It is an honour to have been elected President of the Christ’s College Old Boys’ Association (CCOBA). I am very grateful to many Old Boys and the CCOBA Committee for their support.
I would like to acknowledge the former President, Richard Polson, who was elected to the role in February 2020. At that time, the Covid-19 pandemic was a distant, gathering storm, yet to reach New Zealand’s shores. Richard was an exceptional President during a challenging and difficult term. His diligent and inclusive leadership was a testament to his dedication to College and his loyalty to the Association.
New Zealand is beginning to emerge from the restrictions of the Covid-19 pandemic. And, as life begins to return to normal and restrictions are relaxed, the CCOBA will resume holding and supporting events in towns and cities in New Zealand and also around the world. A calendar of upcoming events is set out in this newsletter. We hope Old Boys throughout the country and overseas will support the many CCOBA events to be held later in the year.
As the elected President, I am conscious of the very rich and impressive history of the CCOBA. Although much has changed since the Association was founded, the guiding purpose of this society will always be to serve its members, advocate for their interests and promote the interests of Christ’s College. Every member of Christ’s College’s diverse alumni community had a unique and different experience at College. However, we are linked by friendships and shared memories. The Association seeks to connect and support College Old Boys for life – wherever they live, and whenever they attended College.
Old Boy Chris Henshaw is part of the highly qualified team of 16 Search and Rescue Officers who monitor the country’s safety, ensuring a 24-hour, 365-day response is always available across the New Zealand Search and Rescue Region (NZSRR).
Christ’s College vs Christchurch Boys’ High School game – curtain-raiser for Crusaders and Rugby Reunion
3 August 2022
Auckland Community Event
4 August 2022
Auckland Young Old Boys (YOBs)
10 August 2022
Havelock North Community Visit
18 August 2022
Wellington Community Event (including YOBs)
30 September 2022
19 October 2022
65 & 75 Years On & Gentlemen’s Lunch (2021 & 2022)
31 October 2022
Nelson Community Visit
1 November 2022
Blenheim Community Visit
7 November 2022
Ashburton Community Visit
15 November 2022
Wanaka Community Visit
18 November 2022
Christchurch Long Lunch
24 November 2022
Long Lunches: Auckland, Wellington, Queenstown, Sydney, Melbourne
SAVE THE DATE
17–19 February 2023
Reunion Weekend 2023 20 Years On (2003–2007), 30 Years On (1993–1997), 40 Years On (1983–1987), 50 Years On (1973–1977), 60 Years On (1963–1967), 70 Years On (1953–1957) and 80 Years On (1943–1947)
Also, Old Boys from the postponed 2022 Reunion Weekend: 20 Years On (2002–2006), 30 Years On (1992–1996), 40 Years On (1982–1986), 50 Years On (1972–1976), 60 Years On (1962–1966), 70 Years On (1952–1956) and 80 Years On (1942–1946)
CCOBA ‘tosses’ aside STAC Old Boys at Valley of Peace
Success at the Valley of Peace – in this captain’s mind – revolves heavily around the toss. To be able to secure the rights to propping up the bar for the second half of the day is gold dust. And so it came to pass that this vital decision went the way of the Christ’s College OBA. What followed was a champagne performance in the field by College against the St Andrew’s College Old Boys.
Opening bowlers Hugo Davison and James Thomson began well, with the pitch showing good bounce and carry and the ball hooping both ways. The first wicket came about when S Irving faced a ball that swung viciously, hitting the pads. The second came moments later when Frazer Offwood drove to mid-on, putting College in the driver’s seat.
Nic Kyle then came into the attack, bowling with flight, turn and cunning to stem the runs. At the other end, Michael Davidson – bowling seam up – entered the fray to again pick up Sandy McLeod, who spooned a catch to square leg. Both bowlers sustained the pressure on Jesse Tritschler and Scott Kilday, with Henry Holderness also stepping up. Jesse was soon on his bike after first-class fielding by ‘Nuts’ Rutherford, swooping in to pick up the ball and hit the stumps.
Drinks were taken at the 22nd over, with STAC at 72/4. However, STAC came out firing, with Kilday and J Dalman finding the boundary regularly, until Dalman was out LBW.
Davison struck again, with Alex Toohey ‘believing in the leave’ as the ball crashed into his foot on middle stump. The return of Thomson brought two more wickets – bowled and LBW – and Kilday, who had batted superbly, was obviously aware that he was running low on partners. Kyle returned to pick up Kilday for 48, finishing with 1/22 off eight overs.
Tristan Pettit squeezed in one over before Woody Anderson finished off the STAC OB innings with a series of bouncers at Olly Dugdale, who was caught by Jono Davidson. Ben Patton’s mercurial keeping kept everyone guessing, with some exceptional stops and several misses. STAC were all out for 139 runs.
After lunch, College openers Ben Patton and Woody Anderson went straight to work, with Patton driving with vigour. Patton fell for 22, with the team on 43. A mini collapse followed, with Jono Davidson out for 3, and Pettit for 4. Jim Blakely then took the crease, playing superb shots around the ground while Anderson built his innings at the other end. Woody fell on 27, with the team on 90.
Michael Davidson then went straight to work, dispatching the shocked STAC bowlers at will. The pair made short work of the remaining runs required, with Blakely finishing on 43 and Davidson, 23 and the win wrapped up in the 26th over.
Many post-match libations were had. We were served brilliantly throughout the day by David Hearn and Phil Smith in the morning, and Rev. Cameron Pickering and Scott Cartwright in the afternoon.
Many thanks to the Valley of Peace for the wonderful hospitality. The ground was picturesque and the deck played beautifully throughout the day, an absolute credit to the groundsman, Tony Polson.
STAC 139 all out S Kilday 48 J Dalman 31 J Thomson 3/25 H Davison 2/13
College 143/4 J Blakely 43* W Anderson 27 S Kilday 2/35 J Dalman 1/12
Twenty-two Old Boys at the Criterion, Piccadilly Circus in 1902, and one former master, and you have the makings of “a most enjoyable gathering”, complete with flowers, a New Zealand flag and black and white ribbon.1
Unfortunately, the menu was not recorded, but several toasts particularly relevant to recent events were. The first was to “The King”, whose illness had postponed the coronation and, thus, prevented the attendance of several Old Boys. William Pember Reeves (289) – as Chairman – proposed the toast and, at the suggestion of Dr William Crosbie Hamilton (987), sent a letter to Sir Francis Knollys, the King’s Private Secretary, expressing their “humble concern and regret at the illness of His Majesty the King and of their sincere and heartfelt hopes for his speedy and complete recovery”.2
Joseph Firth, a former master3, in his toast to College, asked the Old Boys in England to take more interest in their old school. He hoped that more would be present at any future gatherings. Reeves, in his reply, emphasised that College continued “to send out into the world men who for sound principles, honest dealings and clean living would hold their own in any part of the world”.
The College Song was then sung.
However, that was not the end of the toasts. Heinrich Ferdinand von Haast (648) was appreciative of the “gallant” work of Old Boys in the South African War and gave a toast with musical honours. Cousins Hugh Thomas Dyke Acland (1238) and Reginald Tristram Harper (1519) replied, along with two other Old Boys – Thomas Edward Moorhouse (1659) and Michael Egan Lindsay (1521) – who had also been involved.
The rest of the business involved the setting up of a branch in England of the Old Boys’ Association and obtaining the names and addresses of those visiting the ‘Mother Country’.
Finally, William Pember Reeves was thanked for presiding over the dinner and it was sincerely hoped that it was the “forerunner of many other similar gatherings”.
Other than those already mentioned, who else was at the dinner? Brothers Frederick George (1296) and Albert Harold (1489) Andrews; Frederick William (1517) and John Harold (1354) Kemp and Edward Hutton Dillon (377) and Ernest Tancred Dillon (379) Bell.
Arthur Paul Harper (877) was also present. Maurice George Louisson (1395), Gerald Warren Russell (1505) and Thomas Henry Lowry (999) were studying and Huyshe Melhuish Cathcart Worthy (1183), like Edward Bell, had been ordained.
Henry (Hal) Williams (1218) would later become the Secretary of the London Old Boys’ Association. Francis Joseph Nathan (895), William Cowper Robison (647), William Arthur Izard (1450) and Heinrich Ferdinand von Haast may have been on their OE, although Nathan would later become a London merchant.4
And when were these Old Boys at College? Were they old Old Boys or young Old Boys?
William Pember Reeves was the oldest, as he was at College from 1867–1874, while Michael Egan Lindsay, who left College in 1898, was clearly the youngest. Attendance was spread evenly across the intervening years, except for 1891–1893. The attendance at College during these years was markedly higher at the dinner. Time enough for Old Boys to begin to make their way in the world.
1 All quotations are from the Christ’s College Register, September 1902, pages 193–5 where an account of the Old Boys’ dinner can be found.
2 A reply was received from Sir Arthur Davidson, Equerry, indicating that the letter would be shown to the King.