Celebrations as Windsor Public School marks 150 years

On September 6, 1869, Australia's Father of Federation, Sir Henry Parkes, travelled to Windsor from Sydney to lay the foundation stone for Windsor Public School.

Exactly 150 years later, his great-great-grandson Ian Thom joined student leaders Cassidy Grima, Jasmine Solah, Jackson King and Jacob Simmons to cut a cake marking the school's historic anniversary with the very same trowel used to lay the stone all those years ago.

Celebration: Mike Watson, Cassidy Grima, Jasmine Solah, Jackson King, Jacob Simmons and Ian Thom cut the cake with the foundation trowel. Picture: Geoff Jones.

Celebration: Mike Watson, Cassidy Grima, Jasmine Solah, Jackson King, Jacob Simmons and Ian Thom cut the cake with the foundation trowel. Picture: Geoff Jones.

"The trowel hadn't been used for 150 years, and I was pretty chuffed just to have it on display on the day," Windsor Public School Principal Mike Watson said. "I was having a general conversation with Ian Thom and he said, 'you can use the trowel to cut the cake if you like'.

"I just laughed, but when it came to crunch time, he was serious. So we opened the box and the student leaders cut the cake with the trowel."

Perfect weather greeted visitors for the anniversary formalities at midday, which included a traditional smoking ceremony by Uncle Wes, Mr Watson's official address, and Mr Thom as guest speaker. Riverstone MP Kevin Conolly, representing Education Minister Sarah Mitchell, presented the school with a 150th certificate, and Education Department officials Kerri Brickley and Gary Ruzgas then joined Mr Thom in placing memorabilia in a time capsule.

The school choir sang several songs, a May Pole Dance was performed, and historic displays were held in the library.

While wild weather later saw the evening activities cut short, Mr Watson said it was still a special day.

"It was a credit to staff and the P and C, it's been a huge job," he said. "It was pretty good to be a part of the school's history.

"The students loved it and the student leaders were excellent. For their role as student leaders finishing Year Six in a special year like this and leading the assembly, they couldn't have had a better day."

The school opened its doors again on Monday for those wishing to browse through the displays and photo albums.

"We've got people in their 70s and 80s as ex-students talking about what happened back in the day, and they had some interesting yarns," Mr Watson said.