Half a century has passed since they flicked rubbers at each other from their desks, but up to 250 of a Sutton Coldfield secondary school’s first pupils are to reunite to mark its 50th anniversary.
The former classmates, now aged between 59 and 61, will travel from all parts of the country as well as overseas for the landmark reunion on Saturday, October 12.
Arthur Terry, which opened its doors on September 10, 1963, will be welcoming ex-pupils and members of staff who joined the intake years ’63, ’64 and ’65 to the evening gathering.
Although the original buildings have been remodelled, the school – named after Arthur Terry, who was Mayor of Sutton Coldfield from 1934 to 1935 – is still on the same site, in Kittoe Road.
When it first opened, it was sometimes known as the Arthur Terry Grammar or High School and schooled about 950 boys and girls – with boys being required to wear bow ties and for the girls to wear boaters.
Spurred on by the school’s first head boy Greg Leadbeater and Terry Payne – its first music teacher – Mike Newey and an organising committee are coordinating the reunion. Mike, a musician, who now runs his own music studios in Burntwood, Staffordshire, is working to track down as many pupils from Arthur Terry’s first three years of intake as possible.
“There was a reunion to mark the school’s 30th anniversary (see photo above), but nothing since. So to mark half a century since the school was founded, we wanted to celebrate the occasion with the Pupils and Staff to share the memories,” he says.
“We have already been in touch with dozens of former pupils, many of whom have already booked tickets, which cost £20. Because of the size of the venue, we are limiting it to those pupils from the first three years of the school’s intake.
“Although the school doesn’t look the same physically as it did 50 years ago, it will still be an amazing trip down memory lane. We’re expecting between 200 and 250 former pupils to come along – and we’d love to hear from others who were there at the time and would love to meet up with former classmates.”
Anyone interested in attending the reunion can get more details from the specially-set up website http://arthurterry50