This is Coronation Year.
From the very beginning of term interest in the great event was awakened. On January 26th, we were invited to the Coronation Display at Beale's, Bournemouth. Models of the Queen, Peers, Yemen of the Guard and other regiments which were to play a prominent part on June 2nd, helped us to visualise the scene in advance. Perhaps the chief attraction was the model representing the Coronation procession, showing the State Coach, the cavalry and the whole procession in full.
The little metal figures revolved slowly around a painting of London scenery and cheering crowds. Besides the models, there were two large glass-topped cases which proved more interesting to the seniors, as they were souvenirs of bygone Kings and Queens, and medals which had been struck to commemorate previous coronations.
Everyone enjoyed the visit which proved most instructive, as our History Mistress had previously explained the significance of the various symbols and robes. We thank the managers of Messrs. Beale's for their invitation.
Our Diary must give to this month the rather depressing atmosphere usually associated with it, for we were obliged to face the prospect of Half-Yearly Examinations. When this looming spectre had been confronted - and found to be less dreadful than anticipated (we hope!), life became more cheery and we began to feel the joys, of spring.
One day in February is held very dear and on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, February 11th, each Form made its visit to the Grotto in the Convent Garden where we recited the Rosary and sang the Lourdes hymn.
This month is welcomed with enthusiasm, for well in advance our thoughts turn to St. Patrick's Day. This year we were delighted to learn that Reverend Mother would keep her feast once again on the actual day. The Irish prepared to do honour to their patron - the English to plan a possible victory in the Netball "International" - and the few Scots and Welsh were ready to watch the proceedings with interest.
The Juniors' Party was arranged for the Saturday preceding the Feast so on Friday and Saturday morning, some eager souls offered to assist Mother Pannell with the decorating. By the time we had hung up the last shamrock and artistically arranged the last streamer, the senior Gym room and the junior School in many parts, were virtual Emerald Isles.
Our private Secret Service has not been able to discover just what the juniors enjoyed most, the Wishes and presenting of flowers to Reverend Mother, the Films or Games, or the tea - but from the endless sighs of satisfaction, it was evident that Reverend Mother knew how to give a party and the juniors how to enjoy it!
Sunday was spent by the Seniors in longing far Tuesday 17th, and by the juniors in happy recollections of Saturday.
On Monday the Schools Cine was again at work but this time Mother Wallace and Mother McLoughlin were showing a more serious Film than those selected for the Feast day. This Film explained the work of the Whites Fathers and it certainly captivated the interest of all.
A shorter Film followed, which gave us a good laugh but at the same time made many of us study the floor in shame. The film was arranged to show the importance of the "Morning Offering", the consecration of the day to God at the first moment of rising.
Sleepy heads who can never get up when called were likened to Pussies, while the brave people who face the cold and do not cling to bed were dogs always on the alert. Very few of us felt we could bark - but the lesson went home and the fllm undoubtedly made us consider the importance of the Morning Offering in a new light, with the consequent resolution to be faithful to. it.
Some clever members of Form Lower V had made a scroll "A Happy Feast", done in paper sculpture, and this was hung in the Gym Room in preparation for the morrow.
Tuesday morning came at last. We sang with all our hearts at Mass, which was offered for Reverend Mother's intentions.
Early in the afternoon, the Middle and Senior School pupils assembled and Catherine Weatherley read an address, offering our wishes to Reverend Mother. The "International" Match followed and the Halos and other decorations worn by the teams added to the fun. The Game was close and interesting. At half-time, it seemed that the Irish would carry off the honours but the English had retained a great deal of their vigour and an exciting struggle ended in a draw.
All were ready for tea, which was served in the Refectories and St, Helen's. Dancing followed in the Gym Room and then another surprise - two extremely amusing cartoons, which provoked laughter enough to raise any but the sturdy Convent roof!
Father Weaver, S.J., our devoted Chaplain, who is willing to give Benediction when we are assembled, arranged to come at 7 p.m. We sang and prayed in thanksgiving for such a happy day. Miss Gobell had taught us a new "Per Signum Crucis" and a "Panis Angelicus" for the occasion, and Reverend Mother expressed her pleasure at the rendering of them.
Later in the evening the Boarders of Forms Upper V and VI invited Reverend Mother, the Community, the Boarders and Form Upper V to an entertainment they had prepared. Irish Songs, a Duologue in excellent brogue! by Genevieve Bond and Maureen McFadden, and Advertisements come to life gave great pleasure. Ann Fry sang a Solo and last but not least we enjoyed "Five Birds in a Cage".
Clare Murray made a perfect 'Orate, the Lift Attendant, in striking contrast to the eccentric Duchess, so well played by Cecelia Elgar, and the ineffectual Lord Porth (Deirdre Crick).
Catherine Morton as Bert and Bridget O'Connell as the Milliner's Assistant added to the fund and although tired by all the excitement, we were very sorry when the programme came to an end - and immediately began to look forward to the next!
Surely every Boscombe pupil can say with sincerity
"Even though we be far away,
March 26th proved to be of great interest, this year. His Worship the Mayor, Alderman Benwell, paid an official visit to the School. He was accompanied by the Mace-bearer, explained the importance of the mace and gave us a resume of its origin and history. The mace was then handed round and we were able to see the engravings on it - the Royal coat-of-arms, the Bournemouth coat-of-arms and pine and fir cones, with a crown and orb at the top.
We'll always remember St. Patrick's Day".
From these accounts we learn that the mace is of such importance no Council meeting may begin until the mace has been placed before the Mayor. The mace represents the Royal Warrant, that is, the permission from Her Majesty the Queen for the Council to make, bye-laws and direct the affairs of the Borough
His Worship the Mayor was wearing his robes of black with gold decorations and his chain of office. He explained the origin of the robes, and the occasions on which they are worn.
The black and gold robes are reserved for special occasions - so we felt duly proud! When his tour of the Form-rooms was ended, the Reverend Mother and Mother McEvoy conducted His Worship round the rest of the School buildings and all were gratified at the time he devoted to the visit and the interest he showed in the work of the School.
The end of term was approaching but a few days before, during the week-end of Passion week the Senior Pupils were privileged to have a three days' Retreat preached by Father Paul Brassell, S.J. We are happy to have this opportunity of thanking Reverend Mother for arranging the Retreat and Father Brassell for his help and interest during and since the Retreat.