Yesterday, the revamped Methodist Girls’ School Heritage Centre was launched. The opening was officiated by Mrs Anna Tham, former principal of the school. She is an Old Girl, former teacher, and remains the longest serving principal of the school (1977 to 1994) to date. Yesterday was also the day the Methodist Girls’ School was founded in 1887 by Sophia Blackmore (15 August). To have the Heritage Centre launched on this day gave an added significance.
There was a heritage room set up when the school moved to Blackmore Drive in Bukit Timah in the early 1990s. Not many teachers and girls have been in there. Many often wondered what lay behind the closed doors. In 2015, the Alumnae Association decided that it was time for a revamp, and they would spearhead this project as their gift to the school on its 130th birthday. The Heritage Centre was almost two years in the making, and The History Workroom is proud to have been consultant on the project, working alongside the MGS Alumnae Association in the planning and curating of the Heritage Centre.
Two features of the revamped Heritage Centre stand out for us. The first was the incorporation of items from the old school campus on Mount Sophia including bricks from the former Sophia Blackmore Memorial clock tower, school bell and shed, doors and window frames. These sentimental items were salvaged by the Old Girls in the 1990s before the campus was demolished. The second was the effort made to include items from the original heritage room into the new Heritage Centre. These items included original showcases and handwritten captions which gave the new Heritage Centre a connection and sense of continuity with its predecessor.
This project was not without its challenges. But what left a deep impression on us was the commitment and dedication of the Alumnae Association. They put in their best effort to help in any and every way they could, whilst juggling the demands of work and home. The MGS Old Girls were also generous with their time. When the call went out for items and stories, many responded with items that are now on display, and spent time sharing their memories of their school days with us.
THW is grateful to be a part of this project.