Mark McGowan

Mark McGowan

Minister for Education and Training; South West

    Wembley Primary School Oval renamed to honour its founder

    11/04/2008 12:00 AM

    The Wembley Primary School oval will be renamed in honour of a man whose vision and dogged determination made it a reality.


    Education and Training Minister Mark McGowan today announced that the oval would be named after the late Bob Pritchard.


    “Bob Pritchard was a Wembley resident and consulting engineer who identified the urgent need for an oval more than 25 years ago and successfully lobbied the State Government of the day to build it,” Mr McGowan said.


    “If it were not for his energy, dedication and refusal to take ‘no’ for an answer, the students of Wembley Primary School would not have a playing field of their own.


    “In 1981, Mr Pritchard led the school’s P&C Association to turn decades of discussions and correspondence into positive action, resulting in the oval being built the following year.


    “Bob’s immense contribution included compiling an extensive research report into the provision of adequate playing facilities for the school, and assembling a team of parents who volunteered their own time to help with works such as fencing, reticulation and levelling.”


    North Metropolitan Region MLC Ed Dermer was a student at Wembley Primary School from 1967 to 1970.


     “The campaign to re-name the oval in memory of Mr Pritchard, who died in October 2006, was led by the Wembley Primary School P&C Association and supported by the Pritchard family,” Mr Dermer said.


    “Mr Pritchard was also instrumental in bringing other local school projects to fruition including the development of the City Beach Senior High School gymnasium and the building of an underpass near Wembley Primary School in 1990, following a student’s death and several near-accidents.”


    Speaking on behalf of the Pritchard family, Bob’s son Geoff said his father would have been humbled by the recognition.


    “My father had tremendous passion, energy and enthusiasm for many projects in the community during his lifetime, not bowing to opposition but persuading those around him that they could be a reality,” Mr Pritchard said.


    “If he was with us today, he would have played down his involvement and acknowledged the significant contributions of all of the people who voluntarily gave so much to ensure that the school had this playing facility for many generations of students.”


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