PENWITH College was “buzzing” on Saturday as hundreds of old girls from Penzance Girls Grammar School enjoyed a day of celebration to mark the centenary of the school’s foundation.
Visitors to the college were able to visit the granite building which housed the grammar school from September 1913 until it closed in 1980 – now called Nanjizal – and also the rest of the college buildings – Zennor, Sennen, Porthcurno, Gwenver, Lamorna and Treneere Manor.
There were also displays of archive material including hockey sticks, boots, gym shoes and a mannequin dressed in 1950s’ school uniform.
Old pictures of school life down the years were displayed on plasma screens in several of the college buildings and 280 of the old girls sat down to a much enjoyed buffet lunch when Martin Tucker, current director of Penwith College and an old boy of the boys’ grammar school, gave a talk on the college and his hopes for the future.
Margaret Woolcock, who organised the day, said she was delighted with how it went.
“The college was buzzing all day – although I’m not sure exactly how many people came along in addition to the 280 who sat down to lunch, I do know that all 500 programmes had been taken by the end of the day.
“People were moving around all through the day and I was really pleased to help two ladies, who had not seen each other for 70 years, to meet each other again and sit them together at lunch.
“Martin Tucker gave a very entertaining and inspiring speech and I feel that the future of education of young people in the Penzance area is in safe hands.
“We even managed to sing the school song, much to our surprise; all in all so many people said that the whole day had been such a great treat.”
Others attending included the five Gibbs’ sisters, four of whom have gone on to become headteachers in Cornish schools.
Mrs Woolcock also paid tribute to the staff at the college “who were very accommodating and looked after us so well”.