Summer Lunch 2010
The pouring rain on 19th August was contrasted by the warmth of the occasion.
Daverio Matteucchi at Keats Restaurant, Ampfield, had closed its facilities to all but those attending the now annual Summer Lunch. He and his staff had set aside the main restaurant and bar area for the meal, while the private function room was used as a reception and pre-lunch area.
We had originally had reservations for 75 people although, very unfortunately, because of illness and bereavement there were seven withdrawals prior to the day.
So, 68 Old Tauntonians and their partners (the largest gathering we have so far had at this event) sat down to a choice from the usual delicious menu, served by a cheerful and attentive staff. As we have often commented, one has only to listen to the conversation and laughter to learn whether an occasion is going well. It certainly seemed to be.
We are always pleased to report the regular attendance - some even "ever-presents" since the first of such lunches - of a number of OTs. There were several first-timers with us - we were delighted to welcome, in order of seniority by Years at Taunton's:-
"Pip" and Brenda Errington, Crosby Hunter, David and Stella Jackson-Smith, Owen and Leila Ward, Ivor and June Morgan, Terry and Hazel Hatton and Jack and Joan Taylor.
We would love to think that the experience was felt to be one to be repeated and that they will all consider coming back next year.
A View of Keats RestaurantIt was his 90th birthday year and Ted Colenutt (President of the Association, former pupil, master and Second Master at the school and Vice Principal of the College) was the Special Guest at the lunch, accompanied by his lovely, charming daughter, Liz Henderson.
After the meal Arthur Spencer reminded us that although he and Ted had been firm friends for many years beforehand, he was the supporting speaker for Ted on the first occasion that Ted had been Chairman of the Reunion Dinner. He congratulated Ted on his record at Taunton's and, in Tauntonian tradition "took wine" with him. Johnny Bathurst, in the absence (by deliberate intent, he scurrilously suggested) of Ron Allison, Peter Munro and John Martin, became Plan 'D' (for Desperation). There followed a mixture of compliment and quip and the proposition of the Birthday Toast.
Roger Parsons spoke of the energy, enthusiasm and involvement of Ted in his position as President. A Rose for the PresidentIt was a special year in the history of Taunton's and Ted was doing his utmost to ensure that it would be remembered as such.
Lindy Parsons presented Liz with a bouquet, followed by Roger who presented Ted with a rose bush for his garden.
Ted then thanked the assembled company for their presence and the gifts that he and Liz had received.
The menu card had included a photograph of a broadly smiling EJC on which he commented that he couldn't remember seeing such a happy one - at which point a voice from the audience said it had taken a long time to find it!
He was particularly delighted to see so many ladies at the lunch and asked the gentlemen to rise and drink their health. He thanked Liz for being his companion at the lunch and for all she had had to put up with during his recent set back. He found it difficult, he said, to say anything in thanks to the Association that he had not said before, but nevertheless wished to express his appreciation for all that had been done to make the day a success.