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UCL Medical School 1971-1977 Reunion - 15 October 2011

On Saturday 15th October 2011 eighty alumni and their guests, some travelling from as far away as New Zealand, gathered together to celebrate forty years since beginning their medical degrees. The reunion was hosted by Professor Chris Thompson (MBBS 1977), alumnus and Chair of UCL’s Campaign Executive Committee, and held on campus.

The day began with tea and coffee in the North Cloisters and perusal of old photographs from student days which caused much amusement. The guests then split into groups to embark on campus tours lead by current medical students. One alumnus, Paul Nunn commented I was impressed – and touched – that a group of medical students would give up their Saturdays to show us around. I found the tour fascinating, especially since as one of the Oxbridge entrants to the clinical course, we had so little interaction with UCL in the 70’s.  I was very glad to see that that had changed so much.” The tours took in the main UCL campus, the Student Union Lewis’s building and the Cruciform and some tour groups were even fortunate enough to be allowed into the, now closed, old Huntley Street bar, a former favourite haunt of many.

The evening events began with a drinks reception in the Flaxman Gallery, under the dome in the main library, which many alumni remembered not for the ornate sculptures decorating the walls but for the lightwell in the middle of the room which some recounted being used as a quicker way to ‘borrow’ books from the library. The light well today is covered over by John Flaxman’s most famous statue, ‘St Michael Overcoming Satan’.

After the drinks reception the guests made their way to the Jeremy Bentham Room for dinner, during which they were entertained by alumni, Simon Keightley and Laurence Buckman who performed a comedy double act to the amusement of all. The dinner was rounded off with a toast by Chris Thompson to forty years of friendship and followed by enthusiastic dancing to the sounds of the seventies.

A good time was certainly had by all and the alumni greatly enjoyed reconnecting with old friends and re-living their student days. Some comments from the day were:

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the day (all of it) - just sad that we didn't have time to talk and catch-up with friends as much as we would have liked. But that would have required a week.” Steve Gould (MBBS 1977)

What a great day. Brilliant company, good food, wine and phenomenal organisation” Mike Bailey (MBBS 1976)

“It was great fun and nice to see the College looking so spruce”. Liz Driver (MBBS 1978)


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