AT their reunion last month, the Eastern Cape Wilgenhof League (ECWL) hit upon a novel idea to raise funds for their alma mater.
It was decided that 30 miniature replicas of a bronze sculpture of Dr Danie Craven on a solid piece of stinkwood, a project the league undertook in 1984, was to be commissioned and sold.
It is believed the sculptures will become collectors' pieces and will raise at least R500000.
"We will now try to find R112000 in sponsorship so we can commission Anton Momberg, the sculptor of the original bust. Once he gets started the sculptures will be completed within three months,” said chairman of the ECWL, Lomo du Plessis.
The project, dubbed Craven 500, is once again the initiative of the ECWL as was the original 28 years ago.
"Apart from raising funds we will also try to reach 500 Wilgenhof alumni as well as current senior students,” said Du Plessis, adding they would be making use of modern social networks such as facebook, websites and eventually e-bay to reach their targets.
Although the original bust of Dr Craven was mounted on an 80-year-old piece of stinkwood from the Knysna forest the miniatures will be mounted on oak from Stellenbosch.
"Doc”, as Craven was fondly known, left a rich legacy intertwined with the history of South African rugby as well as Wilgenhof in Stellenbosch. Many well-known South Africans passed through its corridors and as such have a high profile alumni scattered around the world. The ECWL sports 188 active members.
"The initiative is something the Old Boys can associate with. It will give them something to take their minds off present cares like the politics of the day,” said Du Plessis.
He said one spirited alumni summed it up in an e-mail: "It's like a vitamin B injection; all that money spent on my chronic medication has been a waste.”
For more info call Du Plessis: 072-485-4881.