OA The magazine for Dulwich College Alumni Issue 03



OLIVER LAM-WATSON Double Paralympic Medalist




Meet the Team

In the last few years, the OA Magazine has taken the opportunity to speak with a wide range of OAs about their lives and careers. After what might be described as a career of careers in the music and publishing industries, Peter Hogan (63-70) has written a successful comic book called Resident Alien which is now also a TV series. We also meet up with Ulundi ‘Lundi’ Makhanya (91-98) who was featured on the Premiership Rugby website in October as part of its reporting on Black History Month. We caught up with him as he reflected on his role at Northampton Saints RFC, where he is Head of Commercial Partnerships and part of the Sporting Equals Leadership project designed to equip ethnically diverse community professionals and former athletes with the skills required to help influence equality, diversity and inclusion in the boardrooms of sport. The Alleyn Club Dinner returned in person to the Great Hall in November, and over 150 OAs and their guests joined to welcome both our new President Nick Rundle (69-76) and our first live guest speaker; journalist, broadcaster and cricket commentator Dan Norcross (78- 87). James Kendall (59-67) was appointed to be Treasurer of the Alleyn Club at its AGM in December 1978. When he handed over the Alleyn Club’s accounts ledger to Michael Wade (67-72) at the 2021 AGM, he had been in post for a remarkable 42 years. I would like to take this opportunity to thank James for the many years of distinguished service that he has given to the Club. I doubt very much if we shall see such a length of tenure ever again. Looking ahead, apart from building on our cultural programme, as well as our successful series of professional networking events, we will put on a Spring Reception at the College on the afternoon of Saturday 30 April where OAs and their guests will be able to join together in a garden party atmosphere prior to a question and answer session with Rory Cellan-Jones (67-76), former BBC News technology correspondent. On the evening of Thursday 30 June, the College will be open to all OAs for a summer OA Reunion, as it was in 2019. There will be food and music to help us celebrate as we catch up with old friends and reacquaint ourselves with present and past members of staff. I look forward to catching up with many of you there. Finally, I must thank those members of the Development Office who have worked so hard to help put this edition of the OA Magazine together. In particular, Isabelle Beckett, Joanne Whaley, Olivia Straker and graphic designer Lucy Baragwanath who have spent many hours writing, designing, editing and proofreading.

Covid of course dominated the headlines during 2021 with both the College and the Alleyn Club continuing to adapt to the ever-changing rules and regulations announced by the government during the year. The 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games took place in the summer of 2021 and it is wonderful to be able to celebrate the success of Oliver Lam-Watson (06-11) who won silver and bronze medals in the wheelchair fencing foil and épée team events respectively. We also reflect on OA Olympic rowers in an article which is accompanied by a brief history of rowing at the College. Closer to home, OA sport quietly began to re-emerge and although the Arthurian League was cut short, it was tremendous to see the 1st XI in second place behind the Old Carthusian in the Premier League. The team also enjoyed a stellar run in the Arthur Dunn Cup, reaching the semi-final for the second time in the club’s short history, before falling to eventual winners Old Foresters. The Halford Hewitt golf took place in the autumn after a seventeen-month hiatus and OA marksmen were able to return to the range where it was good to be able to welcome some younger OAs to the team. Wimbledon Common also welcomed back the alumni cross country race to its usual pre-Christmas slot. I was delighted to be able to join boys from the College for a day’s sailing in the Solent as part of the Alleynian Sailing Society’s Boys Sail Training Week. The sun shone and the wind gently blew. Perhaps not the ideal conditions for racing, but perfect for practicing newly acquired nautical skills. The autumn saw the continued growth of our cultural programme with a screening of The Father, starring Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins, at the May Fair Hotel. The programme continues this year with a number of events planned to celebrate the centenary of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s death. The College prides itself on its wide ranging co-curricular activities and free learning programme and 2021 was no exception. During the week of 15 November, and following immediately after the COP26 Summit in Glasgow, the College ran its own Eco Week. Entitled ‘Choose your Change’, the programme challenged both members of staff and pupils to consider new ways of thinking about the environment and to adopt new practices that together would positively affect not only the College, but also the future of the planet. Not only do we celebrate several OAs whose work took them to the climate conference, we are also fortunate to speak to a number of OAs whose work involves working in or with the environment, and for whom climate change is a real and immediate issue.

Trevor Llewelyn Hon Secretary of the Alleyn Club

Matt Jarrett Director of Development

Joanne Whaley Alumni and Parent Relations Manager

Kathi Palitz Database and Operations Manager

Isabelle Beckett Alumni Relations and Events Officer

Kara McMahon Donor Engagement Manager

Olivia Straker Alumni Relations and Events Officer

We would love to hear your thoughts and feedback, and welcome suggestions for future features. Should you like to get in touch then please write to us at: ALLEYN CLUB AND DEVELOPMENT OFFICE

Dulwich College Dulwich Common London SE21 7LD +44 (0)20 8299 5335 alleynclub @ dulwich.org.uk dulwich.org.uk/old-alleynians-home oldalleynianconnect.org

Trevor Llewelyn (72-79) Hon Secretary of the Alleyn Club

Follow us:




Alleyn Club



Meet the new Alleyn Club President Nick Rundle


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Meet the Team

Meet the New President: Nick Rundle

06-09 10-12

OA News

Oliver Lam-Watson


Pat-ball: History & Rules A Message from The Master

14-15 16-17

Do you have any particular

What do you hope to achieve with your new role as President of the Alleyn Club?

College News


OAs Inspiring the Next Generation

memories of your seven years at the College?

I would first like to put on the record my appreciation of all the hard work that my two predecessors, John Lovering (61-68)and Simon Dyson (59-67), have done in consulting a large number of Old Alleynians regarding their views as to the purpose and constitution of the Alleyn Club. An immense amount of thought and preparation has gone into providing a new set of proposals for the future of the Alleyn Club, including a potential change of the Club’s name to the Old Alleynian Association and the creation of the role of Chair who will provide continuity of administration over an initial three year period, whilst the President will continue to serve for just one year following a year as Vice-President. We hope to have these proposals ready for a Special General Meeting in the late Spring of 2022. Additionally, I hope that I will be able to meet as many Alleynians as possible, both here in the UK and abroad as we hopefully move towards an end of the pandemic.

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Shackleton 100

Peter Hogan

I made a number of lifelong friends here whom I still see regularly. The College for most of my time was still benefiting from the sponsorship and free places of the ‘Dulwich Experiment’ and did not start to change towards being more fee-paying until the mid 1970s. I specialised in German and Economics for the entrance exam to Oxford and I have always been particularly grateful to Jim Whitehead, the Head of German, and Simon Dawkins, the Head of Economics for their inspired teaching and encouragement, especially in my final term. Stephen Howard, then Head of the Middle School, took us for ‘O’ level Latin and was a most charming and charismatic teacher. He was also extremely helpful when we were stuck on the Times crossword, as invariably happened!


2020-21 Leavers Destinations The Class of 2019 Reflect

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Rowing at Dulwich Dulwich Adapts 2 Eco-Week at Dulwich OAs in Sustainability



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OA Cross Country OAAFC (Football)

OAFC (Rugby)

Old Alleynian Shooting Club Alleynian Sailing Society

What did you do after leaving the College?


After studying PPE at Oxford I spent the vast majority of my working life in the City of London, firstly as a stockbroker and latterly as an investment manager. I retired from full time work a few years ago but kept an interest in the financial world going as a non-executive director of a global equity fund until last year. I took a year off full time work to be a Sloan Fellow at the London Business School in 1998/99, where I was reintroduced to the joy of three-hour written exams after nearly 20 years!

You were at the College between 1969 and 1976. What brought you here?

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Old Alleynian Lodge

Old Alleynian Golfing Society

I was a beneficiary of the so-called ‘Dulwich Experiment’ and was fortunate enough to be awarded a free place to come to the College by the London Borough of Sutton. They paid my travelling expenses too, which as a day boy involved a 20 minute train ride and a walk from Tulse Hill station along the South Circular. How I envied my classmates who commuted to and from West Dulwich!

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Black History Month & Ulundi Makhanya

Ourhood Community

Ivan Owen Belgrave Shirley

Oliver Storey

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James Kendall: Do We Pay Tax? Old Alleynian Endowment Fund

You have been involved with the Old Alleynian Endowment Fund since 2011.

How did you spend your time at the College?

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Dan Whitlam

The OAEF will celebrate its 90th anniversary next year. Over that time it has helped many Old Alleynians with loans to assist them in taking advanced degrees in the academic, medical and artistic fields. I have over my 10 years, firstly as Treasurer and now as Secretary, had the privilege of meeting a number of very talented OAs who have been looking to advance their careers in what is undoubtedly a more challenging employment market than was my experience in the early 1980s. The OAEF offers the facility of an interest free loan with no specific pay back period. Each beneficiary is liked up with one of the OAEF trustees who are able to keep in touch and offer friendly help and advice until and, in many cases beyond, the time when the loan is repaid. Our resources are relatively modest and any additional financial support is naturally most welcome!

I was on the Modern side here and specialised in Modern Languages, French and German together with Economics. Up to the fifth form it was also compulsory to take one science subject. I managed to pass my Physics ‘O’ level quite comfortably but, finding the paper again recently and looking at the questions I apparently answered, that certainly would not be the case today! I enjoyed playing cricket throughout my time at the College and was fortunate enough to be in the 1st XI in 1975 and 1976; two of the best and warmest summers in recent memory. I never, alas, paid enough attention to Gerry Thornton’s wise words that ‘you can’t score runs in the pavilion’.

OA International Community Joshua Ibuanokpe: Wing Ting

OLD BLEW HOUSE: The view through the arch - James He, Year 11

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Transforming Lives at Dulwich College

Building Strong Partnerships


OAs in Prin t In Memoriam




Singer Alex Banks (91-92) won ‘Americast’s Got Talent’ after being chosen by the BBC to sing Frank Sinatra in a special episode of the Radio 4 podcast, Americast, in January 2021. the James Caird, telling the life and expeditions of Sir Ernest Shackleton. Dulwich College will be using to teach the Lower School and it is available for all to view on our website.

Dr George Okafo (81-83) was featured in the Society of Chemical

Dr Alastair Niven Awarded 2021 Benson Medal Dr Alastair Niven OBE LVO (54-63) was awarded the Benson Medal by The Royal Society of Literature for outstanding contribution to


the Yazidi community in Kurdistan which is the focus of the current exhibition at The Courtauld Gallery. Kurdistan in the 1940’s runs until 30 May 2022 is housed in The Project Space.

reflected on his days at the College and spoke enthusiastically about the changing nature of cricket and of its role in wider society where it has evolved recently to try and ensure that everyone, regardless of background, has the same access to the game. Archives Webinars Our Archives Webinar series continues to draw in big audiences, with many members of the College community ‘Zooming’ in as we delve into the past.

The Father Screening at the May Fair Hotel On the evening of 1 October, nearly two hundred Alleynians, Old Alleynians, parents, staff and guests joined The Master, Dr Joe Spence, Director of Drama, Peter Jolly (72-80) and

Industry’s series on black scientists, talking about his journey from curious child, encouraged by family and mentors, to Global Director of Healthcare Data and Analytics with a leading pharmaceutical company. When asked what barriers may prevent young black people from pursuing science, he said “I do not see colour as a barrier nor a hindrance to pursuing a career in science. I think it is important to look for role models from the same background to help inspire you, to answer your questions and to encourage you.” EVENTS

Nicholas Galitzine Stars in Musical Remake of Cinderella Nicholas Galitzine (06-

13) stars in the new live-action musical remake of Cinderella which was released on Amazon Prime Video in early September. Nicholas plays a more

literature. Founded in 1916, the Benson Medal honours service to literature across a whole career. Alastair has written critical books and articles on many authors, including Chinua Achebe, Mulk Raj Anand, D. H. Lawrence, and Raja Rao. His autobiography was published in 2021. Jeremy Eccles Elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of New South Wales Jeremy Eccles (56-

Videographer Hal Howe (13-20) created a fantastic new short film, Shackleton and

“humanised” version of a fairy-tale prince alongside singer Camilla Cabello. This was his most sought-after role to date and Nicholas has spoken about how hard he needed to work for the studio to choose him over a big-name actor. As well as an upcoming role in Netflix’s adaptation of Purple Hearts, Nicholas is planning on releasing his own music. Paul Joyce Presents Photographic Retrospective The Hampshire Cultural Trust was home to A Life Behind the Lens , a photographic

Producer, David Parfitt at a special screening of The Father held at the former theatre, now cinema, beneath the May Fair Hotel in the West End of London. The film, co-written and directed by Florian Zeller, won Anthony Hopkins an Academy Award earlier this year for his outstanding portrayal of a man, sometimes mischievous, often defiant, who is unable to come to terms with the onset of dementia and its distressing side effects on him, his daughter and all who care for him. After the screening, Peter was joined by David Parfitt for a question-and-answer session that ranged widely across the whole production process, from the adaptation of the stage play for the screen to the financing of the project. David reflected on Hopkins’ extraordinary ability to move seamlessly in and out of character and on how, just forty-eight hours before filming commenced, the mustard colour on the walls of the set “just did not seem right”. The screening was a wonderful addition to the newly curated Cultural Programme on offer to the College community. Anthony Kersting: A man of many pictures and few words

Bidding Goodbye to the Class of 2020 and 2021 Our newest Old Alleynians joined us at Dulwich College on two consecutive nights for their Leavers Receptions, one of

In April, the spotlight was on Ernest Shackleton and his Old Alleynian network while in June the focus turned to some of our most well known authors as Patrick Humphries (63-69) discussed the work of AEWMason, PG Wodehouse, Raymond Chandler and Dennis Wheatley during which he drew on research carried out for his book, Dulwich College: Cradle of Writers. Finally, in November we learnt about Edward Alleyn’s journey to becoming the Founder of Dulwich College and explored the many facets of his character along the way. Networking Webinars Despite the pandemic, it has been business as usual when it comes to our various networking events. Healthcare Webinars In January, we welcomed a panel of OAs who all work in a health service facing unprecedented logistical, financial and technical challenges due to the pandemic. In May, we were joined by OAs and Dr Nikki Kanani MBE, Medical Director of Primary Care for NHS England, as we explored the theme of healthcare in a post-Covid world. Our latest webinar in November focused firmly on dentistry and maxillofacial surgery, with our chair Dr Sameer Mallick (94-01) introducing us to fellow OAs within these fields.

64) was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of New South Wales after a career in journalism spanning over fifty

Attaché TimBelow (74-83) was honoured to present a

Commissioner’s Commendation Award to the leader of the Scouts and Guides of France

years, the last twenty-five of which he has spent specialising in commentary on the Indigenous arts and culture of Australia. He described it as “a tremendous honour” to be made a fellow of a body which traces its origins to the Philosophical Society of Australasia, established on 27 June 1821. Jeremy remains one of very few non-Indigenous journalists working in this field.

when HRH Princess Anne met with scouts in Paris during her visit. David Reynolds FBA (61-70) took over from Roger Knight OBE (57- 66) as President of Cambridge University Cricket Club.

which was long-awaited. It was great to see so many familiar faces back at the College and catch up with their post Dulwich experiences. Alleyn Club Dinner Returns The College was delighted to be able to host the 139th Alleyn Club Dinner on Friday

retrospective of the career of the internationally renowned artist Paul Joyce (50-59), between August and November of this year. Paul was born and raised in Hampshire before building a global reputation as a documentary filmmaker, writer, photographer and painter. The gallery brought together some of Paul’s most exceptional portraits in celebration of his life and work, and to mark his 80th birthday. The commentary that accompanied each image gave an insight into Paul’s illustrious career and the talent and persuasiveness that made his portraits of “the good, the bad and the beautiful” possible. PANDEMIC NEWS TomKirk Revolutionises Covid-19 Vaccination Process Through Vaximap Biomedical engineer Tom Kirk (07-12) played a pivotal role in the creation

In January, Saracens rugby star Josh Ibuanokpe (07-14) received the year’s first Vodafone Gain Line Award (GLA) for his chicken wing company’s continued partnership with Southwark Foodbank.

Lieutenant Graham Creedy (48-56) and his wife, Vanessa Agutter, celebrated their Diamond Wedding Anniversary towards the end of last year. They married at St John’s Church, Copthorne, Sussex on 9 December 1961. Professor Ewan Anderson (49-56) and his wife Sian Anderson (née Mallen) celebrated their Diamond Wedding Anniversary this year having married on 6 January 1962. For his last two terms in Oxford, Ewan and Sian lived in a caravan by The Trout Inn at Wolvercote, much to the surprise of the Principal of St Edmund Hall.

On 20 January 2022, we welcomed Tom Bilson, Head of Digital Media at The Courtauld Institute of Art, to discuss

12 November. The evening started with a drinks reception in the Lower Hall, where it was fantastic to see OAs greet old friends whom they had not seen in some time. Many took the opportunity to see the new Shackleton 100 exhibition in the Archive, celebrating the life of Sir Ernest Shackleton as we approached the centenary of his death. After everyone moved up to the Great Hall for the dinner itself, Nick Rundle received the chain that sealed his place as our new Alleyn Club President. Our after-dinner speaker, Dan Norcross, cricket broadcaster and journalist

The award was created to celebrate the proactivity and off-field achievements of Rugby Players Association members. Josh recently spoke to the College community as part of our Entrepreneurship series turn to page 65 to hear more about Josh’s business venture, Wing Ting.

the life and work of Anthony Kersting (30–34) , the most prolific and widely- travelled architectural photographer of his generation. Anthony took great pleasure in recording life at the College and combined his love of photography with his passion for travel when he joined the RAF in 1939. He is best known for his architectural images from the Middle East, but it is the life of

Artist Stephen Finer (61-66) had his artwork selected to appear on the facemasks being sold to raise money for the National Portrait Gallery.



Action, who give grants to hospitality staff who have lost out due to the pandemic. Tom is now working on a Bartender Series, the first of which is a pineapple and pepper gin.

Crew: Charlie Lowe (94-01), Reg Kheraj (02-07) Ant Lindley (92-00) Ollie Light (03-08), Harry Tinker (02-11), Matt Gorvett (06-13), Ben Taffs (09-16), Chris Law (11-16), Tommaso Quaglia (15-20) and Will Holmes (12-19). OAAFC in the Semi Final of the Arthur Dunn Cup The Old Alleynian Association Football Club (OAAFC) reached the semi-final of the Arthur Dunn Cup in May following a magnificent victory in the quarter finals. After an uneventful first half, Captain Josh Lawrence (02-07) led the team to a dominant second half, with CamKelly (04-15) scoring a hat-trick and later being named the man of the match. Their semi- final game was against a disciplined and resolute Old Foresters who halted their progress to a first Arthur Dunn Cup Final.

of VaxiMap, an online resource for GP surgeries across the country to optimise the delivery of Covid-19 vaccinations to housebound patients, of whom

NEW YEAR HONOURS 2022 We are delighted to share news of the following OAs whose achievements and service has been recognised in the New Year Honours List for 2022.

SPORTS NEWS Arrow Trophy 2021

there are over a million in the UK. Healthcare professionals can upload spreadsheets of anonymised patient postcodes then the website sorts these into the optimal order and maps the routes, saving hours of planning and travel time. Within a month of starting up, Vaximap had already reached 25% of the target patient population, saved the NHS £400,000, and won backing fromMicrosoft, JHub Med (MoD) and Oxford University. Alec Bannister and CamHenderson Combat Holiday Hunger in Southwark The London alone, 400,000 children currently face food insecurity and in Southwark, increasing numbers of children are eligible for free school meals. This leaves them vulnerable to hunger outside of term time. Alec Bannister (05-16) and Cam Henderson (11-16) were inspired to help combat holiday hunger amongst children in Southwark and launched an initiative to raise funds to support Kitchen Social: Take & Make Boxes, part of the Mayor’s Fund for London, which provides healthy recipe boxes to children during school holidays. Amongst other ideas, they organised a mufti day with all proceeds going to Kitchen Social. pandemic has had a devastating impact on children’s access to food. In Tom Lord Supports the UK Hospitality Industry Through Gin Tom Lord (02-09) is a hospitality veteran and the founder of Hospitality

Sir Peter Riddell CBE (59-66) was knighted in the 2022 New Year Honours list for his services to journalism and foir public service. As a journalist he worked on both the Financial Times and Times newspapers before leaving to work in public service. It was a career that in 2016 resulted in his appointment as the new Commissioner for Public Appointments, a position he held until 2021. Sir Peter served as Chair of Governors at Dulwich College until 2021 and was awarded Fellowship of Dulwich College in 2021.

The Alleynian Sailing Society (ASS) competed in the Arrow Trophy J80 Regatta at the Royal Thames Yacht Club in April. At the helm was Mark Richmond (95-00) with Matt Gorvett (06-13), WilliamHolmes (12- 19), Ben Taffs (09-16), Harry Tinker (02- 11) and Tommaso Quaglia (15-20) making up the rest of the crew. After a hearty supply of bacon sandwiches supplied by the land crew, the team had a full day of racing competing in seven races, with four of those wins. The main Arrow Trophy Regatta took place 2nd and 3rd October with a new format. The fleet was split into two, twelve schools racing on the Sunsail First 41’s and fourteen on the Fairview Oceanis 37’s. In essence, it was really a Division 1 and 2 fleet, based on previous years’ racing results and longevity of participation. There was no promotion or relegation this year as it was the first time the fleets have not been a single class. The weekend’s weather seriously curtailed the racing on both days. On Saturday only two races were concluded due to wind speeds increasing considerably to in excess of 30 knots and on Sunday one much longer race was completed. Some of the ol’salts thought that the programme should have been postponed due to the conditions but actually getting a regatta on the water at all and holding the dinner was a major achievement for the Arrow Trophy Committee, given the ongoing uncertainties of the last 18 months. Dulwich managed to finish the weekend 8th overall which considering a number of crew changes, blooding in two new mates, Will Holmes and Tommaso Quaglia, a couple of rigging breakages and sailing a new untried boat was all in all quite an achievement.

Beno Obano selected for Calcutta Cup 6 Nations Game

Beno Obano (11- 13) earnt his first England cap after being selected by England rugby

coach, Eddie Jones, as a replacement for England’s 6 Nations opener against Scotland at Twickenham on 6 February 2021. Beno helped the College to win two Natwest Cup Finals before leaving to pursue a career with Wasps.

Peter Burnett OBE (70-78 ) has been awarded an OBE for his services to the British Business Community in Hong Kong.

Oliver Kebble (09-11) was also selected as a replacement for Scotland.

Chris Jordan Rejoins Surrey County Cricket Club Chris Jordan (06-07) will re-join the club next season on a three-year contract. He first played for Surrey in 2007 when

Andrew Braddon OBE (63-70) has been awarded an OBE for his voluntary and charitable services. Andrew is a founder trustee of the Story of Christmas appeal, a Christmas charity event which raises funds to support a broad range of charitable organisations, supporting the homeless and underprivileged children in the South East. Another of Andrew's charitable interests includes fundraising for prostate cancer and counselling those diagnosed with the disease.

he left the College at the age of 17 and has said that he is "extremely pleased to be returning to the place where it all started".

Gin, who have pledged 100% of the profits from their product, Hospitality Gin: Charity Dry, to support the hospitality

industry. It quickly became clear to Tom that Covid-19 would have a devastating impact and he wanted to find a way to provide long-term support to the hospitality industry and its people. The main recipients have been The Drinks Trust and Hospitality


Oliver Lam-Watson In the summer of 2021 Oliver Lam-Watson was part of the three man team that won Silver and Bronze medals at the Tokyo Paralympics in wheelchair fencing. It was an extraordinary achievement coming only five years after taking up the sport. Oliver was born in 1992 with Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome, a vascular disorder affecting his left leg, which worsened around the age of nine forcing him onto crutches. The condition means that Oliver cannot straighten his leg nor bear any weight on it without causing significant discomfort. Arriving at Dulwich in 2006, Oliver largely kept a low profile and today recognises that he often ‘denied my disability’ . He acknowledges that the College offered a great deal of support, although with the onset of puberty, it was often a confusing time. ‘For many in my year group there was a real sense that while we were entering a time of change and moving forward, we were also leaving something behind. My condition was not something I really talked about, nor did I encourage others to discuss it with me. My reaction was to shy away from the use of the word disability, even to the extent of suggesting that it was temporary and that soon I would be walking normally again. From an early age sport was never something I enjoyed and at the College I would always choose the gym option whenever possible; it allowed me to be self contained and focus on my own improvement.’ In 2011 Oliver left Dulwich and threw himself into his architecture degree. The course was to occupy the next six years of his life and became he says ‘an opportunity to re-invent myself. I was done with being the disabled kid, the kid on crutches’ It was a time when he chose to publicly acknowledge his disability; although by attributing his use of crutches to a skiing accident he was not yet ready to fully explain its origins. He hoped too that it was an opportunity to leave the worst experiences of his condition behind him, the countless doctor’s visits, the operations, the painful physio appointments. However, a routine visit to his doctor forced him to consider his life choices. ‘I was told that my condition had worsened and that now was the time to decide if I wanted to have my leg amputated.’ It was, Oliver admits, a wake up call. ‘This was a huge decision for me and although the risks involved meant that I did not, in the end, have the amputation, it did force me to revaluate what my disability really meant to me. I had just reached my twentieth birthday yet had only just fully come to terms with the fact that I was looking at a future as a disabled person. I started to go to the gym and train with a real purpose. Before long I had signed up for a 5K cross country ‘Spartan’ obstacle race which not only was a significant challenge in its own right but also gave me a benchmark against which to judge just how fit I was. I loved the buzz that finishing the

course gave me and having already decided not to continue with architecture I gave myself a year to see how far I could push myself. Soon 5K races became 10K, then 15K. At the same time I began to develop my media posts by focusing on disability and physical fitness. Social media became the vehicle that I hoped would allow me to show young people with disabilities what was possible if they put their mind to it.’ A follow up appointment brought yet another change of direction and Oliver was made to face up to the realisation that however hard, however challenging the obstacle races were, they were not, in the words of his doctor, ‘a real sport’. It was a comment that struck a nerve and resulted in him researching the Paralympics. ‘There was no doubting that these were real sports; the Olympics are at the pinnacle of any athlete’s ambitions. Wheelchair fencing stood out as being something I could relate to, felt I had an aptitude for and was accessible for someone with my level of disability.’ From that moment Oliver dedicated himself to his new sport. ‘This was the summer of 2017 and I guess I became a little bit obsessed with doing something that people had told me that I couldn’t do. I did everything to make this new dream a reality. I rang round every fencing club in London looking for help and for a coach that I could work with. I threw myself into getting fit and spent hours mastering the new techniques I would need to succeed. I was literally living wheelchair fencing 24 hours a day. Six months later in the February of 2018 I was selected to represent Great Britain at my first World Cup in Hungary. I was soundly beaten by some of the world’s best wheelchair fencers but I could see the progression I had made and knew I had made the right decision’ . A further six months on and he won his first individual medal, a Bronze, at the IWAS (International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports) World Cup in Montreal. A Bronze medal in the Team Epee competition at the 2019 World Championships soon followed. It was the first ever won by a British wheelchair fencing team and helped persuade UK Sport to invest in fencing for the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo. At the same time Oliver was placed on the British Disability Fencing Programme which meant a move from London to Bath and to a way of training that was far more structured and professional than anything he had experienced. For the first time he was supported by a team of full time coaches, physios, nutritionists and sports psychologists. ‘Everything in fact that I needed to be the best fencer I could possibly be.’ For some, Covid (and a postponement of the Tokyo games) came at completely the wrong time, for others, including Oliver, the delay meant that he could use the time to work on his fitness and

‘The biggest challenge was not my leg or the fact that I could not walk but society’s perception of me and what I was capable of. Four years ago I was told I would never be an athlete, so if you are young and having a tough time: I get it, that was me too. I encourage you to dream big, make every moment count, and don’t listen when they tell you to ‘take it easy, play it safe’…’



The Glorious Dulwich Game of Pat-ball: A History Pat-ball was born in the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. As boys and students wrestled for position on the courts, determination etched on their faces, Sir Ernest Shackleton, with his crew of 27 men, turned his attention to the crossing of Antarctica from sea to sea, via the pole. In April of 1912, the Titanic departed from Southampton, with Lawrence Beesley on board, a former Biology teacher from Dulwich College…such rich, intertwined history. No one really knows when the first ball was patted, but as evidenced by The Alleynian of 1901, the first year of the reign of Edward VII, we can say that pat-ball is at least 120 years old. And now in 2022, Dulwich boys, from Year 3 to Year 13, still grace the pat-ball courts, to play a game that is quintessentially Dulwich.

refine his fencing technique. ‘I knew that there would be athletes at the Games who had been fencing for much longer than me, I so I focused on improving my tactical awareness. I had to look for advantages wherever I could.’ ‘Tokyo was amazing despite the Covid restrictions which included twice daily testing, the fact that we were not allowed outside the Olympic village bubble and that we had to leave Japan within forty eight hours of the end of our competition. Nevertheless, I loved the feeling of being part of something so much bigger than just a fencing team. There was the opportunity to meet athletes like Weir who up until then I had just seen on TV. The dining room was enormous, catered to absolutely every taste imaginable and open 24 hours a day! In many ways it was easier than the build up back in Bath where I was quarantined in a small flat, pretty much being on my own except for training and eating. Hardest of all was having to get up at 2.00am to replicate the time change between London and Tokyo so we could minimise the effects of jet lag.’ ‘It worked though, all the hard work paid off. By the time the actual competition arrived we knew we were ready, we had trained hard, the work was done.’

‘I think it is important to

get the balance right and enjoy the little things, enjoy the moment. I think people often pursue outright happiness and feel as though they have failed if they are not happy all the time.’

HOW TO PLAY (The current rules)

A Bronze medal in the epee was a wonderful surprise for a team not ranked in the top three going into the Games, so much so that there was little thought that they could improve on that position in the foil event taking place forty eight hours later. In fact Oliver considered leaving his medal ceremony jacket back in the village on the day of the competition; ‘it took up so much room in my bag’ . His last minute decision to pack it though certainly paid off and the British defeated Russia and Italy (neither of whom they had ever beaten before) and France in the round robin before defeating Ukraine in the semi-final. While we were surprised to make the final there was no way we were going to let the Chinese intimidate us and we gave it 110%. In the end though they were the better team and we were Olympic Silver medal winners which was an incredible feeling. That the British team experienced the success that they did was all the more remarkable given the lack of competition running up to the Games. ‘Nothing internationally since February 2020; we had to spar with able bodied fencers in both our training and holding camps.’ Since Tokyo, Oliver has been careful to balance celebrating his success with a return to fencing. In early November he visited the College to speak about his career and then a few weeks later won his first ever individual medal, a Bronze, at the IWAS World Cup event in Italy. ‘The Olympics in Paris is definitely on the radar’ he says. ‘After that I will decide what comes next. I will be 31 in 2024 and after the Games I suspect my priorities will change. I can see myself settling down and starting a family. I often sit down and talk to Josh Ritchie (06-11) also an OA, about empire building. We started a media production company while I was training for Tokyo and there are other projects we are looking at. I also want to develop my media presence and write another TED Talk. I am also currently working with Nike on a range of clothing. ‘I definitely want to do more to raise awareness of disability; there is still a great deal of bias, both conscious and unconscious against those with disabilities. In particular I want to help younger people who are growing up disabled. It is also so rewarding to hear back from those with the same condition as me and feel that I have at least in part been able to help them achieve their goals. I subscribe massively to the idea we are more disabled by society and their perception of us, than by our diagnosis. There is a great of work still to do, Tokyo was only a stepping stone. What is important is where I am going to be in ten years time.’

There are four ways of playing the game. There is singles, a one-on-one game, scored as points, with the loser of the previous point serving. In doubles, the same rules apply as in singles, except there are two players on each team. The remaining two variations of the game are Aces and Kingpin with the latter being the most popular. Teams of players bring their own rules to the game: some rules are a matter of opinion, but as long as a compromise is agreed, then the game can be enjoyed by all. But please do not confuse this legendary Dulwich game with wall-ball or other variations. This is the game of pat-ball we love, and these rules are for you to share, discuss, add to and enjoy across the generations. There are a few core rules that everyone must abide by before any variations are accepted: • When using the hand to hit the ball, one must hit it such that the ball bounces in their square before it bounces in another person’s square, to make it a legal shot. If the player fails to do this then ‘straight-ins’ is called as they are out. • If a player were to use another body part, then they are allowed to hit it into another person’s square without it bouncing, for example when using the head. • When any shot is played, the ball cannot bounce twice in a person’s square, either before they hit it or after. If this is the case then ‘double-bounce’ is called, and they are out. • A traditional courtesy is that if a player gets out then it is their duty to retrieve the ball and return it to the court, especially if the ball travels quite some distance from the court after the point. Etiquette is a core value of the game.

Fred Griffiths, Year 13 Simon Middleton, Member of staff


A message from The Master

The new academic year 2021-22 brought with it a welcome return to an array of activities and events redolent of pre-Covid times. There was much to celebrate and we have been delighted to celebrate individual and team successes for Alleynians in the fields of Sport, the Arts and academic endeavour. While progress towards normalcy was punctuated with 10 days of ‘amber measures’ ahead of Michaelmas half term in late October, we managed to stem an increase in Covid cases and salvage a run of end of term events. Thanks to the collective diligence of pupils, staff and parents we were able to go ahead with Christmas Jazz , courtesy of the Big Band and Jazz Band, at Pizza Express Soho and a rehearsed reading of the School Play, Thornton Wilder’s Our Town. I have been pleased to be able to welcome back to the College an increasing number of guests, including Paralympic medallist, Oliver Lam-Watson who graces the cover of this magazine. I was pleased so many Past Presidents of the Alleyn Club and Fellows of the College were able to join us when the whole College community came together at the War Memorial for the first time since 2019 for our Act of Remembrance on 11 November. As you will read in this magazine, Dulwich College Eco Week, later in November, was an important launch pad for our commitment to sustainability, just as Black History Month, rather than being tokenistic, has spurred us on to a sustained commitment to racial equity. Similarly, as I write we are holding our third Dulwich College Identity Awareness Month (DC IAM), with the focus this year being on celebrating our LGBTQ+ pupils and giving them a platform to talk about their hopes and concerns at Dulwich and in the wider world in 2022. In the wake of Everyone’s Invited and an Open Letter to the Master of March 2021, which brought to my attention the testimonies of those who had been the victims of sexual abuse or harassment or serious social media misuse at the hands of Alleynians or OAs, I can also assure you that the College’s – and most importantly the pupils’ – commitment to gender Allyship and the work outlined on the Equality and Respect page of our website continues. I have written of the return to near-normality at school and I have also been delighted to see the restoration of a programme of events for Old Alleynians. It’s been a great pleasure to see so many of you re-engaging with us – in person or online and from afar. The addition of a cultural programme of events has been widely welcomed, and has encompassed Archives lectures on Sir Ernest Shackleton, Edward Alleyn and notable OA authors of the early 20th century, a private screening of Oscar-winning film The Father followed by a Q&A session with its producer, Dulwich Governor and past parent David Parfitt, and a webinar about the life and work of Anthony Kersting . Kersting’s extraordinary photographs of Kurdistan in the 1940s feature as one of the exhibitions with which the Courtauld Gallery reopened in November 2021 after its substantial renovation. We look forward to building on our cultural programme. Indeed, again courtesy of David Parfitt, our next event in this series is a preview screening of a film of the Poulenc one-woman opera La Voix Humaine which will be staged at the screening room of the May Fair Hotel on Thursday 10 March. We are delighted that we will be joined there by the star of the film, the internationally acclaimed lyric soprano Danielle de Niese who has agreed to take our questions after the film has been shown. As many of you know, Lent 2022 sees me on a part-sabbatical, the main focus of which was to have been a voyage to the Antarctic as part of the celebration of Shackleton 100. That was cancelled just before I was due to set sail, falling foul of omicron, but I am enjoying days away from College visiting our partner and feeder schools. Fiona Angel, the Senior Deputy, is Acting Master during this Lent Term and I know she’s enjoying representing me at OA events at and beyond the College, not least at the AGM and Annual Lunch of the Alleynian Sailing Society, held at the College in mid-February. This hope has been expressed before, but nevertheless I reiterate that I hope we will find this to be the year in which things return to normal in terms of the extent of our activities and our openness to visitors. We are certainly looking forward to our next OA Reunion here at the College in June, at which we hope to welcome many of you back to see us after so long.

As ever Dr Joe Spence The Master

College News


A Return to Normality June saw the return to live performance in the Edward Alleyn Theatre. Year 11 pupils staged extracts from Punk Rock by Simon Stephens, Year 12 presented The Get Down , their original piece inspired by the story of hip hop in 70s New York, and Year 13 revived their exam monologues, owning the stage of the Edward Alleyn Theatre for one last time. In July, Dulwich athletes enjoyed a hugely successful season with boys regularly training after school, new competitive fixtures and many achieving excellent times and distances. We were proud to see that 19 Dulwich boys were rewarded for their hard work by achieving the standard to compete at the London Schools Championships in Battersea. The final cricket fixture of the 2020-21 academic year saw the Year 13 Leavers XI take on The Forty Club. A solid opening gave the Leavers XI a good foundation to build on - a score of 167 off 52.5 overs. The opposition inched nearer to 167 in the final hour, but the Leavers XI won by 1 run. As is often said, cricket is never over until it's over!

International Women’s Day: 8 March The overarching theme for IWD 2021 at the College was to champion and to challenge. A celebration of the pioneers for gender equality and a collective pledge to ‘Choose To Challenge’ have been central to our marking of this day and future calls to action. The programme included talks on the female survivors from East African countries where there is conflict the impact of Covid-19 on women in the UK.

Refugee Week: June 2021 Refugee Week provided a platform to look at the sources of conflict and displacement and possible solutions. Through talks, panel discussions and workshops, the pupils explored the role of education to break down the barriers, humanise the dehumanised and encourage critical thinkers who can be part of the solution. The College community were invited to take part in the ‘Walk with Us’ challenge to support the work of our pledge charities, Aegis Trust, working to prevent mass atrocities worldwide and Gua Africa, providing education for those affected by displacement. The College hope to take pupils and OAs to East Africa where these charities carry out much of their works as part of its advocacy trips. Mental Health Awareness Week: May 2021 We were all invited to engage with nature, follow the paths on our Wellbeing College map, and take moments to consider the importance of looking after each other and ourselves. The College hosted a range of activities, from a panel discussion on mental health hosted by clinical sports psychotherapist and a sports broadcaster Gary Bloom to letting it all go on inflatables. The Wodehouse Library organised a seed and seedling exchange so that staff could get growing over the mid-term break and pupils were invited to take part in The Big Plant! The focus was on recharging our batteries whilst also providing much-needed moments to slow down and reflect. DC I AM Here: February 2022 DC I AM Here was the College’s third Identity Awareness Month, focusing on the concept of HERE and providing a chance to explore how physical spaces and places contribute to our identity, sense of self, recognition, and belonging. Last year, as we were all in lockdown and the pupils were learning remotely, the focus was on our collective community identity. Amongst other initiatives, the College put together the I AM Library, modelled on The Human Library movement and aiming to address prejudices by allowing people to talk to those they would not normally through a library analogy of lending people rather than books.

Talented DC Art Students Bring Una Marson to Denmark Hill During the summer, sixth formers Emilio Nunzi and Timur Safardiar were commissioned by the Camberwell Society to paint an optical illusion of the Jamaican poet, writer, and activist Una Marson at Denmark Hill Station. During the Second World War, Una Marson was a feminist, poet, playwright and social activist.

Results We are pleased to report that the Year 11 and 13 pupils achieved an excellent set of GCSE and A-Level results respectively this year. Not only are there many top grades to celebrate, but there are stories of individual successes in the face of adversity from pupils who have faced unprecedented academic and personal challenges over the 18 months of lockdown.


OAs Inspiring the Next Generation

SHACKLETON 100 By Freddie Witts, Dulwich College Archivist

Wing Commander Lewis Cunningham (91-96) treated the students of the College CCF to a fascinating talk on Tuesday 2 February. Lewis was the Senior Cadet in the RAF section during his final year at the College and oversaw the first team as they won the National Air Squadron Trophy in 1996, a trophy we have now won on several occasions. Lewis spoke about how he came to have a career in the Royal Air Force as a fast jet pilot and shared some of the experiences he has had so far.

Taran Matharu (04-09) , author and publisher, joined pupils for a virtual visit on Wednesday 3 March. The boys and library staff had sent in lots of questions and were keen to hear about how Taran got started as a writer, found inspiration in both mythology and real-life adventure and the input he has on the design of his book covers.

On Tuesday 23 March, Pierre-Louis Denaro (03-14) spoke to the Francophone Society about his work as Managing Director of Ngor Island Surfcamp and Head of Medical for the Senegalese Federation of Surfing, working with their Olympic team. Pierre-Louis spoke passionately about how languages opened up opportunities for him throughout the world. An advocate for “outside the box” careers, living sustainably and limitless goal-oriented travel, Pierre-Louis left the group abuzz with ideas.

As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, the College welcomed a panel of experts, including Will Fraser (06-08) , to explore the links between a healthy body and mind. Will played for Saracens and England and pursued his dream of winning the Premiership and European Cup, before being forced into early retirement due to injury. Will now uses the power of real-life experiences to drive change through his company, 100andfirst.

Dr Faheem Ahmed (03-10) joined us for one of May’s instalments of Thinking About webinar, a joint project with the Southwark Schools Learning Partnership. The collective community join weekly guest speakers to think about a variety of topics. Faheem focused his talk on Medicine and spoke about his company Selfless, whose mission is to create effective, innovative and sustainable solutions to the most pressing local and global challenges in healthcare with young people at its helm.

5th January 2022 marked the centenary of Ernest Shackleton’s death aboard the Quest . Just short of his 48th birthday, in 1922 he was on the fourth Antarctic voyage of his adventure-filled life, looking out over the scene of his greatest triumph.

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