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Class of 88 reunited

PUBLISHED: 11:52 27 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:38 03 March 2010

MUSIC from the likes of Bros and Duran Duran filled the air as students from a Suffolk school reassembled after a 14-year break.

The Deben High School class of 1988 were signing the register once again at a reunion held in Felixstowe on Saturday night.

MUSIC from the likes of Bros and Duran Duran filled the air as students from a Suffolk school reassembled after a 14-year break.

The Deben High School class of 1988 were signing the register once again at a reunion held in Felixstowe on Saturday night.

The last time some of these people met, Ronald Reagan was president, CDs were outselling vinyl for the first time and Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson was set to disgrace himself at the Summer Olympics.

It was a chance for old friends to catch up on what they have been doing in the intervening years and reminisce about some of the things they used to get up to.

Photographs from school days adorned the walls of the Customs Club in View Point Road, some of which people hoped had been lost long ago along with their school reports!

While a lot of those in attendance still live in Felixstowe or the surrounding area, others had travelled hundreds of miles for the event.

Many at the reunion still keep in contact, but for others it was the first time to see old friends in more than a decade.

Stephen Moss, who organised the night, said with the former pupils either at, or fast approaching 30, it seemed like an appropriate time to stage the event.

He said: "I still live in the area and when I bump into people they always say 'Wouldn't it be great to have a reunion' so I thought why not organise one?

"I did most of it by using the friendsreunited website. There were about 300 e-mails going backwards and forwards from my computer."

Looking through old school registers Stephen discovered there were about 190 people in the class of 1988 and he hoped up to 100 would make the event.

He added: "It's great to see so many old faces here and who knows, in another ten years we might have another one."

Carolyn Wright (nee Stewart) along with Carrie Calver and Katy McAllister helped Stephen with preparations for the event.

All three were wondering just how they managed to get through their school days.

Carolyn said: "I used to sign in every day and sign out but go home in between times. I don't know how I passed my exams."

"Neither do I," added Katy. "I think I turned up to a maths exam after having a few drinks."

Across the room old friend Jon Thirlux and David Mizon were competing against the sound system in a bid to catch up.

The two men were good friends in their school days but now live hundreds of miles apart.

Jon had travelled from south coast town Eastbourne, while David had come from the opposite direction with his journey from his Doncaster home.

David said: "I did see him at his wedding quite recently but it's nice to catch up again.

"It's easy to recognise people - they've hardly changed at all."

Jon said: "My school days were OK but I wasn't there a lot of the time. I do have some fond memories.

"I moved down to the school from a different area so I remember that being quite scary at the time."

Both men agreed they had some good tales to tell but most were unsuitable for publication in a family newspaper!

Kathleen Douglas was enjoying the evening with former classmates Julie King and Louise Baker.

All three women live in the area and have kept in contact ever since school. They also took the opportunity to catch up with some less familiar faces.

Kathleen, who now runs her own business and has two children, was described by her friends as the "rebellious one."

Julie, 30, said: "If anyone was bunking off school or getting into trouble the chances were it was Kathleen."

In her defence, Kathleen said: "I suppose I was a bit naughty back then but that was a long time ago. I've definitely mellowed now."

Meanwhile John Durrant and Steve Smale, both 30-year-old dockers, were keen to dish the dirt on old friend Ian McCarthy.

Steve said: "I remember Ian having a confrontation with a teacher. I think the teacher accused him of something he hadn't done and he didn't like that at all. It might have come to blows."

Ian, who works as a designer in London, added: "I did have a bit of a short temper back then but I have changed over the years."

He continued: "It's nice to see so many old faces but to be honest there are a few who I don't even recognise."


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