East Dulwich, London SE22
11th August 2020
Amidst all the furore of Covid-19, the distractions of lockdown and quarantine and the all-consuming tensions the pandemic has brought us, one piece of news might have gone unnoticed: the imminent arrival of a new Rugby Fives Club.
For, as Hamish Buchanan tells us: The Alleyn Old Boys have played their last match and completed (although as with everything, not actually completed) their final season. Henceforth that band of men and women who play their Fives on the courts on Townley Road will be known as The Edward Alleyn Fives Club.
As Hamish puts it: The School began a fully coeducational intake in 1976 and has continued that practice to the present day; therefore, after the reasonable time span of 37 years since that first intake left the school to become Old Girls, the Alleyn Old Boys’ Fives Club has moved with the times and embraced them into the fold. Although, not literally, that would be completely inappropriate in these times. This momentous decision has been made not a moment too soon as many of the up and coming school players that regularly join in on a Tuesday evening are indeed girls. In fact the truncated season was lifted by the regular involvement of 4 or 5 young players each week and they also had some great success in competitions. Notably, Martha Nugent in the Girls’ U18 Singles & the Ladies’ U23 Doubles and Stuart Scott in the President’s Cup.
As chance would have it, the Alleyn’s School Old Boys’ Fives Club was founded in 1921, so if by the coming year we are once more in a position to play Fives ‘as normal’ the centenary of the Club may need to be celebrated with perhaps a little more than the customary Curry Night!
All of which raises two questions. UCS Old Boys? The Owers Trophy for Old Boys’ Fives?