Alumni Main


At Magdalen College School, we highly value our connection with our former students. We celebrate the achievements and experiences of our alumni with students, staff and the local community.

The school plans to hosts annual ‘Alumni Connect’ days, where alumni are invited back to mentor, guide and, most importantly, inspire our current students. They lead discussions on career choices, apprenticeships and higher education.

We are highly active across social media. Former staff and students are encouraged to engage with each other and the school via our Alumni & Old Bracklians facebook page, where we also publicise our alumni’s achievements and share memories of our school.


John Gillett 1948-56

My favourite memory of MCS:

Sugared buns from ‘Knibby’s’ tuck-shop.  The malty scent of the Brackley brewery.  Hymn practice in chapel with “Daddy Green”.  EN Jones and “Forry”.

Since leaving MCS I have:

I left MCS Brackley for National Service in The Royal Signals, and then I went to Jesus College, Cambridge to read Natural Sciences and eventually to read Chemical Engineering.  I then worked as a process engineer and technical manager for 12 years in ICI Plastics Division; followed by 25 years in ICI/Zeneca/AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals (To describe what I did during this period would take a book!).  My life has had five strands: Family, Spiritual Development, Chemical Engineering, Caving and Education. When one strand performed badly I could always make up for it in another strand.  I have had and am still having a most enjoyable and fulfilling life.

My biggest achievement so far is:

This is difficult to answer as the word ‘largest’ is governed by opinion and experience, but there is at least one per strand of my life.  Family – I was happily married for 51 yrs and raised a daughter who is a chemical engineer.  Spiritual Development – Ongoing, but I have lectured and written a great deal; “The North Bucks Yokel” poetry book is probably the best.  Chemical Engineering – I started up the first computer controlled high pressure polyethylene plant, published many papers and a textbook “Hazard Study & Risk Assessment in The Pharmaceutical Industries”.  Caving – I led a successful expedition to The Gouffre Berger in 1983, wrote two books on caving and I am still caving in my eightieth year.  Education – I chaired the European Federation of Chemical Engineering Education Group for several years and wrote many papers on chemical engineering education and education in general.  I received an Honorary Doctorate for my work in education from l’Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse.

My advice to current students is:

Think for yourself!  Be prepared!  Spend at least a quarter an hour of each day in peace and quiet.  Never stop learning!

My next goal is:

To celebrate my eightieth birthday in style without passing out. 

Harry Brooker 2003-2010

Harry Brooker

My favourite memory of MCS:

Going on the World Challenge trip to Nepal in 2008 and seeing the Himalayas.

Since leaving MCS I have:

Worked in Bristol and Milton Keynes doing Product Design, Graphic Design and CGI for some of the biggest car and electronics companies in the world.

My biggest achievement so far is:

Earning a degree in Creative Product Design from the University of the West of England.

My advice to current students is:

To get the most out of yourself, focus on the things you're passionate about. Show devotion by putting time into your own project away from school, that sets you apart from the crowd and will pay off later in life.

My next goal is:

To design my own watch.  

Adam Grant

AG 2016

My favourite memory of Magdalen College School?

PE, competing in cross county for the school and electronics/metal work/wood work.

Since leaving MCS I have?

Worked in several professions before deciding to train as an engineer. I am currently a Principal Engineer at a building services consultancy in Oxford.

My biggest achievement so far is?

Graduating from London South Bank University with 2-1 Beng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

My advice to current students is?

Don’t worry if you haven’t decided on a profession before leaving school or choosing which A levels to take or which University to go to. Whilst it will benefit you to know what you want to do early it is not essential. I did not start training as an engineer until my mid-twenties and graduated in my thirties. Engineers are sought after in the UK and there are plenty of companies who offer apprentice type programmes with day release to college and uni.

My next goal is?

Gain Chartered engineer (Ceng) status with CIBSE (Chartered institute of building services engineers).