College celebrates 100 years at Hove site

College celebrates 100 years at site

College celebrates 100 years at site

First published in News

A sxith form college has held a series of events to celebrate 100 years at its address.

BHASVIC marked its centenary at its Old Shoreham Road site with a gala performance among other events.

The college’s Media and Performing Arts department decided to create ‘100@205’ - a spectacular multimedia, music and theatre event that featured excerpts from many of the productions that have been performed in the buildings since 1913.

The promenade style theatrical event was staged in various college locations including the main hall with an audience sing-a-long of the old school song. Audiences were treated to musical theatre selections at the end of February, all the way from Gilbert and Sullivan through to Sondheim, as well as some Shakespeare and music by The Beach Boys thrown in for good measure.

This was followed by a special Gala Performance in March attended by many of the former grammar school pupils who enjoyed reminiscing with other members of the Past and Present association - open to anyone who has left the College or even to those who left the Grammar School many years ago.

For the final performance of ‘100@205’ students and staff past and present were invited to the headmaster’s office to relive old traditions, in particular afternoon tea or sherry.

Head teacher Chris Thomson joined in 1998 he has seen the student population swell from 1,049 to 2,000.

He previously told The Argus: “I think it’s really important students appreciate that sense of history.”


The saying goes “if these walls could talk” and none more so is this applicable than at the college.

Its relocation to the site in 1914 (previously Brighton Proprietary Grammar and Commercial School, founded in July 1859 at Lancaster House, Grand Parade) was badly timed, with war breaking out shortly after it opened and the school converted into a military hospital.

It managed to survive the Great War and continued as a grammar school until 1975 when it became a sixth form college.

One of its pupils, Ernest Beal, was the first Brighton man to be awarded a Victoria Cross in World War One.

He is honoured in the school as well as on the War Memorial in the Old Steine. Among its alumni are historian Sir Walter Adams, composer Howard Blake, and Radio 4 funnyman Tony Hawks.

With a rich past, it is now looking to its future. It recently sealed planning approval for a new block of classrooms.

The plans were originally thrown out but after designers went back to the drawing board, the new three storey scheme was granted planning approval in January.

The college currently has 2,276 students and the construction of the new building will allow capacity to increase a further 132 while improving facilities for existing students and staff.

Comments (1)

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9:58am Sat 22 Mar 14

Alison Smith says...

"Absque Labore Nihil" for 100 years!
"Absque Labore Nihil" for 100 years! Alison Smith
  • Score: 1

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