Thirty-ninth Athletic Meeting.-May 13th.
Though not ideal, the weather during the afternoon was, by contrast with the unpromising conditions that had prevailed in the morning, satisfactory. This year an obvious effort had been made to make the meeting worthy of the School. The preparations had been careful and detailed, and on the day the program of events was carried out most efficiently. The serving of teas in a marquee on the grounds instead of in the not too congenial manual-room; the use of a public address outfit to replace the apparently out-of-date megaphone; the introduction of rules, strictly enforced, controlling more precisely the dress and the deportment of the competitors; and such small but essential things as distinguishing caps provided for the starters, all helped to make the meeting, considered strictly as a meeting, an outstanding success. Even the young lady who dispensed free large quantities of a famous medicinal liquid food to an alarming number of victims of nervous fatigue contributed to the same end.
Considered as an athletic contest the meeting was just as successful. In addition to the new record, 26 mins. 21 4/5 secs., returned in the Cross Country Run Open, no fewer than seven new records were set up on the day. The Relay, 4x 220 Yards Open, was won in 3.5 sec. less than the previous record; and in the case of the Relay, 4 x 220 Yards, the Relay, 4 x 440 Yards, the High Jump, and the 440 Yards, all under 15, the previous records were beaten by 6 4/5 sees., 10 secs., 1.75 ins., and 3.4 sees. respectively.
As for the Old Boys' events, the times for the Mile and the Relay, 4 x 220 Yards, were 7.6 sees. and 2.4 secs. respectively inside the previous records. Further, the records for the 100 Yards Open (10.4 sees.) and the 100 Yards under 15 (11.4 sees.) were both equalled by this year's competitors.
The events, besides being of a high athletic standard, were all interesting, not to say exciting, to watch. Three races attracted particular attention: the 880 Yards Open, won on the tape by E.E.W.S. Thompson after D.J. Lodder (second) or D.F. Webber (third) had appeared bound to win; the Mile Medley Relay Open, an innovation which, though it did not by any means provide us with a thrilling struggle, was still very interesting; and the Old Boys' Mile, won from scratch in clever style by H. Shipway, without whose annual presence the Sports would be incomplete.
At the end of the meeting the medals and trophies were distributed by Alderman Mrs. M. Norrish. The House Shield was won by Morris with 191 points, followed by Mallinson with 130, Higham with 100, Allpass with 97.5, Whittingham with 92.5, and Spivey with 40. Thus the run of successes which Allpass had enjoyed from 1928 was finally interrupted. An important feature of the list of trophies was the absence of the Victor Ludorum Cup, abolished on account of the excessive strain it sometimes persuades competitors to undergo.
On behalf of the School, the Headmaster thanked Alderman Mrs. Norrish for her kindness in presenting the prizes, and he also thanked all those who had helped to make the afternoon so remarkably successful. He congratulated Mr. Ninnim on his first appearance as Master in charge of the Sports and asked him to convey the thanks of the boys to Mrs. Ninnim for giving up so much of her time to making rosettes, flags, etc. for the meeting.