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News > Reunions > Our Founder Robert Gray, commemorated in the Gray Chapel at Bishops.

Our Founder Robert Gray, commemorated in the Gray Chapel at Bishops.

The 1960 Leavers donated the Gray painting, which remains an important reminder to us of the great work that the Bishop played for our school - each September, we place flowers on their graves.
25 Aug 2023
Bishop Robert Gray, Founder of Bishops - 15 March 1849.
Bishop Robert Gray, Founder of Bishops - 15 March 1849.

Each year we visit the graves of our Founder Robert Gray and Sophia Gray to lay a bouquet of roses.  They are interred at St Saviour's in Claremont, itself a significant Bishops landmark.  It is where the St Saviour's school started which amalgamated at Feldhausen to which Bishops boys from the 'middle school' were sent from Woodlands (to return in 1900 when School House was built).

St Saviour's is also the resting place of Arthur Edward Robottom, the father of a close friend of one of our ODs Alan Ramsay (1960F), the late Mike Robottom (1958W). 

The land where Saviour's is today was donated by the ancestor of Warwick Jones (1961S), which is explained in the following extract:

"[T]he site for the church was donated by Mr Rice Jones, a wealthy merchant, in 1850 on condition that a church was built within the next twenty years. The original church, a small rectangular thatched building, was designed by Sophia Gray, the foundation stone was laid on 13 November 1850 and the church consecrated 1853. From the beginning the church had a distinguished congregation and was known as 'the fashionable church ... where Lady Grey (the wife of the Governor of the Cape, Sir George Grey) and all the grandees go ' ". (

The picture above of Bishop Gray is from the painting by Stanley Colborn, donated to the College by the Class of 1960. The '60 Class held its reunion over the Founders weekend in 1990 thus commemorating their 30th year as Leavers.

Today, this painting of Gray remains an important commemoration item for the College appropriately hanging in the side chapel next to His Grace's tablet on the wooden panels on the NW side.     

On Friday 01 September 2023, the ODA Paul Murray will go to place flowers on the graves of Robert Gray (3 October 1809 – 1 September 1872) and Sophia Gray (5 January 1814 – 27 April 1871).   

Recently OD Jeremy Lawrence (1952F, PM 1953) installed a stained glass window in the church, in honour of his maternal grandfather Sir Malcolm William Searle (at Bishops 1865 - 1875) buried in the graveyard at St Saviour's.  

Attendees at the 1990 reunion held ove the Founders weekend were: Syd and Catherine Cullis (1961F); Jenny and Peter Swift (1961W), Mac Bisset (1960G), Chris Saunders (1960O), Richie and Sue Rhodes (1960O), Suzanne and David Kilpin (1960F), Karen and Fred Brown, Rob Phillips (1960G), Ingrid and Boetie Versfeld (1960W), Archie Jordan (1960F), Caroline and Peter Trengove Jones (1957F), Tom and Liz McEwen (1960G), Christel and Nico Basson (1960F), Lyn and Tony Mossop (1960O), Yvonne and Pat Normand (1960S), Eddie and Margie Sedgwick (1960O), Joe and Myrtle Lister (1946G & both Staff), Les Kay (1958O), Lionel Goetz (1957S), Anna and Harry Malleson (1960W), Janet and Mike Robottom (1958W), Annette and Bill Francis (1958S), Neville Walker (1960W), Colleen and Ray Andrews (1960S), Mike Foote (1960W), John and Marlene Parker-Wood (1960W), Sally and Guy Bekker (1960F), Heather and Gerald Rosenthal (1960W), Cherry and Mick Versveld (1960W), Mike Fisher (Staff), Doug Clark (Staff), Anne and Charles Currey (Staff), Joe Walker (1957O), Thea and Alan Ramsay (1960F), Geoff Caradoc-Davies (1960W), Diana and Louis Serrurier (1960W) and Bronnie and Mike Pickering (1960W).

ODs connecting and engaging remains a cornerstone of Bishops and the ODU.  

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