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St Swithun’s School celebrates its 140th birthday in style

Published by St Swithun's School on Tuesday 7th of May 2024

St Swithun’s School in Winchester continued to celebrate its 140th anniversary with a series of festivities including a vibrant birthday lunch and party.


The celebratory lunch on 3 May was followed by the school dance with students from the prep school joining in the celebration in Harvey Hall. Students showcased their dance moves and sang Happy Birthday.


The highlight of the event was the unique fancy dress theme, ‘Through the Ages, 1884-2024’, which encouraged senior school attendees to don attire representing various eras spanning the school's 140-year history. From Victorian elegance to contemporary attire, the costumes added an additional layer of excitement while prep students wore their best party outfits for the occasion.


Students from both the senior and prep schools joined Headmistress Jane Gandee and Prep Head Liz Norris to cut a birthday cake which was made by prep school teacher and Head of HPL, Jenny Davies.


Adding to the festivities was a house photo competition, challenging students to recreate scenes from the school's photographic archive. Earlier in the week, students presented posters and academic work to their peers after researching the history of the school. Girls from the senior and prep schools also filmed a special  – highlighting the journey the school has been on throughout Winchester since its inception in 1884.


The day finished with a Founders’ Day concert in Harvey Hall. The audience enjoyed performances from various musical ensembles across both the prep and senior schools.


Reflecting on the success of the occasion, Headmistress Jane Gandee, remarked, “The entire day reminded us of why we are proud to be at St Swithun’s as our school community  celebrated our rich heritage and our pioneering and philanthropic ethos. It was heartening to see students and staff alike embrace the fancy dress theme and immerse themselves in the festivities. We look forward to continuing our anniversary celebrations and creating many more memories in the years to come.”


St Swithun's Winchester is a renowned independent day, weekly and full-boarding school for girls. Founded in 1884 by Anna Bramston alongside Amelie LeRoy, it promotes quirky fun whilst providing modern academic, sporting, creative and recreational opportunities to prepare young women for the 21st century. The St Swithun’s vision is a world where its young women see possibilities, not barriers. Its purpose is to turn wide-eyed little girls into courageous young women; and its belief is that it’s not just about learning lessons, but learning who we are without fear of failure, censure or outdated attitudes about what young women can aspire to.

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