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Volcano ash can't cloud school centenary

PUBLISHED: 13:46 30 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:14 06 July 2010

A SPECIAL milestone was marked in style as a century of "pride in achievement" was celebrated at a Lowestoft school.

More than 200 former staff and students of Denes High gathered at the school in Yarmouth Road at the weekend to reflect on a "100-year period of great change" and recall their own fond memories of time spent in its classrooms.

A SPECIAL milestone was marked in style as a century of “pride in achievement” was celebrated at a Lowestoft school.

More than 200 former staff and students of Denes High gathered at the school in Yarmouth Road at the weekend to reflect on a “100-year period of great change” and recall their own fond memories of time spent in its classrooms.

With headteacher Michael Lincoln - the school's eighth head - unfortunately stuck overseas following the volcanic ash cloud chaos, deputy head-teacher Evelyn Hicks led the proceedings at Saturday's centenary celebrations.

The day of events included the unveiling of a granite commemorative stone which was placed next to the original stone in the school grounds, while a special 'centenary edition' flag was raised on the Denes new flagpole.

Mayor Malcolm Cherry and chair of governors David Ormsby were among the guests to witness the occasion.

The school, which was founded in 1910 as the Lowestoft Municipal Secondary School, went onto become the Lowestoft County Grammar School in 1945 and finally became Denes High School in 1970. And this progression has been remembered “for posterity” in a new centenary album, written for the occasion by former pupil Chris Brooks.

In the book's foreward, Mr Lincoln says: “We are part of an unbroken chain of people, which goes back a century now through two world wars, an evacuation to Worksop and several major changes to education in the area and to the school in particular. I am proud to be head-teacher of this school, particularly at its centenary, and as it stands on the verge of another major development moving from a 13-18 high school to an 11-16 school and nearly doubling in size as it does so.”

Members of the centenary committee were thanked for their hard work in organising the celebrations.

Doris Ruth, an active member of the committee, was also praised for donating two benches to the school while local companies MS Oakes and Harrod UK were acknowledged for their contributions.

Guests enjoyed tours of the school, and viewed some of the items on display including old school uniforms, school registers and record books and copies of the Lowestoftian magazine. There was also a slideshow courtesy of Chris Brooks.

Chairman of the centenary events committee, and school operations manager, Justin Smith said “As a school we felt it important to mark this historic occasion and I am delighted so many people who were involved with the school, past and present, were able to join us. We have a number of projects planned throughout the year… the future is just as likely to be as colourful as the past!”

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