It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Dr Mary Cadogan on the 27th September in London from complications arising from cancer. Mary began working for Krishnamurti as his secretary in England in 1958. She was the first Trustee to be appointed to the KFT and remained a Trustee up to the time of her death. She was involved in the establishment of Brockwood Park and has been actively engaged in its operation ever since. A member of the KFT Publications Committee, Mary was herself a published author of 28 books. In 2009 she was awarded a doctorate by Lancaster University for her services to children’s literature and the editing and publication of Krishnamurti’s books.
The following talk was given by Mary one month ago at the 45th Anniversary Alumni Reunion at Brockwood Park:
The Autumn/Winter 2009 Brockwood Observer had published an article about Mary which we would like to share here:
For anyone in the vicinity of Bilbao in early October, please come and meet our representatives and see our stand at the Biocultura Fair. Staff members Adrian and Izaro will be very happy to meet with you and discuss life at Brockwood and answer any questions you may have about the School. Look for stand number 165 but if you would like free entry to attend the Fair, we have a limited number of free entry tickets available, please contact us in advance via firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name, address and the number of tickets required.
After months of preparation, taking registrations, getting rooms’ ready, assembling welcome packs and discussing menus, Brockwoods 45th Reunion happened last week and was a success. There were 370 alumni present over the five days, spanning every one of Brockwoods’ 45 years, and this included one of Brockwoods’ very first teachers from early 1969.
Thank you to all those who helped organise the Reunion and thank you to everyone who came back to see us at Brockwood. We had a wonderful five days, with good weather, a beautiful marquee, delicious food, inspiring workshops, a magnificent bonfire, photos, conversations, dances, walks, classical, marimba and rock and roll performances, tree planting, morning meetings and lots of rota! Prior to this, we had a smaller Reunion of a group of alumni from the 1970’s who joined us for four days and it was delightful to meet them and to hear them comment on their time spent at the school.
I hope that you manage to keep in touch with us, and not have to wait another five years for a Reunion. You can do this through visits to the school, as well as through sharing your projects and the work that you are involved in, and maybe offering workshops to our students. Thank you all, and do stay in touch!
We are pleased to announce the launch of the Friends of Brockwood Park Portal which occurred yesterday. This is a password protected social networking site for the benefit of registered Friends. On the Portal, you are able to participate in online dialogues, send messages, post events via a shared calendar and buy, sell and exchange goods and services. The Portal avoids the excesses of larger social networking sites, but has many of the benefits and we hope that if you are not already a registered Friend you will now consider doing this in order to have the use of it. To register as a Friend, we invite you to go to:
This time next week you will be more than 300 to join us for our 45th Anniversary Reunion.
We are finalising preparations and just a few days ago all school staff and some volunteers arrived to help get the rooms ready, have the gardens tidied, and to get some baking underway. Lists are being compiled, welcome packs are being put together, menus are being finalised, and we are printing out tickets for our Great Raffle which will happen over the first three days of the Reunion. All participants to the Reunion will be able to purchase a raffle ticket which will enable them to enter a prize draw for a flight on a lightweight aircraft to witness the breath-taking landscape around Brockwood. This ride will last up to 45 minutes and will happen on the Sunday of the Reunion. We are also getting ready to welcome our alumni for the 1970’s Gathering due to begin on the 16th August. A total of 15 alumni have registered for this pre-reunion Reunion and we look forward to meeting some of Brockwood’s first students!
Here are some photos of Brockwood today, of school staff busy with preparations… we are getting so excited about welcoming you all back to beautiful Brockwood.
With just a handful of staff and mature students present amidst the tranquil summer days at Brockwood, we are steadily working in preparation for your visit in August. The excitement is slowly building up as we allocate rooms, count out all the teaspoons, make plans for where the sheep will go when the campers arrive, and finalise the programme of events. The gardens are being meticulously pruned and weeded, t-shirts to commemorate our 45 years are being printed, DJ’s are being sought and reminders are sent out for gathering items for the auction and workshops. We have also been busy capturing the scenes we love at Brockwood and wished to share these with you in reminiscence of the spaces you once roamed and wandered through. Accompanying these images, filmed by current student Ewan Benoit, is a melodious classical piece by Debussy, often played by Alan Rowlands during Sunday Morning Meetings back when I was a student in the 90’s. Here it is performed by Jerome Blanche in a live recording.
Enjoy this trip down memory lane and see if you can notice the changes in the landscape.
I wonder when was the last time you sent, or received, a postcard? Perhaps you have a couple stuck to your fridge or cupboard doors right now. The photograph of an exotic setting, the foreign post-mark and stamp, and the sunny message scribbled in a familiar hand on the back, make this small colourful gift, survivor of the long journey to your letterbox, not so easily forgotten or ignored as an email or a text.
We would like to encourage as many alumni as possible – attending or not attending the Reunion – to send us a postcard in the coming weeks before 21st August. You are spread around the world and in anticipation of the Reunion, we are hoping to gather images and messages that reflect our global community and the thoughts we wish to share with one-another. We will post these on the Reunion website before the event and during the Reunion, they will be on a giant pin-board inside the marquee.
Remember, whether you are attending or not, what is the message you would like to share with everyone (or with just a few) in advance of the Reunion? Send your cards to: Reunion Reflections, Brockwood Park School, Bramdean, Hants, SO24 0LQ, UK. Keep your eye out for the cards on the Reunion website.
In just 6 weeks’ time we will be welcoming many of you back at Brockwood.
We are receiving new registrations every day, and it is not too late to encourage alumni friends to sign up and join us for the 21st August.
Here is the list of participants so far. As you can see there are alumni attending from each of Brockwood’s 45 years.
From 30 May until 1 June, we held the first ever retreat for registered Friends of Brockwood Park at the Krishnamurti Centre (for more info on how to register, seehttp://friendsofbrockwoodpark.org.uk/). It turned out to be a very inspiring weekend full of meaningful connections.
On Saturday afternoon Trustee Mary Cadogan held her audience spellbound while reading from her upcoming memoir on working with Krishnamurti. She painted a vivid portrait of what it was like to work with and be so close to Krishnamurti. In the evening students and staff put on a wonderful concert featuring classical music and songs from the choir.
The feedback from participants was wonderful. They loved the opportunity to get to know Brockwood from an insiders point of view and savoured the chance to meet with likeminded others. Based on their feedback and encouragement we have started thinking about the nextFriends of Brockwood Park retreat. To be continued…