Annual Report 2016

Summary of 2016 Chairman’s Report

The key points from Grant Macrae, Chairman of the Melville College Trust, report at the Annual General Meeting of the Trust in December 2016.
The Trust Fund Bursaries –
  • We continue to support the three schools with £230,000 of bursary funding. In 2015/16 there were 32 awards (two less than in 2014/15). 16 of these were to pupils in SMC, 13 to MES pupils and 3 to primary seven pupils in the junior school. Of these 7 were 100% bursaries.
  • In 2016/17 the number of awards reduces to 30 because of school fee increases and the mix of the value of individual awards. While school fees continue to rise unfortunately income from investments has not and in the current uncertain times investment income may fall, so the Governors have decided to earmark some reserves with a view to maintain the total level of support for bursaries over the next few years.
Other awards –
  • After discussion with the Principal, we decided to award a Melville College Trust prize annually “for outstanding contribution to SMC by a pupil in S4, S5 or S6”.
  • We also support the three schools by funding £12,500 for 16 different projects and activities, 6 to SMC, 3 to MES,3 for use by CCF across both senior schools and 4 for the Junior School. These ranged from equipment for the Latin club, a boxing ring floor, history club artefacts and equipment for the shooting club at SMC; an honours board going back many years and a new trailer for the CCF; a geography exploration library, allotment club equipment and robotics club equipment for MES; and in the Junior School, a hockey trophy and medals for a sevens tournament in P7, tools for product design and waterproofs for children in the nursery.
Other activities –
  • This year we were able to arrange a one-off tour for sixty of us to part of our old school premises in Melville Street. While a great deal has changed internally as the individual buildings have been converted into offices, the original staircases helped us get our bearings. We were delighted to welcome Mrs McKelvie, who most of us remember as Miss Pratt, to her old classroom. Outside, the Melville Street frontage is largely unchanged except for the removal of the entrance porch, but the rear elevation with the demolition of the gymnasium to form a car park, looks very different although the old science block remains now in the form of offices. Our afternoon trip down memory lane in Melville Street was followed by a gathering at Inverleith.
  • Since our visit to Melville Street both the current tenants and landlord of the premises have consented to a plaque on the outside of the building as a permanent record of the former use of the building.
  • Alan Veitch and Ken Richardson kindly produced an updated leaflet about the Trust in time for the Melville Street visit and have also worked on our website, both of which make it easier for our alumni to keep up to date and also to keep in touch with us.
  • We were delighted to learn recently that Professor Fraser Stoddart, a former pupil of Melville College, is one of the joint winners of the 2016 Nobel Prize for Chemistry. We understand this is the first time a former pupil has won a Nobel Prize. He will be coming to the school to speak to current pupils in December and the Trust plans to find a suitable way to recognise his award.