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Photographs by Thanuja Wijesekara

The Epping Club, was the venue of the Wesley College, Colombo, OBA (NSW) 15th anniversary commemorative Ball held on Saturday 28th September 2013.  The response from past pupils of Wesley this year was tremendous and this was mostly due to the presence  as chief guests, the present Principal of the School Dr Shanti Maclelland (a former Wesleyite) and his wife Sriyani, and of Mr. Haig Karunaratne a much respected and liked teacher.

Dr Maclelland is an outstanding product of Wesley. In addition to being a gifted sportsmen excelling in athletics and hockey, he was a gifted student who qualified as lawyer as well as an accountant, who gave up what would have been an excellent career in commerce and law for his love of teaching. We have indeed been the beneficiaries of that. He taught at Wesley for some time before emigrating to Canada and carving himself a very successful career there. But true to his spirit, he walked away from all of that to heed Wesley’s call at a time when it was in very great need of leadership in accepting the role of Principal. Wesley as a community will forever remain indebted to him for his contribution and commitment.

In his address to the old Wesleyites that evening, he emphasised the role of gatherings such as these to enable Wesleyites to rally round the College Flag in helping raise the national and international profile of their Alma Mater, to raise funds, and most importantly in providing the much needed morale boost at a time when the School faced many challenges.

Mr. Karunaratne (a Thomian,) joined Wesley as a young graduate teacher and devoted his whole teaching career to Wesley, until his retirement some years ago. In addition to teaching English and Geography to the Upper School, he was choirmaster who nourished the talents of a great many gifted students. In his address, Mr Karunaratne said that Wesley had always been an excellent example of a multi ethnic and multi religious society, living in splendid harmony, a feature reflective of Australia as a country generally.

The almost perfect accord that continues to prevail between staff, students and the community generally over the decade has been possible through the generosity and inspiration provided by institutions such as the Old Boys Association in Australia, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere. He hopes that this fellowship will flourish and grow in the years to come.

The evening was filled with nostalgia where young and old met and exchanged pleasantries and reminisced of days gone by at the School and their land of birth. The nostalgic mood of the evening was aided by the band ‘Desmond De Silva and the Impressions.’ In all it was a memorable night of entertainment, fun, and camaraderie. Thank you to all the Wesleyites, non Wesleyites, and their spouses for gracing this special historic occasion, to make what was a great and eventful night.

Thank you to Thanuja Wijesekara for her excellent coverage of the event.

Courtesy of Ozlanka | Full Photo Coverage

Sri Express
Sri Express
Photographs by Thanuja Wijesekara

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