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News > Christ College Archive > Start of Term 1973

Start of Term 1973

Reflections on starting at Christ College fifty years ago today!
Start of Term. Photo credit: Mark Craig.
Start of Term. Photo credit: Mark Craig.

Mark Craig (SHB 1973-1978) began his career at Christ College on 12 September 1973 - exactly fifty years ago. He has kindly allowed us to share some words he posted on the OB Facebook page.

Though his photograph of the dorm (above) was taken slightly later in Autumn 1975, the wardrobes in the tightly-packed dorm and the metal bed frames made more snug with a checked blanket will be familiar to many OBs of the 1970s (and 1980s and 1990s . . .)

The school has evolved into a very different place in the intervening decades; a quick look at the programme for the first Saturday of term will soon reveal just how much it has changed. Even so, the experiences of OBs of previous eras inevitably overlap with the experiences of new pupils in 2023 and we are sure that Mark's words will resonate in one way or another for Old Breconians and current pupils alike. 

Posts written by Old Breconians have a really special place in building the collective memory that binds the CCB community. If you have your own story to tell of your first day, or have thoughtful words to share with our young people as you reflect on the years since that first day, please let Huw or Felicity know. They really would be pleased to hear from you. 


This is Mark's story. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Photo credits: Mark Craig with his kind permission. 


Newly arrived in the UK having spent the first 13 years of my life in Singapore, I started life at boarding school in Brecon, South Wales.  The first pic shows me all togged up in my new uniform, about to be driven there for the very first time on 12 September 1973. 

To say it was a culture shock for me would be an understatement. The place looked like Colditz for starters! And there was no escape. It wasn't all bad by any means, and it wasn't all good either. It was of its time. And it shaped me, and all the other lads from that era.

The school got me outdoors in a big way, and into the mountains (we didn't have any of those in Singapore - or snow for that matter). I sure got plenty of both during my time in Brecon. 

Once in a while I go back, and it's a fabulous school today. I'm one of the 'Old Boys' and am still in touch with a few people from my era. You know who you are. And without the need for words, I know that you understand.

I'm sure you all have your own memories of your first day at CCB.

The photo below of me standing in front of the school was taken just six weeks later - on our first free weekend. I'm already a different person. How I'd love to be able to tell that kid what I know now.

And that it's all going to be OK.

So, to all young people out there - including my own - who are starting something new, somewhere new, this week...

Good luck and go for it!  Enjoy the ride.




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