members Elizabeth Bills; Valerie Elder; Lynne Myers; and Phil Phillips – thank you. Heather is handing in her ringing badge and we are looking to replace her.
My warmest thanks for the efforts and ongoing support of our Committee: Ngaire Robertson; Jo Geary; Elizabeth Bills; Lynne Myers; Phil Phillips; and Valerie Elder without whom our events would not be the success they are.
And a big thank you to all members for the contact and assistance you have provided to me over the past year.
I wish our Association all the very best for the coming 12 months.
Timaru High School/Old Girl’s Association
2nd March 2014