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News > OLD WALHAMPTONIANS - 1970s > OW 1970s - A-B

OW 1970s - A-B

Details of OW (surnames starting A-B) as previously featured on the Old Walhamptonians website
Jon Bentley, Chris S
Jon Bentley, Chris S
The information below was kindly provided by Laura Wade and Ralph Montagu (Sept 2015), as featured on the previous Old Walhamptonians website:

Old Walhamptonians A - B 

Simon Ashby (Lymington)
Left in: Dec 73

Awaiting Simon's news. 

Ben Atkins (Cornwall)
Left in: Dec 78 

I'm Chief Instructor of a small outdoor centre in Cornwall working with dissaffected youth and vulnerable community groups through outdoor activities. I got married last year to my Wife Kelsey and we rent an old farmhouse with our Cairn terrier Chloe. I climb and surf on the weekends (weather permitting!) and lead a pretty idyllic life - long may it last.....!

William Atkins (Edinburgh)
Left in:  Jul 74

Married to Hilary and have 1 daughter, Polly who is 11 years old.I joined the Army briefly after leaving Milton Abbey, but it was a short career.  After 4 months I was given the choice of leaving immediately or, at a push, the next day. 

I then went to Southampton College of Higher Education (I seem to remember that both Gavin Smeed and Simon James were there also). This lasted 2 years after which I had an HND in Business Studies.

In 1984 I joined the Ministry of Defence and stayed 13 years. During this time I worked mostly in London, but also got to work in the British Embassy in Stockholm for 3 years (met my wife there). I also went to the Army School of Finance and Management and qualified as an Accountant (CIMA) – now I was both a civil servant AND an accountant – double whammy!

In 1997 I left the MOD, had a personality transplant and joined Druid Systems as a management consultant. I left there in 2000 and joined KPMG who promptly sold their consulting operations to Atos Origin ( and that is where I am currently.

Memories - take the following with a pinch of salt as there has been a lot of alcohol under the bridge: 

The bad ones:
• Waiting outside JB’s study for the whacks (3 times - talking after lights-out, fighting with Andrew Baerselman and being cheeky to Mrs Stebbings – I was innocent on at least 2 counts, honest Guv !)
• Being summoned by JB/Mr Kealy to go up in front of the patrol leaders meeting in my last year in my dressing gown and slippers to be accused of bullying and given a bollocking (little turd was being cheeky and deserved the shove I gave him!!). All the patrol leaders were grinning and making faces at me behind JB and Mr Kealy’s back (you all know who you are Graham Carr, Robin Hepburn ……..!).
• Last day of the holidays/first day back at school every term

The good ones:
• The Girls
• Riding (ponies) in the New Forest with Mrs Brown and the gypsy caravan being towed by Bob the cart horse 
• Swimming on the ponies in the gravel pits
• Catching an adder whilst out riding and taking it back to school for Major ‘Hammy’ Hamilton in my riding hat (After writing this I see that Julian Clegg had the same memory, it was definitely my riding hat – I think !!)
• PE lessons with Mr Berry
• Riding camp, staying at the Metheralls who had a pet cow called Trudy and a very friendly lurcher.
• Shooting a fellow boy (name withheld to protect his dignity) in the backside with my home made catapult loaded with a spent airgun pellet, in the dorm after rest. Watching him bounce round the room like a kangaroo on steroids and then having to sit on him to keep him quiet else he would attract matron’s attention. I think I then had to bribe him to stop him sneaking !
• After lights-out when the patrol leaders were away at their meetings (Thursdays ?). Pandemonium used to ensue in the dorms as there was no one around to stop it.
• Home entertainments (those sketches that we wrote and performed) – I think Mr Knox was the organiser.
• British Bulldogs and Chain He (until it was banned due to too many broken bones) 
• Gordo, who took me under his wing from day 1
• Piggyback fights between form 2a and 2b (1970) Mr Berry’s form vs Mr Underwood’s
• Learning to drive in the Hilman Minx with Mr …..?
• Auntie Alligator (Miss Arnott) – She was a matron who outwardly seemed very strict, but we loved her!

I consider myself very lucky to have been at Walhampton in the late 60’s and early 70’s, before the thought police invented the Health & Safety legislation that surrounds our children in a protective bubble. 

Rupert Backhouse (Australia)
Left in: Jul 78

Awaiting Rupert's news. 

Andy Baerselman (Lymington)
Left in: Dec 74

Just returned from Tanzania to put a roof on an orphanage! Last January I climbed Mt Kilimanjaro, and came across the small orphanage run by a lady from Newcastle and they desperately needed the roof!  So there you go.

Tom Bailwood (Bristol)
Left in:  Mar 73

Currently employed at Montpelier Health Centre, Montpelier.

Jason Ball (South Africa/Woking)
Left in: ?

Awaiting Jason's news.

Chris Ballard (Canberra, Australia)
Left in: Jul 76

I went to secondary school at the King’s School in Canterbury, and then returned to Australia, where my parents lived, for university. Ten years of boarding school left some catching up to do with my family! Almost immediately I fell under the spell of New Guinea, and spent every spare moment either up there or reading about it. I did a PhD in archaeology, living for twenty months amongst Huli-speakers in the Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea. By the end of the PhD, I had decided that I preferred the living to the long dead, and moved into more contemporary research, on mining and human rights issues around the giant Freeport mine in West Papua (Indonesia). More recently I’ve followed my wife, Meredith Wilson, to Vanuatu, where we’ve been working together on a project nominating sites for World Heritage status and helping to establish community tourism businesses. We’re still based in Canberra, at the Australian National University, with a daughter and a second child to come (in mid-November), and we’d be delighted to hear from any Old Walhamptonians passing through. Work and travel have taken me fairly frequently to Europe, but less often to the UK and never, sadly, to Hampshire.

Work wise I am a full time research historian (“Fellow”) at the Australian National University in Canberra, working on land rights and human rights issues, cultural heritage, and the history of “racial science” in Oceania. 

Best memories – Wide games, rafting (illegally) with David Boyle on the lakes, town visits, the furious haggling over sweets at the tuck shop, gazing at the ceiling in the Chapel, field trips to Mull and the Loire, and the support of friends and their families, such as the Sopers of Lymington.

Worst memories – numerous encounters with slippers, canes and the occasional boot.

Jonathan Ballard (Massachusetts, USA)
Left in: ?

I live on cape cod, Massachusetts, USA., I'm a general contractor/carpenter and registered nurse, thinking of going into furniture making.

Tim Barnard (Isle of Mull)
Left in: Jul 72

Trained as technical illustrator, self-employed since 1987. Run B & B in Tobermory, Isle of Mull, with wife and daughter. Still into running. Teach recorder and flute. Indulge in hiking, hillwalking, sailing, photography and painting when time allows. 

B & B website is Anyone interested in a reunion on Mull, revisiting favourite places?

Worst memory: being on detention!
Best memories: choir, music generally, art, and the summer camp in Mull!

Tom Barton (Herne Hill)
Left in: Jul 72

Awaiting Tom's news. 

Euan Belson (Uralla, Australia)
Left in: Dec 74

30 years wow. I struggled to get work after completing a business degree in UK, went travelling around the world where I joined the Whitbread Round the World Race in NZ and sailed my way home quite fast! I skippered a flotilla in Yugoslavia before the trouble there and returned to UK for a year before the Aussies accepted my application to emigrate. Landing in Perth I travelled with some other Brits round Aus ending up in Sydney. Life in Sydney was good, fast but full. The beach was 50 metres down the road for a morning swim and 7 minutes to work. After a year in the big city things turned for the worse – work was becoming difficult, my mum died back in UK and my good friend in Sydney split in bad circumstances. I decided for a new life and ran a charter boat business in the Whitsunday’s. It was here I met my wife in the same industry and living on her boat. Looking back it was heaven, beautiful water, coral, islands, diving, laid back Airlie Beach, 5 acres, horses etc. People still ask why did you leave; the negatives are its hot, hard work, low paid and not mentally stimulating. Ten years of advocacy for a major wildlife group led me to going back to study Environmental Management at the University of New England – its quite a challenge to go back to school I reckon – visions of all those exams and student life. We finally sold up in the Whitsunday’s to a bare footed helicopter pilot for Nat Geographic emigrating from Botswana – this was just the place for him and his wife.

We now have entered the truly rural phase of our life, moving close to the Uni town of Armidale on the Northern Tablelands of NSW. We have a 2000 acre grazing property and breed some lovely Angus cattle for the Japanese market. We love it, granite hills and winding creeks, beautiful riding country. In 2004 we had our first child, “Sari”, 2 years old now she loves the farm and animals and will certainly be handy in the future. 

I work in Armidale for an environmental consultancy. Its interesting work, however after 3 years as regional manager I need more time for the farm, sport and music – I am due to finish up in November and look forward to seeing what new doors open. work… but also go to for Armidale for surrounding National Parks 

Best memories: Hey look, I just loved the outdoors life there – the sports and athletics, “Major” Hamilton and the working bees in the lovely grounds, British Bulldog after supper on a Sunday in the summer evening light, special TV at weekends in the beautiful timbered hall… with so much to enjoy I can see study for me was quite a challenge! Still qualifications were not everything.

I’d like to put in a special special thank you to the staff who had the genuine interests of girls and boys at heart. Their names and my memories flood into my mind as I write. At the time some of the most disciplined and least familiar staff actually did us the most favours – helping form our values which we carry today. Thanks to them and of course Jackie and John Bradfield.

Anyone coming to Aus. is welcome to get in touch… or just email.

Sadly I cannot be with you all in November or later at the school. I wish you all the very best & will drink to your health on the day and look forward to reading all about the tales you may have. I am hoping though to return to UK just for few weeks in February next year to celebrate my Uncle’s 90th.

James Bentley (York)
Left in: Jul 75

• Met Leone in 2000, married in 2003 and now living in York with Rebecca (aged 9) from Leone’s previous marriage and Hannah (just coming up to 2).
• Mum based in Bournemouth. Younger brother (Jonathan - also at Walhampton) also based in Bournemouth/Poole area, is married with 2 daughters aged 9 and 6 (ish).
• Walhampton > Haileybury > Southampton University : BSc (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering (class 2:1).
• Undergraduate apprenticeship with Rolls-Royce Ltd in Bristol (Military Aero Engines)
• 1985-1995 - Project Engineer type roles with Smiths Industries Aerospace & Defence Systems in Putney Valve, London, then in Basingstoke.
• 1995-2006 - Various roles with GE Energy (UK) Ltd (formerly Kvaerner Boving Ltd) – including Site Engineer based in Kashmir (India) for 2½ years, Business Development Manager in Tripoli (Libya) for 10 months, but mostly Project Manager based in Doncaster working on supply & installation of mechanical equipment for a new hydroelectric power station being built in the Indian Himalayas. 

Just started as Project Manager for Cameron (UK) Ltd in Leeds – a leading supplier of subsea oil & gas well-head control equipment.

Best memories – summer camps (Buckstone, Mull, France); friends (who I’ve never kept up with); the woods; sneaking out down in the middle of the night (to the lakes on one occasion, and to the Lymington ferry terminal on another). 
Worst memories (but all taken in perspective) – noisy marks and standing endlessly in the gym in front of Mr Kealy; the odd “six of the best” administered by Mr Murray-Walker, Mr Kealy and JB!

Jonathan Bentley (Poole, Dorset)
Left in: Jul 77

Currently working as a mortgage consultant (6 years in the industry) [Homeloan Warehouse FS Ltd,] covering the full range from First Time Buy to Lifetime Equity Release (with buy to lets and adverse credit mortgages in between). Also advise on protection and insurances from the Zurich group. 

Married to Sally,2 daughters Alice age 9,Claudia age 6. Lived in Poole for last 13 years, (Worked in finance industry in one form of another) since the age of about 22.

Best memories: Long summer days, Scottish dancing (should I admit that),summer camps,sailing and rugby matches !!

Worst memory: falling from the very tall (or so it seemed at the time) aerial runway tree and seeing my short life flash past me.

Mark (Hilary) Berrill (Hassocks) (NEW) 
Left in Jul 75 

After Walhampton went to Tonbridge School, then on to City University. Started work for Financial Printing company in London, and then moved on to High Security Printing. Covered the Far East during this time and had great fun travelling. 

Married Beverley in 1991, and have two children Ben aged 10 and Jessie Kay aged 4. Built are own home, and now have house with livery yard attached! Have a horse mad family, and am still riding when possible. 

Now self employed, as an IT consultant, which allows me to work from home most of the time! Trade under Itronic – and livery yard is

Worst memory – leaving the Walhampton for the very last time!
Best memory – A very long list, which all led to the sense of being part of a special community!

Paul Bliss (Alresford, Hants)
Left in: Jul 77

Bryanston, Bristol University (Dept. Bot/Zoo).

Then back home to run family farm and boarding kennels. Meanwhile met my future wife on archaelogical diving expedition in Sicily got married to Melanie in 1989. Two kids Daniel (13) and Marnie (12).

Have run annual music festival on the farm since 2001 (started with fifty friends in back garden , now 1,000 +), this has become a very time consuming but hugely rewarding hobby!! 

Gay Dog Boarding Kennels, Bradley Alresford, Hants SO24 9RY : Proprieter and Manager 

Blissfields Festival, Bradley Farm, Bradley Alresford, Hants SO24 9RY : Organiser

Gay Dog Boarding Kennels
Blissfields Festival

Best memories: Riding Expedition (1976?), just a brilliant week, in fact all the expedition weeks were fantastic times!

Worst (although it is great to be able to tell my kids now that I went to a school that had punishments that to them seem victorian!) : “The Whacks” from JB for talking after lights out (bit harsh!): 1974? “I want you to know that hurt me more than it hurt you!”

Sorry I can't make it to the reunion, would really like to have met up with some old friends. Also sorry to hear that some friends I have always remembered with great affection are no longer with us, can't believe how the years have passed with out seeing you all, thanks Laura and Ralph for helping me re-live a few memories in the last couple of weeks!

If anyone can make it please come along to Blissfields Festival the weekend after the summer reunion, it is family friendly!

David Boyle (Cambridgeshire)
Left 1977

Updated 10.11.17

I'm from rural Cambridgeshire these days, but was at Walhampton, the most outstanding school I ever encountered,from 1972 to 1977. These days I am an energy consultant and property developer with a view to social housing. Demand outstrips supply!

My brother Micky is still alive [at Walhampton two years after me] - he is in the music business, in London.

In an age of no win no fee lawyers, and health and safety at times bordering on histeria, JB was out of this world in allowing us kids to develop a sense of adventure!

Wide games,with noone knowing who would get lost, ropes between trees, mull camps, dodgy minibuses taking us to rugby matches with no seatbelts-we loved it all!

Philip Broke (London)
Left in: Apr 76

Updated 14.7.17
Married to Natasha since 1993 and living in London.  We have three children, Sophie and Katie both 22, Nicholas 19.  I went to Eton, then Cambridge, then became a lawyer at Ashurst, Morris, Crisp & Co in the City.  I am now a partner in White & Case, a large global law firm, working on mergers and acquisitions and public company matters.

Thank you especially to Laura and Ralph for the alumni network.  I would be happy to hear from anyone.

I only have one bad memory, which was Chitty falling out of that tree. I was standing next to Glennie and was too shocked to cry.  I have more wonderful memories than I can summon up, reading other people’s stories has brought many back, I absolutely loved it.  I came aged 9 from two years in London primary schools where competitive sports, even in breaks, were forbidden because it made people unequal, where I was taught nothing because I could already read and write and could be safely left alone and there was nothing at all to do.  Walhampton with the immensely strong Christian values, the lovely people, the learning and the teaching and the activities organised or not, just so much to have fun with, the space, the sheer beauty of the place, the trips for History and French and Slimbridge, the New Forest, plays, art, science experiments, loads of sports (I even played netball).  Life was wonderful, to be gone for and lived with real principles and you have to do it yourself.  Those things have never left me.

Chloe Bruce (Galloway, Scotland)
Left in: Jul 78

I have been in Southern Scotland for nearly 20 years. I still visit my mother in Lymington. I have 3 children, Molly, 17, Bazil, 15 and Marlin, 12. I am not married.

I am a Medical Herbalist. I grow my own veg, fruit and herbs providing a small amount of our total consumption. At the moment I’m managing a traditionally built house extension. I am a volunteer in various groups, an anti nuclear peace group, a rural support group formed during the Foot and Mouth disaster and a Complimentary Therapy group. Self employed. No present web site.

Best memories: The beautiful grounds. Gordon and the ducks. Mrs Brown and the ponies.
Worst memory: Having to go on a run around the lakes topless, aged 12 with the rest of the school.

The school still looks a formidable sized building.

Richard Bruges (Horsham, Sussex)
Left in: Jul 77

Currently working for Unipart Logistics Ltd, Cowley, Oxford. Direct: 01865 382710. (A very dull representation of the company, but we are working on it).

Since leaving Edinburgh University, most of my career has been in sales and marketing in the automotive industry. I spent the last five years in strategy consultancy, then in September ’06 joined Unipart Logistics in Oxford developing their Sales Strategy. Given that Kate (undisclosed), Max (13), Harry (11) and Jim (7) and I live in Sussex, this is a bit of a commute so I spend a few nights a week in digs, so if anyone wants a beer in Oxford, let me know.

Best & Worst memories of Walhampton (you decide): All those things we did before the Health & Safety Gestapo stifled adventure: dropping the whole school off on the other side of the New Forest and hoping we would all get back in time for tea; capsizing a Mirror dinghy in the path of the IOW ferry; Chitty falling out of the conker tree; abseiling in Mull. Plus: JB being more interested in talking to the children than prospective parents; getting 99 in my cycling proficiency test; Ferry beating me to sing the Once in Royal solo; realising (years later) that CK deliberately wore blakeys so that we would hear him coming down the corridor and pipe down before he got to the dorm.

Victoria Bulloch (SW London)
Left in: Dec 75

I live with my partner, whom I met 12 years ago in Goa. I used to commute to see him between London and India, but he has now been in the UK for six and a half years and for the time being we are based here, although we do also have a house in India and we try to go each year

After University, where I read Modern Languages, I went to work for News International, followed by a brief spell at the BBC before joining a small qualitative research consultancy where I have worked for the past 15 years. I work for a small research consultancy, based in Tottenham Court Road in London. I’ve done a variety of jobs within the company and am currently Accounts Manager

CSR Qualitative Research Ltd
The Heals Building, 22 Torrington Place, London WC1

Best memories of Walhampton are probably the camps in the summer. I remember particularly enjoying the riding camp. However, one of the not so good memories was also a camp – I seem to remember that we went camping in or near Lyme Regis and the weather was foul and everyone was ill and our parents had to come and collect us. My Mother still reminds me of how bad we were smelling!

Louisa Burnett-Hall (Paris, France)
Left in: Jul 77

After studying Fine Art at Edinburgh University, I worked as an artist in London, moving to live in Paris in 1990. My paintings are exhibited in London, Paris and Belgium. Married with three children. I work in a warehouse in Pantin, a suburb of Paris. Currently my paintings are on the theme of water, inspired by the rhythms, light and movement. Techniques used are oil on canvas and mixed media on paper.

Best memories: Mr Elphinstone dressed in a pink tutu, leaping into the waiting arms of a line of teachers. Going off in an old white van to paint gnarled trees on Wednesday afternoons.

Worst memory: Finding my guinea pig dead from an overdose of clover!!

John Burnett-Hall (W London)
Left in: 1981

Walhampton - Winchester College - Magdalen College, Oxford (Physics) - London School of Economics (Economics) - Paris - Left Bank Cafes (Jazz Piano).

Career alternating between finance and music. Not married (yet!).

Currently playing piano, promoting jazz evenings and planning to launch a Jazz-&-Cocktails bar in London.

Working for Heronrock Ltd, /

Best memory: The whole school playing British Bulldog…and lots of others.

Worst memory: Burning my tent down on camp.

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