Mother & Son Dinner
May 10, 2024

Mother & Son Dinner

On that terrible day when the Grenfell Towers burned, former St James pupil, Zane Jawad, was one of the first on the scene to help the victims who had lost not only their homes, but also in some cases their loved ones. In the aftermath of that tragedy Zane spoke to me and stressed the importance of community, exhorting us to build greater community into St James and the education we offer.

The annual Mother and Sons’ Dinner was one of the fruits of this vision and it has developed into a very special event. Mr Atkinson-Young welcomed mothers dressed in their finest gowns into our beautifully decorated refectory for an evening of good company, fine dining, and speeches.

The promenade in was accompanied by our Director of Music, Mr Aidan Coburn, on the piano, and soon staff, boys, and mums were mingling and enjoying each other’s company. The purpose of said evening was to celebrate the feminine in the boy’s life. This always takes place at the end of Year 8 as they prepare to step into adulthood in Year 9 and begin the first step toward the GCSEs and a fulfilment of their talents and visions.

After I blessed the food, the first table of young men individually spoke about what their mothers meant to them. This heart-warming ritual continued through the evening between the courses of veggie lasagne, chocolate brownies, and coffee.

The speeches were in turn funny, profound, and poignant. Each boy spoke from the heart to their mums and were afterwards changed by the experience. I wondered to myself: Is there another boys’ school in England where Year 8’s would declare their love for their mums with such heart felt fidelity, speak of service, and the putting of others before oneself with such sensitivity? One could not be more touched by such Grace.

Our guest speaker was Mrs Emma Bell, the new Headmistress of the Senior Girls’ school, and she spoke eloquently of her own education and the role models that inspired her to study at Oxford and follow her dream.

As the evening concluded and we said our goodbyes, one could not have had a more splendid evening. This is a special event and so necessary in our modern world, and I am sure the new Head, Mr Rick Clarke, will want to preserve it for future generations!

Mr Brazier- Headmaster