For some years now parents have been invited to pay in advance for a life subscription to the Old Priorian Association for their son or daughter. Payment for this subscription is collected at a flat rate in year 7 or in Lower and Upper Sixth for those who join the school at 6th form level. Below, the President of the Association gives some details of the Association. Parents may of course opt out of payment of this subscription.
What is The Old Priorian Association?
The Association is the recognised system for keeping former pupils of St Benedict’s School in touch with each other throughout their lives, with their former teachers, with the School and with the Ealing monastic community – and indeed for praying for them after they are dead. Like other Alumni Associations it has elected Officers and a Council. The OPA Council currently meets six times a year at the school and volunteer new blood on the Council is always welcome. It also has an office and a paid administrator at the school. Former pupils are called ‘Old Priorians’ because on the Association’s foundation in 1927 the school was still called ‘Ealing Priory School’. The payment you are currently making ensures that on leaving St Benedict’s your son or daughter will become a paid-up Life Member of the Old Priorian Association and will be entitled to all the privileges, which go with that.
What are these privileges?
1. For the first four years of their membership they will receive the school magazine, The Priorian, free of charge.
2. For the rest of their lives they will receive emails and postal communications telling them about forthcoming OP events at which they can renew old friendships and make new ones across the generations. These range from formal dinners to rugby tours, from the family fun day at Perivale when they show off their toddlers (Yes!) to cultural tours and pilgrimages organised by leave of the Council. They will be kept in touch with school events and will enjoy a forum for passing on to each other news of their activities and achievements.
3. They will receive a biannual Newsletter.
4. They will become Life Members, without further charge, of The Benet Club at Ealing Abbey, a pleasant venue with a bar and comfortable lounge accommodation open seven days a week by the Abbey church – OPs must still apply for membership.
5. Perhaps most usefully to some, they will be entitled to ask the Hon Secretary of the time to be put in touch with other Old Priorians specifically for advice on their career. This will always be on a confidential one-to-one basis, and no one’s name or contact details will be revealed without their specific permission. It helps enormously if people keep the Hon Secretary notified of their career moves as they occur.
Lewis Hill (OP 1975), President, Old Priorian Association