Old Harveians Annual Dinner 2013

Saturday 7th December – 7.00 pm for 7.30 pm at the School 

Guest Speaker: Bill Wright 

After 32 years at the Harvey, Bill will be retiring at Christmas, and will speak at the Dinner to reminisce and reflect on his time at the School.

Join your friends, contemporaries and other Old Harveians at this year’s Dinner. The School will be open from 6.30 pm for you to explore. Dine in comfort, and socialise before and after the meal. There will be a well-stocked bar with a good selection of wines to complement your meal.

We are anticipating another really good turn-out, so be sure of a place by ordering your ticket(s) right away 

We hope for a particularly good attendance from those who joined the School 50 years ago in 1963 and 25 years ago in 1988 


Home-made Leek & Potato Soup with French Bread 

* * * 

Roast Kentish Turkey with all the trimmings (Option 1) 

served with a selection of vegetables 


Parmesan & Stilton Roulade (Option 2) 

* * * 

Christmas Pudding & Brandy Sauce (Option 3) 


Profiteroles (Option 4) 


Selection of Old Harveians Cheese & Biscuits (Option 5) 

* * * 

Coffee and Mints 

Tickets £22.50

Download the ticket order form here

HGS Prizegiving 2013


All those who attended the Annual Prizegiving at the Leas Cliff Hall could be in no doubt that the Harvey is in excellent shape. An event that is never less than highly impressive was, even by its own high standards, a wonderful snapshot of remarkable achievements by the current generation of Harveians.

John Dennis’s tenure as Chairman of Governors has been characterised by a real feel for what the Harvey stands for, what it represents in the community, and what it means to those who have worked and learnt there. As usual, he presided over Prizegiving with considerable skill.

Bill Wright’s swansong report of the School’s activities painted a comprehensive picture of individual and collective achievement – record exam results, sporting success, trips and tours… and so on. A truly amazing year for the School.

The warmth of the occasion was emphasised when the guest speaker, Reverend Anthony Buckley, spoke in such positive terms about the Harvey. As a former parents and Vice-Chairman of Governors, he knows the School well. It was typical of him to highlight the importance of valuing every pupil as a special individual – one of the Harvey’s unique qualities.

And then, as is customary, we heard from the Head Boy. His role is to propose a vote of thanks to the guest speaker, and to reflect on his time at the School.  Over the years, successive Head Boys have entertained us with a maturity beyond their years, but never before have we been treated to such a barnstorming (to use John Dennis’s description) speech as that delivered on this occasion by Harry Stevens.

Having been friends with Harry’s father Nick since we were at school together in Dover, I know how proud he is (and rightly so) of Harry’s achievements. It is difficult to believe that it is seven years ago when he told me that Harry had been offered a place at the Harvey.  At tea in the Leas Cliff Hall after prizegiving, he told me that Harry’s speech spoke for the whole family, who are delighted with the education that Harry has received at the Harvey, which has culminated in him being given an offer to read English at Cambridge.  As staff will readily testify, he is a highly impressive young man.

Harry’s speech is reproduced here in full – for all to appreciate:

I must start by apologising to many of you, because what I intend to say is actually directed to a specific group among you: the younger members of the school, those at the opposite end of the school to my friends and I. 


Though I am a long, long way down the list of people qualified to give advice in this hall, if I have any knowledge to impart it is to that group of young men – since they are at the beginning of a process and a journey which my friends and I are approaching the end of.


I must add, that if I say anything of any value, if I offer those young men anything which helps them in any way – I in turn learnt that at this institution, I was taught it by my teachers and my schoolmates combined, to whom I am unspeakably indebted, in a way that I will never be able to convey fully.


I start by telling those young men: never make the mistake of assuming the distance between you and I is long. It is not. The next few years will happen quickly, you will change rapidly and you will change significantly. Do not fear this. Embrace the brevity of your adolescence.


As Roger Walters so brilliantly identified once, young people are often made to believe that education and adolescence are about preparing for a life which is going to start later – after school, after university. This is not true. Shun anyone who tries to make you believe that. Your life is happening now, it has been happening for years and you must take responsibility for it.


Take risks and break rules. I’ve learnt that there is nothing wrong with breaking rules – so long as you break the right rules at the right time. Believe me, you will certainly know about it if you get your timing wrong.


Avoid arrogance – it is the one of the most vile human traits. Never believe your own hype. There are very few people in this world who can get away with being arrogant – assume that you are not one of them.


Attend as many of those joint discos with the Folkestone Girls School as possible. Girls are considerably easier to understand at your age now than they will be in couple of years. My advice to you lads is: get on their good side early.


Throughout your education, the government will bombard you with disgusting and unhelpful little phrases such as “job-market”, “employability”, “transferable skills”. Ignore them all, they are of no use to you. Focus on nothing but the cultivation of your own character. I live in faith, as should you, that the rest will follow.


When writing an essay, it always helps to get the title right. A special mention here goes to my friend, who, upon handing in an English Literature essay had his knowledge of the texts questioned by our teacher, thusly: “It just seems like you haven’t even read the novel – it’s called ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ not ‘How To Kill A Mockingbird’.”


The most important choices you will make in your time here are those between instant gratification and gratification in a week, a month, a year’s time. You are absolutely right choose either way at different times, but it is true that gratification that you wait for and that you earn is far more valuable.


Never be afraid to contradict yourself. Be a paradox, be ironic. I can’t tell you how much I love these lines from Walt Whitman:

“Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)”


Changing your opinions is the best part of learning. People afraid to contradict themselves become one-dimensional.


Learn for the sake of learning, treat all knowledge with caution and understand what a huge task the pursuit of knowledge is – answers easily obtained are answers easily discarded.


Know your town. Know its virtues and its many limitations. About 100 years ago someone asked the first ever headmaster of Stowe School in Buckinghamshire what the purpose of his school was and he answered: “To turn out boys who will be acceptable at a dance and invaluable in a shipwreck.”


Now I don’t think that applies to Folkestone, not least because anyone who’s been down the Parisian nightclub will know that a dance and shipwreck can actually be the same thing.


Shun anyone who patronises you. Don’t allow people to tell you that you are unable to understand certain things because of your age.


But never take yourself too seriously and if you must do so, do so in private – there are few less attractive things than one who takes themself too seriously in public.


To this end, being a terrible footballer should not prevent you from playing football. It certainly never stopped me.


Some will tell you to ignore what others think of you. That is ridiculous. Always be aware of how others perceive you, but just never become dependent on the opinions of others. Never measure yourself solely in the mirrors of other men.


Be dissatisfied with yourself more readily than you are proud of yourself. Dissatisfaction is a vastly more useful emotion than pride. Pride will make you stand still, dissatisfaction moves you on.


Use each other. Your classmates are a far more useful resource to you than any textbook ever will be. Stephen Fry is right when he says that education, to some degree at least, happens when students talk to each other between lessons. Find a balance between supporting one another and competing against one another – this way everyone will go further.


And finally, understand that many things over the next few years will be out of your control. I can tell you with certainty that the only thing you can maintain control over in the next seven years is your own character. People talk about things being against young people and you might think many things are against you. It may well be that the national education system you are experiencing has flaws, it may well be that examinations do not represent you in the way you think you are best represented, it may well be that society will view you incorrectly and not always offer you what you deserve – but never become one of those useless people who are prepared to use that as an excuse.


We go to a remarkable school. I am convinced that it is as good as any other. I, truly, have nothing but praise and gratitude for this institution and the thing I am most grateful for is that this school taught me that yes the education system – like all things – may not be perfect; yes organisations and procedures will risk impeding you; yes this small corner of the world feels, at times, oppressive – but everyone who comes here has the opportunity not to be limited by that.


Indeed, why this school is different to so many others, this school’s superior achievement in my view, is that it said to me and it said to my friends and it will say to all of you (to use someone else’s words, not my own, with which I end): “the system might fail you, but don’t fail yourself.

“Shipwrecked at the Parisian” – that will bring back memories for many! I am sure that we have not heard the last of Harry Stevens. Knowing Scott Norman as I do, I am equally sure that, as he looks forward to taking up the reins of Headship in January, he will have made a mental note that a future Prizegiving with Harry Stevens as guest speaker will be another treat for us all.

Phil Harding


FSG Old Girls Reunion

Patricia Kennedy (nee Collins – ex-student and former teacher at Folkestone School for Girls) is organising another Old Girls Dinner at Eastwell Manor Hotel on May 11th and all Old Harveians are very welcome to enjoy the evening – wives / partners / boyfriends welcome.

Two previous dinners have been very successful, with several Old Harveians enjoying the evening with their ex-FSG wives.

Click here for full details

Programme for 2013

Wednesday 6th March – Railway Swing Band Concert at the School
For further details, contact John Oliver – 01303 251403 or johne.oliver@talktalk.net

Thursday 7th March – Linkedin Gathering at Canary Wharf
For further details, contact Mark Harrison harrison84@ntlworld.com tel: 01233 500464 07939 101065

Tues 19th or Tues 26th March – Old Harveians Golf Society Spring Meeting at Upchurch GC
For further details, contact Dave Green on 01303 268858 or

Friday 22nd March, 4.00 pm – School v Old Harveians Hockey
Members wishing to play should contact Simon Cowling at the School – 01303 252131 orscowling@harveygs.kent.sch.uk

Wednesday 27th March – School Golf Championship
Sponsored and organised by Old Harveians Golf Society
For further details, contact Geoff Cooke on 01303 269724 or gcooke@rditmail.co.uk

Wednesday 8th May – Annual Old Harveians v School Golf Match at Etchinghill Golf Club
For further details, contact John Edwards on 01303 268612 or johnedwards@saltwood1.fsnet.co.uk
or Geoff Cooke on 01303 269724 or gcooke@rditmail.co.uk

Friday 31st May – OHGS Lord Imbert Trophy at Sene Valley GC
For further details, contact Dave Green on 01303 268858 or

Wednesday 3rd July – School v Old Harveians Cricket
Members wishing to play should contact Paul Castle at the School – 01303 252131 orpmcastle@harveygs.kent.sch.uk

Thursday 11th July – John E Oliver Seniors Golf Trophy at Littlestone Warren Golf Club
For further details, contact John Oliver – 01303 251403 or johne.oliver@talktalk.net

Friday 16th August – OHGS Captain’s Day at Sene Valley Golf Club
For further details, contact Dave Green on 01303 268858 or davegreen.insuranceservices@virginmedia.com

Friday 13th September – OHGS Annual Match v Dover Strait Mariners at Tudor Park Golf Club
For further details, contact Mike Fawke on 01303 894392 or 07879 071283 or
michael.fawke@homecall.co.uk or Chris Wells on 01303 275280 or Chrischerrygards@aol.com

Friday 28th September – OHGS Peter Gavin Trophy at Sene Valley GC
For further details, contact Dave Green on 01303 268858 or davegreen.insuranceservices@virginmedia.com

Saturday 7th December – School v Old Harveians Football (1st, 2nd & 3rd XIs), 10.00 am
Members wishing to play should contact Paul Castle at the School – 01303 252131 orpmcastle@harveygs.kent.sch.uk

Saturday 7th December – Annual Dinner at the School: 7.15 pm for 7.30 pm
For further details, please contact Phil Harding on 07850 154827 or phil@ksfa.freeserve.co.ukor pjharding@harveygs.kent.sch.uk

OHA Annual Dinner 2012

The annual dinner returns to it’s usual December slot at 7:30 on Saturday 1st December 2012

This years menu includes:

Home-made Leek & Potato Soup with French Bread (Option 1)


Tomato and Basil Bruschetta (Option 2) 

* * *

Roast Kentish Turkey with all the trimmings (Option 3) served with a selection of vegetables


Goats Cheese and Roasted Vegetable Tart (Option 4)

* * *

Christmas Pudding & Brandy Sauce (Option 5)


Lemon Tart (Option 6)


 Profiteroles (Option 7)

* * *

Selection of Old Harveians Cheese & Biscuits

* * *

Coffee/Tea and Mints

 Tickets are £20. Download the order form here.

Facebook and LinkedIn Groups

There are now Old Harveian’s groups on Facebook and LinkedIn.  The LinkedIn group has been running for a short while now and has, under the guidance of Mark Harrison, organised some get togethers both in London and Folkestone.

To join in the fun. share memories and catch up with old friends, go to http://www.facebook.com/groups/oldharveians/ and http://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=105051&trk=anet_ug_hm


Discover the Secrets of Number 10!

We’re delighted that Tom Fletcher (Harvey GS 1986-93) has agreed to be the Guest Speaker at the forthcoming Old Harveians Luncheon on Monday 11th July – just prior to taking up his appointment as Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Lebanon.

Tom is one of the Foreign Office’s high-flyers, and his appointment as one of the UK’s youngest-ambassadors at the age of 36 follows his four years in Downing Street at the very centre of government. He is an accomplished and entertaining speaker and in addition to giving us an insight into Number 10 he will be conducting a question and answer session.

The meal is at 12:30 in the Trafalgar room at the School.

For more information contact Phil Harding.


Railway Swing Band 2011

The Old Harveians’ Association Present

The Railway Swing Band

In concert at The Harvey Grammar School, Folkestone
on Wednesday 2nd March 2011 at 7.30pm

All the popular music of the big band era!


To reserve your tickets email John Oliver, Event co-ordinator for OHA,
email the Harvey Grammar School or call the school on 01303 252131.

OHA Dinner Update

We hope that the postponement of Saturday’s OHA Dinner didn’t cause any of you too much inconvenience.

Along with several hundred other schools in Kent, the Harvey was closed last Thursday and Friday.
The site was clearly unsafe for the usual contingent of Old Harveians, ranging in age from 20 to 92, to venture on it – even if they had been able to cope with the road conditions. These were the scenes at school on the Friday:

The Dinner will now be held on Saturday 5th March. The Welsh-themed menu to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the evacuation to Merthyr will remain the same, and will perhaps be even more appropriate at the end of the week that includes St David’s Day.

Hopefully you will be able to join us on that occasion, but if not please let me know and I will return your cheque. On the other hand, you may well know of friends and contemporaries who were unable to make it last Saturday, but who will be able to join us on 5th March – they’ll be most welcome.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to make you aware of another event that week: the Railway Swing Band Concert on Wednesday 2nd March.

This will be third such concert that John Oliver has arranged on our behalf, and the previous two have been enormously enjoyable evenings. The Railway Swing Band is twice the size of a standard big band and plays a mixture of most of the great Swing Era – Ellington, Goodman, Basie, Miller, Kenton, Herman, as well as more modern compositions.

Consisting of many former musicians from the Royal Marines School of Music at Deal, they have progressed from their early roots in the Railway public house in Walmer (hence their name) to become hugely popular in the area, where they perform for local charities.

The previous two concerts here have sold out and have raised several thousand pounds for the school, facilitating the replacement of a minibus and the purchase of state-of-the-art lighting and sound equipment for the hall. Details are enclosed and John will be pleased to receive your ticket order.

Hope to see you in March. In the meantime, best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

Kind regards

Phil Harding