London Meeting at the Mitre, Lancaster Gate, March 3rd, 2017 | St. David's College Old Davideans Association

The Lancaster Gate tube station would be closed, wouldn’t it? Of course we didn’t know that until we went to confirm the buffet menu the day before. Nevertheless, there was a good turn out. This time our venue was downstairs in ‘The Scullery’; there was the aforementioned buffet, followed by varied drinks, alcoholic and otherwise. The guest of honour was Judith Gauge, still nobly reading and writing for exams, having spent many years in both the English and Cadogan departments at St David’s. The most surprising visitor was Bongo Woodley - he left St David’s in 1980 and HITCH HIKED all the way back home to ‘Tree Tops’, in Kenya - can you imagine that? He looked appropriately rugged and has recently been a security expert in Afghanistan. Another ‘older citizen’ was Brent Jackson - in property. Brent was the first pupil at St David’s, in 1980, to be allowed to DRIVE his own car to and from his off site boarding house. Financier Nick Ward, the most loyal and long serving member of the ODA committee reminisced with Jim Austin, who manufactures carbon fibre, some of which ends up in Formula 1 Cars. Ed Newman looked as youthful and lively as ever, while James Williams having spent much time chatting with his contemporary, Andrew Emm, who is a computer wizard, introduced us to his girlfriend Kinga, from Poland. The Seldon twins, Jonny and Ollie, the youthful double backbone of the ODA, but without Alice this time, were there, having made the journey from Llandudno. Jake Roden is ‘doing' his PGCE in London, having been both Head Boy and Student Teacher at St David’s - let’s hope he ends up back there; his friend Tom Murray, cheerful as ever, spends half the year coaching sailing at Summer Camps in USA. Henry Morris is now on the ladder to becoming a head chef, and he enjoyed chatting with his former 1:1 teacher, Judith Gauge. Emma Wright designs jewellery both for her own customers and also commercially. She and Nic Connor are together, and he is no longer involved in Politics. Joe Faulkner operates a printing business and it was a pleasure to see former Head Girl Esme Cole again; her family run the Red Lion at Llanellian, near Colwyn Bay, well worth a visit if you are in the area. Esme is working in environmental disaster management. Nick Roques is studying photography and Fraser (Jay) Blake, a brand ambassador, hunkered down with his guru, Tim Hall. Extreme youth was represented by Jemima Thompson-Vidal, who recently attended St David’s 6th Form, and is now a student in London. Staff and former staff, in addition to those already mentioned, who came to see how their former protegés were progressing were Headmaster, Stuart Hay; Deputy Head, Andy Russell, with his wife Kate and Judy Buckley, former Head of the Cadogan Centre. Ray and Jane Beech sent their apologies, but had a prior commitment. I am sure they will be back next year.

Simon Buckley.