Ravenswood 70th Anniversary photos
When we first talked about holding a 70th Anniversary reunion, it sounded like such a good idea, but as we got closer to the event, doubts started to creep in and we wondered whether anyone would turn up. I can’t tell you how happy we were to see so many people arrive. What none of us had anticipated was the atmosphere created by bringing all of those Ravenswood people together. I am struggling to find the words to describe it to people who weren’t there and talking today to one of our current parents, who is also an ex-pupil, she felt that anyone who hadn’t been to the school might have struggled to feel it. It was a mixture of emotions. There was a great big helping of love in the building for sure, mixed with nostalgia, goose bumps, lots of laughter and a few tears. It all came together to create a mood, an ambience, a vibe, which certainly made it hard for me to get to sleep that night and I wasn’t the only one. If we could capture that feeling and sell it, we would be very rich.
The building brings us all together and gives us an identity. In Leavers’ Assembly every year, I always finish with the words, “But remember, whatever happens in the future, you will always be a Ravenswood pupil and you will always be welcome here.” I have always believed this, but now I know what it feels like. In the past, I have also been heard to say that a school is all about the people in it, not the building itself, but the building seems to be far more important than I realised.
What we can’t do now is box everything up for another ten, twenty or thirty years. During the evening, I chatted about how we could capture this event, but also celebrate our unique community. Do we risk setting up a yearly reunion? Do we create a space on social media or dedicate part of our website to this? How do we share the memories and photos collected? How might we use the experiences of our ex-pupils and staff to inspire our current pupils? These are all questions that I can’t answer just yet, but to start, we will keep this email address open and if you would like to share photos, memories, thoughts about what we might do in the future, then this can be our initial space to do so. I will also use it to let you know our thoughts going forward. If you know anyone who would like to join this group, then please pass on this email address.
I would like to finish by thanking our current staff. I wondered whether the evening might be a bit of a chore for them, but they were all as excited as I was. All of the cakes were baked by them and I think they did a great job in taking the tours. Thursday made us all remember why we love working at Ravenswood.