The group enrolled at the college when they were 15 years old
and many went on to forge successful careers becoming Senior
Sisters, Nurse Practitioners, Midwives, Midwifery Managers, Health
Visitors and Tutors. The only male on the course, Alan Pearson,
moved to Australia to become Professor of Nursing La Trobe
University in Victoria.
The class reunions started in 1990 and were held at various
restaurants every November. For the group's 40th anniversary in
2003, the group decided to meet where they had first met all those
years ago at the college's Wansbeck Restaurant and have met there
every year since.
Maggie Pringle, nee Picton, who is organising the reunion,
completed her nurse training at Newcastle General Hospital and
worked her way up to Senior Night Sister and Nurse Practitioner at
Maggie said: "There are twelve of us who are still in touch but
because it is 50 years since we started the course we wanted to try
and contact more of our old classmates to make it even more
special. It would be fantastic to see some old faces and find out
what path their lives took."
Maggie speaks fondly of her time at the college and recalls her
favourite memories as: "The social life and the coffee bar;
listening to music; the rounds of silly jokes; backcombing our hair
and wearing makeup, after all many of us had went to all girls
schools and there were boys around now!
"We chose the course as we were from Secondary Modern Schools
and needed O Levels to get into nurse training. Ashington Technical
College, as it used to be known, was the only place in
Northumberland to provide this course plus it was on a convenient
"The course provided us with the qualifications we needed and it
was a valuable transition from school to a working life. Not least
it has given us friendships that have lasted 50 years."
The reunion will take place in November at the Wansbeck
Restaurant at the Ashington Campus, College Road. Former classmates
who would like to get in touch can email Maggie at email@example.com