Michael John Simpson

Of the 103 Old Bordenians whose names are now commemorated on the School's war memorials, the most recent casualty is Michael John Simpson. After having left Borden in 1972, he briefly served in the ranks of the Royal Engineers before being selected for officer training at Sandhurst. Commissioned into the Staffordshire Regiment, he was soon posted to Northern Ireland: 'The Troubles' were then at their height and while leading foot patrol in Londonderry, Michael was shot by an IRA gunman on 3 October 1974. He died as a result of his injuries three weeks later, aged only twenty-one, and was posthumously mentioned in despatches for the gallantry he had shown during his final patrol. 

As part of his on-going research into the lives of all those Old Boys whose names are recorded on the School's war memorials, Marc Stewart (BGS 97-04) is now collating information relating to Michael Simpson. Unlike the School's casualties from the two world wars, relatively little information is publicly available about Michael. His place of burial, for example, is unknown - and hasn't even been recorded by the Staffordshire Regimental Association - and it has so far proved impossible to track down his family. If members therefore have any memories of Michael that they would be willing to share, especially relating to his schooldays and funeral (which is believed to have been attended by a number of Old Boys), Marc would be grateful if they could contact him via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Marathon in memory of Harold Vafeas

A number of former Borden Grammar School pupils are taking part in next year's Brighton marathon to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust in memory of former headmaster, Harold Vafeas.  The full story was published in the Sittingbourne News Extra.  Click on the picture below for further details.

Philip Goldacre - Old Bordenian and Actor

Old Bordenian Philip Goldacre has landed a role in a new play at the Royal Court Theatre, London.  The article in this link to our Flickr site - Philip Goldacre - was featured in this week's local newspaper, the Sittingbourne News Extra (reproduced with kind permission of SNE). 

Memories of Borden Grammar School 1943 to 1948

Continuing the series of articles produced by Norman Wigg (see Recollections of the Battle of Britain below), here he recalls his days at the school.

For the next five years, I caught the No26 bus from Teynham, to Sittingbourne, getting off at the post office, then walking up through the alleyway past the Bull Inn, to arrive at the Grammar School. In the evening, I caught the bus outside Burton's to return to Teynham. As my father was a bus driver, I got a cheap season ticket, but that was about all the financial help my parents did get. I cost them a lot of money, in the next few years, but they never complained.

Work experience and apprenticeship opportunity for current "Bordenians"

We have received the following employment opportunities for current pupils at Borden Grammar School from a local Insurance Broker, based in Oad Street, Borden.

The Insurance Broker contacted us back in 2013 and 2015 with similar opportunities.  Neil Barlow, director of the company, now has a further opportunity for two apprentices to start in the summer.  Neil is also offering work experience opportunities for 1 or 2 weeks. Neil has written to the School and the Association with the following offer:

Graham Holbrook

We have recently heard that Graham Holbrook (BGS 1955-62) has passed away.  Graham was admitted into the Canterbury Pilgrims Hospice on Friday 17th March and he passed away peacefully early on Monday morning 20th March 2017, with his family by his side. The date of the funeral is 4th April 2017 at 2.40pm at Barham Crematorium, Canterbury Road, Barham, Near Canterbury, Kent,  CT4 6QU.

All are very welcome to join the family afterwards at Olly's old watering hole, the Anchor Public House, at the far end of Abbey Street, Faversham, ME13 7BP.  Should you wish to attend a reply of numbers would be gratefully  appreciated. Please email the OBA at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we shall forward the information to Graham's family. 

Graham is pictured in the 1956-57 Form Photo on the OBA website below (1956-57 Form Photo). He was known as "Fish" Holbrook....as his family ran the wet fish shop in Sittingbourne High St.  From school he joined the RAF and followed that up with a varied career in business and consultancy.