St John's Society


 

St. John’s College is renowned amongst Durham Colleges for something intangible; a sense of community stronger than a terrace of Georgian houses can alone provide.

It’s difficult to define this ‘John’s Spirit’ to an onlooker, but what is apparent to Johnians new and old is that it’s a very special environment in which to live, as undergraduate, postgraduate or ordinand. The sense of warmth as you walk out onto Linton Lawn to look across the Wear, is something that stays with you for life.

The St. John’s Society (SJS) is an umbrella organisation that brings Old Johnians and current students together, to perpetuate the John’s Spirit.


What does the SJS do?

Every year, Freshers make a one-off membership contribution to the Society, which together with additional fundraising and donations, enables the SJS to make carefully considered donations to projects of long-lasting value in College.

The SJS aims to enrich College life.

For example, in 2007 a significant amount of money was contributed towards the reconstruction of the boathouse. And in 2009 we have allocated specific fund to support the Centenary celebrations; to help mark the occasion.

In this way the SJS manages to uphold a collegiate sense of belonging that bursts the ‘Durham Bubble’.

And the support goes beyond the financial: the SJS keeps the network of Old Johnians together through social events and reunions, and represents current students and alumni to the College’s governing body


How do I apply for funding?

Send an email to apply@thesjs.org.uk outlining the amount requested, the reason for the request, who would benefit and any other information to support your application.


Where is the SJS going?

In the past the Society has held a number of reunion events in Durham and London. We are keen to strike these up again since they are excellent opportunities to catch up with old friends.


Roddy Peters, SJS Chairman

roddy@dunelm.org.uk

 

The SJS Committee

Alex Davis

Who are you - name and role on SJS

Alex Davis - Liason Officer

What did you study at university?

English Literature (class 2009, stayed on to do a MA in English Literary Studies 2009-10)

Where did you live in college?

A tiny room on Linton Wing that, rumour said, was smaller than legally allowed for a prison cell. It has since been knocked into the next room so it is twice the size!

Why are you on the SJS?

College gave me some of the best memories and friends of my life. I want to help ensure that everyone who goes there gets to have the same incredible experience, and I love meeting others who have shared it in their own way.

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! 

Well, there was that time that I threw up on the wonderful Principal David Wilkinson (too much alcohol or concussion from hitting my head... we may never know the truth). He sat with me and a friend in A&E for two hours before driving me home safely... then, on my graduation day the following year, said in front of my parents "Try not to be sick on me today". We all laughed awkwardly.


Bex Lindsay

Who are you - name and role on SJS

Bex Lindsay, and I'm the SJS Vice President

What did you study at university?

I (very loosely) studied Law, but in reality I spent more time at Purple Radio than the Law Library.

Where did you live in college?

In first year I shared a room In Cruddas D (the building was constantly boiling hot so we once used the whole corridor to host a Beach Party). Then in third year I bagsied a lovely room in Cranmer, opposite the MCR.

Why are you on the SJS?

Because I love John's! It was the best place to spend my university years in, and I met all of my close friends there. So now I want to celebrate how great it is and help the SJS to connect all generations of Johnians.

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! . 

I suspect my embarrassing college memories are many and varied- from voting Ron in an election because I thought it was someone's name, to the sheer volume of times I slipped up and down the corridor between rooms in the bar. I best not say too much...


John Grocott

Who are you - name and role on SJS

John - 1909 Club officer

What did you study at university?

Modern Languages & Cultures (Spanish and Italian, with a tiny bit of French)

Where did you live in college?

Haughton, C17

Why are you on the SJS?

I have issues letting go of St John’s – and who could stay away from this fun bunch?

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! 

For a number of years I was known for shocking successive Freshers with an incredibly crass joke that involved several layers of taboo – female sexuality, the lunar month and (of course) vampirism. It did get successively more embarrassing…


Richard Roberts

Who are you - name and role on SJS

Richard Roberts – Treasurer

What did you study at university?

Law and Politics 1976-1979

Where did you live in college?

23 North Bailey C7 (sharing with Jon Morley, top floor attic front with dormer window, full stereophonic effect of the Cathedral chimes through the night, and Tim Yeats car exhaust fumes wafting yep every time they left the engine running while using the garage opposite) then Cruddas B10 (with the view of the brick wall) and finally Cruddas Top Floor right hand corner with the double aspect windows overlooking Principals Walk and the River (I came TOP in the room ballot!!!)

Why are you on the SJS?

For the fun of maintaining and developing true friendships with the Johnian Family scattered worldwide

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! 

Once the fire alarms went off at 03.20 and every one was evacuated - they were all in nightwear plus dressing gowns - I was in Black Tie Evening Dress, and spectacular red silk lined full length black cloak - and remember saying to the then Principal as I was ticked off the list 'But I always dress like this at night'


Alice Ross

Who are you – name and role on SJS

Alice Ross (nee Manuel.) - Social Secretary

What did you study at university?

Church-based Youth and Community Work

Where did you live in college?

1st year Linton B, 2nd Year Brockwell at Margaret's, 3rd Year Cruddas D

Why are you on the SJS?

Because I really value my time at St John's and think it's a wonderful opportunity to connect with other people who have this very special thing in common; maintaining friendships, getting to know other alumni and keeping in touch with current students and events at College.

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! I can't think of much that I want people to know...


Roddy Peters

Who are you - name and role on SJS

Roddy Peters - President and Chair

What did you study at university?

Ancient, Medieval & Modern History 2003-6

Where did you live in college?

Cruddas D44 in first year, sharing with Tom Orton; up in Neville's Cross in second year, then back in the JCR Flat for my non-sabb Presidency, when it was in Linton Wing. My retirement room was then Cranmer C17.

Why are you on the SJS?

I want the SJS to be the most invigorating and helpful alumni society in Durham: to serve you, and to keep the John’s Spirit burning brightly.

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! 

I think I occasionally sleep walk. I once woke up in a Travelodge lift in what transpired to be Birmingham, going towards the ground floor. With no key card. In my pants.


Kate Godfree

Who are you - name and role on SJS

Kate Godfree - Secretary

What did you study at university?

Psychology (I graduated in 2011 but then decided to do an MSc in Developmental Psychopathology 2011-12)

Where did you live in college?

A very small room on Linton B Wing

Why are you on the SJS?

I met some of my closest friends at university and had four fantastic years. I want to help others who have shared the Johnian experience stay in contact with friends and college and enable them to meet other Johnians.

Any funny/embarrassing moments (in your college life or general life) or a fun fact about yourself! 

I went to stay with my cousin one Easter holiday and I left some underwear at hers. She sent it to college but somehow it ended up being given to the Revd Kate Bruce (the chaplain at the time), an email was sent out to the Kates in the college, I had to go and reclaim it and explain the situation


At the front: Alex, Alice, Roddy, Kate, Bex and at the back: John and Richard



St John's College
3 South Bailey
Durham
DH1 3RJ

0191 334 3500

johns.alumni@durham.ac.uk