Latest News

As members know, we regrettably had to cancel the 2020 Reunion.

We may be able to hold an event in 2021 but this is very much dependent

on roll out of the vaccine for Covid-19. Information will follow in due course.

From time to time members ask us for assistance in finding friends with whom they have lost touch. These requests are on our “Find a friend” page and we would ask all members to check them out in case they can assist.

Members Database

The Members' Database will be updated regularly, and if in doubt, the 'How to Use the Database' guide is immediately below the link to the most recent database.

Amendments and additions are made to almost every page of the website regularly during the year to reflect the activities of the Association and of its Management Team. Please do check out all pages to benefit from these updates.

Newsletters are no longer circulated. Instead, members are briefed regularly on changes and updates to this website.

January 2021 - Various amendments to the website continue, including the addition of further photos and documents unearthed from members’ lofts, basements, garages and trunks and we very much appreciate these, which add to our on-line archive and to the pleasure of members looking at these pages. If you find anything we might like, please contact us! We have the facilities to scan items, if you wish, and can return hard copies / reimburse postage.

2021 brought with it a reduction in our Team membership. “Now we are four”. We would love to hear from more recent leavers who may wish to be involved even on the fringes of our work. While we’re all very happy to undertake the duties running the Association involve, we are not immortal…Please contact us to find out more.

The loss of our Memorabilia manager resulted in a Flash January Sale of our notelets.

Immediate interest from members means we now have stock only of one type of card, the ‘glossy’ landscape single fold colour image of the Hall.

If members would like to purchase these, which come in packs of ten, with

envelopes, the cost is £5 for ten, £10 for thirty p&p included, posted within

the UK only. We’re happy to sell overseas provided you have a UK address

for us to post them to. Contact us if you would like to order.


We still have ten or so members with no access to the internet. Through the

good offices of our members most of these now have ‘twins’ who contact them

from time to time to keep them abreast of the news. Sadly, at the turn of the

year, this included passing on the news of the loss of an Old Girl, Marigold (June) Mack, whose obituary has been added to our In Memoriam page. Memories of June came back to us from two or three members to whom we emailed the news and two of them offered to telephone/write to contemporaries who are not online. The Team regards it as crucial to ensure that members are not disadvantaged too much by not having access to our website (etc.). If anyone in any of the following areas would like to be a ‘twin’ please contact us.

Haywards Heath; Ipswich; Colchester; Shoreham-by-Sea; Lymington; Southampton; Peacehaven; Woburn Sands

We write, each year, to those who do not have SMH ‘twins’. The news is compiled by a member, topped by a brief note from our Team Manager, tailed with a summary of the accounts and printed and posted through the kindness of other members. A real team effort. Thank you all – you know who you are! This is the news we shared in December 2020.

Dear ‘Old Girl’,

We hope very much you will enjoy reading this letter.

Here are a few snippets from this year’s news from members of SMHA including the obituary of one of our former Headmistresses – Miss N Olwen Davies.

If you have any news you would like to share with members, please do drop me a line. It is always nice to hear how you are and what you have enjoyed doing during the year.

With every good wish for Christmas and the New Year,

Penny Harrison (Titheradge, 1969-73)


The Annual Letter 2020-2021 followed with news that we welcomed our first Old Boy – Simon Standage – in June. He is a “notable former student” who began his career as a violinist of great distinction with lessons at SMH in 1947/8. Simon was one of several who found us through the new website; another being the son/brother of Joan Nolda (Drury, 1927-35) who was a ‘Nellie Jones’ scholar  / Rosemary Matthews (Nolda, 1953-60). Rosemary “Nol” died in 2010 but her memory lives on in the minds and hearts of her contemporaries. He was fulsome in his praise for our camaraderie and efficiency.

Also the death of Miss N Olwen Davies – Former Headmistress (1926-2020). A summary of her funeral and obituary were included in the letter.

Carol Services We shared the information that we will no longer be participating, officially, in the annual Carol Service at St Mary’s Church due to lack of interest from Old Girls.

We also included “History and Photos Shared by Others” taken from the website including the image of Black Rock Pool sent to us by Sarah Mylne (Boyd, 1950-60), the update from Patricia Blunt (staff, 1988-96) of her visit with Pamela James (1973-97) in October 2020 when she told her about Katy Morrison (1991-97)’s book and of how much Katy had valued her English lessons. Patricia was able to let us know that other than her failing eyesight, Pamela is keeping well. A photo from Katie Johnson (Cook, 1979-85) had prompted memories of ‘ghosts’ and this was also shared in the letter which concluded with the summary of our Running Costs & Fundraising, Investments, Sales of Memorabilia and photos, and 100  club profits.

In 2019 the Income from 100 club and sales of memorabilia funded 76% of the Association’s running costs (postage, website and accounting costs).  The accounts for 2020 will shortly be finalised and placed on the website for members to review and approve.

July 2020 - Our website continues to have been updated over the last couple of months. Pages to look at include (but not limited to) are :

Items of Interest - and in particular our new 'In Memoriam' page, which includes a report on the recent death and funeral of  'Noddy' - Miss N. O. Davies - Headmistress  in the late 1960's/ early 1970's.

Our latest 'find' for 'Notable former students and staff'  - Simon Standage, world renowned violinist - is one of SMH's very few 'Old Boys'!

There are also copies of some Prize giving pamphlets kindly supplied by Shirley Read-Jahn.

School Days & Reunions - Several girls have recently sent us photographs of their days at school or at reunions.

History - a copy of extracts from the Parish Magazine for St Andrew's in Hove, kindly supplied by Patricia Blunt (staff 1988-96); which focuses on the Elliott family and in particular, Charlotte.

Newsletters & Magazines - we finally have as full a complement as we are able to obtain of historical Newsletters and Magazines, scanned in high definition. They make fascinating reading - especially to those who have an interest in social history.

Continuing the upload of images obtained via 'The Keep', many other pages have also been updated, rendering them worthy of a revisit! Enjoy your visit and beware of getting lost in times gone by!

May 12th 2020 - 

The Management Team ran a competition in the Virtual Common Room in April asking for unusual / original images from Old Girls’ attics, garages, trunks and basements, given that many of us have more time at home than usual at the moment! These are the photographs and images which were shared:






































































If you would like to know who won the prize of a free entry into 2021’s 100 Club  then just pop into the Common Room to find out. The names of all contestants and details of dates / names of those in the photographs are all there.


One image, from SMH Burlington NJ USA’s 1961-2 exchange student gave so much pleasure to her many contemporaries that they chatted about it on email for nearly a week and, between them named all the Girls pictured. The image, with a key, has been added to the School Days gallery.

April 27th 2020 - Your administration Team are delighted, on behalf of the Association, to welcome Melanie Heidler (Morrison, 1976-84), who is joining us as Team Member and Assistant Finance Officer. 
Further information about Melanie may be found on the
Admin. Team page.

Last summer (2019) we ran a piece in our e-Newsletter on “skiing”. (click here for that newsletter) 

Recently, as part of our Easter (2020) competition for ‘new images’, Jeanette Cureton (Smith, US exchange student 1961-62) sent us these lovely photos of her ski trip with SMH to the village of Saas-Fee, Switzerland, shown below in the distance and with three fellow skiers in close up. Two further images show them enjoying a wonderful time! (These photos will also be shared to our Gallery of School Days with the names of the Girls)

Virginia Jackson (Craig) recalled that she went to Hochsolden in Austria and Davos in Switzerland with the school in 1964 and 1965. She had great fun. Her father owned some Millets shops in London and kitted all her friends and her out with skiing gear. “Seems like yesterday”.

Odette Ford (Terleski), Vivienne Lagraulet (Goff) and Juliet Rose (O’Hea) all enjoyed this photographic reminder, as did Penny Barnes (Ryall/Hunt)  and Prisca Furlong (Baillie) whose photos were included in the newsletter.

If this item prompts you to share your own school skiing holiday memories with us please ‘Get in Touch’!

Katie Johnson (Cook, 1979-85) sent this photo to us, commenting that the house with the trees in front of it was derelict whilst she was at SMH. Someone had done graffiti on the outside walls of a devil face and on the brick wall there was a polystyrene head with a hat on. The school rumour was that the devil lived in that house and if you looked at the polystyrene head it moved!!! “Funny now”, she remarked, “but mighty scary when you're 11 or so!” Vicky Riley (Mokhtar), contemporary with Katie, confirmed that it was terrifying. Lesley Clifford (1971-78) didn’t recall it (it may have appeared after her time) but said that " the 70's we had 'the haunted house' inside the school grounds.

 Diane White (Hudson, 1971-78) remembered that “it was on a lane that ran behind the tennis courts above the lax field, where the junior school was built. It was derelict and ivy covered and we used to dare each other to go down the lane. We were convinced we could see ghostly apparitions in the windows. We would terrify each other with these dares!”

Penny Harrison (Titheradge 1969-73), noted that the building would have been the location for pottery classes/club in her day. She added that "We used to say the smoke from the boilers of the hospital chimneys was them burning bodies." Katie Johnson said that rumour had persisted down the years - in her day they referred to the black smoke from the hospital as the "burning of guts". And that someone in the year below wrote to the hospital manager questioning what they were burning and the pollution element. Carolyn Jackson-Brown (Sycamore, 1974-78) asked Diane White whether she remembered their friend Amelia saying she saw an ankle go through the wall?  Diane didn't remember it but said "it’s exactly the type of thing we would say to freak ourselves out!"

Heather Lucie (Goddard, 1986-97)  remarked that she had been told many a story of the school library being haunted...backed up by some of the teachers no less!!

Do you have haunting memories of school? Get in Touch and we will add them to this item.

Sarah Mylne (Boyd, 1950-60) shared this image of a derelict Black Rock pool (with Sussex Square and SMH in the background) which prompted the usual flurry of memories of the cold water, the biting winds, the lifeguards...referred to in many e-Newsletters and in "Such Fun".


Do check out the Newsletters page and Items of Interest to take a dive into the pool, and if you would like to add memories of your own to “Such Fun”, or just to send us a photo/memory please Get In Touch.

Rowan Fookes (Cawkell, 1952-56), passed in autumn 2020, author of “Murder Costs Everything”, shared news of her (long) short story “Am I Confessing?”.

This will form the first chapter of her new crime novel.

Each chapter will be a stand-alone story, but taken together will allow the reader to travel with the protagonist through her somewhat deadly life.

A short excerpt will be found on the home page of her website, as will her blogs

September 2019 - A simple question from Sarah Davis (1984-90), regarding which 'house' she had been in and what the house colour was led to perhaps the largest piece of research to have been undertaken since the school closed! The resulting article is featured in a recent e-Newsletter in abridged form and, in full, here

 When is a House not a House  (click to access) 

Patricia Blunt (staff, 1988-96), who so very kindly acts as the conduit between SMHA and Pamela James (head, 1973-97), visited Pamela, in company with Olive Ridge, in late October and told her about Katy Morrison (1991-97)’s book and of how much Katy had valued her English lessons with Pamela. She was really thrilled to hear about its success and very touched by Katy’s appreciation of her teaching. She said “it’s wonderful when you find the girls thinking as you do yourself.“ I know all Mrs James' Girls will be pleased to hear that thanks to Patricia we are still in touch and that other than her failing eyesight she is keeping well. Why not follow: to  keep up to date with the publicity for “A Book of Secrets” and read more about Kate the Author!


On Founder’s Day, 1st August 2019, we asked as many of you as possible to have an Austerity Lunch and donate the cost of the meal you saved to one of our three suggested Charities:

Susanne Rea (Nicholls 1956-61)’s work to eradicate Polio

Jo Grey (French 1983-88)’s AMEND charity

Jan Johnson (Launchbury, 1977-84)’s fundraising for Kidney Research UK.

You can still make a donation by BACS to SMHA, Sort Code: 30-92-92, Account No:  36910860.

Use Reference ‘Charity1’ ‘Charity2’ or ‘Charity3’. Or just ‘Charity’ and we will split it for you.

Enormous thanks to those who did donate. Every penny helps these wonderful OGs’ good causes.

June 2019 - Following a successful visit to The Spire Arts Centre (formerly St Mark's Church) by Old Girls Micki Aston and Virginia Craig, we are very pleased to be able to bring you images of a variety of artefacts, formerly belonging to the school. To view the images please go to this page Gallery - External Views

Resounding Success!

SMHA Virtual Common Room Reunion Lunch - Saturday 6th July 2019. The Reunion Lunch was attended by 21 members of SMHA, from several 'eras'. Photos of the event may be found here

One of the group photos taken after lunch. (Names of all those who attended are listed in the gallery)

In addition, we are delighted to have published an abridged version of Shirley Read-Jahn's (1954-61) article 'Dancing through Life' in a recent newsletter. The full article may also be found by clicking the above link.

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