Wellington School is adding a poignant contribution to the WW1 centenary with its ‘Dedication to the Fallen’ tonight, Friday 7th November. The programme of readings, drama, poetry and music will take place mainly in the school’s chapel which was built as a memorial to the 37 Old Wellingtonians who died in the conflict.
An excerpt from the moving play, ‘A Fitting Memorial’, first performed in the chapel in 1993, will form part of the programme. This play, written and directed by Joe Storr, then Head of English, traces the story of the building of the chapel from Headmaster George Corner’s first ideas for a memorial through to the chapel’s dedication in 1931.
The school has recently deposited its own archive of WW1 letters and documents with Somerset Heritage Centre as part of the ‘Somerset Remembers’ commemoration. One of the documents, the School Magazine issued in December 1914, opens with a list – extending to eight pages – of Old Boys serving their country, followed by extracts from their letters.
The School Magazines continued throughout the war, naming Old Boys who were serving and those to be remembered. In December 1916 it was subject to censorship when details in former pupils’ letters threatened to jeopardise the Somme offensive.