It was wonderful to see many familiar Old Lyonians (OLs) as well as plenty of new faces join the School, its pupils, staff, and civic dignitaries including the Mayor of Harrow (Cllr Janet Mote), to pay tribute to John Lyon, and his wife Joan at the annual Founder’s Day celebrations.
Many OLs initially gathered at the School’s Sudbury Playing Fields where memories of past sporting events together with photographs were shared to reminisce the ‘old days’. A ‘thank you’ to Roger Gage who donated a memorable photograph of the school.
Once at St Mary’s Church, the sun was shining and many more OL’s gathered with the pupils, the staff and guests. The ceremony was delivered by The Vicar, The Revered James Power who renditioned the story of John Lyon and his commitment to providing educational opportunities to children in the surrounding communities. This was followed by readings, angelic music from the School choir, and an address by the Mayor of Harrow. The service was completed by the traditional laying of the wreath at the tomb of John and Joan Lyon.
After the ceremony, we descended along Crown Street, where Prefects talked, walked and further intergenerational memories were exchanged from highlighting where the school tuck resided, to considering the fundamental changes that have been made to the surroundings over the last 40 plus years!
Lunch was in the School Refectory and a special Founder’s Day lunch was prepared by Sarah Blithing and her team. The OLs enjoyed queuing to collect their food and be part of the school lunchtime hustle and bustle. The Head, Miss Katherine Haynes and the Chief Operating Officer, Cdr Gareth Mawdsley also joined the table and revelled in hearing further memories as well as sharing updates on the latest developments at the School.
This was followed with an informative tour by the Head Boy’s Team which was thoroughly appreciated by all. A huge thank you to everyone who attended. Below are a few comments:
‘The school is almost unrecognisable and can see how today’s generation appreciate the opportunities for personal development offered at John Lyon’
‘It was somewhat strange coming back for the first time in 55 years, but it would seem you are all thriving and the whole day was organised very well. The young prefects were all charming and helpful’
‘Thank you for a most enjoyable and interesting visit to the school for Founder’s Day. A very well organised day with an excellent lunch and fascinating tour of the school. Just a few changes from my time, 60 years ago! I was also able to meet up with my grandson Sebastian during the day and it was good to see him enjoying his start in the 6th form.’
‘It was most enjoyable and great to catch up again with some old pals of such long standing’
‘It proved to be a very enjoyable and informative day’
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