This excerpt is taken from the excellent “History of the Old Askean Club 1879 -1979”, written by Maurice B. Alexander and published by the Association in the centenary year.
“The foundation of the Old Askean Club is recorded as follows in the minute book: ‘In response to an advertisement in the June number of the Askean calling a meeting of Old Boys for June 20th (1879), the following Old Boys attended: Messrs Lister, Collingwood, Webb, Cozens, Hide, Wates. The meeting was held in the Headmaster’s room, the headmaster, being present, took the chair.
Earliest activities of the club
The members got to grips with things quickly and decided at the meeting on 7th July to hold an excursion, the committee to choose between Hampton Court, Box Hill and a yacht on the river. The choice fell on Hampton Court and the excursion took place on 20th September 1879. The Minutes record that the charge was to be three shillings for the railway fare – third class – and a meat tea at Tagg’s refreshment rooms. A goodly number took part according to a report in the Askean, the editorial committee of which had been strengthened by the addition of three members of the Club.
A second excursion was held on 3rd July, 1880, when the participants took the train to Kingston, rowed up the river to Hampton Court (but owing to delay caused by rain did not arrive soon enough to see over the Palace), repaired to Tagg’s Dining Rooms for a meat tea, and afterwards rowed up the river to Sunbury Lock and amused themselves with short races between the boats. They rowed back to Kingston, arriving at 9.15 p.m. for the return journey to London. Quite a hard day’s work!
The first Annual Dinner was held in 1884, apparently at Holborn Restaurant, which was certainly the venue of the second dinner on 5th March, 1885. The cost of a ticket was five shillings. The attendance was about 50. Annual dinners were held without interruption until 1914 usually at the Holborn Restaurant, though the Criterion restaurant was favoured on some occasions.”
6th of November 2000 saw the 125th anniversary of the opening of the Hatcham Schools.