"I am quite proud to quote Dr. Kurt Hahn, who during one of his visits to Anavryta, in the early fifties said: “This is the best of all three!” We, the old boys of Anavryta know why. I am sure that its Headmaster knew too, but never claimed any credit for himself."
Apostolos Kallios, President Anavryta Old Boys Association - in his memorial address for JWY, Salem, May 1st 2012 ∞
with hopes for this house and
what we are going to make for it
no[t]of it – I had already hopes
in 1933 that he would make something else
- serving the common cause. He
certainly does it and God bless him
and his Ghislaine and the great work
they are doing. I smell victory amid
Anavryta 15.1.1952 Kurt Hahn
In 1948, with the help of Kurt Hahn, JWY went to Greece to become the private tutor of Crown Prince Constantine. In consultation with the Queen and King of Greece, he founded Anavryta which followed the ideas of Salem and Gordonstoun as a Kurt Hahn school for boys.
"It was the first time that a Hahn school was built from the ground up. The classrooms were concentrated in one block and the houses for 50 boys each, were spaced out into the woods; on the principle that they could not be seen from one another in day-time, but that lights should be visible through the trees at night. This allowed sufficient isolation and independence for each community and its housemaster [….] We started with twenty-five boys, and the total grew to 180 by the end of the first eight years. They were divided into three houses: a junior house taking the age-group ten to twelve and the two senior houses taking them up to the final exams at eighteen […] The boys came from all parts of Greece and from the large Greek communities overseas […]. Only very few were foreigners, as we taught in Greek […] Extreme poverty was widespread in the country, and we had many boys who came from the poorest homes. We therefore kept a simple way of life in the school and restricted items that the richer boys might bring with them. […] One third of the boys were non-paying scholars; these were selected on journeys through the poorest provinces […] The school was run in the same lines as Gordonstoun. The training plan, Colour Bearers, Helpers and Guardians were introduced gradually as the boys grew into their responsibilities." (Winthrop-Young, J. (1970). Anavryta, H. Röhrs, H. Tunstall-Behrens (eds). Kurt Hahn, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, p.116-122.)
In 1958 the Crown Prince finished his school days and in 1959 JWY moved back to England with his family. For his work at Anavryta JWY was rewarded with the OBE in 1960.
It was as Headmaster of Anavryta that JWY helped the Head of Salem, Prince George of Hanover, organize a multiple-school reconstruction effort in Argostoli, Greece, following a devastating earthquake in the Southern Ionian Islands in 1953, that involved 120 students from eight different European countries and inspired JWY to the idea that would later become Round Square.
As JWY was sadly ill, his daughter Sophie and her husband, were generously invited to take part in JWY’s place in the 60 years celebration of Anavryta in 2009. There, they were presented with an award for him from the Association of Anavryta Old Boys in appreciation and recognition of his work at Anavryta.
Top row photos, left to right:
All the resources on this subpage are from the family collection.
Except: ∞ Salem