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The School is delighted to announce that the St John’s Old Chapel is now open after extensive renovation and restoration. A simply stunning building with its very own rich history dating back to 1878, the Chapel is now ready to come back into service for St John’s School, after an opening ceremony that took place on Monday 28 April.
Headmaster Martin Collier formally opened the Chapel and spoke about the remarkable transformation of the building since renovation work began in July 2013. During the renovation process, secrets of the past were revealed, preserved and restored. Such discoveries included Latin inscriptions, wall stencilling and the beautiful beamed ceiling, which had been hidden from view by a false ceiling for over 52 years.
Attended by Governors, staff, pupils and friends of the School, including the Leatherhead Trust, the ceremony featured an inaugural recital of Schubert's Lieder by acclaimed tenor Ian Bostridge, accompanied by Sebastian Wybew on piano. An internationally revered musician, Ian has won countless global awards, been nominated for 13 Grammy Awards and performed with the world’s greatest orchestras and opera houses.
The Headmaster commented, “That we have been able to restore this important building to this standard is a source of intense pride and satisfaction to all of us at St John’s.” He continued, “One of the reasons why our school is flourishing is because of the very strong support given to us by the Governors, alumni, parents of pupils – past and present – and friends.”
The Old Chapel can now be used as a standalone facility, to serve the local community as well as St John’s. Local schools, charities, volunteer groups and other community organisations will be able to use the building for external events. Many bookings have already been made for the coming weeks and months, with the programme of events becoming more exciting by the day.
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