The Three Day Alumni Extravaganza Takes Off- Watch Our Film
The Prince’s Foundation is delighted to be starting it’s three day celebration for it’s alumni which will give all those who have been involved with programmes an opportunity to share their experiences and update other alumni on their progress since leaving the Prince’s Foundation.
The 3 days will be made up of range of activities from receptions, to presentations, films to visits and it is hoped that new networks will be formed and old bonds re-discovered.
The Reunion – Day 1
This morning (Thursday 24th) saw the beginning of the Prince’s Foundation’s highly anticipated three day alumni extravaganza! At 9am all of the Prince’s Foundation’s Alumni and guests met and gathered together at our headquarters in Shoreditch. Many had not changed through the years and it was easy to recognise those very familiar faces of colleagues and former students. It didn’t take long for everyone to reacquaint themselves; a diligent buzz in the air as everyone discussed the projects and amazing environments they had worked in since their departure from The Prince’s Foundation.
Shortly after introductions, came the arrival of “special guest”, HRH The Prince of Wales; greeted by Hank Dittmar, CEO of The Prince’s Foundation, and Alumnus Mark Hoare.
Hank then took to the podium to deliver a short speech, followed by Alumnus and Trustee Mark who delivered a short reminiscence of The Prince’s Foundation. This ended with a short film being played, highlighting the careers and experiences of various Foundation alumni. It showed many of the projects that they had been involved in and the scope of their working environment.
It was at the end of this film that HRH The Prince of Wales took to the podium to speak to the Alumni. Thanks were given and the opportunity arose for the Alumni to speak to HRH The Prince of Wales. He was keen to talk to everyone, and see what many of the alumni had been up to, particularly interested in how his foundation helped many of the alumni in their current career paths.
The afternoon, saw a Petcha Kutcha session; allowing many of our alumni to give a 3 minute presentation showing their work and projects over the years.
Finishing with a Thanksgiving dinner at The Princess of Shoreditch, day 1 wound down after a hectic day of re-acquaintance and re-discovery….
Day two required being hustled onto a bus for an excursion to Poundbury. World-famous and highly influential, Poundbury is the best-known exponent of the principles of sustainable urbanism espoused by the Prince’s Foundation and serves as a core teaching example.
For those that aren’t familiar with Poundbury, In 1987, West Dorset District Council identified land owned by the Duchy of Cornwall on the western fringe of Dorchester to meet the future growth needs of the town. The Prince of Wales resolved that any development should enhance its setting and also help to engender a sense of community.
This required a radical departure from conventional planning and development practices. Léon Krier, a well-known theorist and proponent of traditional urbanism and architecture, was appointed to draw up a shared vision for Poundbury.
Arriving at Poundbury, we were given a walking tour by current staff of The Prince’s Foundation and former Alumni. Poundbury’s plan carefully integrates different building uses so that factories, offices, shops, cafés, community buildings and leisure facilities are cheek by jowl with housing, all within easy walking distance of each other. Unlike other conventional developments, there is a wide variety of building types and a hierarchy of scale; over twenty different architects have designed buildings at Poundbury.
Ending the tour for a ceremony at The Queen Mother’s Square, we were surprised by another visit from HRH The Prince of Wales. The ceremony saw the grand opening of a brand new Waitrose in Poundbury, by HRH, on the west side of Queen Mother’s Square; a key moment in the development of phase III of Poundbury, currently under construction, which is due to be completed in 2020.
After the ceremony, the opportunity was then given to explore Poundbury on our own for somewhere to eat. Given recommendations and directions, we split into manageable groups and set off to end the day with a delicious late lunch.
And so the final day begins…
Day 3 of the Alumni trip began by meeting once more at the Prince’s Foundation headquarters in Shoreditch. Today we made a trip to East Anglia, visiting the private homes of two of our alumni and Trustees.
Invited by Dominic Richards, a trustee of The Prince’s Foundation and former alumnus, we firstly arrived at his beautiful home at Yaxley Hall. After coming across Yaxley Hall one winter’s day covered in a light dusting of snow, Dominic began straight away on the ongoing renovation of the Tudor House. After a fire and two principle rebuilds in 1588 and 1772, a quirky house with a varied and peculiar architectural form resulted.
We enjoyed a tour of Yaxley Hall; wondering around we enjoyed many talks about the history and past of Yaxley Hall, including the resident ghost, Henrietta Nelson.
A delicious brunch was then held which included eggs from Yaxley Hall’s prized woodland chickens.
After departing Yaxley Hall and thanking Dominic for his hospitality we made our way to Framlingham.
Framlingham is a beautiful small market town in rural Suffolk, England. Surrounded by vast amounts of English heritage, it is an ideal place to explore the timeless part of eastern England. Commonly referred to as “Fram” by the locals, it is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is mentioned in the Domesday Book.
Alumnus and Prince’s Foundation Trustee Mark Hoare led us around a visit of Framlinghim, where we got to visit the historic Framlingham castle and the mere delightful old buildings, including his own beautiful home.
A traditional 16th century listed house with sensitive low carbon renovations on a modest budget gave a perfect place for an afternoon tea.
This is where the final day ended and unfortunately the end of the Alumni extravaganza. As we thanked Mark for his generosity and made our way back onto the coach and consequently back home, we vowed to keep in touch with our Alumni as old friends and new friends, parted their own separate ways.
The Prince’s Foundation would like to thank all those that were involved in the three day event and to all those that attended. After an overwhelming success, please keep in touch as more Alumni events are in the pipeline!
The Prince's Foundation Alumni
We are proud to celebrate the achievements of the alumni who have agraduated from its various Education programmes over the years, and to have 505 Alumnu who have graduate from 8 different education programmes over the last 21 years.