Class of 1980 French reunion
Class of 1980 French alumni gathered on campus in July and finally celebrated 40 years since their graduation. After postponing the event twice, and after a successful online reunion during the pandemic, the Class of 1980 returned to Liverpool, joined by a few fellow graduates from other years who were also studying French at the time.
The organisers, Charles and Jackie, started planning the reunion three years ago. Charles said: “What started as a simple idea over a glass of wine, back in the easy autumn days of 2019, turned into something more convoluted. 2020 would be the fortieth anniversary of our graduation, and Jackie’s excellent suggestion was that we should mark that occasion with a gathering of our contemporaries. We connected with Liverpool’s Alumni Office, who encouraged us and provided the mechanisms for extending our invitation to as many alumni from our French graduation year as possible. Then, of course, Covid-19 struck with a vengeance. All hope of such a ‘live’ event was dashed, but rather than lose all momentum, we mounted a Zoom meeting instead. Hosted through the Alumni Office Zoom account, we met online with a dozen or more enthusiasts, sitting in our front rooms with our own glasses of wine, and as well as lively catch-up chat we enjoyed a wonderfully informative presentation from Prof Charles Forsdick about French studies at Liverpool in 2020.”
Three years later, the group finally reunited in Liverpool in the Summer. The group gathered in the Language Lounge on Abercrombie Square and were joined by members of staff, past and present, and a current student. Attendees enjoyed the buffet and refreshments before going on a small tour of the campus led by Dr Ian Magedera, Senior Lecturer.
Many things have changed, the Arts Library has morphed and transposed into the Language Lounge, the Modern Languages Building is now the School of Law and Social Justice, but some things remain the same. One of the attendees, Caroline, said: “Soaring trees greeted our arrival at Abercrombie Square. It all looked rather lovely and elegant. I had forgotten, but it was brilliant to see the University again, and it felt like a sort of time travel. Forty years have vanished since we were last at Liverpool together at the University. Old friends look just the same in my eyes – or very nearly – and the bond is still there.”
It was truly wonderful to see people again after all these years. It reminded me of the strength of relationships between students and between lecturers and the student body.
– Jackie, reunion organiser
Are you in still in regular contact with peers from your year? If so, let us know! We want to hear your stories about staying connected since your time at the University of Liverpool. Get in touch with the Alumni team via: firstname.lastname@example.org.