Brighton High School
Now Brighton Secondary College

Voyager Alert!

Former students will be delighted to hear Brighton Secondary College has undertaken a formidable task of restoring downloads to the Voyager magazine to the website. Voyagers from 1958 to 2005 are all online and years 2006 to 2017 are in the process of being scanned. Here is thepage for Voyager links.

Congratulations!

Congratulations to Linda Bruton. Back on 27 January 2013 she created a Facebook page. Search for Brighton High School - Marriage Road, Brighton on Facebook and you can ask to become a member. The page currently has 510 members.

School Photograph

Brighton High School, now Brighton College, form five.

Our second last year at Brighton High School. I am in the rear row, second from the left. I remain in contact with Anne Whittingham (nee Henley) (rear, second from right), Isabel Martini (nee Macdonald) (second row, far right), Kathleen O'Shaughnessy (rear, third from left) and with Margaret Kotre (nee Manning) (second row, far left). Margaret Kotre died 1 July 2018 in Melbourne.

Sandy Alp's search

Sandy Alp (nee Sandra Lacy) was a student at Brighton High School from 1968 to 1972. She moved away from Melbourne in 1977 and has spent some decades living in Darwin where she has raised her family. Sandy sought help on this site to catch up with former school friends and, with many thanks to Isabel Martini and Colin MacDonald, Sandy has now found Wendy Lindstrom, and Denise Docker, and has discovered Dale Bradley died in WA during early 2017.

Sandy was very disappointed to hear of Dale's death as she went through primary school with her. "What a pity we didn't have social media to keep in touch back then," said Sandy who has been surprised to find many people she knew in her Melbourne days have not taken to social media and don't even use emails.

Sandy says she has a desire to reconnect with people who were once a significant part of her life. "Too many are leaving this world and I guess I just want to let them know that I remember them and appreciate their friendship - while I can," she said.

Class 4F2 at Brighton High School in 1971.

Sandy, who is in the photograph above in the front row, extreme left, has also joined the BHS Facebook page and the Bentleigh West Primary School group.

She has also been in touch with Dale's sister, Jenny, who was in her brother's class.

Brighton High That Was

I attended Brighton High School, in Marriage Road, Brighton, a suburb of Melbourne, for six years until I matriculated in 1962. I began, as Diana Mann, as a student in 1957, just two years after the school was built, and, oddly enough, a year before it was officially opened on 30 May 1958. The image below, of the program for the official opening, appears thanks to Denis McCarthy, who has also provided the photographs below of the original school uniform.

Official opening of Brighton High School in Melbourne.

I think of my senior schooling as taking place at Brighton High but the name was changed in 1988 and today it is called the Brighton Secondary College. We had the ship, Endeavour, as our logo and this was also our motto.

The school has always been co-educational however in my day the girls and boys had separate playgrounds and the rooms were divided with boys on one side and girls on the other. Our summer uniform was a purple check dress, we had a grey jumper with narrow green, purple and gold bands on the sleeves, and a grey blazer which did absolutely nothing to keep out the freezing cold.

The original Brighton High School jumper.

The original Brighton High School jumper

The original Brighton High School Blazer.

Pocket on the original Brighton High School blazer

The original Brighton High School Cap.

The original Brighton High School cap.

In winter we wore grey tunics which were bulky without being warm, with apple green shirts and a tie. The boys were drearily all in grey. Our sports uniform was horrific, a thin grey short tunic with splits up the side and yellow bloomers good grief. Today yellow is my favourite colour but it certainly wasn't then.

Brighton Secondary College purple jumpers.

Purple jumpers! We only had purple hockey socks!

The grounds were huge and largely untouched by human hands. I belonged to quite a large group of girls and most lunchtimes we ate our lunch amongst what smelled like aniseed bushes near the back gate. The bushes were only a foot or so tall so they didn't provide much privacy however I don't remember anyone else down there.

Ghastly Things like Hockey

On dreaded sports days we all traipsed over the the road to what I remember as council grounds where we played ghastly things like hockey. I imagine the boys would have played cricket and football but as I had no interest in sport I really don't know what they did. Perhaps they played cowboys and Indians. The school had a large hall built over a gym and it was there we undertook physical education and there, in form six, where I practiced ballet, instead of sport, after fronting the headmaster for permission. I was very nervous of authority figures in those days so it shows just how much I hated sport. I went to the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne as part of a school group. I was probably the only person there who took three books to read.

Tickless Time

As an older student I acted in one of the Lonsdale house plays called Tickless Time. My memories about the play are extremely vague but I found it once online and it was written soon after the turn of the century. I remember I had to kiss the male lead which I found mortifying in the extreme. Our director, a fellow student, was actually famous at that time as he had had a role in the film Smiley. His name was Gavin Davies and it appears this was the only film he acted in although he has credits as production designer for two other films, Martin Chuzzlewit (1994) and Fellow Traveler (1989). In Smiley Gavin played the role of Fred Stevens whom I remember as a nasty boy who made life very difficult for Smiley.

Poster for the film Smiley.

I mentioned Lonsdale house earlier, the other three houses are (and were) Philip, Murray and Grant. Phillip was called after Captain Arthur Phillip who brought out the First Fleet to Australia. I didn't know then that on board two vessels in the First Fleet were a couple of my convict ancestors.

Lockers for Textbooks

I have always been amazed by Queensland high schools where the poor children carry all their books in their bags on their backs. At Brighton High all the very wide corridors were lined with lockers and we each had one for our books, plus we shared a larger locker in which we put raincoats, blazers etc.

Having recently watched Summer Heights High, which was filmed at the school, it doesn't appear that the school has changed much at all. There was a fire in 2000 which destroyed part of one corridor, and there are some new wings and also portable classrooms. A new building is the Discovery Centre which apparently largely owes its existence to donations from students and former students plus some government assistance.

One thing that has changed is the motto. In my day it was, sensibly "Endeavour", now it has become "A tradition of excellence".

Today the school has four computer rooms, each able to house a classroom full of students, plus three computer pods which may have come from outer space. The school also has SMARTboards which provide video/DVD playback, sound and projection. And now to quote - "The advanced interactive multimedia hubs are widespread around the school. As well as normal projector systems, classrooms which contain SMARTboard technology feature a normal projector which projects onto a specially designed board. This board has sensors - when using an electronic white board marker will project 'electronic ink' onto the smartboard - a digital canvas. It also is fully interactive, and touch sensitive. Brighton Secondary is one of the first schools in Melbourne to use Smartboards."

The school is undergoing an $8 million redevelopment.

Transforming the Headmaster

When I began at the school the headmaster was C.O. Holland who was followed by G M Stirling who was transformed from headmaster to principal in 1965. Today the principal is Richard Minack.

Studies at the school today include English, mathematics, science, geography, history, business studies, Languages other than English, physical education, technology and creative and performing arts. Our Language other than English was French and we did not have studies in technology, obviously, as it didn't exist then at school level. Nor did we have studies in creative and performing arts although we had music and we were able to take part in school plays and in the school concert.

The diagram below shows the layout of Brighton Secondary College for the golden jubilee in 2005. I must confess to some bewilderment as I tried to put the layout of Brighton High, as I remembered it from 1962, onto this one. The place has certainly changed during the past almost 50 years. Thanks Denis for finding this.

Brighton Secondary College open day.

Sixtieth Anniversary

Students from earlier years at the open day at Brighton Secondary College in Melbourne.

Photograph by Isabel Martini, former student

Brighton Secondary College opened its doors during an open house on May 24 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. to celebrate its sixtieth anniversary. The open house provided an opportunity for people, especially former students of Brighton High School, to say goodbye to some of the original corridors prior to new building work.

Brennan Library at Brighton Secondary College previously Brighton High School in Melbourne.

Voyager Yearbooks

Reading Voyager yearbooks certainly bring back memories. Brighton Secondary College scanned copies of Voyager from 1958 onwards however following an upgrade to the website they have been temporarily unavailable. They are now being reloaded to the site and as soon as they are available again, I will post a link here. Here is thepage for Voyager links.

Links to other pages about Schools


This page was updated by Diana Kupke (Diana Mann) on 3 March 2019