Old schools pals to meet twice a year

Neil Appleyard
Neil Appleyard

FORMER staff and students are gearing up for a repeat school reunion which is so popular it is held twice a year.

Neil Appleyard is organising another get-together for anyone who ever attended Hartlepool’s Elwick Road Secondary Modern School.

It will take place at the Woodcutter pub, in Waverley Terrace, Hartlepool, from 7.30pm on Saturday, May 19.

The event is also open to anyone who attended Brinkburn Comprehensive School between 1973-1978 – as Brinkburn was formed when the Elwick Road, Hartlepool Boys Grammar and Hartlepool High schools amalgamated.

Neil, 53, first appeared in the Mail in April 2008 to promote the popular get-together and it has been such a success, it has been held each May/June and December since then.

This will be the ninth reunion Neil has organised for his fellow classmates and other students from the school over the years.

Neil said this time around, he hopes former teacher Stan Suggitt, who attended the previous event, and other staff members including Ken Lupton, Bob McLeod and Ray Chater are also expected.

He also hopes his former classmate Alan Ferguson, who now lives in Ellesmere Port, in Cheshire will attend.

Neil, who lives on the town’s Brooke Estate and attended the school from 1969 to 1974, said: “It’s great to do this twice a year – more people are coming along each time, getting together and seeing people.

“It’s nice to catch up and nice to have something to look forward to.”

Neil, a father-of-two who is married to Carol, said the last event, held in November, saw £50 raised for Hartlepool and District Hospice and he hoped people would be just as generous this year.

The former teacher, who is chairman of Hartlepool United Disabled Supporters’ Association (HUDSA), said on average, more than 40 people turn up to each reunion.

People are asked to take a bring and share buffet, and there will also be a quiz.

To find out more, call Neil on 07747735247 or email neilappleyard@hotmail.com