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Reunion Reports



1970 Leavers - Reunion Lunch 

8th March 2020                          

We were especially pleased to host a reunion lunch last Sunday, 8th March, on behalf of the Calne Girls' Association, for 26 Leavers from 1970.

The Oratory Library, (the school chapel until the early 1980s), was transformed into a stylish dining room, decorated with spring flowers, where our guests were treated to a champagne reception and welcome speech from Dr Kirk, followed by a delicious sit-down lunch.

Very few of the returning old girls had visited Calne since the day they left and one had not set foot on the campus for 52 years. It was a day of great nostalgia and endless chatter, and one lady remarked in her thank you that she was 'stunned at how lovely it (the school) is now, and quite wish I was 12 or 13 again - to have such incredible luxury!'

2015 Leavers - 5 Year Reunion 

27th February 2020                          

It was so good to see so many of the 2015 Leavers last Thursday evening (27th February), celebrating their five-year anniversary since leaving Calne in a private room on the top floor of a Belgravia pub.

The atmosphere could not have been more uplifting, with over 30 girls all thrilled to see each other and various members of staff past and present. Although some of the girls are still in education or deciding on their next steps, many of them are at the start of exciting careers and were positively bursting with their news. Mrs Depla gave a short speech to thank the CGA for hosting such a great party and to let everyone know about all the incredible changes that have been and continue to be made to the school since they left, including the new Library and the Lime Kiln garden.                  

2018 Leavers - 5th Term Reunion 

9th January 2020                          

Jan 2020

On Thursday 9th January, approximately 25 of the leavers from 2018 were treated to their first St Mary’s reunion, courtesy of the Calne Girls' Association. They were joined by four current members of staff and Mr Rothwell, previous Senior Master, who were all thrilled to see them and hear about their news of the past 17 months.

The party was held in a newly renovated basement club in Victoria which lent itself perfectly to the occasion, and provided seemingly endless wine and delicious canapés. Many of the girls had not seen each other since their last day at school, so there was a lot to catch up on and even more to reminisce over, so by 8pm the staff quietly exited for their train back to Wiltshire, leaving them to it!                  

2014 Leavers - 5 Year Reunion 

7th November 2019                             

On Thursday 7th November, the CGA hosted a fantastic five-year reunion drinks reception for the Leavers of 2014.

Over 30 girls and various members of staff gathered in a private room at The Orange Brewery in Pimlico, for an evening of high volume chat and laughter. Whilst delicious canapés were served and wine flowed, they reminisced about their school days and shared stories of career progress, relocation and, in several cases, continued studies. The St Mary’s bond was in full force throughout and it was a pleasure to witness.                                  

 25 Year Reunion - Silver Jubilee

 5th July 2019                             

On Friday 5th July, 18 leavers from 1994 came back to St Mary’s to celebrate their silver Jubilee reunion with an over-night stay in the UVI House. Prosecco was served on arrival and after a tour of the school and the obligatory group photograph, they all sat down to a delicious 2 course dinner and caught up with each other’s news.

Many had not been back to school since they had left, and whilst their positive responses to all the changes on campus were to be expected, it was their reactions to the scale of the original buildings and landmarks such as the Lime Kiln that was surprizing. Everything appeared to have shrunk!

Several of the girls got in touch after the event to show their appreciation and it was deemed a truly memorable evening enjoyed by all. One even asked if there would be another one in 25 years’ time?                                    

 80 Plus Reunion

 29th June 2019                             

Founders’ Day this year was a little special as we welcomed back to school 10 of our octogenarian alumnae to celebrate with us and take a trip down memory lane.

Inspite of the searing heat and an alarming amount of stairs to contend with, (once galloped up by young ladies from Red Hall to Wordsworth, but this time navigated with the aid of a few walking sticks), the day could not have been more enjoyable, or memorable and not to mention revelatory!

One of the returning Calne Girls’ remembered being the first person in school to hear the radio announcement of the end of WWII and another told tales of her near expulsion having being caught stark naked on campus. It was a complete delight to hear the stories and the memories that came flooding back and the letters of appreciation were truly heart-warming!       

Left to right :

Gill Bailey (nee Browne), Mary Hellings (nee Steele), Gill Ross (nee Johnson), Diana Lee Brown (nee Ford), Jane Fletcher, Sue Vind (nee Wedgwood), Georgina Simpson (nee Chitty), Susan Tomson (nee Parry Jones), Hilary salmon, Sybil Spence (nee Ford)                     

 2009 Leavers - 10 Year Reunion    

 28th February 2019                             

Feb 2019 Reunion

On Thursday February 28th  approximately 30 Calne Girls congregated in the private room of a Pimlico pub to celebrate their 10 year anniversary since leaving St Mary’s . The atmosphere was a mix of  total over excitement and delightful nostalgia and the girls could not have been more appreciative to the CGA who hosted the reception.  Delicious canapes were served and the white wine flowed as the conversations got louder and louder.  A few sparkly engagement rings were even displayed as if to highlight what a long way they had all come since sharing dorms at Calne.                                            


1993 Leavers - 25 Year Reunion

6th July 2018                                                                                

1993 Leavers croppedThe annual 25 Year Reunion for leavers from 1993 was held on Friday 6th July – one of the hottest nights of the year so far. 15 Calne girls and one gorgeous baby gathered in the Helen Wright house, to celebrate this momentous occasion with evening drinks, dinner and an overnight stay. Everyone was instantly transported back in time as memories stirred and stories were shared of school life in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Topics covered included the inedible school food – a far cry from the incredible dinner provided 25 years later – the appalling careers advice given to girls in the Sixth form back then, and the expulsion of one of the returning guests!


An Enchanted Evening - 2018 Leavers Lily Ball

30th June 2018                                                                                 

2018 Lily BallOn Saturday 30th June the departing UVI, plus their families and friends, celebrated their final night together at St Mary’s, with the annual, highly-anticipated Lily Ball. The girls could not have looked more glamorous, happy and relaxed – and memories of A level stress seemed light years away. It was the most perfect balmy summer’s night with a Mediterranean temperature and an almost full moon. The champagne reception was sponsored by The Calne Girls Association, and the marquee and tables were decorated with ferns, foliage, honeysuckle and butterflies to evoke the theme of ‘An Enchanted Evening.’ Guests dined on delicacies and danced to live music until after midnight, when they were whisked away to the after party, and from there to the beginning of the next stage of their lives as St Mary’s Calne alumnae.


Ten Year Reunion

February 2018                                                                              

For the second year running we held our 10 Year Reunion drinks at the Orange Brewery in Pimlico. It was a hugely successful evening with a total of 21 2008 leavers braving the February chill to congregate in the Piano Room of the pub for delicious wine and canapés. As expected there was much excitement as everyone reunited and reminisced and both temperature and volume continued to rise until every last bit of pizza was eaten.



The CGA 5th Term Reunion

January 2018                                        

The CGA Fifth Term Term Reunion always makes for a happy start to the year, and for leavers of 2016, the annual evening reception at Juju’s in Chelsea, was no exception. Approximately 25 Calne girls and various members of staff gathered together to toast the New Year and old friendships, and to cross-reference life stories from the past 18 months. The girls were extremely impressed to hear about the rapid development of the new Sports Complex and the staff were equally delighted to learn stories of successful gap years and university news. As always, thanks go to the CGA for laying on such a generous spread. It was much appreciated!



Calne Girls Association Reunion

14th October 2017                                                                  

We celebrated our three-yearly Calne Girls Association Reunion at St Mary’s on Saturday 14th October 2017 with 32 old girls, the eldest being an unbelievably spritely 84! It was a particularly happy and uplifting occasion and commenced with a beautiful chapel service given by the Rev Rachel Benson (née Woods, 1960 Leaver) and our school chaplain Father Jonathan. St Mary’s catering excelled itself as usual with a delicious lunch and tea and the Music department put on a series of stunning performances by the girls, accompanied by Chris Totney. The alumnae were given tours of the school by members of the LVI and memories were evoked at every doorway. (Pictured is a group of 1976 Leavers)



1964-1966 Leaver Mini Reunion   

September 2016                                                                 

In September 2016, five Old Girls who left St Mary’s between 1964 and 1966 met in Montana, USA for a wonderful few days. Rosemary McKinnon (née Fletcher) – and her husband John – welcomed us into their home not far from Kalispell. First to arrive were Sue Ross and myself, Christian Donovan (née Davidson). A couple of days later we travelled into Glacier Park and spent a night at a chalet with friends of Rosemary’s at a place called, appropriately enough,
St Mary’s. The following day we hiked in glorious sunshine up a mountain to Ptarmigan Pass.

At Rosemary and John’s house by the stunning McGregor Lake we were then joined by Janet Gilbert (née Rivett) and Etelka Davey (née Leadlay) and their husbands, both also called John. We celebrated by hiking up the fairly-aptly-named Big Mountain where we experienced all four seasons on our ascent, with snow, hail, thunder,
lightning and heavy rain added to what had started as a sunny morning. The next day we were all interested to visit the Montana Academy, founded by Rosemary and John 20 years ago.

There was inevitably a lot of reminiscing on our days at Calne, now more than half a century ago. It’s surprising how much we could collectively recall and it was lovely to share those memories with good friends. The Johns were very patient throughout.

A big thank-you to the McKinnons for everything.’


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