Shrigley Association Reunion 2008




 Programme :
Friday 19 September 2008
1800hrs……….Buffet at Savio House

Saturday 20 September 2008
0830hrs………Breakfast at Savio
0930 hrs…...Mass at Savio
1100hrs .....AGM at Shrigley
1230hrs......Lunch at Shrigley
1430hrs..... Visit and memorial in the Shrigley cemetery (As part of the annual Association's memorial cemetery service, we will include the Staff and boys of ’58 who have since died.)

1545hrs….. A presentation of Reminiscences of Shrigley
1800hrs.. …Dinner at Savio
1930hrs.. …Concert at Savio

Sunday 21 September 2008
 0830hrs.. …… Breakfast at Savio
0930hrs………….Mass at Savio
1230hrs.. ………Lunch at Savio

Minutes of the 13th AGM. Shrigley 20.09.2008

The Shrigley Association has had a very good year, with three Committee meetings held in different locations to reflect the geographical spread of our Members in Britain, followed by a very successful reunion at Shrigley/Savio House in September. Below you will find the minutes of this year's AGM, including reports from your Officers and Organisers of the reunion.

We should be glad if you read these carefully and acted on them in the various ways suggested. Above all, keep in touch. We should love to hear from all of you.

With warmest best wishes,
Peter Roebuck (Chairman 2008/9)



1.   Welcome & Apologies

2.   Minutes of the 12th Annual General Meeting           held on 21 July 2007

3.   Matters arising from the Minutes

4.   Chairman’s Communications
I.             The Presidency
II.            Report for the Year, including proposals from the Committee

5.   Other Reports
I.             Secretary & Archivist
II.            Treasurer
III.           Minutes Secretary & IT Co-ordinator

6.   Proposed Changes to the Constitution

7.   Elections to the Committee for 2008-9

8.   Any other business

    1. Welcome & Apologies: the Chairman, Peter Roebuck welcomed all present to this meeting held in the Cheshire Suite (Lower Elements), beginning promptly at 11.00am
    Present: Peter Roebuck (Chair), Mike Kilduff (Secretary/Archivist), David Murphy (Treasurer), Eric Baggaley (Minutes Secretary/IT Co-ordinator), Paul Barnes (Southern Rep.), John Bergin (Scottish Rep.), Bernard O'Neill (Event Co-ordinator), Patrick O'Neill, John King, Donald MacDonald, SDB, Kevin Dean, Gail Dean, Gerry Wright, Anthony Calway, Robert Hilton, Tom Mc Cormick, Gregory Bell, John Burke, Marie Burke, John Beirne, John Burnett, Anthony Mc Carthy, Helen Kilduff, George Robson SDB, Albert Carette SDB, George Holley, Keith Dransfield (Webmaster), Bernard Parkes SDB, John Ballard, Norbert Gough, Joe Adams SDB, Frank Mc Griel, Peter Stubbs, Kevin Panton. (present Reunion, Saturday, Ted Carless & Ruth Dark and present Reunion Sunday Fr. Michael Winstanley SDB.)
    (N.B. I have included here, for convenience, Members present at the reunion, but not at the AGM.  Min. Sec.)
    Apologies: George Paton, Joe Zahra, John Booth SDB, Bernard Jerstice SDB, Frank Sutherland SDB, Peter Lally, Rev. John Crowshaw, Charles Garrick SDB, Terry Prendergast, John Bosco Whitehead, Leo Fewtrell, Peter Hunter, Joe Lomax, Tom Bushell, Stan Malloy, James Walsh SDB, Canice Dooley SDB.

    2. Minutes of the 12th AGM : Shrigley 21st July 2007 (Document/LINK) were accepted as a true record.

    3. Matters Arising:
    2a: Charitable Status was not feasible, as our financial turnover is too small.
    2b: A small group of ex-Shrigley boys, led by Mike Cox, had organized their own mini-reunion at the Hotel during the year. We thank them for the report and photographs for posting on our website. 5: Life Membership is now available for the sum of £200.
    6: The Shrigley House Shields are now prominently displayed in the Hotel foyer. A selection of framed photographs is also displayed in the corridor which follows the outside of Shrigley Chapel.
    7: The Southern Committee Meeting was held, courtesy of the Rev. John and Mrs. Mary Crowshaw, at their Great Missenden Parish, together with a programme of speakers and a dinner. This was a very successful event and arising from it we propose a change to our annual programme as follows: an autumn meeting, to be held in the South, at Chertsey in November 2008, the January meeting in Glasgow, and a Thornleigh meeting in May on the feast of Mary Help of Christians (24th.). This agreed revision has been implemented with Paul Barnes planning the Southern event. Joe Lomax, having previously arranged the Don Bosco mass at Thornleigh in early February (attendance at which was greatly affected by proximity to the Glasgow event) has arranged the 24th of May Mass at Thornleigh with Fr. Anthony Bailey SDB.

    The Chairman announced Joe Lomax's resignation as Joint Secretary during the year, owing to his family difficulties. Joe will still represent the Association on the National Council. A warm and unanimous vote of thanks was passed to Joe for all the work he has done for the Association in the past decade.

    10: Thanks were registered, once again, to Bernard O'Neill, for his update of the Association Directory.

    4. Chairman's Communications:

    1. The Presidency: Once again, Fr. Albert Carette has agreed to serve as our President for the coming year. This announcement was greeted with prolonged, enthusiastic applause. Fr. Carette conveyed to the meeting the very best wishes of Fr. George Williams SDB, Rector at Shrigley in 1958. The Chairman extended a special greeting to Michael John Bosco Wosser and his wife, Grainne, relatives of Patrick Wosser, who died in 1934 at Shrigley and is buried in the Shrigley Cemetery. 1958 is also the 50th Anniversary of the death of Damien Cocksey. The latter's family was represented at the Cemetery Book Launch last year, but Damien's relatives are also visiting Shrigley on the 4th October 2008 to meet his classmates, Peter Roebuck and Mike Kilduff. Other Old Boys are invited to attend, but please let Peter or Mike know in advance. (Click HERE for a report of this event)
    2. Report for the Year: In presenting his Report for the year, the Chairman paid tribute to the hard work of his fellow Committee members: the group had operated very effectively as a team and made progress on a number of fronts.

    Progress: A revision of our annual programme has been formulated. The Secretary has circulated a new-style Newsletter and devised a Welcome Pack for all new Members. The response to his "Up-dating & Contacting" exercise has not been very encouraging so far and all Members are encouraged to complete this exercise without delay.

    The Treasurer has established our new banking arrangements and his analysis of the figures he had received show that our account relies far more on donations than on subscriptions. A Constitutional change to be proposed later in the meeting is aimed at rectifying this. Standing Order forms are now available for Membership Annual Subscription and we are all urged to complete and return these to David Murphy as soon as possible.

    The Minutes Secretary/IT Co-ordinator, with indispensable help from Keith Dransfield, has greatly refreshed our website. Minutes, Reports and other new items appear promptly and regularly. The website has a growing list of "hits". Members are reminded that they can also benefit from joining the "cascading" of RUALINK, should they want comprehensive coverage of Salesian affairs.

    The Events Co-ordinator had toiled long and hard to make this reunion well attended and highly successful and we express our thanks to him. Unfortunately, once again, the task of organizing the reunion had been made unnecessarily difficult by Members making their bookings only at the last minute. We are all strongly urged to help in future by booking for events well in advance.

    Scottish Representative, John Bergin, had arranged the successful event for the Don Bosco mass in January in Glasgow and Southern Representative, Paul Barnes, had provided us with our first ever "Southern Gathering".

    The Chairman concluded with a particular request for all Members of the Association to ask themselves what they might do to help the Association. Providing ideas or items for future events, sending in photographs and items for the website, offering their expertise, or simply sending in to the Secretary their correct contact details and specific requests for the type of contact they desire, were all excellent ways of Members helping their Association. Now that Committee Members are working as a team, we should all attempt to adopt a similar approach to all aspects the affairs of  Association activity.
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    Other Reports:
    Secretary & Archivist:
    Mike Kilduff reiterated his request for Members' replies for up-to-date contact details. Essential savings in time, effort and expense can be made by limiting email and postage contact to those Members who actually want and request it. Archivist work currently is focussing on researching the work and the workers associated with the building of the Shrigley Church.
    Full Report Here

    Treasurer: David Murphy presented the most up-to-date and complete accounts possible with "the difficult set of figures received". He appealed for all Members to become "Enrolled Members" by the payment of the annual subscription, preferably by completing a DD Form today! 2008 income of £440 in subscriptions and £587.50 in donations, less outgoings, leaves a surplus of £360. By comparison, the corresponding figures for 2007 were £745, £1,623 and a surplus of £58. Secretarial and other cost savings in 2008 have seen the total surplus in the bank rise from £2,467 in 2007 to £3007 currently.  (It has been agreed that the full Association Accounts are not published here, but David will send a copy to those who request it. His contact details are in the Directory and on the website.)

    Minutes Secretary and IT Co-ordinator: Eric Baggaley remarked that the GALLERY coverage of reunions is not at all complete, even the 2004 75th Anniversary of Shrigley's opening. Members are urged to send in photographs and items and to join the "cascading" of RUALINK, if desired. Full Report Here

    John Bergin has assured Members that he will again plan the Glasgow event in January 2009. Paul Barnes has provided a document about the November 2008 event in Chertsey.

    Proposed Changes to the Constitution:
    Tony Calway spoke about the necessity of "Enrolled Membership". The main thrust of the proposed change is to distinguish between those Entitled to Membership of the Shrigley Association and those who are Enrolled Members by virtue of their payment of subscriptions, Life or Annual. The AGM approved the adoption of the new Constitution. (Click HERE to view)
    There was some discussion of membership of the National Old Boys' Association (and its financial implications). The matter of some form of "Membership" for wives and partners was also raised.
    Action: Peter Roebuck and David Murphy, with the Committee, will explore these matters further and report back.

    Elections to the Committee:
    The Chairman announced that Mike Kilduff, David Murphy, Eric Baggaley, John Bergin, Paul Barnes and Bernard O'Neill had all been duly nominated and seconded, following on their agreement to stand for re-election. All were duly voted onto the Committee for 2008-9. As promised at the AGM 2007, Peter Roebuck offered his resignation as Chairman. However, there being no other nomination received, Paul Barnes proposed that Peter be invited to continue overseeing the important development of the Association for a further year. Seconded by Tony Calway, this proposal was accepted by Peter to generous and warm applause from the AGM.

    Savio House is seeking support for a Youth Venture in 2008/9, at an estimated cost of £10,000. Further details will be made available.
    As the clock crept towards 12.30 pm, the Chairman was again happy to close an AGM on time!

    Eric L. Baggaley  29.09.2008

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In glorious sunshine we assembled at 2.00pm for our Annual Service. A special welcome was extended to Michael and Grainne Wosser, who had travelled from Ireland. Fr. Albert Carette SDB (our Association President) assisted them in laying wreaths on the graves of their relative, Patrick (1934), and of the other three boys who died at Shrigley in the 1930s, Andrew Gallagher (1933), Daniel McAfee (1933) and Desmond Sheehan (1937). Michael Wosser expressed the gratitude of the whole Wosser family for the efforts made by the Shrigley Association and especially for the commemorative booklet published in 2007. He and Grainne were delighted to represent the family this year. Grainne sang beautifully "On Eagle's Wings", a moving tribute which all applauded.

Wosser Family

The last boy to die and be buried at Shrigley, Damien ("Dan") Cocksey (1958), was recalled in anecdote by Peter Roebuck, including some brief reminiscences of the details of Dan's death. Bernard O'Neill then read a poem in Dan's memory. Both are contemporaries of Dan Cocksey as also is Fr. Bernard Parkes SDB, who conducted the Service. He recalled the five Salesians who died during his years as a boy at Shrigley: Fr. Thomas Slythe (1959), Bro. Emile Hevia (1961), Bro. James Brockbank (1962), Frs. Peter Mc Cusker and Frank Wilson (both 1963). Wreaths were laid by their contemporaries. In addition a wreath was laid at the central cross as a tribute from the class of 1958 to all their dead contemporaries. Commemorated then were Salesians Bro. Christopher Higgins (1976), Bro. Laurence Biello (1977) and Fr. Edwin Slack (1982), for whom wreaths were laid by fellow Salesians Bro. Joe Adams, Bro. Donald Mac Donald and Fr. George Robson.

Cemetery Group

Also remembered were Tony Booth, Tony Coop and Hugh Walton, whose ashes had been scattered here by their relatives. Fr. Robson spoke of the Massey family, great Co-operators of Shrigley, whose ashes are also scattered here, and a wreath was laid at the cross in memory of them and of  all Shrigley Co-operators.

Since last year's Service, the Association has heard of the death of Donald Bishop, Hugh O'Rourke, Patrick Slavin, Michael Heron, Jack Rogers, Arthur Pace, Paul Bartoli, Hugh “Hodge” Quinn, brother of Fr Peter Quinn. Hugh “Billy” Bott and of Salesians Fr. Patrick MacBride, Fr. Anthony Garman, Fr. Dan Lyons, Fr. John Corcoran, Bro. Jim Hamilton and Fr. Sean Crummey. We also recalled that today was the Anniversary of the death of Fr. John Docherty SDB, the last person to leave Shrigley when it closed as Salesian House.

Cemetery Group

The singing of the Requiem Aeternam and Salve Regina from "Carmina Shriglesiana" and the final blessing by Fr. Parkes ended our Annual Service.

John Burke

(The Association thanks the organizers and the contributors, especially Marie Burke for her elegant hand-made wreaths, Martin Rose from Savio House for cleaning the graves, Co-ordinator John Burke and Celebrant, Fr. Parkes. Min. Sec.)
See also the Oct 4th meeting to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Dan Cocksey's death


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The overall response to this event, the venues, the meals and the organization, has been very positive. We were well up with the average number of Members attending reunions over the past twelve years (31 Shrigley Old Boys) and we were delighted to welcome some first-time attenders and some members returning after an absence of a number of years.
Following an excellent buffet supper on Friday evening at Savio House, we enjoyed an exchange of photographs and other mementos, Gerry Wright starring. Later in the evening our reminiscing continued at a local Bollington Hostelry…
Shrigley, bathed in traditional sunshine, was the venue for the AGM, followed by lunch in the one-time "parlour" at Shrigley. At the Cemetery Service we were joined by our special guests, Michael John Bosco Wosser and his wife, Grainne. The presence of the Wosser family completed the full circle of family contacts made by Peter Roebuck and Mike Kilduff for their 2007 publication "The Salesian Cemetery at Shrigley".
We then enjoyed a lively and interesting session of Shrigley reminiscences. Contributions from Fr. Bernard Jerstice, Joe Zahra, Bernard Paton and Peter Lalley were read by Bernard O'Neill, Keith Dransfield, Paddy O'Neill and John Beirne respectively. "Live" presentations were made by John Beirne, Gerry Wright, Bernard Parkes SDB, Tom McCormick, Eric Baggaley, John King and Norbert Gough, with generous and amusing additions from the audience! I intend to publish these and other reminiscences in an illustrated compilation later in the year.

At Savio House, supper, aided by the gift of twelve bottles of South African wine, was followed by the concert, with me as compere, in the enforced absence of Paul Barnes. Kevin Dean led the commentated, sing-along of popular songs from the 1950s and 60s. John Ballard and Keith Dransfield sang delightfully, and Keith added a version of a famous biblical monologue (Noah's Ark) in truly broad Northern England-Speak. Gerry Wright and John King then performed as Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly (The Return of The King and Our New Buddy, as Eric Baggaley later described them!). PHOTOS HERE

Recalling humorous incidents, in song and anecdote, Eric recalled some of Fr. Albert Carette's Bootle experiences, and presented him with a copy of the recent booklet produced by five of the "pioneer pupils" of St. Martin's, Stanley Road, in 1965.

Michael and Grainne then sang and played. Both are extremely talented musicians. (Grainne was also a soloist at the Savio Mass on Sunday morning.)

The "Goodnight" by Fr. Carette and the singing of the Salesian School Song ended our evening's entertainment.

After the concelebrated mass with Fr. Michael Winstanley (also a boy at Shrigley in 1958), Frs. Carette and Parkes and the concluding lunch, it was time to say our goodbyes until next year.

Should you, after reading these reports, feel that you have "missed out" on a very enjoyable reunion, please watch out for the dates of Future Events and come and join us!

Bernard O'Neill (Events Co-ordinator) September 2008


STOP PRESS: The dates of next year's Reunion have been confirmed as the evening of Friday 18 September 2009, through to Sunday afternoon 20 September 2009.

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