Heritage Guide to The Geelong College

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WATSON, Ian R (1916-1996)

Ian Watson.

Ian Watson.

WATSON, Ian R (1916-1996)

Headmaster of the Geelong College Preparatory School from 1963 to 1976, Ian Watson succeeded the long serving Preparatory School Head, Leslie J Campbell who had held that position since 1931.

Ian first received his education at Mordialloc and Melbourne High Schools before training to become a primary teacher. In 1938, he was appointed to the one teacher school at Yungera near Swan Hill. Ian first joined the staff of the Preparatory School in 1941 but shortly after enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force in which he served for 5 years on active flying operations. His final rank was as squadron leader on bombing operations out of Darwin. In 1943, while on service, he met and married Mavis Vivian at Bentleigh. He and Mavis were to have eight children. He returned to the Preparatory School in 1946 and at the time of his appointment had been the Senior Assistant Master and acting Head during Leslie J Campbell’s illness.

Ian Watson played a leading role in the establishment of the Preparatory School on its new site. His activities extended beyond the College and he served as Junior Chairman of the Heads of Junior Schools and was an active churchman and Rotarian. He was also a board member of Christian College and supported the Salvation Army in the region. The Ian R Watson Gymnasium at the Preparatory School was named in his honour.

Sources: Pegasus December 1962 p 15; Ad Astra November 1996 p 21; Geelong Advertiser 20 Sept 1996.
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