General News

Ben Brown – Istanbul Challenge

It is with great sadness we learn of the loss of former Cryptian Ben Brown.

Ben left the school about 6 years ago to go to Welbeck College and then on into the Army. Sadly, Ben took his own life two weeks ago. He had hidden his struggle with mental illness from everyone and it came as a great shock to all his family and friends. He was always an outgoing person and had a likeable cheekiness in his approach to life, so it is hard to believe that he has passed.

Following this tragic loss, Ben’s family and friends have joined together to honour his life and raise awareness about the issues surrounding mental health, neuro-diversity and the prevention of young suicide.

Ben was a big part of Typhoon Squadron in the Army and one exercise he was extremely fond of and could not wait to see come to fruition was ‘Trans-Europe’, a summer long exercise covering the majority of Europe in four stages. Starting in Loughborough, the Squadron planned to travel all the way to Istanbul and back again; however, due to the Coronavirus pandemic the exercise could not go ahead. Typhoon Squadron have now decided the best way to honour Ben is to complete the journey he had originally planned and have set up a team challenge to run the 4600 miles to Istanbul and back.

You can follow the progress of the “race” to Istanbul and back at the Challenge website.

Read more…

eNews May 2020

Some good news…

A six-classroom extension to The Crypt School could soon become reality after planning permission was granted by Gloucester City Council.

The project is the latest in a line of expansions for the Podsmead grammar school in the last 15 years, including a Sixth Form Learning Resource Centre and new-build engineering block.

Elevations of the new block. Picture: Quattro Design Architects

Elevations of the new block. Picture: Quattro Design Architects

Drawn up by Gloucester Quays-based Quattro Design Architects, the plans will provide replacement accommodation and facilities in a previously under-utilised area of the school.

The new single-storey teaching facility will offer six matching 56.5 metre square classrooms running from a central corridor, alongside four toilets and associated storage space.

Established in 1539, the school serves the city of Gloucester and the surrounding areas and is said to be ‘noted for high levels of achievement with a strong emphasis on science’.

While reinforcing that “there is no increase in staff or pupil numbers as part of this development”, the school said the project will allow for “an improved learning environment for the students connected to the main school building”.

The proposed site of the new block, outlined in red. Picture: Quattro Design Architects

The proposed site of the new block, outlined in red. Picture: Quattro Design Architects

A planning statement added that: “These additions have provided wonderful new facilities, but the fundamental 1940s core of the school remains inappropriate for modern teaching due to undersized teaching spaces.”

Floor plan of the new block. Picture: Quattro Design Architects

Floor plan of the new block. Picture: Quattro Design Architects



A Letter from the Headmaster

30th March, 2020

Dear Old Cryptians,
As you all may know, the School was closed on Friday, 23rd March due to the coronavirus epidemic and the need to limit each person’s social contact with others.

In the run up to the closure, the School had undertaken a significant amount of preparatory work to prepare for such an  eventuality, which was frankly looking increasing likely as the days wore on. Therefore, when the order to close came, we were quickly able to implement our plans to move to remote teaching and learning.

Read more…

Discover DeCrypt e-News April

Discover DeCrypt e-news March 2020

eNews January/February 2020

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eNews Jan/Feb 2020

Coffee and Prayer Together


Brexit is a cause of great celebration for some and great sadness for others. But now is the time when we must come together to serve the common good in our city, our nation and in our relationship with the rest of Europe. Whatever the future holds, Christians believe that we can entrust the future to God; therefore there is always hope.

The Archbishops and our own Bishops too have urged us all to listen to one another and to pray together too. Whether you voted leave or remain, what are the three main things that we have in common that we can build on for a better future as a community?

You are invited to gather to discuss this question and others over coffee in the schoolroom at Discover DeCrypt on Friday 31 January 11.00-12.30. Let’s find common ground together and commit the future to God. 

Canon Nikki Arthy


Pancakes for Shrove Tuesday 

Tuesday 25 February 3.00-7.00pm

Join us in the Schoolroom for pancakes on Shrove Tuesday any time between 3.00pm and 7.00pm.  Our willing chefs will be preparing delicious pancakes with a range of toppings including bananas and cream, maple syrup with strawberries…and lemon and sugar for the die-hard traditionalists!  Tea and coffee will also be available.

‘Shrove’ comes from the verb ‘to shrive’ which means to confess. In the Middle Ages Christians went to confess their sins the day before Ash Wednesday, which marked the start of Lent. As Lent was a time of fasting, when meat and dairy were prohibited, Pancakes were eaten on Shrove Tuesday to use up all the forbidden eggs, cream, butter and milk.

Donations will go to the Church Urban Fund.  CUF was established by the Church of England as a practical response to unmet need and has been active in local communities for over 30 years. It works through the Church of England’s local parish networks, and alongside other faith-based and secular organisations, to bring about positive, long-term, sustainable change in neighbourhoods. It works through building trust, empowering local people to have a go at addressing the areas of greatest need in their communities, and speaking out against injustice.

Every Friday:

Coffee, Cake and Conversation 10.30am-12.30pm

Prayers for the City 1.00pm

LGBT+ Rainbow Cuppa @DeCrypt 
Wednesdays 29 January & 26 February 1.00-3.00pm


We are delighted to be co-hosting the Rainbow Cuppa together with LGBT+ Partnership Cheltenham, Gloucestershire & connected areas and Age UK Gloucestershire.  Come and enjoy a cuppa and a chat in a safe, friendly and calm space for all LGBT+ folk and allies, supported by the broader community.

New to Discover DeCrypt the first of a monthly

FUNtastic Community Fair

Saturday 8 February 10.00am-3.00pm

“Cake is a symbol of joy, celebration, belonging, friendship and love.”

Viva O’Flynn grew up in the Philippines where she learned to bake from her grandmother, helping in the kitchen from the age of 5.  For Viva,  you eat cake to enjoy life.:

“The wafting aroma of freshly baked homemade goods transports me back to my childhood years and I’m filled with love.  Whenever I bake, I listen to love songs, so my secret recipe, which isn’t so secret any more, is love.”

Viva studied as a chef at Le Cordon Bleu, London. Since marrying and settling in Gloucestershire, she has started a highly successful business, Love Viva Cakes and Crafts, last year winning Creative Business of the Year Runner Up and Best New Business Finalist awarded by the Women’s Business Club.

Her latest enterprise is a series of ‘Funtastic Craft Fairs’ to be held here at Discover DeCrypt once a month.  The first is on Saturday 8th February from 10.00am until 3.00pm. There will be delicious cakes, lovely handmade crafts, gifts and lots of shopping for everyone. And it’s free entry. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, stop in for a taste of Viva’s cakes and crafts and take home a little love! 


Half Term Creative Crafty Club
Wesdnesday 19th February
Thursday 20th
Friday 21st
11.00am – 12.30pm

Looking for some free, fun family activity over Half Term?

Come and get creative with paint, pens, glue and glitter.  We’ll be taking our pencils for a walk, painting to music, exploring watercolours and thinking colourfully about spring…Ideal for 7-12 year olds, but younger children will manage well with a bit of adult help. There is no charge, but we invite a donation to help cover the cost of materials. More information on the website

Gardening in the Churchyard

The birds are singing, green shoots are struggling up through the mud and spring is on the way….how about a little gardening?  Starting with the weekend of February 1st and 2nd, we will be inviting enthusiastic volunteers to join us in the churchyard on the first weekend of each month for whatever seasonal tasks are required. This month it will be mainly weeding, clearing brambles and nettles and litter picking.  You don’t need to be a knowledgeable gardener (though gardeners are most welcome!) just be sure to bring a pair of gloves and any tools you might have.  Discover DeCrypt will offer hot tea and coffee and a place to warm up when your fingers get chilled. Let’s make the churchyard into a beautiful and safe community space for all to enjoy.

Reminder: the churchyard is in the care of the City Council, which provides a team periodically to do the heavy work. Discover DeCrypt is joining with neighbours, residents and local gardeners to form a community group for maintaining and improving the churchyard. If you’d like to get involved, come along to a gardening weekend and introduce yourself.

Keep up to date with news and events on our Facebook page and Twitter





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End of year reflections

A few thoughts and recollections as I near the end of the first half of my term as president of the OCC – it seems like the time has flown by.

This is available (with pictures!) as a pdf download from here – Christmas Update

Read more…

Old Cryptians’ Club eNews October 2019


OCC eNews

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Adam Ashby
(1973 – 1978)

The School would like to warmly invite Old Cryptians to the
Annual Remembrance Service on Monday, 11 November at 10.30am  

If anyone is interested in attending, please could they email and arrive at the school for 10.15am

London Old Cryptians’ Club Annual Dinner

The 2019 London Old Cryptians’ Club Annual Dinner

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, 145 Fleet Street, LONDON, EC4A 2BU

Saturday 16 November from 6.00pm

Please click here for further details and booking form

A message from your Membership Secretary…….

final few email addresses

This is a plea, supported by our President, from the Membership Secretary, to those remaining 12% of Old Cryptians who do not have an email address.

We really must stop posting to members (even 2nd class letter costs 61p) in favour of 100% email.  However the Cryptian will continue to be posted to those members who still like to receive a printed copy as one of their subscription benefits.

If you know of any fellow Old Cryptians who do not use email please would you kindly have a word with them to encourage them to provide an email address, it need not be their own. Perhaps they have a tech savvy relative who is prepared to pass on messages, invitations and our eNews newsletter in printed form.

In doing this you would be helping to significantly lower our administration costs.

Many thanks,

Richard Briggs (1955-63)
Membership Secretary
01694 723845
07870 401399

The Cryptian has returned!


The Cryptian was distributed to members at the annual school prizegiving in September. The Head, Nick Dyer commented “I am delighted that the Cryptian magazine, after a short absence, is now back and, I have to say, looking very good indeed”.
If you haven’t received your copy via post or personal delivery
it should be with you very soon.


Membership information:

Membership Direct Debit:





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You are receiving this email as you are a member of the Old Cryptians’ Club

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Gloucester, GL2 5AE

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London Old Cryptians AGM and Dinner

On behalf of the Committee of the London Old Cryptians’ Club, I would like to invite you to:

The 2019 London Old Cryptians’ Club Annual Dinner

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese,
145 Fleet Street

Saturday, 16th November, from 6pm
RSVP: Friday 27th October.

The cost of the meal will be £32 inc £1 annual membership of the London Old Cryptians’ Club.

If you would like to attend then please:

Option 1: Bank Transfer (preferred)

  1. 1. Please email John Rose
  2. Include Your name, years at the school, vegetarian preference and how you have paid.
  3. Make payment by bank transfer – details below
Bank: Lloyds
Sort code: 30-95-74
Account number: 01002236

Option 2. Cheque

As above, but send cheque to:
Andrew Prosser
The Penthouse
William House
45 Bury Fields

Option 3. Eventbrite

Online registration

We look forward to welcoming you on the evening.
Please do forward to any OCs you think would be interesting in attending.

We look forward to welcoming you on the evening.

Thank you
John Rose (1982-89)
Chairman, London Old Cryptians
07818 442 772