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`The Hugh Wilson Square – a Tribute to the late Mr W J H Wilson (1932 - 2010)'

‘Only the forgotten are truly dead’ was written on a scrap of paper and found amongst his things shortly after Hugh Wilson’s passing in early March 2010. A man of strong presence, an innovator, for many an erudite life coach; blessed with an iron will and dogged determinism, tempered by a kind and empathic disposition, Hugh Wilson will live on in the hearts and minds of the Edwardian family and will not be easily forgotten.

Hugh was an educator, imparting well over 50 years of wisdom, sound advice and drama (literally) to all those who were fortunate enough to make his acquaintance. He was a demanding task master and expected people to deliver their best at all times. Hugh was an ardent fan of the classics, ancient Rome and Greek mythology. He was very knowledgeable and taught Latin and its associated History with great passion and enthusiasm. Many will remember his lessons with great fondness. Some, who were victims of his scathing and at times volatile attacks, may have different memories of this Latin master. But whatever your experiences with Hugh Wilson, few people were ambivalent about their interactions with him.

Hugh Wilson started his teaching career at King Edward VII School in January 1955 as a Latin master. He was also appointed as the assistant Master for Davis House. This would be the beginning of a long and satisfying career path which would encompass many firsts (for both Hugh and the School) and successes over the next half century. Hugh Wilson served on various academic committees and co-wrote a textbook for Latin. He singlehandedly was responsible for packing the annual school timetable for thirty five years and he started the relief timetable (which many may argue may not have been such a good innovation!). Hugh extended the Colours system and controlled the allocation of Scholarships and Bursaries for many years. He instituted the Moot board outside of his office to create awareness in politics and current affairs. He nurtured and developed the RCL into a meaningful body and gave recognition to its President.

He started Hockey as a sport at the School in 1956, and sat on Provincial committees, even managing a Provincial team for a while. In later years he was often to be seen in the vicinity of the astro during inter school fixtures, a quietly biased spectator. He revived Tennis, albeit without courts to play on.

KESFAM as an outreach body was founded by him to benefit the disadvantaged and needy, and with the added boost of KESCO in 2006, has grown into a strong force with the boys gaining empathy for others through ongoing collections for charity, to the installation of our very own vegetable garden.

The one Cultural activity that most people associate with Mr Wilson is the Dramatic Society! He founded it in his early teaching days and it grew from theatre visits and script readings into plays being staged thrice annually in his ‘creation’, the Tandem theatre. The winter production involved the serving of glühwein (cooking all day in the kitchen and tempting tastings to get it just right) after the production, and the Headmaster’s party on the final night of the Inter-house One Act Play Festival, meant entrance by invitation only, a much sought after honour. At the close of each year, a formal Dramatics dinner would be held which was the highlight for the boys in the Drama society, as it usually meant an evening of good food and even better entertainment. Play rehearsals were run with military-style precision and heaven help those who missed one!

Hugh was a perfect gentleman. He liked to travel and relished the new experiences it brought. When asked if he ever tired of teaching the same material over and over, he replied that each new group of boys were different and their responses changed over time resulting in different approaches to tackle the philosophical challenges he posed to the boys.

Over time Hugh Wilson forged a somewhat unique career which would advance him to the level of senior Deputy Principal, and although he cut back on his commitments to the School as he advanced in years, he only finally retired in December 2009 due to failing health. Although Hugh had ceased formal teaching some years prior he still kept the Dramatics Society going, and staged regular productions in the theatre. It was his express wish that drama and theatre be kept alive at King Edward. The Tandem Theatre was renamed in his honour, and the newly paved area covering the old tarmac has been aptly named `The Hugh Wilson Square` as a further tribute and acknowledgement of his contribution, commitment and dedication to King Edward VII School and the extended Edwardian family. The physical link between the Hugh Wilson Theatre, Square and Hockey Astro do justice to Hugh`s considerable legacy,

(Tribute written by: Mrs A Mania)

Before and After Images of the paving project



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Term 1: 15 January- 28 March

Term 2: 7 April- 27 June

Term 3: 21 July- 3 October

Term 4:13 October- 10 December

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Mon, 1 September 2014
Tennis: Sun City Tournament-1st Team
Mon, 1 September 2014
Academics: Grade 12 Prelim Exams Start!
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Wed, 3 September 2014
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Thu, 4 September 2014
Tennis: Sun City Tournament
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Sat, 30 August 2014
Athletics: Triangular Meet KES Jeppe Parktown
Fri, 29 August 2014
Soccer: vs Sutherland High
Fri, 22 August 2014
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Sat, 16 August 2014
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Fri, 15 August 2014
Soccer: vs Parktown Boys' High
Sun, 10 August 2014
Soccer: u15A at St David's Tournament
Sun, 10 August 2014
Soccer: 1st at St David's Tournament
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