Our College Captains represented us beautifully at the Anzac Day Service hosted by the ELwood RSL on the foreshore. Here are excerpts from their speeches.

Georgie Stone: It is an honour to speak to you today, and to commemorate the ANZACs: those who have fought in past wars, and those who are fighting or serving today. This day is a potent reminder of their determination and mateship. A day that unites us under the values of comradery and courage, something I believe is very important today.

It is especially an honour to commemorate my great-grandfather – Arthur Robertson – who fought in World War I alongside his brothers. He was a Sergeant in the 22nd Battalion, and served in France between 1916 and 1917. Three years ago, I was lucky enough to travel to France on a school tour, to see many of the Battlefields in Amiens and the Somme. Not only was I deeply moved, but I began to understand, for the first time, the brutality of the battles, understand the fear experienced by the soldiers, and why many never recovered. I saw where my great-grandfather fought; in the Battle of Pozieres, one of the bloodiest battles in France of the First World War; the Battle of Mouquet Farm; and the Battle of Bullecourt, where my great-grandfather was finally wounded and sent to a hospital in London, where he met my great-grandmother. His brothers were sent to Gallipoli, Bill was part of the last great cavalry charge at Beersheba, Bob at Passchendaele, George wounded the day after Grampy at Bullecourt. They all, incredibly, returned home.

Grampy never considered himself, or his comrades, as heroes. He never sought glory or immortality. He fought for his brothers, and the men around him: the fallen and those still fighting. In the Roll of Honour at the back of his book of the History of the 22nd Battalion, he has marked in pencil against the names of his friends who perished in the War. It was in memory of those people he marched in ANZAC Day parades, until he could march no more.  

I never met him. He died before I was born. Nevertheless, he has had a profound impact on my family. They adored and respected him, because of how much he had endured. The Somme was not just a concept, but living memory. He was light-hearted and gentle and loved to watch the footy on TV. He died in 1988, at the age of 97, having lived a wonderful life.  

What can we learn from ANZAC Day? It is important, I think, to remember the pain and grief that the Great War brought to so many; a grief that those men who returned, carried in their hearts for the rest of their lives.  And a pain that the families of those that never returned, carried for the rest of theirs. It was ‘The War to End All Wars’; so incomprehensible, the scale of loss. But sadly it was not the end of war. Peace, diversity and unity are worth our protection, but not at the cost of our humanity. We as young Australians can take inspiration from the ANZAC spirit to stand up for what is fair and equitable in our society. In this rapidly changing world we need to come together more than ever.

D'Artagnan Holt: Anzac Day allows this defining moment in our history to be immortalised in time, as the Anzac legacy lives on, forever enshrined in our nation’s values. 103 years ago, despite almost always enjoying peace in Australia, the Anzac’s travelled across the far reaches of the globe to fight in the name of freedom. Nevertheless, in the midst of battle, it was the values of determination, sacrifice, courage, mateship - that were born on the sands of Gallipoli and in the trenches of the Western Front.

It is this extraordinary culmination of comradery, this selflessness shaped at the hands of tragedy, that resonates with us today. Together as a community, we too are demonstrating true Australian stoicism, as we champion these values in commemoration of our fellow Anzacs.

I too, like Georgie, has a relative whom fought in the Great War, My Great uncle. He was first wounded on the Somme in late 1917, where he was sent to England to recover. He was presented with the opportunity to come home back to Australia, but he chose to fight on in what was known as Sausage Valley Pozieres, on the Western Front. He was shot in the same place as his original wound- upper left-hand shoulder and died. He was buried in France. His determination to fight on, his refusal to leave his comrades, and his belief in our nation, truly typifies what it means to be an Anzac, what it means to be an Australian.

The monumental impact of the Anzac legacy transcends its origins, as this day ultimately recognises all countrymen and women who defend of our Australian way of life. 

Beverley Pinder attended Elwood High in 1968–1971. Beverley is one of Melbourne’s most respected career public relations consultants, a former Miss Universe Australia and is now in her second term as s a Councillor at the City of Melbourne, where she holds the People City portfolio. Since the age of 13 she has been a fundraiser for charities and has a deep sense of social justice. Beverley's portrait was painted by her Elwood High friend and artist, Rachel Rovay for the Archibald Prize's Salon des Refusés exhibition in 2014; you can see a photo of the pair in front of the portrait here.

“I arrived in Australia in October 1968 and was desperate to start at Elwood High School straight away. I was shy and was put into a “special” English class. I soon discovered that it was for students who were beginners at English but it took weeks for the very nice Afrikaans teacher to discover that I had a voice and that my mother tongue was English.

I absolutely loved everything about Elwood High. There was a great spirit in the school. It was so culturally diverse; but no matter what countries we came from it was so collaborative and so collegiate. I loved Drama with Mr Whitehead. He enabled me to grow into the person who comes alive when I have the platform or a stage. Equally, I was fond of the teachings of Mr Pittock – there was so much to learn about the history of my new homeland.

I also threw myself into sport and played hockey, netball and basketball. The other girls in the basketball team, who were much taller and stronger than I was, really looked after me. It was such a close community.

Being a part of the Elwood High community, helped me to understand the importance of contributing to the wider community and to have had this rich start to my new life in Australia was a gift from God.”

Beverley’s parents bought a house in Springvale in 1971 and, after Beverley struggled to adapt to life in a high school there, she took a series of jobs in the public service and enjoyed her time in Immigration and Foreign Affairs. She worked diligently in this role and loved her time conducting citizenship interviews.

In 1978, aged 22, Beverley entered and won the Miss Universe Australia competition. This experience gave her a lot of media experience and exposure and she then “fell into” the public relations industry.

She was elected onto the Melbourne City Council in 2012 and, despite having no formal background in politics, felt that she had reached a stage in her life when she wanted to start giving something back to the community. Beverley was re-elected as a Councillor of the City of Melbourne in January 2018. She has taken on the roles of Chair People City and Deputy Chair Small Business, Retail and Hospitality, having previously been Chair of the Marketing Melbourne portfolio and Deputy Chair of Arts and Culture.

The role also allows her to continue her commitment to helping other less fortunate members of the community and believes that the role matches with who she is; “ I am first and foremost a compassionate person who believes in humanity, humility and hard work with a focus on family and community”.

For 50 years she has had personal involvement in assisting charities and not-for-profits. She sits on the Advisory Board of the National Institute of Integrative Medicine and provides marketing and fundraising support to the team. She is also a Patron of the Father Bob Maguire Foundation and a supporter of the Lighthouse Foundation, providing counsel and assistance on a pro bono basis.


“The Two of Us”,

Congratulations to Year 7 student Harriet Clapham Fell, who won third place at the Victorian Interschool Equestrian Series in April. This was Harriet's first time competing at State level and only her second time ever competing with her horse Primrose Lane.

Representing Elwood College, Harriet competed in three phases of competition - dressage, cross country and show jumping - at the prestigious VIES event in the Yarra Valley, known in equestrian circles as the Tintern Horse Trials.

Harriet started riding two years ago.

Congratulations to Baseball State Champions Wesley Ka (Year 7) and Millar Kuhl (Year 8). The boys represented the Southern Mariners in the Junior League (U14) Baseball State Championship played in Geelong in March.

Their team was undefeated, winning the State Championship medals.

Wesley and Millar will now represent Victoria in the Junior League National Championship in Adelaide in late May.

Congratulations to our Under 15s Girls Touch Footy Team who have had great success and showed sensational team spirit at two events this year.

In February, with coach and former teacher Emma Robbins, 10 girls played in the Junior Touch Affiliate Cup (pictured top). They played six games and won third place.

Then on 20 March, a team of 12 girls headed to the Eastern Conference of the 2018 Victorian School Championships (pictured bottom). They won all five of their qualifying games, taking them straight to the Grand Final, which they also won. Ironically, this time they were competing against Miss Robbins in the grand final, who was coaching for her new school.

Well done to the following students who represented the College at one or both events. Year 9: Indigo Gaal, Lola-Jean James, Adele Kirkpatrick, Lily Ranieri, Amy Richardson, Maya Simmonds, Kitty Smyth, Amelie Whitfield and Bree Whorlton. Year 8: Brie Bartlett, Renee Warman and Georgia Skewes. Year 7: Maisy Evans.

The team is expecting to be invited to the next stage of the State Championships but is awaiting confirmation.