About

The Old Stithian Association
The first Matric Class in St Stithans College was in 1956 and this group wasted no time in taking the first teps  in the fomation of an Old Boys’ Association.  A steering committee was formed with Michael Lewis (1957) as Chairman and Ronald Rankin (1956) as Secretary with the purpose to arrange a Founders’ Day Dinner on 11 September 1959 in the Tudor Room at the Wanderers Club.
By the end of the year, the Committee had drawn up a Constitution which was adopted by a General Meeting.  The objects of the association were :
  1. to promote friendly intercourse between Old Boys of St Stithians College
  2. to organise Old Boys for the purpose of cricket, hockey, rugby tennis and other games.
  3. to assist financially Old Boys and their dependents and in various benevolent purposes in the interest of the boys of St Stithians College.
  4. to purchase, rent, lease, hold and dispose of any buildings or premises used for the members.
  5. to further the interests and prosperity of St Stithians College.
  6. to create and administer trusts to be used for the purpose.

For the first ten years, the Association was mainly driven by Michael Lewis, Clive Abraham (1956) and Jimmy Vickers (1957) as Chairmen, with Ronald Rankin, Michael Lewis and William Moir (1962) featuring prominently as Secretary and from 1965, Ross Bradley (1960) as Treasurer.  The Old Boys, without experience and management skills, nominated two parents, Duncan McMillan and Blen Franklin to act as representatives on council and in 1965, Clive Abraham became the first Old Boy to serve on Council.

The Association began to organise matches against the school in cricket, rugby, hockey and tennis, which took place on an irregular basis.

To celebrate the tenth year of the foundation of the Association, the Old Boys presented an ornamental sundial designed by David Morrison to the school and it was placed in the main quadrangle, which was presented to the school at a ceremony on 14 September 1968.  The Old boys also started a tradition by expressing a wish to have a painting of the first head, Wally Mears, commissioned and this was hung in the in the reception area of the College.  This tradition continues to this day.

Always in the minds of the Old Boys’ Committee, was the dream of having a club house, preferably placed in the grounds of the school.

Mark Henning arranged for the Old boys to have an Old Boys day with sport against various schools teams and these matches soon became part of the Founders’ Day activities.

The 1976 newsletter contained news that the Association was negotiating with the College Council for ground to be set aside for the formation of an Old Boys’ Club and it was eventually decided on an area on the eastern boundary of the College.  One of the major problems of establishing the club, was the stringent Church rules about alcohol, but this was solved by leasing the ground to the Old Boys for R1.00.  The actual site was the remains of an old amethyst quarry and had more recently been the site of a borrow pit to supply gravel for the construction of the Nicol Highway.  The ground was thus very uneven and full of dongas and ditches.  However, an unexpected solution was found.  Jonathan Arthur (1963), returning from work one day, noticed a stream of heavily loaded trucks heading out north from Sandton City where large constructions were taking place.  He noted the names of the trucks, contacted a friend, and within a matter of hours, had arranged that the ground from Sandton City be deposited on the site of the borrow pit and should be levelled by the contractors at no cost.

During the 1980’s a Porta-Cabn was obtained to act as the first clubhouse and an old ground staff cottage nearby was converted into a change-room.  In 1984, the first stage of the One & All Clubhouse was built overlooking the now-completed playing field, which could be used as a cricket field and two hockey fields.  The first part of the clubhouse consisted of a pub and was made possible by donations from a number of Old Boys.

During the 1980’s, four rugby sides, two hockey sides, tennis and squash teams played regularly against the school and a highlight in 1992 was the appearance of the first rugby Springbok produced by St Stithians College, Lance Sherrel l(1984), who treated the spectators to a scintillating display playing fly-half for the Old Boys.

It was soon apparent that the One & All Club needed to be expanded.  This was made possible through a loan negotiated by Simon Buys (1978) on generous terms from the College. The additions of committee rooms, cloakrooms, a dining-room and a kitchen, were opened in 1997.  The Association now had a debt with the College of R350 000. Some of this had been used to pay back three very generous Old Boys who had made large donations towards tthe new building.  Under the chairmanship of Cliff Jackson (1961), the Committee faced who a debt of R280 000 in 2000, not only paid off the debt in one year, but ended the year with a profit.

Over the years, one of the most successful fundraising activities was that of the Beer Tent provided by the Old Boys during the Schools’ Rugby Festival and Craig Warriner was a driving force behind this.

An important change came about at the AGM in 2000.  The following resolution was accepted. ” The name of the Association would now include Old Girls and would thus in future be called ‘The Old Stithian Association'”.

During the course of 2001, the newly established Junior Preparatory School, began casting envious eyes on the Association buildings, which would be ideal for a Junior Primary Hall and other facilities.  A suggestion was made that the club be moved to a site overlooking the Everest Field in the top north-west corner of the school property.  Not only had this site a magnificent view over the school grounds, but the high elevation gave a further view across the valley to Sandton City.  In 2001, it was discussed, that for the relocaton of the One & All to take place, the College would either have to build a clubhouse for the Old Stithians or to pay for the existing buildings, which payment would enable the Old Stithians to build a new clubhouse.  As it turned out, the College did not have the necessary funds and thus it was decided to leave matters as they were.

In 2001 came the sad news of the passing of Adam Urdang (1978), Chairman of the Association for seven years and a dynamic leader.   On Founders’ Day 2oo2, the main room of the One & All Club was named after him.

The advent of the Astroturf field in 2002, brough a new dimension to the hockey teams and them needing a clubhouse of their own.  In 2007, the College bought the clubhouse from the Association. With a generous donation from Craig Warriner (1982), the project manager, Allen Needham (1974) oversaw the building of the new One & All Club and it opened its doors in 2009 on the new site overlooking the Wayne Joubert field (the old Everest field).

One&All (Medium)

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