October 2015
Dear ODs
The twists and turns of the Rugby World Cup have been quite giddying not least of all for England. There seems all to play for now thanks, as we ODs would like to think, because of the contribution from Francois Louw (W, 2003) who picked up two tries against the USA and who we hope will continue to make an impact as the Boks progress. Various groups of ODs have, ingeniously, been using South Africa's comeback as a good-enough reason to convene and enjoy the excitement of, at the very least, a quarter final showing. One such group were some 1997 ODs - Dave Steward (O), Trevor Reid, (G), Simon Grose (F), Dave Stuart (O), Stuart MacSymon (F),  Mark Westcott (F), Andrew Higgo (O) and Paul Robins (G, 1976) who have been following the Springboks as they played their matches in disparate venues close to disparate pubs. I was pleased to have been able to join them at one - The Dove - last Monday for a long and noisy lunch. The photo shows Dave Steward, Simon Grose and Andrew Higgo. More pictures from the afternoon can be seen HERE.

Rugby has not been the only point around which ODs have congregated; Robert Slingsy (F, 1973) launched his London exhibition, "I am", this week at the Royal College of Art in South Kensington which was opened by Prof. Richard Demarco, CBE. I together with Peter Arthur (W, 1965) and Jeremy Friedlander (F, 1972) were there to view a truly remarkable collection of portraits in charcoal and chalk pastel on paper conceived around the history, culture and existence of the Kara and Mursi tribes of southern Ethopia with whom Robert and his wife Janis had lived. If you have a chance to visit the gallery for the exhibition (which closes on the 13th October) and support Robert, you will not be disappointed. You will also, I hope, be very proud of how ODs, in their field, are making their marks on their international stages. Given his achievements and international reputation, that Robert and I were in the same art class at school is, for me, extremely irritating. Pictures at an exhibition, so to speak, can be viewed HERE.

Speaking of achievements, I'm sure you'll join me in congratulating Dr Chris Winearls (W, 1967) who was one of this year's recipients of the Teaching Excellence Award for Lifetime Achievement from Oxford University's Medical Sciences Division. Chris is a nephrologist and Associate Professor of Medicine at Oxford as well as having just retired as a Senior Research Fellow and Tutor in Clinical medicine at Jesus College.
Well done, Chris

Wine is not an obvious arena in the broad range of activities within which Bishops or ODs compete. Nor can it be claimed that as a rule Bishops and our good friends Haileybury are locked in mortal combat. But when it comes to wine, the ground shifts slightly (read that as you will) and it turns out that in fact in this field (or perhaps vineyard), both ODs and OHs do meet, bottle to bottle, as it were. While the differences between the Vondeling (owned and nurtured by Julian Johnsen (Haileybury) and wines made by Bruce Jack (OD) are almost imperceptible so good is the quality of both, it is still necessary from time to time to put them to the test. And so on Thursday 10th March 2016, the UK ODs are invited to join the Old Haileyburians for a friendly taste-off. Please save this date (venue to be confirmed) and for the few that find themselves needing to, start training now.
And speaking of wine, have a look at the invitation below from Gareth Penny (F, 1980) to the launch of his wines in the UK and see whether you will be able to support him as well. We face a veritable flood of excellent (OD) wine and it is our duty - it seems to me - to keep the levels safe.

Two non-OD functions/events I'd like to draw your attention to are:
  • The very kind invitation below from The Old Haileyburian Society to join their networking event for the Creative Industries this coming Tuesday 13th October.
  • The second is the Rondebosch Old Boys' Union RWC pre-quarter final bash (click on the invitation below to accept). A good many ODs have already accepted. If you are able to make it (no charge) it would be wonderful to mingle with our RBHS counterparts. Appropriate refreshment will be available in abundance.
There is no charge for either.
The year-end OD Christmas Drinks is on Thursday 10th December. The venue is being finalised, but will be in central London. Brian Roberston the ODU Chairman will be joining us and I hope as many of you and your wives/partners will be able to come along. Invitations will go out next month.

Below is a list of events taking place between now and the end of the year. I do hope you will find something that appeals to you. As always, these events and functions are just the lubricant to facilitate the strengthening of the OD connections, personal and professional.
As with all RSVPs, once you have registered your interest/acceptance, there's no need to do so again.

Kind regards

Nicky Bicket
The Old Haileyburian Society are inviting any ODs to join them at the OH Creative Industries networking event in London on 13th October. If you are working in or hoping to work in advertising, architecture, art, crafts, design, fashion, film, music, performing arts, publishing, R&D, software, toys and games, TV and radio, and video games industries I'm sure you'll find the event stimulating, enjoyable and above all, useful to you. This event is aimed at OHs and ODs already established in their careers who wish to network with fellow professionals, and at young OHs and ODs who are fairly recently graduated, who are looking for advice and guidance. 

Date & Time: 13th October 2015 from 6pm.
Venue: Tattinger Terrace & North Room, Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

Refreshments will be served between 6pm-8pm.

The 1990 matrics invite 1989 & 1991 ODs to join them for their 25th matric reunion on the 17th October. It coincides with the Rugby World Cup quarter finals. There's golf in the morning and then the two games in the afternoon and evening with supper and refreshments along the way. The venue is Murray McPherson's home in Stanford Dingley in Berkshire (RG7 6LS) - 45 minutes by train from Paddington. If you'd like to join in, please email Murray for details.
Robert Simpson (S, 1968, above) seen in action against the Old Tonbridgians is one of our Senior OD Golfers who will be joined by Bob Trew (F, 1952), John Wyatt (W, 1963), Peter Arthur (W, 1965) Mike Taylor (G, 1959) and Richard Duck (G, 1964) to their first game on the Wednesday at the magnificent Walton Heath Course. Richard and his fellow-OD golfers are intending to make these games fairly regular (and occasionally competitive) and rotate through as many courses as possible to keep play interesting. .ODs who would like to join the circuit (loosely, a Senior Golfer is 55 years or older, but this is a super-elastic cut-off)  should send through their details by clicking this LINK

Meanwhile, Alex Price, (M, 2009) has had an excellent response to our call for any OD golfers who might be interested in playing against the Old Tonbridgians (or against any side for that matter) in our return game. The OT match will take place at the RAC in Surrey on Sunday 10th July, 2016. Please EMAIL Alex if you're interested. The photos of this years inaugural match can be seen HERE.
The September 2015 Magazine
(Click on the magazine to access the various sections)
Stephen Larkin who recently offered an internship to an OD has written to say that so impressed was he with the calibre of the applicants that he has now taken two who will be staring shortly in his office in Surrey. This is a fully-funded internship which offers a broad ange of experience in he field of alternate energy.

The idea that ODs help ODs is gaining momentum, not just with the mentorship programme which is running extremely well up here thanks to the interest, kindness and engagement of OD mentors. On the back of the UK initiative, the ODU in CT have launched the programme worldwide. But ODs up here are also starting to look to younger (and some not so young) ODs as a trusted and known source of talent and it is encouraging to see that - on merit of course - ODs are becoming more amenable to recruiting ODs.
The Mentor Programme is not about jobs per se, but it does give mentors the opportunity to meet (and help) some of the talented ODs who might prove to be the next generation of leaders.
If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please click HERE. If you are looking for some advice and mentoring, then please email me
Conradie and Pennhill Wines, under the the experienced palate of Gareth Penny (F, 1980) launches in the UK on Friday 23rd October. Gareth is inviting ODs and spouses/partners to join in the excitement of this new range of SA wines on the UK block. The event is being held at South Africa House from 6pm-9pm. Given the date, a number of rugby personalities will also be there, so best to arrive closer to 6pm than 9. To receive a formal invitation, please click HERE.
Amid the global furore over the killing of Cecil the Lion, Ian Michler (W, 1977) left, a conservationist and acclaimed environmental journalist, invites ODs to the London screening of his film Blood Lions (see trailer or read the story). This takes place at the Royal Geographic Society in London on 27 November at 7pm. The film sets out to uncover the realities about the multi-million dollar predator breeding and canned lion hunting industries in South Africa. Before the screening, Ian will be talking to ODs before the film over a cup of tea. Please reserve your tickets (£20 each) by clicking HERE
Last year, a few ODs based in the Oxford area met for a most enjoyable lunch in the Oxford area. There has been support to repeat this and so any OD who would like to meet up for a very casual lunch on Saturday 28th November should let me know via THIS LINK. It is likely that we will meet at The Bell, 11 Oxford Rd,  Hampton Poyle, Kidlington OX5 2QD. If this is not convenient, we can rearrange the venue.
2016 Seniors' Lunch
Friday 22nd January, 2016
Speaker and venue to be advised

OD / OH Winetasting
Thursday 10th March, 2016
Venue to be advised

2016 Annual UK Dinner
Friday 1st July 2016
Next year's dinner will be held in London on Friday 1st July, 2016 with the Headmaster of Bishops, Guy Pearson, our guest of honour

Henley Royal Regatta
Wednesday 29th June 2016
Lunch and a day of rowing (watching) for ODs and partners at the Leander Club on the first day of this wonderful competition

OD vs Old Tonbridgian Golf Tournament
Sunday 10th July 2016
The next matches will be held at the RAC in Surrey (see box above).
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