Tree Planting Ceremony

On Friday 18 November the first of our 38 trees was planted to create an 'Avenue of Trees' which will commemorate the 38 Old Dauntseians who fell in the First World War. The day was particularly poignant as it was the Centenary of the Battle of the Somme.

Our Head of the History Department Ben Sandell spoke of those fallen. In summary:
34 of our casualties served in the Army, 3 in the Air Force and 1 in the Royal Navy. Fifteen were officers and 11 were NCOs. Four of our pupils had moved to Canada and served with its forces; one served with the Rhodesians. The youngest to lose his life was 18, and the oldest 37. Only 2 were killed before 1916; nine died that year, 11 in 1917 and 15 in 1918. This increase is explained by the fact that more boys were leaving school each year and becoming eligible for service. Of those with known graves, 17 are buried on the Western Front; one in Sierra Leone; one in Jerusalem; one in Ireland and 6 in England. The rest are commemorated on memorials, 4 on the Menin Gate in Ypres; 4 on memorials in France and 1 each in Greece, Poland and Basra.
(Research undertaken by Joy Thomas)

Please read here for a full account of our 38 fallen OD's.

The Reverend David Johnson said a prayer, and our Head Boy and Head Girl then planted the tree, and laid a commemorative cross against its base.

All 38 trees will be planted before the start of next term. It will run out from The Pavilion and stretch the length of the Astro pitch, and shall be enjoyed by generations of Dauntseians to come.