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Briggensians Newsletter 2024

The Newsletter for 2024 is available to download here.

Many thanks to all those who have contributed towards this edition.

You will also find details of the Annual Dinner on the final page, which is scheduled for Saturday, 18th May at Elsham Golf Club.

Stay safe and healthy and I look forward to seeing many of you again at the Dinner.

Briggensians Spring Golf Competition

Those who were not able to play in the Spring Match missed a very good day of golf - 12 players with 9 scoring over 30 points! It was overcast all day, and the rain held off, so conditions were really good for golf.

1st on the day, and winning the Captain's Trophy was Dave Howson with 39 points, followed up by Allyson Golland and Roger Holmes, both on 34 points. (for those of you asking, Dave plays twice a week at The Lincolnshire, and has a very active handicap)

There were two 2's, both made by the Captain, Keith Barnes.

Many thanks to everyone who was able to come along, and to you all for your support. I will be in touch for the Past versus Present match on 4th July in a few weeks' time. Dave Harness

Prof Mike Pearson (1964-1971)

It is with great sadness that we report the death of Mike and add our condolences to the flood of messages regretting his passing.

David Horsley: Mike was a year ahead of me at Brigg, but we spent a lot of time together as members of the Bird Watching Group. Initially that was with teacher Ralph Holmes and then when he left a very kind Old Briggensian, Bill Earnshaw, took on the role of taking us out into the field. We covered a lot of Lincolnshire and had odd forays into Yorkshire. Mike was the 'leader' of the younger end of the group, and fairly naturally took over as the sixth formers left. We all had a great interest and our senior mentors helped to foster that in us, but for all of my time in the group bar my final year he was a mentor to me. He always had a great sense of fun and after an early visit to Scotter Common (I think) he decided that all members of the group should be known as “bogger” so whenever we met after leaving school, he was always Bogger Pearson and I was Bogger Horsley. The reason is that our leader, Ralph Holmes, took us into a wetland area of the heath and we all got stuck in mud and got filthy and wet. Of course all of us piled into Ralph's mini countryman and made it filthy too or should I say filthier.

Mike of course was not just a bird watcher. He was seriously into Jazz and the theatre. I remember many weird evenings when he and Rick Weightman were evolving some new theatrical idea. One in particular was us all going to Ferriby - South Ferriby cliff as I remember - overlooking the Humber at dusk. What the performance was all about I can't remember but clearly is was significant on the CV of such a talented Thespian.

He was with me and a large Briggensian contingent on the Lincolnshire Cruise on the Dunera. Mr Knox I think was in charge of us. There was lot's of performing, various bits of music, including Jazz and some theatrical stuff too. The school made a bit of a name for itself in this respect!

After we left school our paths crossed little, but he was a regular at Old Briggensian Dinners and we always reminisced in much the same way as I have been doing. He missed the Dinner which was just prior to the first Lockdown but he and Bizz and I had a long zoom meeting with him just a fortnight or so after. Sadly that was the last time we spoke and as usual we made plans to meet up and go birding again, but sadly it was not to be and I regret that very much. It would have been great to finish as we had started - as boggers again!

Mike Sparling: Very sad news. I had the pleasure of spending a couple of very entertaining hours sitting next to him at the last BGS dinner that I attended. A lovely man who had achieved a lot in his extensive career. He will be missed. My condolences to his wife and family.

David Evans: I met up with Mike in February, for a cup of tea and a chat. Despite his health problems, I was pleased that he was in good spirits at that time.

Credits to the Cambrian News for these quotes

From the university and the land of theatre tributes have been paid to Emeritus Professor and world-renowned theatre practitioner, Mike Pearson.

He became a lecturer at Aberystwyth University's Theatre, Film and Television Studies department in 1997, and was professor of performance studies there between 1999 and 2014.

He was a professional theatre maker with Transitions Trust community arts project (1971-72) and RAT Theatre, co-director of Cardiff Laboratory Theatre (1973-80) and Brith Gof Theatre Company (1981-97).

He also continued to create theatre as a solo artist as well as with artist/designer Mike Brookes. He is also well-known for his work with National Theatre Wales and with senior performers' group Good News From The Future.

Professor Anwen Jones, pro vice-chancellor for the Faculty of Arts and Social Science at Aberystwyth University said: “It was with great sadness that we heard of the death of Emeritus Professor Mike Pearson. His contribution to the world of theatre - as a member of the university's department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies and a progressive producer and director - has been remarkable and put Welsh theatre firmly on the international stage. He was an inspiration to generations of students who studied here at Aberystwyth University, and Brith Gof productions such as Pax and Y Gododdin will be remembered for their striking and challenging visual content, and the exceptional experiences they offered to audiences. We extend our deepest sympathies to his wife Heike, who is also a former member of staff here at Aberystwyth University.”

Professor Simon Banham, head of the department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies at Aberystwyth University, said: “It is no exaggeration to say that Mike's work as a theatre maker and in the field of performance studies has influenced a generation of practitioners both in the UK and on an international stage. Through his productions and his writings Mike's influence has reached a global audience of artists and academics. His work has inspired many of us over the years, those that studied under him or worked alongside him here in Aberystwyth as well as those that collaborated with him professionally, we will always be grateful for that experience.”

The National Theatre of Wales also paid tribute. A spokesperson said: “We are so sad to hear the news of the death of our friend Mike Pearson. A pioneer of Theatre, with an unwavering commitment to ask questions and keep pushing at the edges of what theatre is and can be. His influence is intrinsically woven into our DNA and that of the wider NTW family that has sprung from the foundations he lay as one of the founding artists of NTW. All our love, respect, and deepest condolences to Mike's family at this sad time.”

BGS Football 1924-5 & 1926-7

Below are a couple of old photos of BGS football between 1924-5 (left) and 1926-7 (right). Can you spot any old family members?

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