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On Looking Over My Shoulder - Sedbergh - 1980-2010

sedbergh front lawn 800x440 

Bob Chambers, the Guest Speaker at the Sedbergh Closing in June, 1981, the year following the great fire of April 9, 1980, stated to the parents sitting on the front lawn in front of the newly-constructed school, “To rebuild is not as important as the decision to rebuild. The decision to rebuild is in itself an act of imagination and faith.” A little over a year before, while the School was still burning, the Wood family – the Old Man, Madame, Tom, Ann, Debbie, and Ken – had already made a decision and the Board of Trustees had agreed to it: rebuild in exactly the same place. And now the result was there in front of the parents. The phoenix had risen!

The original Sedbergh, from 1939 to 1980, is a story in itself, told in remarkable detail by Ramsay Derry in his gripping tale, Sedbergh, the Founding of a School. It reminds us of the details which were responsible for building character in boys in a country setting, of teachers who believed that the out-of-doors and the environment were crucial elements in building that character, and of Founders who had dreams of a “country school” and who, when asked by disbelievers whether there was value in this idea, simply quoted the Gospel of St. John – “Nathanial asked, ‘Can anything good come out of Nazareth?’ and Philip replied ‘Come and see.’

I did just that in 1950. Having then passed my student years in the Valley, most of my teaching career was spent at Sedbergh. After reading Ramsay’s book in 2014, I somehow knew that there needed to be a sequel to his story. After all, Sedbergh continued after the fire for another thirty years, closing only in 2010. Didn’t the students and teachers of that era need to know they had not been forgotten? What about their story?

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Sedbergh Memorabilia at Bonsecours Hall

Part of the Sedbergh memorabilia is housed at the Bonsecours Village Hall in thanks to Sedbergh for helping financially in the building of the Village Hall itself. The Sedbergh Room is used continually by groups for conferences and meetings of the local people.

The two huts were brought from West Field to remind visitors of our way of life every weekend in the Valley. Originally, in the very early days of Sedbergh, Mink had been on Joe’s Hill (later known as Tow Hill) before it was moved to the girls’ section on West Field, and Raccoon had been John Macaulay’s art studio behind his house overlooking Senior Field. Both those huts had previous lives in the surrounding countryside. If only they could talk! And if you do go and visit them, sit quietly and there will certainly be whispers - who knows, perhaps even the Wolfobello story will be mentioned and the hair on the back of your neck will rise!

The collage images are of a high resolution so do zoom in to see what you can find.

  • Outside The Sedbergh Room

    Outside The Sedbergh Room

  • The Two School Bells

    The Two School Bells

  • The Sedbergh Stained Glass Window

    The Sedbergh Stained Glass Window

  • The Sedbergh Room

    The Sedbergh Room

  • The Founders

    The Founders

  • Tom & Anne

    Tom & Anne

  • Academic Awards

    Academic Awards

  • The Memorial Statue For Those That Passed Before Their Time

    The Memorial Statue For Those That Passed Before Their Time

  • The Hut Of The Year Award

    The Hut Of The Year Award

  • The 1940s

    The 1940s

  • The 1950s

    The 1950s

  • The 1960s

    The 1960s

  • The 1970s

    The 1970s

  • The 1980s & 1990s

    The 1980s & 1990s

  • The 2000s

    The 2000s

  • Building The Duxbury Cabin

    Building The Duxbury Cabin

  • Nothing Beats Huts

    Nothing Beats Huts

  • Remember When - The April 9, 1980 Fire

    Remember When - The April 9, 1980 Fire

  • Staff - Bless 'Em

    Staff - Bless 'Em

  • Teamwork


  • Tomorrow's Leaders

    Tomorrow's Leaders

  • Mink & Raccoon

    Mink & Raccoon

  • Mink & Raccoon

    Mink & Raccoon

    Old Sedberghian Christmas Party 2018

    Thanks to Nick and Mylene for hosting a terrific Christmas party on the evening of December 13, 2018. It was great fun and wonderful to see all who came. Please enjoy the pictures posted below.

    Best wishes to the entire Sedbergh family for a happy holiday season, a merry Christmas, and a healthy New Year.

    Class of '87 Dinner photo - Sep 2016

    A group from the Class of '87 got together in September 2016 for dinner in Montreal.

    From L to R: Justin Wade, Phillip Gouin, Tim Gunter, Martin Carrier, Kyle Kerr, Arlo Hugessen, and Eric Hough.